Local motives, international triggers

I have this little theory that the latest political assassinations (starting with Rafic Hariri) in Lebanon are carried out by local actors (Lebanese mostly but may include regional players) are triggered by international political shifts and decisions in order to force a status-quo on Lebanese political alignments and decisions. Although I don’t have the time to do this with great historical investigative detail but I kind of recall that most of the assassinations followed or preceded either the voting of UN resolutions, or the issuing of the finding of UN commissions, the visits of political delegates from outside, or some regional political agreement or re-alignment.

For example, Walid Eido’s assassination was preceded by renewed French diplomatic activity with Syria. In the case of Pierre Gemayel there was a very similar circumstance: Syrian and Iraqi rapprochement. I’ll try to find similar patterns later on. It’s like every time something is opening up in the face of Syria, some ‘anti-Syrian’ guy in Lebanon is being blown up. Of course, not any sort of “anti-Syrian” guy, but someone who represents the lamb, the ideal scapegoat, the ‘weakest link’ (Eido and Gemayel are perfect examples). As I argued for Gemayel’s killing, Eido’s assassination obeys the same type of political logics. No material costs (the guy has no popularity for example), but high symbolic effect (represents Hariri’s staunchest supporter).

Bear in mind that the US has not accused Syria for Eido’s assassination. This of course is not a signal that Syria is not behind the assassination but tells you more about specific political configurations, and possible re-alignments. Is it possible that something is cooking in the corridors of regional diplomacy and that some party (Lebanese most probably, but with possible regional help, even groups within Syria) is trying to force a specific status-quo on the Lebanese local political platform?

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3 thoughts on “Local motives, international triggers

  1. Another clue that might help solve the bigger mystery is the fact that the (same) warlords are back in power and attempting to start another civil war that will result in the country becoming a federation, their goal from the beginning (twenty years ago) and America’s goal (also in Iraq and Palestine). Remember that Hariri’s assassination was preceded by the Syria Accountability Act in Congress, the UN resolution and Hamade’s assassination ‘attempt’ (possibly to shake things up). It was followed by strong anti-Syrian sentiment and stronger sectarian tension, and, as you said, the assassinations of scapegoats. The Hariri assassination involved regional and international players, with possibly *some* Syrians, but those that followed were light and made by locals, particularly the last three.

  2. good points dmitri. And it will never be clearly known in any case because all parties benefit from Hariri’s assassination once instrumentalized in a specific direction.

    the “we want the truth” slogan should be read as: “we want our version of the political truth to prevail”.

    and thanks youssef..

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