Saturday, March 19, 2011

Is another Jumblatt turnaround imminent?

The dust barely settled on Jumblatt's inelegant flip-flop of January.  Casting his lot with "Syria and Hizbollah" was never going to be an easy task.  The recent batch of Wikileaks cables only confirm that Hizbollah will never trust him. So, it is not surprising that as recently last Sunday, Jumblatt was still trying to have it both ways: there were protestors carrying the PSP flag and his pictures at the March 14 rally.

Now Syria is creating a new challenge. Dara'a is not the only city in Syria that is witnessing anti-regime demonstrations, but it is the city where the largest demonstrations have taken place. It also happens to be a mostly Druze city.

Jumblatt has often tried to project a role of a "regional" Druze leader, by hosting meetings for representatives of his community from both Syria and Israel. He cannot stay on "Syria's side", or even stay mute if Druze are being arrested or killed in Syria.

What will he do now? My hunch is that he will reach out to a bottle of vodka for the next couple of days. His next flip-flop will be very painful.

I just can't conceal my schadenfreude.

[Update: As events unfolded in Syria, I became aware that Dara'a is not a "mostly Druze city", as I was lead to believe. My source, a Druze himself, seems to have somewhat exaggerated this one. It does not change the fact, though, that the area includes a significant Druze population which is active in the anti-Assad demonstrations.]


  1. Seems you were wrong again, dude!

    Thank you for the laughs!

  2. That's right. I have an opinion, ergo I can be wrong. The good news is that you can't be wrong if you don't have an opinion.

  3. Dara'a has an insignificant Muwa7iddun population, so even your update is wrong. If you're going to update something at least do it right.