Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Late Awakening to... Sovereignty!

By Elias Harfoush
This comment was published in al-Hayat on 2/11/2010
The international investigation into the assassination of former Premier Rafiq Hariri and subsequent crimes certainly violates Lebanese sovereignty, there is no doubt of that. This is not just in terms of the investigators’ violation of “morals” in the neighborhood of Ouzai and of people’s sanctity. It is a foregone conclusion, and a natural result of how the tasks of these investigators are carried out, in implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1757, which is related to the work of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and the Lebanese cooperation that is required under this resolution, at all levels.

The work of UN peacekeepers in the south also violates many aspects of Lebanese sovereignty, in the recognized sense of the sovereignty of states over their territory, where the legitimate forces of any state are the only party that should be present and implement the laws on the land of a given state. However, the commitment to UNSCR 1701 allows international troops in Lebanon to carry out the missions entrusted to them, in cooperation with the Lebanese army, which in turn cannot prevent it from carrying out its missions even if it wanted to. Instead, it must help UNIFIL, according to this resolution. The proof of this lies in the uprising by the so-called “families” of south Lebanon, to protest maneuvers that UNIFIL troops were carrying out. The result was that the “people” returned home after their guardians read the text of the resolution and the prerogatives that it grants. UNIFIL troops continued to carry out the tasks entrusted to them, after receiving assurances from the Lebanese authorities and the army leadership that they wished to facilitate UNIFIL’s work in the south. This will guarantee the security of residents in this region, in the first place, in the face of Israeli aspirations and aggressions.

Things saw a repeat with the Adaisseh tree incident, which almost sparked a regional, and perhaps a world war. This was after all of the “pro-sovereignty” forces were massed from near-by; the grace of God permitted the tree to be uprooted on the same day. Happy ever after!
The recent incident at the gynecological clinic might have even wider repercussions that the tree in Adaisseh. It is an occasion to remind those who are very late in becoming concerned with morals, and with sovereignty, about why all of these external security and judicial forces are being summoned. They are the ones we accuse of spying on our women and our villages, and on “our army, our people and our resistance.” Doesn’t the matter deserve a pondering of these reasons? Wasn’t it the July War of 2006 that summoned the expansion of UNIFIL’s work in the south, after the parties harmed by an Israeli aggression made efforts with the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora to see the Lebanese government receive international approval for the deployment of these forces and their receiving much wider latitude to operate? Aren’t the conditions in which the war erupted, which led to the deployment of UNIFIL, interesting in terms of the questions they raise? They prompted Hezbollah’s secretary general, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah to acknowledge himself that he would not have given the order to capture the Israeli soldiers, if he had known the way things would go, the martyrs who would be lost, and the wide-scale destruction incurred by the country.

Once again… what about the reasons why international investigators are present in Lebanon, and their enjoying wide prerogatives to investigate, about which we complain today? Isn’t the major reason for this that the assassination of Hariri and the many who followed? And after that, the blocking of legislative, judicial and government institutions, to prevent them from playing their authorized role in the investigation of these assassinations and the capture prosecution of those involved. Also, there were conditions that led to resorting to the Security Council to pass a resolution taking over this task, after Lebanon was unable to do so.

These are only examples, so that we can see that the acts we commit have international repercussions that should be taken into account. As for waking up late to the notion of sovereignty, this will not help, especially if the “pro-sovereignty” groups define the term according to their own standards, in order to serve their interests.

These are only examples, so that we can say we hope what is coming will not be worse. Recently, we have heard about overcoming international law and being hostile to those who carry it out. Our country will become one of those in which the laws should be applied by force, because they are in revolt against the world’s laws and resolutions.

No comments:

Post a Comment