Tuesday, September 16, 2008

بحبك يا لبنان

The driver of this BMW I saw today clearly loves this country. He has dressed the 4 headrests in his car in red, white, and cedar. He also has Pierre Gemmayel's legacy, the "Love Lebanon? Love its products" bumper sticker, adorning his rear fender. He's so patriotic he might know the second , heck even the third verse of the Lebanese national anthem.  

Nothing however says "I love Lebanon" more than him throwing his empty Marlboro flip top pack out his car window.  

from the campaign trail

Thirty some odd years ago, the war in Lebanon was between the arms that were a guarantee for the safety and defense of the Christian minority in the Middle East and those weapons that were slated to liberate Palestine.  The funny thing today is the argument you hear that a certain arsenal in Lebanon serves as a protection and a guarantee for the minorities in the Middle East including Lebanon's Christian minority; while some are convinced this same weaponry will pave the way back to Jerusalem. 

Rockn't the vote

In this period between the olympics and the world cup, plenty of spectacles try to fill the void. It seems elections are en vogue this season. All the cool kids are doing it. There's the great U.S. of A. with its bipartisan bout. On the other hand, we have Iran with its bipolar act. Down south they are playing hot potato as no one wants to be the next Olmert. Then there's our show which some believe to be as significant as the previous three combined as all these three nations and multiple other states are involved directly in the electoral process in Zgharta el Zawya and others of the thousands of major metropolitan areas in Lebanon.  

Since the campaign is in full swing it's time to start evaluating the candidates and filtering the m down to those worthy of our vote. After all a vote is not something to be taken lightly, you are ceding power over your interests to someone who should be trustworthy and who would choose your interests above all other considerations. There are also the so called principles that you might stand for or against and they should be reflected in your choice. I for one am against. It's actually the easy out to be ever-opposing without presenting a viable alternative. You never have to defend your position while always pointing out imperfections in a perfectly imperfect world. Well that is the actual job of a citizen; to boss politicians around pushing for an ever-eluding perfection. It seems easy but we always fuck it up.
In any case, I'm against the elections. I don't think I need to back that up with any solid reasons, because that might actually set a dangerous precedent in a country that is not very tolerant of reason... among other things. So instead, I'll just back up my opposition to the election with a hunch or a gut feeling. You can't argue with a gut; it might let its feelings out and it wouldn't be very pleasant. 

I just don't think these elections matter. Not that other elections matter much. Regardless of my strong opposition to that election law that is gerrymandered specifically to shatter a fragilely glued country. It is not about an election law or a political platform. Elections in Lebanon are just for show. A spectacle of long hours of TV programming  to create a diversion from the real politics taking place. Ultimately, they do not matter at all. There are doubts the elections take place, and I certainly hope they don't so this charade isn't gratuitously extended for 4 more years. Now if they do take place, they are likely to be the last or one of the last in this current establishment.   You have to foresee this if you hope to have a political role in this country's future. Those fighting for a seat here or there won't. 

O Canada!

The mighty Zohans have foiled 5 kidnapping attempts of Izzies by Hezbollah in different parts of the world. Now I don't know if these claims have passed the snopes.com test, but I'll play along. So here we have the same intelligence apparatus that failed to sniff what goes on under its nose in Maroun El Ras going 5 for 5 in pulling needles out of haystacks around the globe; thus out-omnipresenting  the party of God...  Good job Mossad, you're so impressive  you obviously don't need to make these annoying dinnertime telemarketing calls offering me $10 million for information about Ron Arad. So stop them.

Back to these latest achievements. One of these cases was in Toronto. So a Hezbollah operative was going to kidnap an Israeli over there and face one of 2 scenarios. Either drug him and and hide him on a transatlantic flight, entertain him for a long layover at Schiphol, then smuggle him agin onto a flight to Beirut where they can hide him in one of their secure bunkers. That's just very unlikely, and too risky. So the second  scenario is more likely. Hezbollah would keep the hostages in Toronto.. in their complex bunker and tunnel system under Toronto's southern suburbs where they hide an arsenal of thousands of missiles that can reach Detroit, beyond Detroit, and beyond what's beyond Detroit. Yep that's the one.