"The Illusionary Dialogue"
By: General Michel Aoun
(Translated by: Elias Bejjani)
27 February 1998

Reports of a "Syrian-Christian dialogue" periodically appear in the Lebanese press, according to "informed and reliable sources" close to the Syrians. In fact, this is a continuous exercise in distraction and deception.

A dialogue such as this originates and ends in the press--there is no agenda, and indeed no participants. It is a mockery, akin to reading the same news bulletin about the same events over and over again without any change in the content. In Lebanon, the word "dialogue" has become devoid of its true meaning and is only a monologue of ghosts.

Seven years after the barbaric destruction of (the presidential palace in) Baabda, they are (still) talking about a dialogue. Who are the participants in this dialogue? Is it between the Lebanese who are banned from communicating among themselves? Or is it between the officials of the Lebanese regime and Syria? The real question is: Can slaves freely negotiate with with their masters?

This so-called "dialogue" is, in reality, a deceptive maneuver by Syria used to divert public attention by creating delusions and false hopes, in a bid to destroy completely what is left of the nation's security, political and economic life.

We have made our stance very clear and public with regard to relations between Lebanon and its neighbors, particularly Syria. This stance is a limit that no Lebanese can positively or negatively surpass, for otherwise irreversible national damage to our nation will occur.

Reacting to this so called "Syrian-Christian dialogue" with increasing silence is not serving any one or fulfilling any objectives. On the contrary, it is feeding and nurturing an odd and unstable status. At the same time, it is giving certain people the right to act unilaterally because the vast majority are unwilling to be involved in the charade.

Real dialogue is not just a pacifier given to an infant to silence his cry without satisfying his hunger. Hunger is a painful merciless experience!

Let us all put an end to this crime that is being committed against Lebanon.