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 “لبنان: التسمية و التشهير هو واجب”

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 “A Warm Welcome to Lebanon’s New Cabinet”

The Time for Justice has Come…

…or so some would say.

Nine years after the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005, the court proceedings of the ‘Special Tribunal for Lebanon‘ (STL) have finally begun. Created for the purpose of bringing those responsible for this crime (and many others that followed it) to justice, the tribunal is considered unprecedented on many levels.  While it is the first time that an international court will be trying a case based on terrorism charges, it is also the first time in contemporary Lebanese history, if ever at all, that so much effort and resources have been allocated to bringing criminals to justice. Lebanon may have become used to wars and politically motivated crimes, but it has become even more accustomed to never knowing the truth behind those crimes and taking for granted that nobody in Lebanon is ever brought to account. Continue reading “The Time for Justice has Come…”

“Only Christians can save Lebanon”: A Quick Response

I’m quite sure not even a Maronite Patriarch could have pulled off such a gem. Technically, they do have a right to, given that the “glory of Lebanon has been bestowed upon him” (“مجد لبنان أعطي له”). Then again, some Christians could have come up with this too, because as some of them have told me (half serious, half jokingly): Christians (read Maronites) created Lebanon, they have the right to destroy it, and if we extrapolate, they could be the only ones to save it as well… Continue reading ““Only Christians can save Lebanon”: A Quick Response”

Lebanon: A Gloomy Look Ahead

Sometimes, I think it would be easier to just re-post my thoughts and frustrations on Lebanon, again and again, in view of the current situation. I am not inclined to write a “Beirut Yet Again and Again” after the latest explosion in Beirut’s southern suburbs on January 2, after having written “Beirut, Yet Again” (بيروت ايضا و ايضا)  following the explosion in Downtown Beirut on December 27. The nature of the explosives may have differed and the location slightly shifted, yet nothing else has changed on the ground. Continue reading “Lebanon: A Gloomy Look Ahead”

بيروت , ايضا و ايضا

الانفجار الاخيرالذي وقع في بيروت استهدف وزير المالية السابق محمد شطح, و أودى بحياة مرافقه ، الطالب محمد الشعار, واربعة مواطنين ابرياء لم تحدد هويتهم بعد. انه يوم حزين انهى سنة مضمخة بالدماء. و باستمرار العنف و الانفجارات في طراباس و الضاحية, و الاعتداءات المستمرة على الحدود اللبنانية السورية, فان سنة 2013 كانت سنة مأساوية. اخذا بالواقع اللبناني كان يمكن ان تكون اسوأ. Continue reading “بيروت , ايضا و ايضا”

Beirut, Yet Again

Yesterday’s explosion in Beirut – killing former Finance Minister Mohammad Chatah among around seven others who remain to be identified –  is a sad way to end a year already painted blood-red. With the ongoing violence and bombings in Tripoli, Dahiyeh, and the recurrent attacks on Lebanon’s border with Syria, 2013 was a tragic year, but in true Lebanese style, it could have always been much worse… Continue reading “Beirut, Yet Again”