Category Archives: Lebanon

De-Feet Cancer Run: Charity Run For The Children’s Cancer Center of Lebanon (CCCL)

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A group of 8 Lebanese friends are running the whole Lebanese coast (210Km) starting May 7th and for 5 consecutive days in an attempt to raise $50,000, which is the cost of treating one child at The Children’s Cancer Center of Lebanon. The Children’s Cancer Center of Lebanon is a non-profit association that treats children with cancer for free and relies purely on donations. CCCL is affiliated to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital (SJCRH) in Memphis, Tennessee; and works in close coordination with the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC).

I’ve donated for the CCCL on several occasions and I am fully supportive of such initiatives! For those of you who wish to help, click [Here].

Cool Find By Sandra Rishani: The “Grudge” In Beirut’s Manara area

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The Grudge is an extremely narrow building standing on a mere 120-square-metre piece of land, that was built back in 1954 just to block the sea view for some residents. Apparently there was a quarrel between two brothers on a piece of land and one of the brothers decided to build what looks like a wall just to block his brother’s sea view so that the value of his land would decrease.

You can read the full story [Here].

Intrigued by this habitable wall disguised as a building, I returned to my father with questions. “Why is it called “Grudge,” and why and how was it built?” I asked him. My father then started recounting an urban myth. “There were two brothers who each inherited a plot. Let’s call them plot A and plot B. Unable to agree on how to develop the two parts, since plot B was partly reclaimed by road infrastructure, the owner of plot B decided to develop the minuscule piece of land on his own. That way, he hoped that his building would block the brother’s view of the sea so that the value of his land would decrease.”

According to residents in the neighbourhood, The Grudge was built in 1954. The liveable wall ranges in depth from four metres at its widest, to sixty centimetres—the depth of a closet—at its slimmest. What is even more exciting is that the building, it turns out, is one of the few buildings in Beirut that will be saved from destruction by the law. Although it is not listed as a heritage building, and therefore not protected by the bill protecting such buildings, the plot on which The Grudge stands cannot be developed under the city’s current building and zoning laws. According to those laws, no new structure may be built in its place, even if the house is demolished, because the plot has an area that is smaller than what you are allowed to build on. Therefore, leaving The Grudge the way it stands is more profitable for its owners than tearing it down, as they would not be able to sell the land to developers.

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Thanks Lea!

Beirut City Center Stopped Using Fake Bomb Detectors

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Based on what Ralph posted today on his blog, Beirut City Center has finally decided to stop using fake bomb detectors and switched to real ones. The device they are using is probably a trace detector which operates by “detecting trace particles of explosives, most likely based on ion-mobility spectrometry (IMS) as well”, as explained by Zod Security.

CityMall was before that the only mall to use real explosive detector, the MO2M detector. “It operates by taking an air sample and analyzing it, in order to detect the presence of explosives particles, in which case, an alarm would sound. It is based on ion-mobility spectrometry (IMS).”

I can’t believe I first posted about this matter 4 years ago, and despite that some malls are using these fake machines.

You can read the full interview with Zod Security, a leader in security equipment in Lebanon, that Ralph conducted [Here].

Pope Francis Coming To Jordan on May 24, Won’t Visit Lebanon During His Middle East Trip

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Pope Francis is the coolest pope we’ve got in years and he’s coming to the Middle East in May for a 3-day visit mainly to Amman in Jordan and Bethlehem. Despite rumors that he might stop by Lebanon, reports are confirming he won’t be passing by. If everything goes as planned, I will be in Jordan on May 24th and will maybe get a chance to see him live.

Pope Francis will be meeting with His Majesty King Abdullah II and other Jordanian officials on the 24th of May before heading to Amman International Stadium to give a mass sermon open to the public. Afterwards, His Holiness will head to the Baptism Site before meeting with a few sick and disabled people and Iraqi and Syrian refugees.
“His Holiness’ visit to the Kingdom not only underlines Jordan’s religious significance for Christian pilgrims, it reiterates the message we’re sharing with guests of Jordan about the coexistence in the diverse cultures and faiths around Jordan that is reflected in our varied historical and religious sites spanning millennia, civilizations and religions,” said Dr. Abed Al Razzaq Arabiyat, Managing Director of the Jordan Tourism Board. Director General of the Baptism Site Commission Mr. Dia Madani said “His Holiness Pope Francis I has come to the holy site of Jesus’ Baptism to be blessed by the waters of the Jordan River and bless his disabled and refugee guests in the same waters where Jesus Christ was baptized.”