Sunday, December 10, 2006

2 million demonstrate in Lebanon.

The largest ever political demonstration in Lebanon, and Siniora is in serious trouble. One of the better points made at the Historical Materialism conference is that the problem with Hezbollah is less their Islamism than their reformism. The Angry Arab has been on about this from the start: Hezbollah have been complicit in the rise of the Hariri gang, and continue to say that they will consider working with the disastrous administration, despite the fact that the Sinioria lot clearly no longer have a mandate to govern, and despite their own criticisms of the government that it was complicit with the Israeli occupation, while pushing through vicious neoliberal reforms that are massively detrimental to the interests of the poor Shi'ite population of Lebanon. The other criticism of Hezbollah has been that they are unwilling to criticise Syria, although the Angry Arab points out that Nasrallah did make some unmistakeable criticisms of Syrian 'guardianship' in his latest speech.

If there is a time to strike hard, now must be it. Hezbollah can't have raised all this furore (alongside Aoun and the communists) for the sake of a few more government posts in the same cabinet. It would be criminal, a complete betrayal of their supporters, to accept such a miserable compromise. The government must be overthrown, the imperialist camp defeated, and the neoliberal policies stopped in their tracks. 2 million people on the streets is more than half the population of Lebanon - that's a revolution in the making. If they squander something like this, they deserve to lose their support.