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Stands >2002 Stands >The Stand of Rabih Alawwal 02, 1423H ,May 14,2002A.D.

Fadlulah: I fear that we will inherit the coming (Lebanese) generations an economic suffering that has no solution.

We only have a shadow, and not a state that possesses a comprehensive plan.

Asked in his weekly seminar about the deteriorating economic situation and that the country is on the verge of a resounding collapse, especially amid the feuds between the country top officials, H.E. the Religious Authority Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah made the following statement:

There is no doubt that the tough economic situation that has been rapidly deteriorating in the last few years, coupled by the feuds and differences between the officials have made the country reach a very grave and dangerous stage that the officials used to rule out, without telling the citizens how they could continue the daily struggle against hunger and resorting to improvised solutions... until we have reached this near catastrophe stage, despite all the taxes that were imposed on the poor class who represent the vast majority and the middle class which has almost disappeared…

In these circumstances, we hear every now and then that the solution could only be through the devaluation of the Lebanese pound, so that the state’s savings will increase even if the people starve. They also repeat that we have to yield and accept the dictates of the big international players that will endanger the future of our youth and coming generations who are paying a heavy social, economic, psychological and political price, with no hope of escaping from the vicious circle of economic collapse, especially as it is allied with the political death that is hovering with each daily or seasonal feud that has nothing to do in most cases with the country’s interests.

We have noticed lately that the talk about stopping the endless waste and trying those who plundered public money has disappeared and has been replaced with talking about partial solutions that rely on privatization although the officials themselves differ on the way it should be adopted…

What kind of a solution is the one that does not solve the problem of waste or adopt a carefully studied economic plan?

The problem lies in the fact that we have but a shadow of a state. It is not an integrated political and economic body that diagnoses the illness and defines the mechanisms of treatment. In such a situation, it is quite dangerous that improvisation is the dominant practice.

Moreover, the projects that are being contemplated are not a part of a comprehensive plan; they rather depend on individual initiatives that are envisaged in different ways by different officials.

I do not think that the country is on the verge of total collapse, for there are certain political limits the developments will not surpass, but the continuous partial political collapses, that coincide with the economic deterioration will leave the Lebanese a new country, which although is the same as always in being politically unstable, it will be a country of economic and social sufferings for the coming generations.

The rich will get richer, and the poor will get poorer, and instead of learning from what happened in other countries of the region, we will live the same problems and pains.