After much denial and vague comments, Suleiman has stated yesterday that he is available to lead
It’s understandable that the Opposition is glad to have Suleiman in charge of a transitional government. After all, he has made most of his career when
Also, it’s easy to see that a transitional government is the upbeat to a national government whereby the Opposition would have a veto right.
In addition, Suleiman’s comments yesterday as to who is behind Fatah al-Islam must have appeased the Opposition: according to Suleiman, Fatah al-Islam is only linked to Al Qaeda and
Finally, it is noteworthy that the tents in Downtown are still there, even though the Christian side is empty except for one tent. This one tent is still no reason to remove the road blocks in front on Virgin. You can not possibly hold Suleiman responsible for not cleaning out the tents, but still…how much did the army really do to remove the tents?
Or what about the violent demonstration earlier this year when the road were blocked with burning tires for a long time, much longer than necessary. By not intervening, the army allowed the demonstrators to paralyze
Photo 1: Posters of Suleiman are popping up
Then again, the March 14 forces also have reason to be pleased with Suleiman: he ignored orders from president Lahoud during the huge demonstrations after the murder of Hariri, which in turn led to the fall of the cabinet of Omar Karami. Other than that, Suleiman has not done much for March 14 per se, but getting rid of a hated pro-Syrian government was already plenty in their eyes.
A paranoid mind would now perhaps suggest that Suleiman’s announcement of yesterday fits perfectly well in the Opposition’s plan. First, Suleiman distances himself from the Opposition by allowing the March 14 forces to demonstrate and by letting them even remove the government. Any hardcore conspiracist would see this as a strategic offer to win the trust of March 14.
Subsequently, lots of bombs started to go off which left the average Lebanese scared and unprotected. Then, just in time, for the upcoming presidential election, fighting broke out in Nahr al-Bared which allowed Suleiman to rise as a strong man who was restoring order. By crushing the Fatah al-Islam fighters, he could shine and was able to increase the prestige of army and him even more. The Nahr al-Bared unrest has boosted his image and has defined him as a true savior of the country.
Photo 2: A banner in honor of the army: "The blood of the army's martyrs should be in the conscience of every Lebanese. So it's time to give them our support..."
As a bonus, the government was brainless enough to organize elections in the heartland of the Maronites, which were won by Aoun, thereby increasing the uncertainty as to who should succeed Lahoud.
All these events lead to but one outcome: Suleiman should become the next leader of a unified
It would leave the paranoid mind to conclude that
Update: See The Ouwet blog for his post which expresses similar concerns
Update 2: See also here for additional information on Suleiman's ties to Syria