"It is no longer important today if we agree with Hizbullah or not."
By DAVID KEYES
Leading Lebanese newspapers from across the political spectrum are calling for national unity above all else in the face of the ongoing clashes between the IDF and Hizbullah.
"It is no longer important today if we agree with Hizbullah or not," Nailah Tueini wrote in the independent daily An-Nahar on Wednesday. "We must only be unified in the face of barbaric Israeli aggression."
Edmond Saab, the executive director of An-Nahar, also said unity was the inevitable outcome of Israeli "aggression."
"If this war did not unite the Lebanese, then nothing else can possibly unite them," he wrote.
Saab said that despite political disagreements, Lebanese must now demonstrate solidarity with one another. "It is the appropriate time to show the world that we, the Lebanese, despite our many differences, are able to stand together in a time of war and speak with one voice," he wrote on Wednesday.
Echoing the need for a unified front, Mustafa al-Fiqi, writing in Dar al-Hayat on Tuesday, called on Arabs to cast aside political differences and praise the Lebanese "resistance."
"Some may agree and others may differ with Hizbullah and its leadership and its secretary-general, however we must always strive for a glorification of the role of the Lebanese resistance... especially given that [Hizbullah] was not preoccupied with side battles or secondary accusations, but it focused on the reaction of aggression and wounding targets inside Israel," he wrote.
Some columnists have focused solely on foreign influences as the most pressing danger to Lebanon. In a piece entitled "Arab Blood Runs Cheap," Muhammad Ashab wrote in Dar al-Hayat on Tuesday, "Lebanon's enemies are outside, not inside its borders. Time helps one to realize the potential power of a united nation."
Lebanon's media has become increasingly independent and critical of the government in recent years, according to Freedom House, a nongovernmental organization that supports the expansion of democracy. "All of Lebanon's national daily newspapers are privately owned," according to Freedom House, something that affords the country's press a certain level of autonomy.
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