Former minister and Hezbollah MP, Hussein Hajj Hassan, is the sixth guest of our podcast “Aux Urnes citoyen! “. It is extremely rare for members of Hezbollah to agree to speak French for more than half an hour in a filmed interview. As part of this interview, we discuss many topics: the party’s weapons of course, its vision of the elections, its reaction to the uprising of October 17, 2019 or the party’s position in relation to the investigation into the double explosion at the port. of Beirut and current economic issues, from the fate of Riad Salamé to the agreement with the IMF. We followed the same rule as with all our other guests: neither complacency nor aggressiveness.
The former minister considers that the Lebanese political regime must be modernized, which, according to him, implies a deconfessionalization of political life. When asked about what prevents this modernization, he nevertheless contents himself, as he does on several occasions during the interview, with accusing the “other parties” which “have an interest” in seeing that nothing changes, without ever naming them. As a reminder, Hezbollah has had a majority in Parliament since 2018 and both the President of the Assembly, Nabih Berry, and that of the Republic, Michel Aoun, are its allies.
On the issue of weapons, the deputy practically closes the door to any negotiation by considering that there is no relationship between the political regime and the weapons of Hezbollah which are not, in his eyes, a subject of order interior. As a reminder, Hezbollah is accused of being involved in several political assassinations including that of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri. The party and its allies also invaded several neighborhoods in Beirut on May 7, 2008, and its secretary general, Hassan Nasrallah, regularly raises the specter of civil war by raising internal issues of discord.
Regarding the national defense strategy, demanded in particular by the head of the Free Patriotic Movement (CPL), Gebran Bassil, Hussein Hajj Hassan believes that it would only be possible if the State has sufficient military arsenals and the capacity to use it. But he refuses to link this question to that of a change of regime implying another distribution of power between the communities. “There is no relationship between the distribution of power and the question of resistance,” he says.
The former deputy believes that “the upcoming elections are more important than those of 2018” for the party, given the fact that several foreign powers are betting on the defeat of Hezbollah. Hussein Hajj Hassan, however, rules out the possibility of a government being formed without Hezbollah, regardless of the election results.
As part of this podcast, the first of L”Orient-Le Jour, candidates from civil society and traditional parties confront their program with our questions. Our bias, in the context of these major interviews, is to go in depth, to explore the programs, the strategies of the different interlocutors.
All our information on the legislative elections of May 15 is gathered here
Former minister and Hezbollah MP, Hussein Hajj Hassan, is the sixth guest of our podcast “Aux Urnes citoyen! “. It is extremely rare for members of Hezbollah to agree to speak French for more than half an hour in a filmed interview. As part of this interview, we discuss many topics: the party’s weapons of course, its vision…