Who knew Aoun would one day ally himself with pro-Syrian Michel Murr, who shut down the pro-Aoun TV station Murr TV during the Syrian era? And who knew that Murr TV will be replaced by an Orange, broadcasting popular rallies to support the election of a pro-Syrian candidate? I still remember the time when Aoun's supporters gathered outside MTV's building, shouting anti-Syrian slogans, and celebrating after their candidate, Gabriel Murr, won against Michelle Murr's daughter. And I still remember the day the pro-Syrian constitutional council annulled the vote -- the same council Aoun fought March 14 to keep after the Syrian withdrawal.
And who knew that Aoun's website would turn into a mouthpiece for the likes of Suleiman Frangieh, who called the Cedar Revolution the "cauliflower revolution".
It gets better. According to Elaph, which cited a western diplomatic source, Aoun recently met with a senior security figure in the Assad regime, Mohammad Nassif, who is in charge of the "Shia file", meaning Hizbullah and Amal. During the meeting which reportedly took place in Germany, Nassif promised Aoun the full support of the Assad regime and its allies and of the Armenian Tashnag party in the Metn by-election.
وأكد المصدر ذاته أن اللواء ناصيف شدّد على ضرورة أن يخوض عون المعركة الانتخابية ضد الجميّل ويذهب فيها حتى النهاية وأن سورية على أستعداد لوضع كلّ امكاناتها في تصرفه.
وأصرّ المسؤول السوري على عدم تراجع عون عن المعركة وكرر أن دمشق ستطلب من الأحزاب التي تؤثر عليها دعم مرشح عون الى أبعد حدّ. وأشار في هذا المجال الى أن سورية قادرة على الضغط على حزب الطاشناق الأرمني كي تصب كل أصواته لمصلحة مرشح التيار العوني. ولوحظ أن ميشال عون عاد من المانيا بمواقف متصلبة قطعت الطريق على أي تسوية في المتن بعدما أكد له محمد ناصيف أن سوريا قادرة على أنجاح مرشحه في المتن وأنها ستضع كل ثقلها وثقل حلفائها من أجل تحقيق هذا الهدف.
While the news of the meeting cannot be confirmed, and will probably be denied by Aoun's Orange apparatus, the pro-Syrian parties have certainly been overwhelmingly voicing their support for Aoun since his return from Germany. The rally I mentioned above and Frangieh's statement, in which he declared support for Aoun, are good translations of that alliance.
Additionally, Samir Geagea today claimed that vans carrying Syrians with Lebanese citizenship have arrived in preparation for casting their vote on Sunday.
The outcome of the elections is unpredictable. Citing a survey conducted in May, David Kenner reports in Now Lebanon that Christian support for Aoun has declined. This might not matter much, since Aoun seems to be banking on the votes that Syrians own in the Metn. These are the same votes that the General thinks will get him the presidency, the same votes that will one day sell him for cheap when Hizbullah finally sheds its Syrian-procured Christian cover.