Some other organisations in the country resisted against Israel which used their kidnapped soldiers as an excuse beside Hezbollah. When resistance was under consideration, although Hezbollah has stuck out, one of those fighting shoulder to shoulder with Hezbollah guerrillas against Israeli soldiers has also been Lebanese Communist Party (LCP). Lebanese Communist Party (LCP) called its cadres for “an armed struggle against occupier” immediately after the attacks and approximately 20 members of it died during Hezbollah-led resistance against Israel. Polite Bureau Member and International Relations Bureau Chief Dr. Mufid Kuteis emphasized they must struggle together with other anti-occupation forces about national issues in the country and they mustn’t fight each other although they had different point of view. A lot of participants representing different groups both from Lebanon and other countries are taking part in international Conference in Support of Lebanese Resistance. Democrats, socialists, communists and some Islamic organisations including conveners are coming together around a common platform. How do you appraise this situation as one of the promoters of the conference?
International Conference in Support of Lebanese Resistance was realised together with Hezbollah, Lebanese Communist Party (LCP), National Unity Platform, People Movement and Samidun Movement. LCP supported Hezbollah in the course of Israeli attacks and fought against occupiers in the same front with it. In this arena Hezbollah aimed to solve a national issue and LCP stood near Hezbollah at this point. LCP supports not only Hezbollah but also all kinds of attempts in the country about solution to national issues.
With regard to the other fields, according to us, Hezbollah’s attitude particularly about socio-economic issues is inadequate. But we expect this organisation formed in the basis of religion to change its stance about such issues and improve them. For example, today’s Lebanese government have already submitted to neo-liberal policies but Hezbollah hasn’t had a clear stance about privatisation, which has been discussed presently, yet. This organisation has to declare to oppose privatisations openly. As you see, we have dissimilarities with Hezbollah on such issues.
However, as Hezbollah has stated on all occasions, the organisation stresses that all Lebanese forces have to struggle jointly, regardless of its kind, against occupiers. LCP adopts this idea and supports it, too. It is doubtless that we have profound dissimilarities with Hezbollah. Some of these contradictions are so profound that it is impossible to eliminate them. As for our noticeable and crucial formula, we don’t have to fight each other and struggle jointly about national issues despite the fact that we have different view points.
On the other hand, this situation is a new experience for both LCP and Hezbollah. We are aware that we have a long way to proceed and along this way we may take a few steps together with Hezbollah. Yet, today, Hezbollah’s administration and a group in the centre of Hezbollah activities receive reciprocal relations favourably and would like to promote them. Undoubtedly, there are also some people who feel indisposed with this relation among the organisation. But common opinion among Hezbollah’s administration is in the direction of cooperation, because they are conscious that they have no choice other than cooperation with forces supporting resistance. we, as communists, have some definite limits about cooperation with Hezbollah. So, what are these limits? As I mentioned a short while ago, we know that Hezbollah’s approach to some issues is inadequate.
Also we would like Hezbollah to perceive well what USA plans and imperialist attacks to the region mean in the long run. USA’s final aim is to besiege the region from social, economic and politic point of views in the frame of neo-liberal policies completely. In conclusion in our opinion it is inadequate to drive Israel away from Shebaa Farms or to resist Israel. A struggle in a wider basis has to be carried out and an extensive struggle line, which will repulse imperialist attacks to the region, has to be built.
What does LCP suggest doing to overcome the last government crises in Lebanon?
We have to apprise of the developments since the last elections to understand today’s crises. In the last elections we decidedly objected to the sectarian alliances in the country, because it would harm the resistance. But on the one side Hezbollah and Amel and on the other side Durzi Leader Walid Junblatt and Harriri were allied. Junblatt-Harriri alliance got hold of the majority in the assembly. After the elections, contradiction between these two camps deepened much more. Alliance, called “14th March Movement” afterwards, in Junblatt’s and Harriri’s leadership retreated about some of election promises, first and forejost the issue of support to resistance.
Disunities about Presidency followed these developments and 14th March Movement declared that it disavowed President Emil Lahud supported by Hezbollah and its allies. Neither presidency nor government has become non-functional due to such clashes. In the meantime Hezbollah proposed to enlarge the government. In this way it was aiming to get hold of the majority in the government. However, this proposal of it wasn’t supported. According to the constitution Lebanese government must embrace all ethnic minorities in the country. But today, Shiites are out of the government. That is why President Lahud explained that government lost its legitimacy.
Now the main problem is fixed into presidency election, which has been planned to be carried out 6-7 months later. Presidential elections seem not be carried out because the votes of 86 deputies are needed to elect the president according to constitution. If the majority doesn’t reach a settlement on Christian leader Michel Aoun supported by Hezbollah and its allies, presidential election can’t be carried out and Sunni prime minister Fuad Sinyora will become an interim president. Sinyora loses its control on the government in this process and Sinyora’s presidency makes Maruni Christians worried, because post of presidency belongs to Christians according to constitution.
Under these circumstances, it isn’t a solution to widen the government or resignation of all ministers. We suggest that an interim government should be established and this government should get the country ready for a democratic election over proportional representation. Assembly taken the lead with this election should elect the new president and form a new government. For Lebanon, there is no choice other than this.
What can be said for the results of elections in such a case?
Results will probably be on the opposite side of assembly balances. If the elections are carried out in compliance with the law of proportional presentation, LCP will also have at least 10-12 seats in the parliament. Law of proportional presentation will likely be put into practice for much of the electoral district and opposition groups in the leadership of Hezbollah will win the majority in the new assembly. Under all circumstances, oppositions will get a stronger position than they have now.
How do you assess the alliance between Christian leader Michel Aoun and Hezbollah?
If we consider the situation in Lebanon, the alliance between Hezbollah and Aoun is a positive process, because, it limits the possible conflict between Christians-Muslims. Generally, Aoun’s suggestions are also democratic suggestions.
What does LCP think of UN force UNIFIL?
We are completely against the deployment of UNIFIL in Lebanon. According to us, this force is a political blow to Lebanon and the resistance of Lebanese people. Article 1701 of UN is oriented to complete the work which couldn’t accomplished by Israel occupation forces. Why has this force (UNIFIL) been only deployed in Lebanon borders? Why hasn’t it been deployed in Israel? According to the UN decision, UNIFIL must help Lebanese army. They will be obliged to help whenever the Lebanese army demands their help. But, today, we are a witness of the different interpretation of this decision by this force. For example, Germany, talks about this force’s establishing the security of Israel and France talks about controlling the Lebanese airspace. Also some others suggest the deployment of the forces in Lebanon-Syria border.
We expect our comrades living in the countries participated in this force to raise the support to the Lebanese resistance against this force and not to allow this force to be used against Hezbollah, resistance and Lebanese people.
Lastly, can you summarise the workers’ struggle in Lebanon?
We can’t talk about any formation which can be named as industry and a class which can be called working class in the view of Marxism in Lebanon. The production plant in south slum of Lebanon and in north Lebanon are all small-scaled ones. They are small-scaled plants and consist of 5-10 workers. So this reality causes a limited interaction among workers. Even at the biggest factory in Lebanon, moreover we can talk about 5 big factories in our country; there are 50 to 100 workers. The small-scaled industry and business in Lebanon compels us to establish separate relations with all small groups.