Corruption in Lebanon

One off the many deficits in Lebanon is the all-embracing corruption. But why is the country so attached to it?

One of the main reasons is certainly the system of government. After the devastating civil war, people were looking for a different way to stabilise the country. The pure number of different confessions gave path to many fights and wars.

Through a division of power between the big groups, Christians, Sunni and Shia, these fights were supposed to be prevented. Effectively, this systems leads to an alliance between the leaders of the different confessions to work together to enrich themselfes for the costs of the state and the people.

This kind of politics on sectarian fundaments is naturally susceptible for corruption, and that thie elite is formed out of former warlords make it only worse. The state went to be a source of income for this people, and after decades of this politics, the results can be seen really clearly now.

In a new paper of the british Chatham House, this system is described as a mix between kloptocracy and kakistocracy. Kleptocracy is a system in which the powerful can take advantage of the property of the poeple. Kakistocracy is just the ruling of the worst.

While the elites take advantage of the country and its institutions and put incompetent people in important positions, the state lost much of its substance and that prepared the current crises.

On the basis of this, there is little hope for improvement of the situation. Even though there are many laws that directly address corruption, the oldest one was implemented in 1953, the politicians are themselfes corrupt, so they won´t let investigations go to far. A law from 1999 was even designed in a way that it wasn´t possible to actually implement it. The investigations of the explosion of August 4 last year give an dramatic insight to this situation.

There are different methods to meassure the extend and influence of corruption. As this is naturally difficult, the feelt corruption in a country is a good way to enable some kind of comparison. In this statistics, Lebanon is getting worse year by year. While it was on place 128 in an international comparison, it is on 149 on 2020, out of 179. Only the people of 30 countries in the world thinks that their country is more corrupt than the Lebanese thinks of their.

While international pressure on the elites is increasing, nobody seems to think that a cooperation with these guys is still reasonable. A successful fight against corruption will certainly not happen as long as they are in power.

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