Shelve the negativity

Never has Lebanon been in a more dire situation during peacetime the situation is catastrophic on every front and all prognoses of economic and financial disaster have already come to pass. 

To put it simply, we have fallen off the precipice and crashed to the bottom.

At this moment, every Lebanese business, and every Lebanese man, woman and child is awaiting anxiously for the slightest glimmer of hope that we will can out of this, that we can somehow manage to claw our way back to a semblance of economic and financial solid ground.

That tendril of hope relies completely on the formation of a government that can enact reforms and meet the aspirations of the Lebanese people, as the International Support Group for Lebanon made abundantly clear in Paris Wednesday, and such a government needs all hands on deck, staying positive and fully supporting its mission.

What it does not need is rhetoric from Gebran Bassil that casts doubt on its ability to succeed even before it has been formed, even before any ministers have been appointed, and in fact even before a prime minister has been finally settled upon.

We need to remain above the kind of pettiness whereby the foreign minister declares that he does not wish to participate in a Cabinet led by Saad Hariri because he expects it to fail, even though every ministry that Bassil himself headed failed miserably because of his own positions, policies and ambitions the electricity scandals come to mind.

Yes, we need to be better than that. We have hit rock bottom and the only options open are either to put the interests of millions of Lebanese people above personal political ambitions, or, as Bassil appears to be doing from his ivory tower, cling to imagined dreams of power that can only serve to dig a deeper grave for Lebanon’s economy and financial system. 

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on December 13, 2019, on page 1.




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