Lebanon: General Strike

A general strike that was called for by the opposition brought Lebanon to a standstill today.
Bloggers posted photos, video clips, analysis and updates on the strike and the activities that ensued.
MFL updates and writes about how the strike effected various places and aspects of Lebanese society.

The Opposition are differing whether this is going to be 48 hours or all week. Nevertheless, both camps proved how they are reactionary and the workers are facing each other. Today also proves that the demand on Hezbollah to disarm is not logical, rather, all parties should disarm.

Blogging the Middle East posts photos of the protests and has this to say:

Yesterday I was telling a few people how the opposition will never succeed with its pacifist attitudes and behaviour in toppling the government, and that if they want to achieve anything, they will have to shift onto a militant stance. Well, it seems they finally heard me. And about time that they did something like this.

Beirut to Beltway reports on the riots during the strike:

Hundreds of hooded men are setting fire to tires and dumpsters after filling them with fuel in Beirut and other areas. Eyewitnesses told me that they saw bulldozers assisting the protestors by shoveling dirt and dumping it on some of the roads. Trucks were also seen transporting tires and metal barriers to various points in the capital. They were not intercepted by the army or security forces.
The Lebanese army so far has been letting the protestors block the roads for a while, to then re-open them, although not in Beirut so far. This seems to be their “neutral” strategy.

Blogging Beirut posts video clips of protests in some areas he was passing by:

On my way to work, I found myself surrounded by Stone Throwers in the Hazmieh area of Beirut, Lebanon.
Roadblocks were set up with charred cars and tire ash.
On one side, a predominantly Hizballah crowd.
On the other, Hazmieh residents.
This is a Video Account of the events as they unfolded. No Comment.

From Lebanon had the following experience in the morning while going to work:

This morning when I left my house to go to work, I had to pass through burning tires and people obviously agitated throwing stones on passing cars. I had to walk because there was no public transportation. Since I work in an NGO, we can not have the senior citizens and children waiting without being welcomed and served.
Finally I arrived at work, where I still am.

And as to what may have caused this escalation of protests in Lebanon Remarkz wrote this a day before today’s strike

But whatever you say, whether somebody decides to close his shop and go down to the streets, is a matter of a thought-of decision due to a specific social and economic condition in which he’s been living in since who knows when. And this is something no one tried to understand.

And UrShalim also has this article about some of the reasons that may have added to the tensions which resulted in today’s violent protests.

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