Saturday, October 29, 2016

The 15 things that will change in Lebanon once Aoun is elected

Artwork by Tarek Chemaly
Well, here we are - Monday October 31st is supposed to be the day. General Michel Aoun will be elected president of the republic and unlike his first foray it is not as a stopgap because the Lebanese could not elect a president, so the army interim board is bound to take over as per the constitution with its head serving as de facto "prime minister" (at the time in 1988 when Amine Gemayel's mandate finished, they could not find wine at the Baabda palace so they drank cognac calling the night of the transition "the night of the Cognac").
Well here we are, again.
Below is a rundown of things that will change in Lebanon (15 to be precise) when Aoun gets elected.
1 - Nothing.
Oooops, this ruins the 14 other elements, to quote Tennis legend Steffi Graf “I’m very sorry it was so fast,” when winning the French Open final in 1988 in 32 minutes.
Seriously people, if you expect one person to be able to change all the Lebanese setting, you must be deluding yourself. Lebanon, as a concept of a nation, has been still-born. And we keep struggling with a notion that does not define us on and on and on.
Mohammad Raad, when confronted by the press in 2008 as to having two competing names whereby MPs would choose between them to elect a president (back when president Michel Suleiman got elected) looked at the journalist, and baffled by the prospect said: "no, this would become an election!".
One last anecdote, back in the 80s, the name of late Raymond Edde was being marketed as a serious contender of the presidency, to which he replied "get me the Israelis and the Syrians out, and I would become president". Late prime Minister Salim El Hoss answered him "If we get the Israelis and the Syrians out we'd bring Georgina Rizk president!". For those not in the know, Georgina Rizk was Miss Universe 1971 and a former Miss Lebanon. 
So this should tell you about the changes in Lebanon from electing a president.