|Written by Administrator|
|Wednesday, 09 December 2009|
On December 7, the March 14 alliance website, www.14march.org, carried the following interview with Kataeb bloc MP Nadim Gemayel:
The March 14 forces are currently the object of campaigns questioning its unity and especially targeting the Christian forces in it. These campaigns escalated in light of the objection or the reservations expressed over an article in the Ministerial Statement.
Can you talk to us honestly about the unity of the position of March 14 and about its status today in comparison to its status in the last four years?
Gemayel: For the March 14 forces to be the object of questioning campaigns is not new, and we have become accustomed to these attempts which are reemerging from time to time to undermine the unity of the majority.
What is noticeable, however, is that these campaigns and those standing behind them are creating new scenarios focusing on the isolation of the Christians of March 14 due to their ideas and principles, which they have not relinquished, especially in regard to our opposition to Article 6 of the Ministerial Statement related to the arms of Hezbollah.
The opposition ran in the elections on the basis that [the elections] are a referendum on the arms of Hezbollah, and we ran in the elections on the basis of our rejection of these arms. The outcome of the elections proved that the Lebanese people voted in favor of the majority which supports legitimate arms and against the illegitimate arms. However, what happened after these elections is that the opposition team tried to play on the change which affected the position of the head of the Democratic Gathering, Deputy Walid Jumblatt, and raised sensationalist slogans regarding the collapse and the breaking up of the March 14 forces.
Deputy Jumblatt’s position might have had a political impact on the unity of the March 14 forces, but on the ground, the popular bases are still united. This was corroborated by the victory of March 14 in the universities and unions. This is a sign of good health, although we had hoped to keep the Cedar Revolution glowing and powerful the way it was four years ago, out of respect for the will of this great audience which headed to Martyrs Square, placed its hopes in its command and assured during the last parliamentary elections and in every event that they were present. In the end, this audience, its strength and unity are a guarantee for March 14.
The issue of the defensive strategy has been postponed until further notice, while waiting for it to be debated around the dialogue table. Are you optimistic about seeing the resolution of this issue and why?
Gemayel: Quite frankly, I am not very optimistic about the settling of this issue around the dialogue table. There is a popular saying that goes. “If it was going to rain, we would have seen the clouds.” In reality, Hezbollah does not want to discuss its arms whose presence it is linking to the presence of the state of Israel. Even the political document which recently emerged showed that Hezbollah was carrying a project that is greater than it and greater than Lebanon.
Today, the inter-Christian reconciliations are on the table, whether through the efforts of the president of the republic or those of Bkirki. Have you been contacted for that purpose and how do you perceive this issue?
Gemayel: Any national reconciliation is good, let alone if it is an intra- Christian one. We thank the president of the republic for his efforts but what is more important is for these reconciliations to be built on clear bases, and not be mere reconciliations in front of the media or to blockade a specific Christian team. Personally, I am in favor of comprehensive reconciliations that do not exclude any of the sides or are secured at anyone’s expense.
What is the current role of Nadim Gemayel inside the Phalange Party in comparison to his father’s role in the past?
Gemayel: Today, Nadim Gemayel is a member of the Phalange bloc and his role is known on the decision table of the politburo. However, one cannot compare between my role and that of my father since the circumstances are different. Nonetheless, I hope that I will be able to achieve my father’s dream to have a strong and capable state, not a [series of] fiefdoms, and to have a free, sovereign and independent country, not one which is linked to or is the hostage of foreign sides.
Does Nadim Gemayel enjoy contacts and relations with sides with whom he disagrees on the political level?
Gemayel: In reality, political positions are one thing and social relations should be another. In regard to the relations with the other sides, my position as a parliament member and a member of the administration and justice committee among others, allowed me to sit around one table with colleagues with whom I disagree in terms of our political perception of things.
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