Monthly Archives: October 2011

Bad news for the Lebanese people

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Due to the unfortunate passing away of Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, Tele Liban will suspend all its programs today.

You will miss out on:
– Captain Bob Season3 finale.
– Al Ostaz Wal Mou3allima Season1
– Chef Antoine Christmas Special episode
– Captain Majed & Jungar Episodes
– Exclusive interview with President Camille Chamoun.

About the Saudi Prince incident

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Yesterday when I watched the video above and read about how the Police officer was made to apologize to the Saudi Prince I got really really upset. In case you don’t know the story, a Saudi Prince parked in a no parking zone in Beirut, a cop came to give him a ticket and the Saudi Prince insulted the cop and the Lebanese. A crowd nearby overheard the conversation and attacked the Prince sending him to the hospital. The cop was then told to go to the hospital and apologize to the Prince.

As I said, I got really upset at how the cop was made to apologize to the Prince but then it hit me… diplomatic immunity.

Diplomatic immunity is a form of legal immunity and a policy held between governments that ensures that diplomats are given safe passage and are considered not susceptible to lawsuit or prosecution under the host country’s laws (although they can be expelled). [Source]

How many times have you watched a movie where people with diplomatic immunity in the States commit a crime and the cops can’t do anything about it and most of the time have to apologize to the diplomats. It’s unfair yes, but at least it’s not a Lebanese only issue or a corruption thing. I’m not defending the Prince here but I wanted to highlight that the procedure that was taken in having the cop apologize to the diplomat is one that is required by the host country.

Afqa Cave

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The grotto of Afqa gives birth to Lebanon’s largest river – Ibrahim River – which flows out through several outlets, streams, and water pools. The cave’s gaping entrance dominates the mountainside, as water gushes out making its way down the valley below.

When the flow of water slows down in the summer, it is possible for one to enter the cave and explore the many tunnels and chambers deep into the mountain.[Link]

I remember very well the first time I visited Afqa Cave because it was on 9/11. We rented bikes and took off from “Pic Blanc” in Hrajel and rode all the way to the cave. The road is a bit tough as there are lot of roads to climb but it’s quite fun and you go through many beautiful villages. Once you get there, there’s a restaurant at the bottom of the cave overlooking a beautiful waterfall. We went up to visit the cave but did not dare go in deeper as we were not equipped and it was pretty dark.

It occurred me this year that it’s been a long time since we did this trip, so I called some friends to try set it up, before I find out by mistake on the news that you can’t get there anymore. Apparently there’s some illegal construction going on and there are lots of troubles between the residents and the ISF and Lebanese army and roads are being cut.

A footage on TV showed how some areas leading to the cave have become and it’s really sad. Lots of ugly buildings and constructions left and right.

I am waiting for problems to end to plan another trip and see if the cave and its surrounding are still as they were. Until then, I urge the Ministry of Tourism to take better care of the cave and organize trips to it cause the two times I went, I could have bombed the cave for all I care and no one would have noticed.

Rafik Hariri International Airport closed for Breitling Air show

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I was in Beirut today until 3 pm, and didn’t see any planes in the sky. It must have started later.

Seven jets took to the sky over Beirut Saturday afternoon for a synchronized air show.

The pilots, the jet team of Swiss watch manufacturers Breitling, performed 25 minutes of maneuvers above Beirut’s Rafik Hariri International Airport, which was closed for 50 minutes for the show. [DailyStar]

LBCI has some more pictures on their website. Check them out [Here]

Jal el Dib Bridge to be taken down soon

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I heard news that the Jal el Dib Bridge needs to be taken down soon as it is no longer safe to keep it. While the project should have been initiated years back, it was postponed due to problems with Jal el Dib’s municipality but the bridge has become life-expired.

From what I heard, the new bridge will be very similar to the Antelias bridge and might harm few shops in the street leading to Jal el Dib’s main road.

Chou fi Wara el 7ayt? (شو في ورى الحيط؟)

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Anytime you are driving back from Beirut on the Dora Highway, you’ll probably notice by the time you get to Sukleen a large writing on the wall saying “Chou fi wara el 7ayt?”.

Well if you ever wondered who wrote this, it’s a blogger who still believes in reviving old train stations in Lebanon, and mainly the Mar Mikhael station which happens to be located behind that wall.

The initiative of this blog is to draw back the attention onto a forgotten space, at the heart of Beirut – capital city of Lebanon – enclosed between four walls: a train station frozen in time, where only green kept living.

Mar Mikhael station is a potential breathing space for a Beirut that keeps on densifying.

Its tracks are still there behind the wall and extend through the city; it’s time to take a look again and remember…

If you want to know more about Mar Mikhael station, you can check [Here]

Kello 3endo shafi3o …

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Got this email yesterday. Very funny!

– Shafi3 l mo3ajjanet: San bousik
– Shafi3 l charcuterie: Mar tadelle
– Shafi3 lvitesse: San qieme
– Shafi3 l2a7ziye: Seur meye
– Shafi3 lsiyyarat: Mar cedes
– Shafi3 ldekhan: Mar lboro
– Shafi3 l2akel: San dwich
– Shafi3 lghasil: Per sil
– Shafi3 lswe2a: San ture
– Shafi3 lmesta3jle: Mar re2a
– Shafi3 ldaya3: Mar iwana
– Shafi3 l LBC: Mar cel ghanem….