This week, the issue of Syria has taken the back seat (with a few exceptions); the Lebanese bloggers were mainly concerned with the students’ elections in various Lebanese University campuses.
The elections are important because they’re like mini-general elections. The same parties compete and similar alliances are at work. Which brings us to why they are important: they can actually predict the trends in Lebanese public opinion.
The convoluted dynamics and confusing alliances shocked and fascinated many Lebanese bloggers, who tried to come up with theories on why the opposition movement lead by MP Michel Aoun triumphed:
Lebanon.Profile from The Lebanese Political Journal writes:
Michel Aoun and the Free Patriotic Movement have become the alternative to Lebanese politics as usual. Support for Aoun is support for change. Regardless of what kind of change that is, he's a new face.
He then went further into analyzing the Aoun phenomenon and concludes:
Aoun is the single most powerful politician in Lebanon and offers the potential for social change.
Raja from The Lebanese bloggers suggests:
It has become clear that there is a divide between the political (party) leadership in Lebanon and the people, the followers of these political parties.
Mustapha in The Beirut Spring proposes looking to the elections from an economic angle:
this is not a battle between the Pro-Syrians and the Anti Syrians, This is very much a battle between the proletariat and the bourgeois, the people versus the elite, the left versus the right, the Socialists versus the Conservatives
Anton Efendi from Across The Bay disagreed with Mustapha. He cautions against what he called “a quick and exclusive socio-economic diagnosis” and noted that “identities (sectarian, socio-economic, political…) in Lebanon often interlace”
The Lebanese blogger Arch Memory made it to Blogging Poet‘s “100 Blogging Poets” list,
and Kais is very happy that The Economist magazine considers Lebanon to be the Arab World's most sophisticated and liberal state.
Mustapha, congratulations on this! This is the first time I read it; you’re doing a great job. And many thanks for the mention!