Just like any good and lasting marriage, the decision to launch the Lebanon Law Review’s political division took time and careful consideration. It’s been a long time coming, and not everyone was on board with the decision. Before I could take the plunge, I had to consider the many objections raised by my peers.
Many argued that a law review should not attend to political matters, and therefore should stay within the confines of legal studies. Still, many others argued that even if the Spirit of the law review were to admit such a political division, it would truly be a challenge and not worth the hassle in light of Lebanon’s never-ending political quagmire. We would be subject to power politics, and our editorial integrity shattered. It is impossible to find political writers who are unbiased, they said. You would start talking about this party or that, praising one and attacking the other. Still, some argued for an unconscious bias ingrained in the author’s subconscious, one which he cannot escape no matter how hard he tried.
Law and Politics are two sides to the same coin – it is impossible to have one without the other.
All of the above arguments, I reject – or at least render invalid or insignificant. It is entirely within the power of the editorial team to decide which articles to post, and which to omit. That the authors who show bias be blacklisted, and that men of integrity be awarded a chance to shine.
Furthermore, to study the art of political science from the lens of any one nation or state would not only be a great disservice – but academically moot and a giant waste of time. Political science is a study much grander than the confines of 10452 square kilometers. This is a study of peoples and cultures, states and nations, civilizations and the epochs of great men. A study that does not recognize borders, nor the passage of time. What was true yesterday, will be true tomorrow. What is true today, may not have been true yesterday. This is a social science, really a study of human nature on a grand scale, wherein lies the art.
It is an oft forgotten truism that the lawmakers of today are in the most part elected politicians. It is not unreasonable therefore to assume that the law was instated in service of politics, nor is it unreasonable to conversely say that policies are shaped by the laws of the times. Man is a complex creature, and requires complex interdisciplinary study.
Nor do I believe that there is now a scarcity of good men, such that none should be found able to rise to the challenge of intellectual and professional honesty. After all, our values are known. All we have to do is adhere to them. Let us stick to academics, to what we know to be true. Let us abhor speculation and vain strife.
For these reasons, I am pleased to announce the launch of our political division on the fourth of August, 2020. A great thanks to my good friend Karam Al Ahmar, who without his incessant and inconquerable energy there would not be a political division at all. He presides over this division with great integrity, heart, and no shortage of intellectual prowess. The right man for the job, if I may say, and comfortably so.
Many thanks to Dr. Fadi Assaf, our great supporter and the one who finally convinced us to go for it.
Many thanks for reading the Lebanon Law Review,
Antoine R. Kanaan.