April 13: How can we not forget?

Today is the day we commemorate the war. We reflect on the fact that 39 years ago, the life of a country and that of its people would change and never be the same again. We reminisce on what was and what could have been. We believe, or would like to believe, that things have changed, but in fact they have never been more the same… Continue reading

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What Turkish Model for the Middle East?

Eye on the East:

Just because Turkey recently banned Twitter and YouTube doesn’t mean it suddenly turned from a democracy into an dictatorship. Then again, has Turkey really been the so-called “democratic model” it has been advertised to be. Re-blogging my thoughts written over one year ago…

Originally posted on Eye on the East:

At a time when many argued that democracy was incompatible with the Muslim-majority countries of the Middle East, the Turkish democratic model was always used as the ultimate example to the contrary. Developed in the backdrop of a ruthless military and a fiercely secular tradition, it provided a model that could be easily emulated by its neighbors, given similar societal composition and other commonalities that came with geographic proximity.  But is Turkey the best democratic example for its neighbors to follow? The more I read about Turkey and its recent trajectory, the more I believe the answer is no.

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Dignity is sometimes too much to ask

You may be easily able to imagine yourself reading a book in a car or eating in a car, but could you imagine living in a car or even dying in a car?

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When in London, Join the Protest: On Lebanese Women and the Police Force

What began as preparations for a modest protest in London – in solidarity with the March 8 protest in Beirut for Lebanon’s Parliament to pass the Law Protecting Women from Family Violence – ended as an invaluable lesson in law enforcement, civics and the rule of law. Continue reading

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لبنان: التسمية و التشهير هو واجب

Note: this piece is a translation of Eye on the East’s previous post “Lebanon: ‘Naming and Shaming’ as a Duty.”  The below Arabic version was published in the March 1-6 2014 issue of Zahle weekly Al Rawaby

يتعذر علي ان اتذكر عدد المرات التي سمعت فيها المقولة السائدة في لبنان “دون ذكر الاسماء” عبارة قصدها تجهيل الفاعل والتعامي عن قول الحقيقة ورفض تسمية الاشياء باسمائها, فنشعر بالاسى لغياب الوضوح و الشفافية في كيفية عمل النظام اللبناني. Continue reading

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A Warm Welcome to Lebanon’s New Cabinet

After 11 long months of political deadlock and childish bickering, Lebanon finally has a cabinet. Although some are satisfied just by having a cabinet and with it some illusion of normalcy, not many are happy with its composition. And in true Lebanese fashion, “what difference does it make anyway,” some will say: if it’s not the same faces on the cabinet table, then it is the same faces behind the scenes that brought them, and if there has been some alternation in portfolios (based on political affiliation and sect), it all remains part of the same game of sectarian and power politics that has brought so much misery to the majority of the Lebanese throughout the years, and will continue to do so in the years to come… Continue reading

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Lebanon: ‘Naming and Shaming’ as a Duty

I couldn’t count the number of times I’ve heard the “let’s not name names” or “دون ذكر أسماء” refrain in Lebanon and feeling at a complete loss for words and hopeless, yet again, about the way this country works. Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Beirut, Charbel Nahas, Lebanon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments