NEWS & OPINION: Rising fear in Lebanon

Darkness falls on the Middle East

It’s difficult to describe what it’s like to be in a country that sits on plate glass. It is impossible to be certain if the glass will break. When a constitution breaks – as it is beginning to break in Lebanon – you never know when the glass will give way.

People are moving out of their homes, just as they have moved out of their homes in Baghdad. I may not be frightened, because I’m a foreigner. But the Lebanese are frightened. I was not in Lebanon in 1975 when the civil war began, but I was in Lebanon in 1976 when it was under way. I see many young Lebanese who want to invest their lives in this country, who are frightened, and they are right to frightened. What can we do? [complete article]

Hezbollah raises specter of long Lebanon power void

Lebanese opposition group Hezbollah said on Sunday that failure to reach agreement on a new president in the week ahead could leave the divided country without a head of state for a long time.

Deputy Hezbollah leader Sheikh Naim Kassem also said the Western-backed government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora had no right to assume the powers of the presidency, which has been vacant since Friday when Emile Lahoud’s term ended. [complete article]

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