Lebanon: Terrorist Attack and Hariri’s Commemoration

Two years ago, on February 14, a massive terrorist explosion targeting Rafic Hariri took away his life and the lives of many others. Fast forward, two years and many dramatic incidents later, the Lebanese marked the event with a mass rally in Martyr’s Square. A day before the memorial, a tragic terrorist explosion targeted innocent civilians as two buses exploded in the village of Ain Alaq, near Bikfaya, in Mount Lebanon. Bloggers discussed these two events with posts and photos. The following are a sample of the Lebanese blogosphere’s take on the subjects:
On the Ain Alaq terrorist attack:

Pierre Tristam comments on the explosions and reminisces about his childhood experiences in this part of Lebanon:

How pitiful it all seems. How disarming of any hope for good will. How shattering of those petty old memories—the resort on the hill, the imaginary occupants and their colors within—that had managed all these years to live on unscathed. I don’t believe in the whole psychology of repressed memories. I do believe in the vengefulness of memories, once they decide, as they so often do, to seize on a contemporary event’s violence and absurdity, and recast one’s personal history accordingly.

Angry Anarchist questions how some leaders are capable of predicting these terrorist acts and asks for investigations and trials for the atrocities committed during the civil war:

What I cannot believe is not that there was a bombing — we all knew it was coming, our very own Nostradamus, Samir Geagea, “predicted” it. What I cannot believe is how some people find it in themselves to translate such a horrible act…
Speaking of the investigation and tribunal, why not investigate the systematic murder of 150,000 people (that includes Palestinians, in case some people forgot the Palestinians were people) in 15 years? Maybe that will settle once and for all the Martians vs. Lebanese issue. Oh I see, the ones calling for the international tribunal for the Hariri assassination were the same ones who carried out those massacres and killings. Oh wait, sorry, I take that back. It was the Martians.

Mustapha sees that the bombing was directed at the February 14 rally:

Regardless of who committed today’s atrocities, it is directed at tomorrow’s Christian crowd.

Hillz writes (Ar) about where he was and the reaction of those around him to the murder of R. Hariri two years ago. He goes on to reflect on how politics and the objectives of some political parties evolved, during the past two years. His depiction of what used to be and what it is now forms a surrealistic image of the country and its slogans.

Bashir fears the predisposition of the Lebanese to be swayed into the trap of any sinister action planned for Lebanon:

Something is cooking for us. Something is cooking slowly. And we are too easy.

On Hariri’s commemoration rally:

Skylark has a translation of the controversial parts of the speeches of Jumblat and Geagea during the rally. Skylark also suggests why there was no significant incident during the rally:

Despite the twin blasts on Tuesday morning and weeks of exacerbated tensions, no significant accidents were reported during or immediately after the rally. This was partly due to the repeated requests of many political and sectarian leaders to their supporters to restrain from acts of violence and partly to the twin barbed-wire fence interposed between the sector of square where the manifestation was staged and the sector of square where the opposition is still staging its sleep-in tent camp.

Liliane post photos and a link to a photo album of images from February 14 rally.

Abu Kais had this to say about the event in a post with a video clip:

Something didn’t feel right today. Hundreds of thousands of well-meaning Lebanese took to the street to remember Hariri, and protest against Hizbullah and Syria.
But the city they converged on was physically divided, with Hizbullah in effective occupation of its heart. “It reminds me of Berlin,” said one protestor from Sidon. Indeed. You could not forget, despite the verbal challenges mounted by the speakers, that on the other side of the barbwire, there is an illegal force wreaking havoc in the country. Their presence, one could argue, was designed to cancel out whatever effect this mass rally was supposed to produce.

Mustapha criticizes the speeches that he said tarnished the impressive turnout:

Why lose the calm confidence? Why bring down the level of discourse? Sure the public got a blast, but why risk an irrational reaction from next door’s dictator? What is Walid Jumblat’s plan for countering a Syrian border closure for example? Would he compensate our exporters?
The other side is busy winning hearts and minds by writing editorials in newspapers, and all we’re doing is behaving like buffoons.

There are many more blogs out there in the Lebanese blogosphere. Here are some aggregators that may be helpful in finding them: Lebanon’s Blogs , Lebanon Aggregator and News.Beiruter.

Stay well and see you next week for another roundup.

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