• Analysis

    When the clock strikes midnight!

    At Midnight this Monday, President Aoun becomes Mr. Michel Aoun, a Lebanese citizen. This transition is the ancient Greeks’ greatest gift to humanity, a peaceful transition of power that does not involve familial inheritance. I was always struck by that almost magical moment when a citizen becomes More. Nothing illustrates that better than every four or eight years when a US President flanked by a General holding the nuclear football, with the power to end life as we know it, becomes an ordinary citizen while another person becomes More. Indeed, at noon last January 20, 2020, President Trump became an ordinary mortal, while Mr. Biden became the President of the…

  • Analysis

    The Prime Minister elections, and government formation in Lebanon

    The Prime Minister elections and government formation in Lebanon By Ibrahim Jouhari Following the elections of Speaker Berri, the time is now for the choosing of a new Prime Minister followed by government formation. Although Lebanon’s political system might seem complicated and archaic, there is a clear order for the next few steps that will lead to the nomination of a new PM and the formation of the government. This article will try to explain these steps and what they entail clearly. Binding Consultations: The first step will be for the President to call for binding consultations[1]. It is an election disguised under another term. All 128 new members of…

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    FNF Lebanon

    This site is generously supported and funded by FNF Lebanon FNF Lebanon is part of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation in Germany, based on the principles of liberalism, the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom offers political education in Germany and abroad. Its headquarter is located in Potsdam, and we maintain offices throughout Germany and in over 60 countries around the world. FNF Beirut Office is focused on Lebanon and it’s people. Regional and local turmoil makes the work of the foundation in this country challenging, forcing our office in Beirut to constantly adapt to new social and political changes.In Lebanon, our main objective is to support Lebanese start-ups, civil society organizations…

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    Analyzing the number of lists

    After a tumultuous month filled with Machiavellian political machinations, the electoral lists for the next election in Lebanon are set! 103 lists were officially registered, vying for 128 parliamentary seats in 15 districts! It was a bumpy ride, filled with backstabbing, bluffs, and some last minutes surprises. Most political parties waited until the last possible moment before unveiling their lists. Negotiations were still ongoing hours before the close of the registration period last Monday at midnight! All sides kept their cards hidden for as long as possible, maximizing their strength and weakening their opponents. There was a significant upsurge on the last day, and the final number of lists rose…

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    E-day!

    That dreaded test of wills! The culmination of months of hard work, outreach, and dealmaking. It will be a very long day, especially for all individuals directly involved in the process, from poll officers, party monitors, the LAF and ISF members, and most importantly, the voters! So what to look for? However, it is important to note that the final results will take a long time to announce officially. Some credible reports are talking of Tuesday at the earliest. This is caused by the significant upsurge of expatriate votes that will not be speedily tallied. On the other hand, most electoral campaigns, especially well-organized and prepared parties, will have the…

  • Analysis

    Early indicators from the expatriates voting!

    Tomorrow the parliamentary electoral process in Lebanon begins, starting with the expatriates voting worldwide. The voting will take place over two days, Friday for the country, in which the weekend falls on that day, and then Sunday for the rest. The elections will occur in 59 countries, up from 40 in 2018, in over 205 polling centers and 596 polling stations.   countries centers bureau registered 2018 40 113 232 82,965 2022 59 205 596 225,114 The primary indicators will be the turnout and how smoothly and well organized the elections will be. Unfortunately, the detailed results will only be known when the general elections results are tallied. Indeed, the…

  • Analysis

    A shift in the political landscape

    By Ibrahim Jouhari Former PM Saad Hariri announced the suspension of his personal and political party’s participation in Lebanese political life in an emotional address. The former PM explained that despite his many efforts to compromise, some are unwilling to let the country move forward. He stressed that this negative trend has been amplified by a growing Iranian hegemony, in a tumultuous regional dynamic, with the international community’s lack of decisiveness. A lot of ink will be spilled, and time spent to analyze the consequences of this decision. The repercussions will be widespread, and it will have a long-lasting effect on the Sunni community and its political aspirations, and the…

  • Analysis,  opinion

    Why?

    Since the start of the severe Lebanese crisis, more than two years ago, practically nothing has been done. No reforms to speak of, no capital control, no aid measures, nothing! The situation keeps getting worse, illustrated by an ever-falling exchange rate, while the central bank issues ad hoc decisions with no consultations, preparations, or declared plan. Small depositors are being bled dry by a universal haircut approaching 70 to 80%, prices keep rising, and the cost of most services have increased by 300 to 400%, fuel is now ten times more expensive than a year ago, same for electricity, while mobile and internet prices are about to follow suit. So…

  • Analysis

    Security and elections, first and foremost!

    For the last two years Lebanon has been described as “facing an unprecedented crisis, on the edge of the abyss, teetering on a narrow ledge, …”. Then as the situation worsened, this shifted to “Lebanon needs a soft or controlled landing, we need to avoid a lost decade, measures need to be taken to escape a hard crash”. Unfortunately, if one just looks outside, or takes a short walk, he will witness the long lines for fuel, the empty pharmacies, and the dark houses devoid of electricity, it has become obvious that we have entered the third phase, “the dreaded crash”. There is a significant number of governance theories  and…

  • Analysis

    US elections Lesson learned for Lebanon, PART II

    Part 1 of this series explored how the ease and openness of the electoral process positively impacted the turnout and overall legitimacy of elections. However, it is equally important to examine the importance of increasing the involvement and participation of youth, women, and other marginalized groups in the electoral process. Their vote is crucial to strengthen democratic, liberal, and institutional ideals and stem the rising tide of populism and authoritarianism. Therefore, Part 2 of this series will explore the different methods to increase the political participation of youth, women, and minorities in the electoral process, emphasizing how to reach them through social media. Meanwhile, keeping in line with the basic premises…

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