Following are excerpts from an interview with former Lebanese president Émile Lahoud, which aired on TRT Arabic TV on June 30, 2010.
Émile Lahoud: We must provide [Palestinians in Lebanon] with the basic means to live in dignity, but we must not allow what happened in France to happen here.
The birth rate among the Palestinians is four times that of the Lebanese. Today, there are 600,000 Palestinians we know of. In 20 years, there will be more Palestinians than Lebanese. Just like in France, it is said that by 2050, there will be more [Arabs] than French. Did you watch the football match? Did you see any Frenchman on the French team?
As a Lebanese, should I be doing what the US wants me to do, or should I be acting according to the interests of my country? If we had not been acting according to the interests of our country since 1990, there would have been no liberation, and we could not have confronted Israel that wants to take our oil. Could we have demanded the oil if we did not have the army and resistance? They would have taken it, and that would have been the end of it.
The economic crisis began in the US. If they look into it, they will find that the Jews were behind it. I am not a racist, but that is what happened.
What happened has affected the livelihood of Europeans. It’s no longer about politics. It has had an impact on their lives, their livelihood. They cannot keep silent. But they can free themselves from the hegemony of the US? No. That’s why they are divided with regard to how to deal with the economic crisis.