ISIS and the specter of Zionism

  I’m not saying that Zionism and ISIS are identical or anything as simplistic. But in trying to find generalizing labels for ISIS, such as being a fascist organization, or a totalitarian state and so on, and in the effort to draw parallels between different political experiences one can more subtly propose that ISIS and […]

Read More ISIS and the specter of Zionism

Sectarian Land Law

Lately, Lebanese Labor Minister, Butros Harb, has proposed a law that would forbid a Lebanese to sell land to another Lebanese of a different confessional affiliation. According, to Al Akhbar Journalist Hassan Oleik, the law does not have much chance to pass and is mostly proposed for electoral reasons, but still signals initiatives from the […]

Read More Sectarian Land Law

Democracy for you

What is mostly fascinating in Lebanon is that it presents an excellent example of the fictions of democracy. It renders visible the inherent tension between power/authority necessary for rules and decisions to be taken and people’s ‘bread and circus’ the democratic processes where unlike the Roman setting, here, we are made to believe that ‘everybody […]

Read More Democracy for you

Aoun parading in Damascus

Sometimes Al Akhbar becomes such a trashy Nationalist newspaper. Everybody has been commenting about Michel Aoun’s visit to Syria, some describing it as a visit to the devil (I’ll let you guess which media outlet) and others going as far as saying that it’s the most important post-Taef visit. So the screams of the Lebanese […]

Read More Aoun parading in Damascus

Changes in the Phalangist party

The inevitable has finally happened, Loubnanouna will merge into the Kataeb party. Loubnanouna is a party founded by Sami Gemayel, son of Amin Gemayel, former president and current leader of the Phalange party, that advocates federalism as a the best solution to Lebanon’s confessional divisions. Accordingly, Sami will occupy an important position in the party […]

Read More Changes in the Phalangist party

For the record

There is something sad in this picture. See the guy behind Lahoud to the right? I know this guy. I don’t know his name, but I remember a couple of years ago, when Lahoud came often to this club (if not daily) to take a swim, I used to see him next to the swimming […]

Read More For the record

On clerical power in Lebanon

Reading the Lebanese press involve the discovery of many fascinating things and we are all most familiar with this. But one of them is the recurrence of stories stating that this or that politician had a meeting with this or that religious instance. Lately, I have in mind the various patriach-ical initiatives supposed to come […]

Read More On clerical power in Lebanon

picaboo!

Look at this guy… Why does he need to look so ugly? the Islamist type is serving as template to symbolize militias! This is part of a campaign (surely Leo Burnet and the billboards provided by Picasso), to ‘build’ some kind of ‘awareness’ about the fact that the different Lebanese factions are arming themselves and […]

Read More picaboo!

National consciousness

Here I just want to throw some ideas around. I have been meaning to write something but the fact that I am trying to produce my miserable thesis does not permit me to invest to many neurones around here. So scattered thoughts here they are: Let me start with the obvious: Today the Lebanese state […]

Read More National consciousness

Take Egypt for example

Don’t you often hear people say “Christian in Egypt are persecuted”? This is one of the many nice little bullshit myths one hears on the Middle East or on “Islamic” practices. Copts (Christian sect in Egypt) are actually significantly present in parliament (much more relative to the size of their community), and the few Egyptians […]

Read More Take Egypt for example

Lebanese diaries

Rest assured, today on LBC news broadcast, the Maronite Patriarch MarNasrallah Boutros Sfeir was asked about his solutions for the current political crisis in Lebanon (two politically very divided camps have to decide on a new president). And so he answered (and I quote approximately but surely my friends), that one should pray the baby […]

Read More Lebanese diaries

Back to Beirut: The Beginning

Since I landed a week ago in Beirut, I have been taken over by a general feeling of weakness (one of the reasons why I did not write since). I’m sure that the humidity has to do with it, and I am ready to bet that Ibn Khaldun and other social theoreticians of the Arab […]

Read More Back to Beirut: The Beginning

Defining a state …

Avraham Burg, former Knesset speaker and former head of the Jewish Agency says “to define the State of Israel as a Jewish state is the key to its end. A Jewish state is explosive. It’s dynamite.” In an interview in Haaretz Weekend Magazine, he said that he is in favor of abrogating the Law of […]

Read More Defining a state …