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Lebanon and the European States Print E-mail

Lebanon and the European States

Relations between Lebanon and the European States deteriorated because the latter also tried to solve the Middle-East problem at the expense of Lebanon. In addition to this factor, many European countries had adopted the obsequious policy of fawning on the Arab States in order to secure their oil supplies. This was done, of course, at the expense of the Christians, of their security, their very existence. Bashir referred to both these factors in one of his speeches :

Europe and many other States are not able to digest the Christian presence in this corner of the world, because it is a stumbling-block to most of their ambitions in this area... The Americans and the West have not yet assimilated the fact that we, the Christians of the Orient, represent their last line of defense against a return to the dark ages, against terror and blind fundamentalism, against those who seek to annihilate all the values of civilization and of their culture... Today, they want to ‘sell us down the river’ for a barrel of oil!”...

Lebanon and the European States

Relations between Lebanon and the European States deteriorated because the latter also tried to solve the Middle-East problem at the expense of Lebanon. In addition to this factor, many European countries had adopted the obsequious policy of fawning on the Arab States in order to secure their oil supplies. This was done, of course, at the expense of the Christians, of their security, their very existence. Bashir referred to both these factors in one of his speeches :

Europe and many other States are not able to digest the Christian presence in this corner of the world, because it is a stumbling-block to most of their ambitions in this area... The Americans and the West have not yet assimilated the fact that we, the Christians of the Orient, represent their last line of defense against a return to the dark ages, against terror and blind fundamentalism, against those who seek to annihilate all the values of civilization and of their culture... Today, they want to ‘sell us down the river’ for a barrel of oil!”...

 These two factors led Bashir to condemn the West in these words : “The West, today, is showing signs of decadence in its policies, in its morals, in its economy.”

 In his tirade, Bashir did not omit France, and he frankly blamed it for the servile attitude of its former Foreign Minister, Louis de Guiringaud. “Periodically, we were fighting in self-defense here while De Guiringaud and Mondale were criticizing us for standing firm and calling us all sorts of names, alleging that we were a band of outlaws who deserved to be punished...” Yet, in spite of all this, Bashir reaffirmed Lebanon’s affiliation to the Western democracies : “We are a part of the Free World”, he said, and he declared that he was attached to the maintenance of good relations between Lebanon and France, because these were based on a sentimental background of intimate friendship and common interests between the two peoples, going far back in history.

 For centuries past, these relations have been characterized by harmony and sincerity, and Lebanon has always shared France’s moral principles of “Fraternity-Liberty-Equality”. Another European State that drew Bashir’s attention was West-Germany ; he considered that this country was likely to consolidate Lebanon’s independence and participate in its development, while supporting its territorial integrity and national sovereignty. Furthermore, he discovered, in the policies of the German Christian-Democrats, several analogies with his own personal views on liberty, justice, dignity humanity, democracy, plurality and social security.

 In the context of Lebanon’s relations with the Soviet Union, Bashir outlined the positive possibilities that could exist in the nature of these relations. He emphasized the ideological aspects in the links that could be established between the two States, and the ideological difference existing between Lebanon and the Soviet Union, specifying however, that this should not prevent Russia from playing a positive role in solving the Lebanese crisis, especially as the Soviets seem to be intent on having role in Lebanon. And they can certainly play this role, together with the Americans, bearing in mind however that Lebanon is nobody’s picnic-ground, nor is it an administrative department of either of the superpowers, whether Soviet or American...

 And despite the fact that an eventual Sovieto-American role in solving the Lebanese crisis was of major importance with regard to the Middle-East, Bashir was not so inclined to leave the matter to these two powers alone, or to any other power by itself : he entertained hopes for an international solution to the Lebanese question. In line with this outlook, he invited all parties and States having direct or indirect link with events in Lebanon - and first and foremost among these, Syria, the Arab States, the USA, the Soviet Union, the other great powers, and the United Nations, to guarantee Lebanon’s political existence.

 

 
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