Lebanese Limbo

BEIRUT — Well, Beirut is now in a state of nervous waiting… Waiting for something, anything to happen. Lahoud finished out his term last night with all the pomp and circumstance he could muster. Too bad he couldn’t muster any local politicians to see him off, so despised he’s become. But before he left office, he may have put Lebanon under military control after he declared a state of emergency.
Or did he? Some commentators are noting that his language — [“There are conditions and risks on the ground that could lead to a state of emergency”](http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7110202.stm) — doesn’t actually do anything more than reiterate the current security status quo. The Army has already been responsible for security in Lebanon since an Interior Ministry decision about six months ago.
And there’s been no uprising by Hezbollah, Aoun seems to be keeping his head down and Siniora’s government is still around. Michel Suleiman, commander of the Army, has pledged to follow the orders of the cabinet. Sure doesn’t sound like a military takeover to me.
What it sounds like is people waiting to see what happens with Syria in Annapolis. If the Golan is put on the agenda, and Syria gets some forward momentum from Israel, then things might very well ease up here. I am working on a column explaining this dynamic for [Spot-on](http://www.spot-on.com), which should be up tomorrow. Until then, let’s hope no one does anything stupid here. The atmosphere is a tight as a garrote.