Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Another Fallen Politician

"An anti-Syrian Lebanese MP was assassinated today and nine others killed when a car bomb exploded in Beirut.

In one of the deadliest such attacks since the murder of the former prime minister, Rafik Hariri,more than two years ago, the MP, Walid Eido was killed as a car bomb detonated as his vehicle drove by, near the seafront in the Lebanese capital.

His eldest son, two bodyguards and six bystanders were also killed in the explosion, which tore open shop fronts and sent debris raining down on the surrounding area. At least 11 other people were wounded, security sources said."

Continue reading Clancey Chassay in The Guardian


Sunday, June 03, 2007

Nahr el-Barid Camp

Satellite Image of Nahr el-Barid Camp

Thursday, May 31, 2007

St. George road opened

After being closed for 836 days, Beirut's St. George road was opened today after the crater caused by the bomb that killed Rafic Hariri and his companions was paved. It comes as the UN Security Council approved the establishment of a special tribunal to try the suspects in the killing of Hariri and other political figures.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Cartoon of the Day

Steve Bell in the Guardian 23.05.2007

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

I was told

If you think Haifa Wehbe or Hassan Nasrallah or Rafic Hariri are the most famous in Lebanon, think again... It is a 70 year old quiet American called Seymour Hersh.

Since he published in the New Yorker an article that reported "the US is funding alternative Sunni Muslim groups to combat the powerful Shia crescent it perceives to be growing in the Middle East from Iran via Syria to Lebanon and Hizbullah", Hersh has become a star for the pro-Syria politicians.

But where is the evidence?

Blast! and the evidence appears in North Lebanon. As soon as a radical Sunni group under the name of Fateh el-Islam violently ambushed the Lebanese Army and the Lebanese Police, Hersh's story was revived as an evidence to point the blame for the recent clashes towards the pro-West current government.

Excuse me, I miss the logic.

Here Ramsay Short replays the same story with the same mistake contradicting himself:

Short mentions that the leader of Fateh el-Islam "Shaker al-Abssi, was last imprisoned in Syria but subsequently released for the murder of a US diplomat in Jordan"

Yet he mentions that "Fatah al-Islam has not been armed by Syria at all but by Sunni Muslims, and even the Siniora government itself, with money from the Saudis and Americans pledged to Lebanon to help rebuild after last summer's Israeli war on the country."

I wander how the US is funding a militant who murdered one of its diplomats.

Looking at Hersh's story, I see it built on one weak line:

A statement by some obscure former MI6 British intelligence officer called Alastair Crooke, who now works in another obscure thinktank in Beirut called Conflicts Forum. Crooke tells Hersh (probably over a pint) that “The Lebanese government is opening space for these people to come in. It could be very dangerous.” Crooke continues, according to Hersh "that one Sunni extremist group, Fatah al-Islam, had splintered from its pro-Syrian parent group, Fatah al-Intifada, in the Nahr al-Bared refugee camp, in northern Lebanon. Its membership at the time was less than two hundred. Crooke “was told that within twenty-four hours they were being offered weapons and money by people presenting themselves as representatives of the Lebanese government’s interests—presumably to take on Hezbollah,”

Who told this Crooke, we don't know.

Did anyone make some logical analysis that these militants came from Syria? - Not necessary.

Being few km from the Syrian borders and having sophisticated weapons? not thought of.

Any linkages with Syria's attempts and threats to hamper the efforts for international tribunal? Maybe a technicality!

Anyone looking at the Iraqi style and how Syria is supporting the militants there with arms and allowing them to pass? Not sure.

It is a shame how a story goes unchecked, I was told!

Monday, May 21, 2007

beirut-bloggers are back

Lebanon is back on the headlines, and so we are. It is unfortunate that we are back to cover the bad news that is coming from Lebanon

Clashes between the Lebanese Army and a Palestinian Islamist militant group under the name of Fateh el-Islam in North Lebanon, a bomb in the predominantly Christian Ashrafieh quarter then a bomb in the predominantly Muslim Verdun quarter. All within 48 hours and scores of dead in the North Lebanon clashes and vast damages in the Beirut bombs.

We'll keep you updated with stories, analysis and media coverage

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Bashar and his vicious circle