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article imageOp-Ed: Lebanon’s economy suffers, while Syria battles for liberty

By Eliot Elwar     Aug 3, 2012 in World
While the civil war persists throughout Syria, the international press has been less concerned about Lebanon. Analysts assess that violence will increase in Lebanon, while its economy struggles.
The Syrian conflict has significantly weakened Lebanon's foreign exchange of goods and services. The Lebanese government remains troubled about Hezbollah's aggression tempting a strike by Israel, which Lebanon’s leadership seeks to circumvent.
Lebanon’s Military
The Lebanon Armed Forces celebrated its 67th anniversary recently when President Michel Sleiman avowed Lebanon should stay out of Syria’s civil war to successfully safeguard its own wellbeing, according to YALIBNAN news. The Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati declared his government will approve billions of dollars to modernize the nation's armed forces, according to the Daily Star.
Lebanon’s Economy
The Syrian conflict is weakening Lebanon's economy because Lebanon depends on roads through Syria for its export and import commerce operations. The transportation hazard through Syria’s combat regions has significantly raised exchange prices. The battle for Syria has cost Lebanon millions of dollars during 2012. The trucks crossing through Syria have become fewer in number during the past several months, according to the Bloomberg Business Week.
Syria’s Chemical Weapons
Hezbollah causes concern for the "March 14" alliance, which won many seats in the 2009 parliamentary elections in Lebanon. This political group is devoted to removing Syrian troops out of Lebanon to liberate itself from Syrian control. The alliance has called on the international community to directly disarm Hezbollah to maintain Lebanese security partly because of Syrian chemical weapons stockpile movement, according to the Daily Star.
The Syrian government plans to employ its chemical weapons stockpile when it is attacked by foreign forces. However, the anti-Assad Syrian rebels have accused Assad’s regime of moving these weapons around to conduct an offensive against them. Israel has expressed worry that the chemical weapons under the control of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could fall under Hezbollah’s control during the civil war. The “March 14” alliance seeks to defend Lebanon from possible Israeli attacks by disarming Hezbollah of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), according to the Daily Star.
The Israelis have blamed Hezbollah and Iran for the recent bombing that injured and killed a busload of Israeli tourists in Bulgaria, according to the Wall Street Journal. This means that Lebanon will suffer when Israel decides to strike Hezbollah.
Lebanon's Future
Lebanon’s leadership has good reasons to move Syrian, Iranian, and Hezbollah forces out of Lebanon. The Lebanese people desperately want to liberate themselves from the corruptions of radical Islamic terrorists groups proliferating throughout their country. However, foreign militant operatives will never leave the country or be disarmed without further bloodshed and violence. The Israeli , the Turkish, and Jordanian armies along with the U.S. Mideast forces are deeply concerned about Syrian chemical weapons arsenal moving west toward Lebanon, where terrorists groups will gain access to these WMDs. Therefore, Lebanon will remain in the crossfire of foreign forces.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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