Bassil rebels against the master: I am the president or whoever I call him
November 20, 2022
(See translation in Arabic section)
Sydney - Middle East Times Int’l: The relationship is no longer well between Hezbollah and Gebran Bassil, who finally refused, in the famous session that brought him together with his ally Hassan Nasrallah, to support Suleiman Franjieh for the presidency. This is not a detail in the party's account. Then Basil went too far, and met President Nabih Berri, trying to agree with him on a third name for the presidency, to cut off Franjieh.
This is also not a detail in the calculations of the party itself, and it may be a major sin.
Does the party inform Bassil that it is preparing for a local, international settlement to bring Franjieh to the presidency, whether he wills it or not, Basil and others? This is the question posed today about the party's next step.
Resorting to Barry
Basil's visit to Ain al-Tineh did not bring peace and cool to Haret Hreik, which Bassil places in the corner. Therefore, the party is looking at how to get out of the corner in which its ally has placed it, and this may appear in the coming days.
The facts of the meeting between Berri and Bassil have become almost known. The denial by the media office of Basil that he initiated the request and arrangement of this meeting with Karima Berri, the Lebanese ambassador to Qatar, and his denial that the meeting took place without the knowledge of Hezbollah, neither advance nor delay the effects of the step he took. In the information, Bassil did not coordinate the content of the visit with Hezbollah, and after Berri ended, he sent his envoy to the Secretary-General of the party to inform him of the content of his meeting with Basil, who was in the process of proposing names to Berri, but the latter blocked his proposal. Anyone who knows Bassil's scenes knows that he has names in his arsenal that he wants to display, especially those that enjoy Bkerke's support, most notably former intelligence director George Khoury and Jihad Azour.
When Berri advised Basil in this meeting to return to his only ally, Sayyed Nasrallah, he did not exaggerate his statement. Hezbollah itself, which is very upset with Bassil's handling of the presidential file, and rejects its attack on Suleiman Franjieh, realizes that Bassil has drained his internal relations to the point that he has no ally inside but the party.
In addition to his dissatisfaction with Bassil’s high ceiling in the descriptions he gives of the “second eye of the party” (i.e. Franjieh), the party is also dissatisfied with the presentation that Bassil made in Ain al-Tineh, as if he wanted to surround Sayyed Nasrallah and embarrass him in the presidential file. This will not be accepted by the party today.
The party will not be silent about this behavior. This will appear in the coming days, as indicated by the “ASAS” information that talked about a step that the party will take towards Bassil, which includes a clear and decisive message on the matter of electing Franjieh. The party is still taking into account Basil's refusal to elect Franjieh, but it is disturbed by his method of dealing with Nasrallah's keenness on him. Therefore, Bassil must be well aware that he will not be able to escalate much in the face of the party that read in the leaking of Bassil's words in Paris a message to him before any other party.
Is Basil ready to bear the burdens of his confrontation with the party, his last ally? Bassil is not envied for his position, as the political forces consider that he has lost all his allies and only Hezbollah is left for him, and today he is in bad relations with it, so to what extent can he impose his presidential conditions after today?
It is not easy for Bassil to announce that he is a presidential candidate if he does not like the candidate that his allies agree on. He believes that the presidential elections cannot bypass him. He may be right, due to the party's clear stance towards him and President Aoun. However, yesterday's calculations may differ tomorrow due to the party's will to elect a president to be reassured by, and its insistence on Franjieh.
Will the party go to the election of Franjieh with 65 votes, just as Berri was elected speaker of the council, thus jumping over the desire of the strongest Christian duo, Bassil and Geagea? This is the serious question that will be discussed in the coming days. Asas Media