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US Sanctions on Lebanese politicians - Magnitsky Act [updated list in OP]

CitizenOfTheRepublic

Legendary Member
I have spoken this weekend with an old friend who is lawyer in USA and have been living there for 30 years.
He told me it is unlikely that the US gov be joking about the sanctions or "falsely" accusing Bassil of something he didn't do.
It is very improbable that such a thing could happen.

HOWEVER, these corruption facts are measured relative to their standards, not Lebanese ones.
What the Americans see as misuse of power of office, might be called in Lebanon as service.
For example employing 1500 or 2000 persons of his political party in the state, stuff like that...
Sorry but that's just flat out wrong.
Your lawyer friend must know the difference between accusation and fact. In addition, the state department is not a court of law by any measure and is not qualified in any way to ascertain guilt. Heck I am almost sure it is not allowed to indict.
 

JustLeb

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Sorry but that's just flat out wrong.
Your lawyer friend must know the difference between accusation and fact. In addition, the state department is not a court of law by any measure and is not qualified in any way to ascertain guilt. Heck I am almost sure it is not allowed to indict.
I am no lawyer, nor in the USA
I am just giving you another perspective of the issue
The final conclusion of what this friend says, is that what makes corruption to the Americans might not be seen as such by the Lebanese.
This is why Bassil was so defiant (unless he is lying as usual)
 

TayyarBeino

Legendary Member
عن لقائه بالسفيرة الأميركية دوروثي شاي، أوضح وهبة انه "التقيت السفيرة الأميركية مرتين، مرة لدى البحث في التمديد لليونيفيل، ومرة في قيادة الجيش. وبالأمس، كانت المرة الثالثة". وأضاف: "لم تقنعني السفيرة الأميركية في أسباب العقوبات على رئيس التيار الوطني الحر جبران باسيل لأنها لم تعطني أي مستندات، فقالت إن المستندات لدى إدراتها، وهي وعدتني بمراجعة إدارتها لدى طلبنا تسلم القضاء اللبناني ملفات الفساد".

وهبة: لم تقنعني السفيرة الأميركية في أسباب العقوبات على باسيل

 

CitizenOfTheRepublic

Legendary Member
I am no lawyer, nor in the USA
I am just giving you another perspective of the issue
The final conclusion of what this friend says, is that what makes corruption to the Americans might not be seen as such by the Lebanese.
This is why Bassil was so defiant (unless he is lying as usual)
From a pure legal perspective the State Department sanctions are based on allegations, and therefore cannot be ascertained as facts. To my knowledge they don’t have any legal basis.

That aside I am not sure what legal recourse Bassil can have in the US but a defamation suit is definitely one of them. He needs though good lawyers if the “proofs” are claimed to be classified.

Given how Pompeo and co. have behaved though does not bode well for them. “We have the documents but they’re not available” has been used one too many times by Trumpists most recently in the elections. That is regardless for Bassil corruption or lack thereof.
 

JustLeb

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
From a pure legal perspective the State Department sanctions are based on allegations, and therefore cannot be ascertained as facts. To my knowledge they don’t have any legal basis.

That aside I am not sure what legal recourse Bassil can have in the US but a defamation suit is definitely one of them. He needs though good lawyers if the “proofs” are claimed to be classified.

Given how Pompeo and co. have behaved though does not bode well for them.
Allow me to be sarcastic
the guy who has -3m$ in his account how can he afford the cost of good lawyers in USA?
I doubt that his friends, you know those who paid him the VIP in euros finals, and the private jet to Davos, will pay him a good lawyer there.
Not because they don't want to, but they might fear the retaliation of the US administration.

I can bet for one coca-zero that he will do nothing at the legal level, he will just wait how things might go on with the new administration, probably he can try to convince someone there to remove him from the list.
 

CitizenOfTheRepublic

Legendary Member
Allow me to be sarcastic
the guy who has -3m$ in his account how can he afford the cost of good lawyers in USA?
I doubt that his friends, you know those who paid him the VIP in euros finals, and the private jet to Davos, will pay him a good lawyer there.
Not because they don't want to, but they might fear the retaliation of the US administration.

I can bet for one coca-zero that he will do nothing at the legal level, he will just wait how things might go on with the new administration, probably he can try to convince someone there to remove him from the list.
His rich friends won’t pitch in for the reasons you mentioned.

That said, it is unclear to me if those sanctions can be overturned in court or the status of classified documents in such a trial. Baddak 7ada metel Amal Clooney yefasserlna.
 

HalaMadrid

Well-Known Member
Orange Room Supporter
I have spoken this weekend with an old friend who is lawyer in USA and have been living there for 30 years.
He told me it is unlikely that the US gov be joking about the sanctions or "falsely" accusing Bassil of something he didn't do.
It is very improbable that such a thing could happen.
Under normal circumstances, your friend is right. Having worked (in an indirect way, not for the government) on Magnitsky sanctions, in my experience they are very difficult to get the Treasury Department to pass without really strong credible evidence that requires multiple layers of corroboration. I *very* strongly believe that's not the case here. And not because of any bias to Bassil or because I think he's such a lovely wonderful person who could never engage in corruption, but based purely on everything coming from the American side of this.
HOWEVER, these corruption facts are measured relative to their standards, not Lebanese ones.
What the Americans see as misuse of power of office, might be called in Lebanon as service.
For example employing 1500 or 2000 persons of his political party in the state, stuff like that...
This is not corruption by American measures either, see why this is a farce on its face? Does the US also think it's corruption for the Joe Biden Administration to employ what's going to be around 3500 mainly campaign and Democratic party operatives in every agency and the White House come January? (and of course same with Republican party now).
 

JustLeb

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
This is not corruption by American measures either, see why this is a farce on its face? Does the US also think it's corruption for the Joe Biden Administration to employ what's going to be around 3500 mainly campaign and Democratic party operatives in every agency and the White House come January? (and of course same with Republican party now).
Just a subtle remark, sure the new administration will bring some 4K people with it, but these people will replace others from the previous administration and they will eventually leave in 4 or 8 years.
Whereas in Lebanon, being employed by the state is a lifetime job (like in France) and they are not replacing people who are leaving, they are recruited as purchase of loyalty, and of course they put more strain on already doomed treasury.

So no, in Lebanon it is corruption if you want to be square and fair...
 

HalaMadrid

Well-Known Member
Orange Room Supporter
Just a subtle remark, sure the new administration will bring some 4K people with it, but these people will replace others from the previous administration and they will eventually leave in 4 or 8 years.
Whereas in Lebanon, being employed by the state is a lifetime job (like in France) and they are not replacing people who are leaving, they are recruited as purchase of loyalty, and of course they put more strain on already doomed treasury.

So no, in Lebanon it is corruption if you want to be square and fair...
You said this was corruption by US standards, but not Lebanese standards. Why is making a strain on Lebanon's Treasury corruption by US standards, just because they're lifetime appointments as opposed to temporary appointments? More importantly, why is that *sanctionable* corruption by US standards? I completely agree that if the allegation was appointing people in the state in order to curry favors and for the monetary benefits to inure to him (for example: Jreissati or other people that he appointed at Environment give Bassil's engineering company contracts despite better bids and he appointed them for that purpose, or anything along those lines), of course, 100% corruption. That is explicitly not the allegation in the US sanctions release. It COULD very well be. It's not. Appointments by a political party in the state standing alone are not sanctionable corruption, as far as I know, by American standards.
 

HalaMadrid

Well-Known Member
Orange Room Supporter
His rich friends won’t pitch in for the reasons you mentioned.

That said, it is unclear to me if those sanctions can be overturned in court or the status of classified documents in such a trial. Baddak 7ada metel Amal Clooney yefasserlna.
Technically they can be. They can also be overturned administratively by Treasury (in this case probably the better route). But there are about 7 different ways one would lose any attempt in court to overturn sanctions before even getting to the merits of the sanction itself. So it'd be stupid to try. My 2 cents.
 

CitizenOfTheRepublic

Legendary Member
Technically they can be. They can also be overturned administratively by Treasury (in this case probably the better route). But there are about 7 different ways one would lose any attempt in court to overturn sanctions before even getting to the merits of the sanction itself. So it'd be stupid to try. My 2 cents.
Can you give an example of the ways one can loose in court before getting to the merits of the sanctions?
 
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JustLeb

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
You said this was corruption by US standards, but not Lebanese standards. Why is making a strain on Lebanon's Treasury corruption by US standards, just because they're lifetime appointments as opposed to temporary appointments? More importantly, why is that *sanctionable* corruption by US standards? I completely agree that if the allegation was appointing people in the state in order to curry favors and for the monetary benefits to inure to him (for example: Jreissati or other people that he appointed at Environment give Bassil's engineering company contracts despite better bids and he appointed them for that purpose, or anything along those lines), of course, 100% corruption. That is explicitly not the allegation in the US sanctions release. It COULD very well be. It's not. Appointments by a political party in the state standing alone are not sanctionable corruption, as far as I know, by American standards.
shou ostak ya man, you are paying salaries now for 2K who in fact do not have effective jobs, just to buy their political loyalties.
2k for Bassil, 2k for Berri, 2k jombi, Hariri etc... leyk wein sorna
in a country where the budget is exponential deficit
 

My Moria Moon

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter

When Allah the generous decided to give @agnostic his Bassira ( fake one mind you, even if our friend is not noticing), he was kind enough to give me the gift of reading people's hearts like an open book by only watching them talk about themselves. I tell you: this guy Bassil is clearly an honest and clean guy, at least as clean and honest as one can expect a Lebanese politician to be. May Evil fatso Pompei eat Armenian Basterma though his ears till his stomach gets four corners for his very mean act against this principled man, but mostly for his satanic intentions against Lebanon.

However, there's one small detail Bassil is not being sincere about, probably because the opposite would demolish the political fortress he's built around his post Omega political career. It's the self evident fact that HA, in its current hyped up state, is not interested in the serious business of building a Lebanese state. La men b3eed w la men 2arib. An insight so politically painful I think Bassil doesn't permit himself to even entertain the thought.

Yalla @Rafidi, @elAshtar, @agnostic, bring forward your angry ants.:cigar:
 

Rafidi

Legendary Member
When Allah the generous decided to give @agnostic his Bassira ( fake one mind you, even if our friend is not noticing), he was kind enough to give me the gift of reading people's hearts like an open book by only watching them talk about themselves. I tell you: this guy Bassil is clearly an honest and clean guy, at least as clean and honest as one can expect a Lebanese politician to be. May Evil fatso Pompei eat Armenian Basterma though his ears till his stomach gets four corners for his very mean act against this principled man, but mostly for his satanic intentions against Lebanon.

However, there's one small detail Bassil is not being sincere about, probably because the opposite would demolish the political fortress he's built around his post Omega political career. It's the self evident fact that HA, in its current hyped up state, is not interested in the serious business of building a Lebanese state. La men b3eed w la men 2arib. An insight so politically painful I think Bassil doesn't permit himself to even entertain the thought.

Yalla @Rafidi, @elAshtar, @agnostic, bring forward your angry ants.:cigar:

Do you really understand what building a state would mean?

Building a state would mean changing the system, and removing all sectarian quotas and institutions. That is what I understand by building a state. It would mean everyone is equally Lebanese. A Lebanon of individual citizens and not of sects and sectarian leaders. None has so far shown serious commitment to this because the status of the sectarian warlords would diminish if this happens and the Lebanese citizen becomes the kingmaker. Of course, you are scared that you lack the numbers as Christians and you oppose a modern state; you prefer the one we currently have that resembles the European nation states of the Middle Ages. So far, the only side actively blocking and opposed to this dream of building a modern state are the Christian parties, led by the "secular" FPM 😄 You just recently opposed a de-sectarianized electoral law with Lebanon as one electoral district. Even though a nonsectarian electoral law and Lebanon as one district is in line with Taef. Yet, you have rebelled against Taef for whatsoever reasons.

You cant preach to us you want to build a state while you hold on to a sectarian regime. It just wont make sense. You want to build a state, it should not be by excluding others, reviving the pre-Taef Maronite rule and trying to marginalize others or even get an undue upper hand because you are an "endangered specie". Building a state means separating religion from politics as a first step in public and state institutions. It means you are ready to leave power, be outside of power and not even be in government in return to have a modern state that treats everyone fairly and equally, irrespective of sect or religious affiliation. The only people opposed to this are you because you dont want the status of being given preferential and special treatment to end. It is either you are with this sectarian regime of power sharing among sects, and you act just as one of the parts of this sectarian puzzle or jungle and you accept your size in the puzzle/jungle or you drop the sectarian regime altogether and stop being pretentious hypocrites.
 

My Moria Moon

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Do you really understand what building a state would mean?

Building a state would mean changing the system, and removing all sectarian quotas and institutions. That is what I understand by building a state. It would mean everyone is equally Lebanese. A Lebanon of individual citizens and not of sects and sectarian leaders. None has so far shown serious commitment to this because the status of the sectarian warlords would diminish if this happens and the Lebanese citizen becomes the kingmaker. Of course, you are scared that you lack the numbers as Christians and you oppose a modern state; you prefer the one we currently have that resembles the European nation states of the Middle Ages. So far, the only side actively blocking and opposed to this dream of building a modern state are the Christian parties, led by the "secular" FPM 😄 You just recently opposed a de-sectarianized electoral law with Lebanon as one electoral district. Even though a nonsectarian electoral law and Lebanon as one district is in line with Taef. Yet, you have rebelled against Taef for whatsoever reasons.

You cant preach to us you want to build a state while you hold on to a sectarian regime. It just wont make sense. You want to build a state, it should not be by excluding others, reviving the pre-Taef Maronite rule and trying to marginalize others or even get an undue upper hand because you are an "endangered specie". Building a state means separating religion from politics as a first step in public and state institutions. It means you are ready to leave power, be outside of power and not even be in government in return to have a modern state that treats everyone fairly and equally, irrespective of sect or religious affiliation. The only people opposed to this are you because you dont want the status of being given preferential and special treatment to end. It is either you are with this sectarian regime of power sharing among sects, and you act just as one of the parts of this sectarian puzzle or jungle and you accept your size in the puzzle/jungle or you drop the sectarian regime altogether and stop being pretentious hypocrites.

See, tell this to Bassil so he gets it from the very mouth of the horse.
Now I can snore on, wake me up when your Islamic Mouqawama arms are at the service of the secular state you wish for.
 

Rafidi

Legendary Member
See, tell this to Bassil so he gets it from the very mouth of the horse.
Now I can snore on, wake me up when your Islamic Mouqawama arms are at the service of the secular state you wish for.

Keep beating around the bush. Having a modern electoral law or a fair one or building state institutions away from sectarianism and dropping your main goal to preserve your sect at the expense of building a state, and actually building a state are not impeded by having a resistance- whether it be islamic or communist - to defend the country. After all, we had adopted a fairer election law for the 2018 electoon and the muqawama did not oppose or impede that. When you had all the power and might to build a modern state and a capable army to protect the entire country, you failed or refused because you didnt feel concerned to do so and because building a state, for so long as you are preserved as an endangered specie, was never your goal or priority. So stop lying and pretending about building a state. You dont want to build a state because building a state would not give you the preferential status of an endangered specie to be persevered through undue political representation that the sectarian jungle gives you. The Islamic resistance has done what your pre-Taef Maronite state failed to do. It was your failure to build the state that led us to where we are. Your sectarian and racist priorities have always been the antithesis of state building. Whether through Aoun or through Geagea, building a state will never be going back to the pre-Taef Maronite rule. Now you can continue snoring and dreaming. Good night.
 

My Moria Moon

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Keep beating around the bush. Having a modern electoral law or a fair one or building state institutions away from sectarianism and dropping your main goal to preserve your sect at the expense of building a state, and actually building a state are not impeded by having a resistance- whether it be islamic or communist - to defend the country. After all, we had adopted a fairer election law for the 2018 electoon and the muqawama did not oppose or impede that. When you had all the power and might to build a modern state and a capable army to protect the entire country, you failed or refused because you didnt feel concerned to do so and because building a state, for so long as you are preserved as an endangered specie, was never your goal or priority. So stop lying and pretending about building a state. You dont want to build a state because building a state would not give you the preferential status of an endangered specie to be persevered through undue political representation that the sectarian jungle gives you. The Islamic resistance has done what your pre-Taef Maronite state failed to do. It was your failure to build the state that led us to where we are. Your sectarian and racist priorities have always been the antithesis of state building. Whether through Aoun or through Geagea, building a state will never be going back to the pre-Taef Maronite rule. Now you can continue snoring and dreaming. Good night.

I personally put most the blame for what has become of us on those who had the power to prevent it, namely the Christians. I have some very heavy weight curses dedicated specifically for those who signed Cairo agreement, if you want to hear.

At the same time, I do not absolve the rest of your umma servants who, ever since "independence", were always quick at wagging tails every time they were called to by some barking bastard, from Syria, to Egypt to Libya to PLO. Don't flatter yourselves for being the resurrected armed heroes against some imagined tyranny, you're really not better off now than you were when your people were the less fortunate class. Without your brotherly horning to assist your umma cousins, we may at least have had peace at our Israeli borders, and maybe, just maybe, under prevailing peaceful conditions we'd had evolved our system to something where everyone is happy. Your path today was walked before, you are where the Christians were 50-60 years ago, ostrich my friend.
 
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