Your email is not valid
Recipient's email is not valid
Submit Close

Your email has been sent.

Click here to send another

thescroll_header

Lebanon Passes Oil Law

Seen as provocation against Israel

Print Email
Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri.(Michael Totten)

For ten years, Lebanon’s parliament could not agree on a law to permit offshore oil and gas exploration due to disagreement over which companies could benefit. But yesterday, Lebanon finally passed just such a law under the leadership of Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri. What broke the impasse? “The amount of debt and Israeli greed are major concerns,” said a Berri aide. “Passing the law is a message that shows Lebanon is serious and persistent.”

The law is the latest salvo in the cold war brewing between Lebanon and Israel over offshore hydrocarbons—a war that, as Tablet Magazine Mideast columnist Lee Smith reported in June, is liable to spark a second round of the 2006 conflict between Israel and Hezbollah (and its Lebanese host). After Berri asserted in June that parts of three natural gas fields discovered off Israel’s coast extend into Lebanese waters, Israeli Interior Minister Uzi Landau, of the ultra-nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party, replied that Israel would “not hesitate to use our force and strength” to defend its offshore assets. (Israel denies that the fields lie also in Lebanese waters.)

In addition to providing yet more evidence that tensions on Israel’s northern border remain high, it is also yet more evidence—the skirmish earlier this month more as well—that the next conflict will be an Israel-versus-Lebanon, state-versus-state, affair.

Lebanon Law Allows Oil Exploration [AP/JPost]
Related: The Next Lebanon War [Tablet Magazine]
Earlier: Israeli Minister Threatens War Over Gas Fields
What Happened in the North

Print Email

COMMENTING CHARGES
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180

WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.

I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at letters@tabletmag.com. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.

We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.

2000

Your comment may be no longer than 2,000 characters, approximately 400 words. HTML tags are not permitted, nor are more than two URLs per comment. We reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments.

Thank You!

Thank you for subscribing to the Tablet Magazine Daily Digest.
Please tell us about you.

Lebanon Passes Oil Law

Seen as provocation against Israel

More on Tablet:

Rediscovering the First Woman Rabbi

By Laura Geller — Ordained in 1935, Regina Jonas died at Auschwitz. Now, she’s being honored.