In the mountain, the situation is also calm, and the Lebanese Army has taken position in many locations previously occupied by Jumblat’s PSP. However, I believe that the situation remains very fragile, and that this is at best a wait-and-see period. There are 2 reasons for that:
- The Lebanese Army appears to be disempowered. Whether this is a temporary tactic in order to preserve the unity of the last major state institution, or because it is really powerless is not important at this stage. What is relevant is that the army will probably vacate any position it occupies if it is asked to do so by the militias, because it is avoiding confrontation.
- Waleed Jumblat represents the vast majority of the Druze. Figures of 90% are often quoted. The Druze are believed to constitute just 5% of the Lebanese population, but their strategic location in the mountain gives them the advantage of the terrain, and they are also thought to be well armed. They will not easily give in.
In the North, the situation has also quieted down, and peace agreements are being signed between the belligerents. But the issue of the SSNP militants executed in Halba might still have repercussions, although this will probably happen at a later stage.
The Council of Ministers was expected to meet today to cancel the two ill fated decrees, as it was requested to do so by the army. PM Sanioura seems to have backed down on this as he declared that he will wait for the Arab Foreign minister’s delegation sent to mediate before calling for a meeting of the council of ministers. This is understandable: why give the cancellation for free, let it be a negotiating chip in a general settlement.
Most roads in and out of
I’ll stick around.