November 14, 2022 Special Dispatch No. 10313

Lebanese Official: The Lebanese Must Divorce Hizbullah, Stop Sharing The Homeland With It

November 14, 2022
Lebanon | Special Dispatch No. 10313

Charles Jabbour, head of the media and communications department of Samir Geagea's Lebanese Forces party, known for its opposition to Hizbullah, comes out against this organization in an article published recently in the daily Al-Jumhouriyya, which is affiliated with his party.  In the article he calls on the Lebanese to "divorce" Hizbullah, namely to divide Lebanon into two states. Jabbour explains that Hizbullah does not believe in coexistence, and is trying to force all Lebanese to adopt its ideology and mentality, whose essence is death. Hence, just as a husband and wife are sometimes compelled to divorce when life together becomes intolerable, groups within a state also have to separate if reality proves that they have no common ground and cannot coexist. Condemning the Lebanese culture that sanctifies coexistence, he states that it would be a mistake and even a "sin" to continue sharing the homeland.

Jabbour adds that Hizbullah is not likely to agree to a "divorce" and will probably try to prevent this by force, out of a desire to take over all of Lebanon. He therefore calls on the anti-Hizbullah camp in the country to formulate a new plan for dealing with this organization and to present it with two options: either agree to a divorce, or surrender its arms and accept the agreed-upon sources of authority: the Taif Agreement, the Arab League and the UN resolutions. 

Hizbullah activists (image: Al-Jumhoiuriyya, Lebanon, October 25, 2022)

The following are translated excerpts from his article:[1]

"All monotheistic religions recognize divorce. Some make it easy and some make it hard, in order to keep couples from divorcing over every hurdle or disagreement, but all of them welcome divorce when it is absolutely necessary. Nobody can force their partner to stay with them, since partnership for life has its own roots and requirements, and if life becomes an intolerable hell, divorce is the [right] solution and option, and [in fact] a very urgent necessity. After all, marriage is not an end in itself. It is meant to enable a happy life together, so it is not an [irreversible] fate. Every person can and should determine his own fate, since life is short, and we are born to live and enjoy life, not to repress ourselves, for any reason.  

"What is true of marriage between individuals also applies to a nation, which must organize its life in the framework of a state with a constitution and laws that protect [people's] rights, provide stability and ensure prosperity. It is not in any way true that nations were created to quarrel and struggle [just] because there are [groups] that have adopted ideologies whose essence is death. [These groups] have the right to adopt beliefs that conform to their perceptions, but they do not have the right to impose their way of life and their mentality on others.

"One of the fundamental, essential and built-in problems in Lebanon is the sanctifying of [the ideal of] coexistence [between the various sects], which has been elevated from a human status to a divine one. This is not just a mistake but a sin…

"There is a group in Lebanon [i.e., Hizbullah]… that does not believe in coexistence but [nevertheless] pretends to, waiting for circumstances that will allow it to eliminate coexistence in favor of its sectarian or religious plan. This plan begins with proposing to [endorse] democracy and [the rule of] the majority, but does not end [even] with a call to Islamize [Lebanon] based on the method of [Iran's] Rule of the Jurisprudent…

"Who said that this coexistence is a fate the Lebanese must accept… and that, if they separate, they will surely die? The basic aspiration of every citizen is to live in security, stability, prosperity and peace, not [necessarily] to live together. If the people and groups that comprise a state and live in the same area agree to live together and share a state, a vision, and [a set of] values and goals,  the experiment can perhaps continue and be successful. But if the different cultural groups are not harmonious and cannot agree on basic assumptions and norms, they must turn immediately to [the option of] divorce, separation and division. In is unclear why different groups, each of which wishes to impose its own priorities, agenda and culture on the other, should insist on living together. 

"Divorce used to be regarded as shameful in some of our societies, but today it is no longer so, out of a belief that individuals choose to divorce when this is [the only way] to achieve the loftiest goals in life, namely freedom, peace, calm and stability. Divorce between the Lebanese [sectors] must no longer be considered shameful, especially since the first group to benefit from our life together [i.e., Hizbullah] is one that wishes to change the identity of the country  and refuses to agree with the rest of the Lebanese on the common ground that connects them, the gist of which is state, partnership, equality and liberty.

"Therefore, Hizbullah must commit to the constitution and surrender its weapons, otherwise there must be a divorce, since the one who currently benefits from the existing situation is Hizbullah itself, which is implementing its plan bit by bit, biding its time. For who is able to take its weapons away from it? Nobody! Is anyone willing to bet on [Hizbullah] being a Lebanese [organization, rather than an Iranian one]? That is a hopeless bet, which was already tried in 2005, and we are still suffering the negative repercussions of that experiment, which caused the Lebanese to miss a historic opportunity to implement the Taif Agreement. Does anybody think Hizbullah will surrender its arms of its own free will?... That too is a great delusion. All that is left for us is to count on external developments, but who says these developments will [really] happen, in the near or distant future?

"We must of course distinguish between the necessity of divorcing Hizbullah and the actual ability to achieve this goal. Because Hizbullah will never agree to a divorce, since such a move will require it to relinquish territory it regards as its own and which it is acting to change over time as part of its sectarian [i.e., Shi'ite] plan. One of Hizbullah's goals is to take over all of Lebanon and to continue controlling the country's decision-making… In fact, a Hizbullah official said explicitly that [the organization] would start world war III to prevent the partition [of Lebanon]. But whoever opposes partition should accept the terms of a pluralistic society – especially considering that [Hizbullah's] plan [i.e., the plan of exporting the Iranian Rule of the Jurisprudent to Lebanon] is no longer accepted in the country that exports it, i.e., Iran.  Does it make sense to export something that the Iranian people [themselves] are acting to eliminate, and when this plan is at odds, in its form and its content, to the character of Lebanese society?

"Divorce requires first of all to shatter the taboo which regards coexistence as a sacred [ideal] that must be upheld, and start spreading [the idea] of divorce in public. The traditional way of dealing with Hizbullah has run its course. It has been tried since 2005 and has yielded no results… Divorce also requires the emergence of a political power balance that will push in that direction, for it is not enough to call for a divorce and to declare this in public, in the face of a partner that insists on imposing unity by force and on his own terms…

"The great problem in our confrontation with Hizbullah is not just that it is armed whereas the rival camp is not. [The problem] also stems from the fact that the camp opposing [Hizbullah continues to] adopt a traditional stance. Only if this camp adopts an untraditional stance will we be able to end the crisis by presenting Hizbullah with two options: either divorce, or a return to the agreed-upon Lebanese sources of authority: the Taif Agreement, the Arab League and UN resolutions.

"Perhaps what the Lebanese want more than anything else is for Lebanon to remain whole and united. But Hizbullah's insistence on holding on to its weapons, its role, and its sectarian [i.e., Shi'ite] plan, and its insistence that decisions regarding Lebanon's [fate] should continue to be taken in Tehran, require adopting a new method, for reality has shown that the current method does not achieve the desired results…

"The Lebanese people is not without abilities. It is capable of deciding its own fate. Divorce is not a religious transgression and certainly not a national one, but rather a necessary and unavoidable option when reality proves that it is no longer possible to live together. The real sin is agreeing to live in a homeland where Hizbullah is suspending the constitution, abolishing justice, undermining the principle of equality, usurping the decision-making of the state and transforming human life from an absolute value in the universe into a tool for [bringing] death."


[1] Al-Jumhouriyya (Lebanon), October 25, 2022.

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