BEIRUT: The latest episode in the ongoing war of words between the Lebanese Forces and the Free Patriotic Movement has tackled the suggestion that LF leader Samir Geagea deserves to be consecrated as a saint of the Catholic Church.
FPM leader Michel Aoun, in remarks published Friday, made the sarcastic proposal when he was asked to reply to his arch-rival Geagea’s recent declaration that he would not sit at the same table with Aoun and some of his March 8 allies, as a part of the National Dialogue process.
“A dossier containing evidence of signs of holiness appearing upon Geagea should be relayed to the Vatican ahead of his canonization as a saint,” Aoun replied, smiling.
LF official and Batroun MP Antoine Zahra replied later in the day, issuing a statement in which he predicted that such a request for Geagea’s sainthood would be rejected by the Holy See.
“This is unless the hakim,” Zahra said, referring to Geagea by his nickname “doctor,” “can prove his worthiness by performing a miracle.”
Zahra spelled out what the miracle would entail: “Returning Aoun to his senses, and the path of correctness, which he exited upon beginning his career in politics, a path to which he has yet to return.”
The two sides have engaged in a steady war of words in recent weeks, particularly over their stances on the National Dialogue and next year’s electoral law.