"This will really set the tone for the future, we are choosing between two very distinctly different paths," he added.
Inside the polling station, men and women voted in separate wings of the building.
One by one they entered the classrooms where the voting booths were set up.
Some complained about the heat and the slow speed of the process, but many emphasised just how important the election was.
Across Beirut, in the city's southern suburbs, pictures of the Hezbollah leaders hung from the walls of the polling stations.
Hezbollah is in full control of the southern suburbs, where most people say they are voting for the opposition." BBC
My guess (and it is only that) is that the Shia/Aouni coalition will either win a small majority or so reduce the March 14th group's majority as to make a super coalition (national unity government) unavoidable. The necessity of dealing with a Lebanese government in which Hizbullah plays a larger role will force US interaction with representatives of that party.
That development will hasten the decline of the influence of the faction within the Obama Administration that mirrors Likud/AIPAC positions on questions such as the possibility of useful interaction with Hizbullah and Hamas.
That will be interesting but I remain convinced that the major problems faced in the greater Middle East can not be resolved on a bottom-up basis. In other words we should not expect to solve the Arab/Israeli dispute by doing things like bringing Hamas and the Abbas "government" together and then "jawboning" the Israelis and Palestinians into accepting a US imposed solution.
I still believe that a top-down solution would be more productive. That would be a path in which the US resolves the international difficulties among; the US, Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia. An ability to "regulate" mainstream Islamic relations would proceed from that and a solution for Palestine would become a real possibility.
Easy? Of course not. pl