petition-land

Designate Lebanon as a Land for Dialogue Among Civilizations and Cultures

Petitioning Secretary-General of the United Nations H. E. Ban Ki-Moon and UN Member States

The petition is prepared by Guita Hourani. Please join us and sign the petition. Link to sign Petition

Like St. Pope John Paul II, Ayatollah Muhammad Mahdi Shamseddine, the Muslim-Christian Summit at the Maronite Patriarchate in Lebanon and hundreds of thousands of people in Lebanon and around the world, we believe that Lebanon is more than a country it is a message of freedom, a model of pluralism and a special space for dialogue and coexistence of different cultures, ethnicities and religions. We also believe that Lebanon’s vocation is to embody this message and to strive to live it and to promote it despite all the challenges and the obstacles faced.  CLICK HERE PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION.

 

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Surprise whatsapp picture

Bachir Gemayel
Bachir Gemayel

I was still in the office around 6 pm last night when I received  a WhatsApp msg. I checked the msg, it was from a relative. She sent me this picture of Bachir Gemayel picture. I was surprised by the msg. I asked her: “What made you remember him now?”  She answered: “A friend of mine posted it on FaceBook, I like it a lot and I thought of you”. I told her that this is one of my favorites.  She said bye and that was the end of the conversation. Little she knows that she changed my night. I looked back at the picture and it took me back to summer 1981. Beginning of Zahle war, I was a young man playing Ping Pong in hotel Mzar in Ouyoun el Siman. I was killing time before attending Sunday Mass. At that time, hotel Mzar was switched to an LF barrack. My back was back to the others while playing. Suddenly I felt a tap on my shoulder and someone saying: “Can I play against you”. I turned around, and find myself looking at Bachir Gemayel. He took the paddle from the guy who was playing against me. Played a set and then he said, I think it is time for the Mass. We entered together. I took the first empty seat that I saw. He was ushered to the front. I saw lifting the fancy chair they put from him in the middle of the first raw and put it on a side. Than he took his place among the others in front raw. After the mass, I waited outside, hoping to see him leaving. When he stepped out, he saw me, smiled, came towards me, shook my hand and said goodbye. On that Sunday of summer 1981, I thought I was dreaming. A year later, they killed the dream.

Last night, the dream sneaked back and made me smile.

Samir Geagea, leader of the Christian Lebanese Forces, speaks during a news conference at his house in Maarab village

From “Let Muslim Bortherhood rule” to “El-Sisi election is a ray of hope”

In 2012, Samir Geagea sent a cable to newly elect president Mursi a cable congratulating him on his election as President of Egypt. He told him in the cable: “…We warmly congratulate from the heart President Mohamed Morsi, hoping that conditions will help him achieve what he has already confirmed in his positions, which is known for his long struggle from political prisoner to President.”

On June 6, 2014, Samir Geagea cabled newly elect president el-Sisi congratulating him : “… This step is an affirmation of the consensus formed by the Egyptians to free choice, and a ray of hope to the people through the yearning for democracy …”

From “let Muslim Brotherhood rule” to the “el-Sisi ray of hope” …. Its tough to catch up with the rapid changes in the area when you are well advised ….

Thousands of Syrain nationals living in Lebanon arrive outside the Syrian Embassy in Yarze east of Beirut on May 28, 2014, before voting in the upcoming presidential elections in Syria (AFP Photo)

Unfortunate and Shameful

On May 28, 2014, Thousands of Syrain nationals living in Lebanon flocked to their Embassy in Yarze east of Beirut to cast their votes. The majority of the “refugees” voiced support for Assad’s rule. 

Today, amid a civil war, thousands of Syrian lined up in Syria to cast their votes in the presidential elections. Waving photos of President Bashar Assad and dancing with flags, tens of thousands renewed allegiance to President Bashar Assad.

For sure we can criticize Syrian presidential election and call it a sham. But what is unfortunate and shameful is that while the Syrian voted for a president, 128 Lebanese deputies can’t meet to elect a president for Lebanon.

Samir Geagea and Michel Aoun

How Samir Geagea can become a national hero?

By running for elections, Samir Geagea got the support of 48 deputies. The 48 votes in his favor belong to March 14 alliance. But he failed in gaining the necessary votes to be elected president. The deadline to elect a president has passed and Lebanon became a headless state. It doesn’t seem in the near future that a president will be elect.

Which will leave the sectarian country run by a Sunnite prime minister and a Shiite head of parliament.

How to break the status quo? How to take out from the hands of Hizbullah, Walid Jumblatt and Saad Hariri the presidential card and return it to where it really belongs? How to bring back what was taken from the Christians of Lebanon during the Syrian hegemony over Lebanon? How to make Samir Geagea a true Lebanese hero? How to make him a “Za3im Watani” (national leader)? How will Samir Geagea enters history ????

Simply by going to Rabieh, meet Aoun, agree on dividing certain first and second levels positions and declare from Rabieh that the Lebanese Forces back Aoun as president.

This will make him enters history from the right door and will erase all the mistakes that he has done.

Just a thought.

syrian-refugees

5 facts you didn’t know about Syrian refugees in Lebanon

Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation – Wed, 21 May 2014
Author: Magda Mis and Ye Li

Every fifth person in Lebanon is a Syrian refugee – the highest concentration of refugees per capita in the world. An equivalent influx to the UK would be 14 million refugees.
Follow this link to find out about the 5 facts you didn’t know about Syrian refugees.

nbcnews-phoenician

Ancient Phoenician Relics Unearthed in Lebanon

Alan Boyle wrote the following article to NBCNEWS

Archaeologists have found a treasure trove of ancient artifacts at a dig in the southern Lebanese city of Sidon, including a 4-foot-high (115-centimeter-high) statue of a Phoenician priest dating back more than 2,500 years.

“Nothing comparable has been found in Lebanon since the early 1960s,” Lebanon’s Daily Star quoted the excavation’s leader, Claude Doumit Serhal, as saying. The priest portrayed in the statue is wearing a pleated kilt, and in his left fist he holds an object that experts suggest could be a scroll or a handkerchief.

To read the article, follow this link.

hariri-jumblat-berri

How about the rest?

Many support Samir Geagea to become president and others oppose strongly. When you ask those who oppose his run for presidency they say he committed crimes, found guilty, sent to prison and after 10 years he was released from prison with an amnesty law, Geagea shouldn’t be president. I’m sure we can write books about the trials, the arrests, the torture … this is not the purpose of this post. I’m not defending Geagea, anyway he doesn’t need me to defend him, but I would like to ask those who don’t want to see him as president, what is the difference between Geagea and Nabih Berri? What is the difference between Geagea and Walid Jumblat? What is the difference between Geagea and Hariri family? What is the difference between Geagea and Nasrallah? What is the difference between Geagea and Aoun? Why Berri, Jumblat, Hariri … have the right to be House Speaker, Deputy, and Prime Minister … but Geagea has no right to run for presidency? Didn’t Nabih Berri give the orders during the war? How about the Palestinian camps war between Amal and the Palestinians? How many civilians died during that fight? Wasn’t Jumblatt the head of the PSP party when his followers massacred Christians in the Mountain war? How about Hariri family? Didn’t they finance several factions during the war? Didn’t they finance jiahdists in Lebanon who spread death around them? What about Aoun? He launched two wars and hundreds of civilians were killed because of those wars.  

If others were allowed to hold key positions in the government why waging a war against Geagea and dig out the past? 

All leaders should be treated the same, we must ban every Militia leader, every person who carried a weapon and every person who financed militias during the civil war, from running to office. 

jala'

The ninth anniversary of the evacuation of the Syrian army from Lebanon

On this day, I found the words of a friend, Selmen Smeha, are the best to describe, this day and what many of us are thinking about. Sorry it is in Arabic:

الى ابي و امي و اخوتي،
اليوم الذكرى التاسعة لجلاء الجيش السوري من لبنان…
في هذا اليوم اقدم اعتذاري لكم، لكل ما قضيتموه بسببي طيلة وجود هذا الاحتلال…
لكل السهر و القلق و الزعل و الغضب و الدموع و القهر الذي تسببته لكم…
لم اكن لاعتذر اليوم لو لم يدس كل رفاقي منذ ذلك اليوم وحتى يومنا هذا على كل تضحياتكم…
لم يتعلموا شيئاً من ظلم و ظلامية تلك السنوات…
لبسوا الشالات الحمر والبييض متباهين متبخترين…
غرتهم المنابر و الشاشات…
اضاعت توازنهم القاب ” المناضل” و” المقاوم “….
باللبناني الدارج بيقولوا ” شم ريحة باطو”…
تسابقوا من يريد ان ” يقطفها ” قبل الثاني…على حساب “الثاني” لا مانع…نكاية ” بالثاني” لا فرق…
تنازلوا للجميع وعلى كل شيئ…ولم يتقدموا بخطوة واحدة تجاه بعضهم
تصالحوا مع الجميع…واستعادوا حقدهم وعدائهم لبعضهم البعض…
لكل ما سبق…ولكل ما سوف يأتي من هزائم نهرول اليها بايدينا و ارجلنا…
اعتذر منك امي…ابي…اختي..اخي…

Just A few Angry Lebanese with PLENTY to say

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