Adonis Diaries

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How the half million Palestinian refugees disappeared in Lebanon since 1948?

Note: The survey sheds light on the living conditions of the latest count of 174,422 Palestinian refugees, as well as another 18,601 Palestinians who fled the neighboring conflict in Syria to camps in Lebanon. Instead of the official count of over 460,000 since 1948 and the successive Israel preemptive wars in Palestine and Lebanon.

The painstakingly conducted count found the Palestinians evenly divided between men and women with half of the total 24 years or younger. While 7.2 percent are illiterate, 93.6% of children aged between three to 13 were enrolled in schools.

Also documented is the well-known fact that Lebanon’s Palestinian camps suffer serious problems, with varying degrees of poverty, diseases, overcrowding, unemployment, poor housing and lack of any functioning infrastructure.

The census found that the rate of unemployment among young Palestinians aged 20 to 29 is 28.5% whereas for Lebanese it is currently 6.8 percent (If this percentage of unemployed Lebanese is correct, it certainly Not taking account of the thousands who immigrate every year for no return and those living in remote areas, barely surviving).

By Franklin Lamb [First Published by Counter Punch, January 5, 2018]

Rashidieh Palestinian camp, on the border of Occupied Palestine, by Franklin P. Lamb The first ever official census of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon was finally released on 12/21/2017 in Beirut. The village by village and camp by camp survey by 500 specialists found that only 174,422 Palestinian refugees are living these days in the country.

Counted were all Palestinians living in the 12 official camps and 156 informal settlements known as ‘gatherings’ and those living outside these areas across Lebanon. This figure is shockingly lower than the previous estimate of 469,331 Palestinians by UNRWA and as many as 600,00 by others for political purposes. (Trump has started to drop funding of UNRWA

Lebanon is a country where demographics have long been a politically sensitive subject to be approached with extreme caution. For the past nearly 85 years (since 1932) Lebanon’s leaders have refused to allow a count of the population out of feelings of terror that a rival sect, among the 17 other rival sects, might gain power at their expense were there to be an honest count. Consequently, plenty of political lords have used fake population figures, without fear of contradiction by a forbidden official government count, to secure benefits-political and financial- for their own sect.

With respect to Lebanon and regional endemic tribalism, one is reminded of the words of Hannah Arendt from her volume, “The Origins of Totalitarianism:”

“Politically speaking, tribal nationalism always insists that its own people is surrounded by “a world of enemies”, “one against all”, that a fundamental difference exists between these people and all others. It claims its people to be unique, individual, incompatible with all others, and denies theoretically the very possibility of a common mankind long before it is used to destroy the humanity of man”.

The reason for UNWRA’s own higher figures since it was created by General Assembly Resolution 302 (IV) 69 years ago this month to help feed and care for refugees forced out of their homes in Palestine, its mandate has always been to register all Palestinians who, since the 1948 Nakba, apply for its help.

This UNWRA has faithfully done to the best of its ability while facing many obstacles-political and financial-over the decades.

Affecting its record keeping, starting in 1950s, scores of thousands of Palestinian refugees left Lebanon for a better life abroad. Just as more than 1,780,000 Lebanese have done since the onslaught of Lebanon’s civil war in 1975. Hence the larger number of UNRWA recorded registrants. UNRWA does not have a headcount of every Palestinian refugee who currently resides in Lebanon.

What they do have are official registration records for the number of registered Palestine refugees in Lebanon. If a Palestinian registered with UNRWA in Lebanon should decide to live outside Lebanon, as countless thousands have, they don’t normally advise UNRWA that they are moving.

As a gentleman this observer admires, Hassan Mneimneh, chairman of the Lebanese Palestinian Dialogue Committee, which coordinated the census, told the media a couple of weeks ago, “tens of thousands of Palestinians left Lebanon when the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) withdrew from the country in 1982. This observer knows something about this firsthand as he was on one of the August 1982 boats than left Beirut harbor by boat for Tunis courtesy of an invitation from Yasser Arafat along with the American journalist, Janet Lee Stevens.

Unfortunately, Janet missed the boat as she was assuring a group of Palestinian women in Burj al Barajneh camp in South Beirut that all would be OK as they worried about losing their PLO protection. The next month was the Sabra-Shatila massacre and seven months later April 18, 1983 Janet and our unborn child, Clyde Chester Lamb III were killed in the bombing at the American Embassy.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians left Lebanon when the PLO withdrew from the country in 1982.

Like the Lebanese over the past 3 decades, many Palestinians try to leave Lebanon at the first opportunity. And why wouldn’t they?

Lebanese seemingly leave their birth country any chance they get these days and during Lebanon’s civil war more than one million left and hundreds of thousands have until today.

There are fewer than 3.5 million Lebanese remaining with many of them searching for the first opportunity to begin a new life elsewhere because they realize that there is little future here for their children given the deep prevailing corruption of the former ‘warlords’ who appointed themselves ‘political lords. Other reasons include the growing Iranian occupation of Lebanon and the failure of the Sunni and Christians to counter the takeover of their country.

According to this seminal study, undertaken by both Lebanese and Palestinian statistics bureaus and the Lebanese-Palestinian Dialogue Committee, 45.1 percent of the 174,000 Palestinians in Lebanon live in refugee camps, while the remaining 54.9 percent live in “other gatherings.”

According to the census taking teams spokesperson: “We would see huge numbers used, 500, or 600 thousand, and these would be used in politics. But this demographic project was able to define things, and thank God today we have results,”

Prime Minister Saad Hariri said in an address at the event where the figures were released. The survey sheds much needed light on the living conditions of 174,422 Palestinian refugees, as well as another 18,601 Palestinians who fled the neighboring conflict in Syria to camps in Lebanon. The survey found that the number of Palestinian in Lebanon were split essentially evenly between men and women, with half of the total being 24 years or younger. The percentage of Palestinian youth is nearly identical to the numbers of youth across the Middle East.

Dear reader can imagine what these demographics and living conditions portend for this region as the bright, energetic and acutely aware youth seek justice and empowerment from dictatorships who have cynically denied them empowerment for countless decades. Revolution is in the air across in Lebanon’s Palestinian camps and across this region.

Announcing the population survey results, Prime Minister Saad Hariri said Lebanon had a “duty” towards Palestinians. He pointed to “exaggerations” as for the number of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon which estimated the count at 600,000. He said the “actual number is 174,422,” assuring “that the State will adhere to its responsibilities.”

Hariri lamented how “some parties in the international community wish to offer no help to UNRWA but instead want to disrupt UNRWA.”

Pointing to the UNRWA’s financial crisis, he said: “It directly affects the basic requirements of refugees in Lebanon. We call upon donor countries to increase their contributions and support to enable UNRWA fulfill its financial obligations to meet the needs of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.”

With a total of $644,701,999 in contributions, the US, EU, UK, Sweden, Norway, Germany, The Netherlands and Japan pay 71% of the annual UNRWA budget. Mr. Hariri omitted mention of the fact that Lebanon, like Israel, donates zero dollars to UNRWA’s budget.

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Since 2013, Professor Franklin P. Lamb has traveled extensively throughout Syria. His primary focus has been to document, photograph, research and hopefully help preserve the vast and irreplaceable archaeological sites and artifacts in Syria.

Like Iraq, Syria is the cradle of civilization, and as such it has been a rich source of our shared global culture and historic heritage. Already endangered from illegal excavation, looting, international trafficking and iconoclasm; the theft and destruction of these sites has greatly increased as a result of the conflict in the Middle East.

Many of the endangered archeological sites and artifacts are over 7,000 years old. The oldest remains found in Syria are from the Paleolithic era (c. 800,000 BCE). The most endangered artifacts and archaeological sites currently are in Tell Halaf, the north of Syria near the Turkish border with Syria. These archaeological sites date as far back as 5,500 BCE. They include archeological sites and artifacts of the Babylonian, Sumerian, Egyptian, Assyrian, Phoenician, Aramaic, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Umayyad, Ayyubid and Ottoman civilizations and empires.

Professor Franklin Lamb has also been working, sometimes under dangerous circumstances, to record and photograph the war damage done to religious icons, images, monuments, and ancient structures that span pre-Roman civilizations, and structures such as Islamic mosques, Christian churches and Jewish synagogues.

Professor Lamb is working tirelessly to record and photograph these sites and artifacts because they are in danger of complete destruction for religious, political and illegal trafficking reasons, especially due to the ongoing wars in the Middle East.

Professor Franklin Lamb’s website and his latest book, “Syria’s Endangered Heritage, an International Responsibility to Preserve and Protect” presents exclusive and never published before photographs, records, data, articles, and interviews from across the whole of Syria. His book can be purchased at his website http://www.syrian-heritage.com/.

In addition to Dr. Lamb’s urgent archaeological work he is also deeply committed to rescuing and aiding refugee children in Syria. He is a volunteer with the Lebanon, France, and USA based “Meals for Syrian Refugee Children, Lebanon (MSRCL)”, which seeks to provide hot nutritional meals to Syrian and other refugee children.

Lamb says that the goal of MSRCL is to be able to provide one meal a day to 500 children. More donors are needed in order for him to reach that goal. At $2.25 per meal x 500 children per day ($1,225), the budget for a month (30 days) requires approximately $36,000. Over 95% of each donation goes directly towards the cost of each meal. The MSCRL volunteer teams give their time, energy and even their own money to help the refugee children so that they will not become part of the “lost generation” of Syria.

Lamb’s books and publications include “Pollution as a Problem of International Law”; “International Legal Responsibility for the Sabra Shatila Massacre”; “Israel’s 1982 War in Lebanon: Eyewitness Chronicles of the Invasion and Occupation”, “The Price We Pay: A Quarter Century of Israel’s Use of American Weapons against Civilians in Lebanon in addition to the three volume set, “Palestine, Lebanon & Syria Palestine, Lebanon & Syria (Commentary and Analysis 2006-2016).” Due out during Fall 2016, in English and Arabic, is “The Case for Palestinian Civil Rights in Lebanon: Why the Resistance Sleeps.”

Dr. Lamb’s most recent book is “Syria’s Endangered Heritage: An International Responsibility to Preserve and Protect”. http://www.Syrian-heritage.com

Lamb’s Academic Credentials include: BA, and Law Degrees from Boston University, Master of Law (LLM) Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy from the London School of Economics (LSE); Diploma in International Air & Space Law from the University College of London; Post-Doctoral Studies at Harvard University Law School of East Asian Legal Studies Center, specializing in Chinese Law; International Legal Studies at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom; Studied Public International Law at The Hague Academy of international Law, at the International Court of Justice, in The Hague, Netherlands.

Lamb’s Professional and Political Activities include Assistant Professor of International Law, Northwestern College of Law, Portland, Oregon and Assistant Counsel to the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, During the Administration of President Jimmy Carter, Lamb was elected for a four year term to the Democratic National Committee, representing the state of Oregon. Lamb served on the Democratic National Committee Judicial Council with California Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi as well as the Platform Committee on East-West Relations. Professor Lamb served on the presidential campaign staff for Presidential Candidate Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts.

mealsforsyrianrefugeechildrenlebanon.com/

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Saudi Emirs made it a lucrative business to whisk Keptagone, unhampered through Lebanon airport

Finally, in 2015, this “emir’, Abdul Mohssen bin Walid Al Saud was caught red-handed carrying 2 tons of this illegal substance.

Since then, he has been spending prison term as an Emir, being lavishly provided with all the necessary facilities and privacy.

He is held in a private large room in the modern detention center of Makhfar Hobeich, funded by the British. Another chamber is reserved for his two acolytes. And the other two rooms are reserved to hold 40 prisoners each.

An elder Lebanese temporary prisoner died in these crammed cells, waiting trial.

قضية «أمير الكبتاغون»: وقاحة السياسة والقضاء والأمن

رضوان مرتضى

لعلَّ الفيديو «السِّلفي» الذي صوَّره «أمير الكبتاغون» عبد المحسن بن وليد آل سعود (ضُبط مُتلبّساً بتهريب نحو طنين من حبوب الكبتاغون في مطار بيروت في تشرين الأول عام ٢٠١٥) هو الأفصح تعبيراً عن وقاحة الأجهزة القضائية والأمنية التي لم تُحرِّك ساكناً، رغم نشر تقارير عدة تتحدث عن الرفاهية الاستثنائية التي يحاط بها سليل آل سعود. هذه الأجهزة المستسلمة للأوامر السياسية خدمةً لـ«سمو الأمير»، أحرجها الفيديو الفضيحة الذي نشرته قناة «الجديد»، قبل يومين، والذي أثبت بالصوت والصورة وعلى إيقاع أنغام الموسيقى أنّ «الأمير» السعودي يعامل كما لو أنه نزيل في فندق خمس نجوم. وقد ظهرت في الفيديو الغرفة الخاصة التي تُفرَد لـ«سمو الأمير»، المزوّدة بكل وسائل الراحة، مضاءة بالشموع في أجواء رومانسية، بحضور «نديم» من قوى الأمن الداخلي هو الرقيب ش. ص. شارك الأمير «الأوف» والطعام والشراب في عيد ميلاده، فيما يُكدّس عشرات الموقوفين في نظارة ضيّقة في مكتب مكافحة المخدرات المركزي.

الأمير السعودي كان يغنّي ويرقص ويسكر فرحاً ويصوِّر «السِّلفي»، فيما الموقوف الستيني عدنان ذياب، قبل أشهر، بما يشبه الإعدام، توفي في نظارة تبعد أمتاراً قليلة بعد حشره مع ٢٧ موقوفاً في غرفة صغيرة تتسع لثلاثة أشخاص. لم يسمع عناصر المكتب استغاثاته فقضى اختناقاً من دون أن يرفّ جفن لأيٍّ من المسؤولين. هكذا يُحشر الموقوفون في «غرفة الإعدام» التي لا ترقى لتكون زريبة للحيوانات، فيما يقضي الأمير محكوميته في غرفة مكيّفة، مشمسة، يصل إليها الطعام الساخن من طبّاخ يزوره يومياً، والثياب من المصبغة، بوجود هاتف خلوي، وزيارات مفتوحة، و«كوافير» يرتّب له شعره، ويهتم بنضارة بشرته.
معظم المارة أمام مقرّ ثكنة يوسف حبيش (تضم مكاتب مكافحة المخدرات والقمار وحماية الآداب العامة)، التي تشتهر بـ«مخفر حبيش»، يصادفون أناساً يقفون منتظرين دورهم لزيارة أقاربهم من الموقوفين لساعات، فيما زوّار «الأمير» مُكرَّمون.
قيادة المديرية العامة لقوى الأمن الداخلي كانت تُبرّر في وقت سابق العناية الخاصة التي يحظى بها «الأمير»، بالحرص على العلاقة الجيدة مع السعودية والحرص الأمني على حياته إذا ما نُقل إلى سجن رومية المركزي. وإذا كانت صادقة في قولها هذا، فلماذا لا تنقُل هذا الموقوف إلى «مبنى فرع المعلومات» في سجن رومية المركزي الذي يخضع لحراسة خاصة من ضباط الفرع وعناصره، أم أنّ الأوامر السعودية تقضي بإبقائه بالقرب من «حرم السفارة» كي لا يشعر بالغربة والوحدة؟
وقد علمت «الأخبار» أنّ الفيديو تم تصويره بهاتف الرتيب في قوى الأمن، المكلّف المناوبة في مكتب مكافحة المخدرات المركزي، علماً بأنّ التحقيق الذي أمر بإجرائه الضابط الذي تسلّم رئاسة مكتب مكافحة المخدرات العقيد هنري منصور قبل نحو أسبوع، خلفاً للعميد غسان شمس الدين، بيّن أنّ الفيديو تم تصويره قبل نحو سنة، وأنّ «هيئة» الموقوف السعودي اليوم تختلف عن الصورة التي ظهر بها في الفيديو. لكن لم يكشف التحقيق كيفية تسريب هذا الفيديو أو الأسباب الكامنة خلف هذا التسريب.
والجدير ذكره أنّ «تغنيج» الموقوف السعودي كان أمراً عسكرياً خلال فترة رئاسة العميد شمس الدين لمكتب مكافحة المخدرات، لكنّه كان بالتحديد نابعاً من أوامر القيادة الأمنية والقضائية، ومن خلفها السياسية، للسهر على راحة «الأمير» كي تكون «طلباته أوامر». وعليه، بعد هذا الفيديو، لم يُعرف بعد إذا ما كان القرار بإبقاء القديم على قدمه سيبقى سارياً أو أن القيادتين السياسية والقضائية ستخجلان وتنقلانه إلى السجن.


«كوكايين المطار» لمن؟

أحالت مديرية الجمارك الموقوفين الخمسة، المشتبه فيهم في قضية تهريب ٣١ كيلوغراماً من الكوكايين، من كراكاس إلى بيروت عبر باريس، إلى مكتب مكافحة المخدرات المركزي منذ ثلاثة أيام. وعلمت «الأخبار» أنّ ضباط الجمارك أنهوا تحقيقاتهم مع الموقوفين الذين اعترف معظمهم بما نُسب إليهم، باستثناء الضابط توفيق ع. الذي أصرّ على الإنكار، رغم ظهوره في كاميرات المراقبة يجرّ الحقيبة التي تحتوي كميات الكوكايين إلى جانب الموقوف علي أ. الذي انتحل صفة قنصل. كما ظهر الضابط وهو يجادل عناصر الجمارك الذين أصرّوا على تفتيش الحقيبة. وعلمت «الأخبار» أنّ الموقوفين هم إلى الضابط و«القنصل» المفترض، العسكري وسام م. والسيدة الفنزويلية التي اعترفت بقبض مبلغ ٧ آلاف دولار مقابل إيصال الحقيبة، إضافة إلى موقوف خامس، لم تُكشف هويته بعد، كان ينتظر خارج المطار لتسلّم الحقيبة التي كانت تضم الكوكايين الموضب داخل علب هدايا. ورغم أنّ التحقيقات تجرى بإشراف مباشر من رئيس مكتب مكافحة المخدرات المركزي، لم تُكشَف بعد هوية التاجر الرئيسي الذي كان يُفترض أن يتسلّم المخدرات المضبوطة. ولم يُعرف بعد إذا ما كان الضابط الموقوف متورطاً في تجارة المخدرات بشكل مباشر، أم أنّه وسيط متواطئ يُستعان به في عمليات التهريب من دون معرفته بالمواد المهرّبة؟

يمكنكم متابعة الكاتب عبر تويتر | radwanmortada@

ABOLISHING LEBANON’S “RAPE LAW”: SPOTLIGHT ON ABAAD’S CAMPAIGN

A woman wears a wedding dress behind the bars of a pop-up prison in Beirut, Lebanon. The campaign’s strong imagery is partly what made it so successful, according to Ghida Anani, the head of ABAAD.

In August 2017, lawmakers in Lebanon made international headlines when they repealed Article 522 of the Lebanese Penal Code. The provision, denounced by women’s rights organisations for many years, allowed rapists to avoid prosecution if they married their victims.

Behind this effort is ABAAD, a Girls Not Brides member in Lebanon, who spearheaded #Undress522. Launched in early 2016, the campaign would eventually lead to the repeal of the law. We spoke to them about their campaign success and what they learned along the way.

TELL US A BIT MORE ABOUT YOUR CAMPAIGN #UNDRESS522.

Our campaign targeted Article 522 of the Lebanese Penal Code. The article provided that, in case a marriage took place between a rapist and their victim, all prosecutions and sentences had to be suspended.

ABAAD saw this article as a blatant violation of women and girls’ human rights. Through this campaign, we wanted to repeal article 522, and insist that rape is a crime that should be punished.

An activist wearing a white dress in a jail that represents marriage. The stunt aimed to highlight a situation where the perpetrator of a crime is rewarded through marriage while the victim is sentence to life imprisonment. Photo credit: ABAAD.

We also wanted to stress that women have the right to refuse marrying their rapist and that we need to end their stigmatization.

In some contexts, families pressure the daughter to marry her rapist because the family’s honour is at stake. Sexuality is often a taboo and some traditional social norms grant society a “right of inspection” over women without them having a say.

We started our campaign early in 2016, but women’s rights organisations have been advocating for the abolition of article 522 for at least 15 years.

THE #UNDRESS522 CAMPAIGN HAD A BROAD REACH – SPANNING ACROSS MEDIA, SOCIAL MEDIA, STUNTS, AND OUTREACH TO PARLIAMENTARIANS. COULD YOU WALK US THROUGH YOUR CAMPAIGN STRATEGY?

We organised a series of “shock” actions to sensitise the public on article 522. We wanted to convey the idea that forcing a woman or girl to marry her rapist meant sentencing her to lifelong rape.

We took part in the Beirut Marathon: activists dressed in white sheets with slogans such as “Rape is a Crime. Abolish 522!” They had covered their heads with boxes to show how women and girls forced to marry their rapist were deprived of their freedom.

Activists marching in the streets during the Beirut marathon in protest of article 522. Photo credit: ABAAD.

As part of the 16 days of activism, we launched “Undress 522 – A white dress does not cover the rape”, a video which reached an estimated 20.8 million people online and was accompanied by banners displayed everywhere in Lebanon.

We organised sit-ins in front of the Committee of Administration and Justice when it drafting the law abolishing article 522 to be sent to the Parliament.

We partnered with renowned artist Mireille Honein to hang 31 white dresses between the palm trees on the Cornicheof Beirut. Each dress symbolised a day of the month where women and girls could be compelled to marry their rapists.

This image of white wedding dresses on the Corniche of Beirut made the headlines around the world. Photo credit: ABAAD.

WHAT DO YOU THINK WAS KEY TO YOUR CAMPAIGN’S SUCCESS?

The development of a strategy combining advocacy, lobbying of stakeholders and sensitisation of public opinion on the existing legal framework was key to our campaign’s success.

The visual aspect of this “shock” campaign also played a crucial role in sensitising public opinion.

WHAT WAS MORE SUCCESSFUL OR IMPACTFUL THAN YOU HAD ANTICIPATED? LESS SO?

Communication level

We were surprised that only 1% of the Lebanese public opinion knew about article 522.

This lack of information made the campaign spread a strong impact. During our actions, we often received shocked reactions from people who could not believe that such a provision could exist in the law.

Advocacy and policy level

We were happy to receive the support of key decision-makers, including MPs or religious leaders.

A positive outcome was that the Committee not only dealt with article 522 but with several articles of the penal code as a whole, introducing the civil judge for the first time in matters related to marriage and family.

NOW THAT LAWMAKERS HAVE AGREED TO REPEAL ARTICLE 522, WHAT HAPPENS NEXT FOR EFFORTS TO ADDRESS CHILD MARRIAGE AND GENDER-BASED VIOLENCE IN LEBANON?

Abolishing article 522 won’t be effective without tackling the lack of knowledge about women’s rights and gender-based violence at both the institutional and community levels.

Also, it is essential to ensure the implementation of protection mechanisms making the repeal of article 522 not only effective in the penal code but also in practice.

ABAAD will continue to raise awareness of the legal framework and the reproductive health services in Lebanon. We will also continue to train key stakeholders such as the Internal Security Forces on how to deal with sexual violence survivors, with the aim of breaking the survivor-blaming culture.

For how long Syria society will suffer the after civil war transformation?

The revolt for a transparent and democratic Constitution is still there: It is the Moslem Brotherhoods in Syria and Turkey who refuse any modern democratic process and who will drag any kind of sustainable reforms

الزمن السوري يعيش مخاضاً عسيرا

أصدر أدونيس كتابه «بيروت ثدياً للضوء»
خليل صويلح published:

دمشق | يصعب رسم تضاريس واضحة لخريطة الثقافة السورية في الحرب، أو إنها لفرط هشاشتها وعملها على السطح تفلت من بين الأصابع.

تتبدد تحت سطوة الشعارات القديمة المستهلكة التي أتاحت لمعطّلي الخيال التسلل إلى الواجهة برطانة لفظية خشنة تمنع عبور كل ما هو مختلف، لمصلحة أفراد جعلوا من الثقافة «بازاراً» رابحاً، تحت عناوين رنّانة، تحمي عطالتهم بذرائع وطنية.

مهرجانات، وتكريمات، وجوائز تقديرية، وملتقيات بالجملة، من دون أن تترك أثراً ملموساً يستحق أن نحتفي به، عدا استثناءات نادرة تمكنت من الإفلات بمعجزات فردية تحت بند «اختراع الأمل».

عام طويل وشاق وجهنمي لا يشبه أعوام الآخرين.
ذلك أن الزمن السوري يعيش مخاضاً عسيراً، في صناعة الثقافة، استثمره بعضهم كنوع من الحبل الكاذب لتوسيع مساحة المزرعة الشخصية بقوة المنصب وليس بمهارة الأداء.

وإذا بنا حيال خواء شاسع يجري ترميمه «إعلانياً»، بتصدير مانشيتات نارية لكنها جوفاء من الداخل، لا تواكب فعليّاً سرديات اللحظة السورية في الحقول الأخرى، بمنتج ثقافي جديد ومبتكر ونوعي، بدلاً من إعادة تدوير الشعارات القديمة، رغم الميزانيات الضخمة المخصصة للإنتاج الثقافي، والتي تتيح فعليّاً تزييت العجلة وتدويرها بما يليق ببلاد تسعى إلى النهوض من رمادها.

في الوقت المستقطع، تنمو فضاءات جانبية بعشب مختلف، وسجالات تنطفئ في الحال، أو أنها تأخذ بعداً شعبوياً عن طريق تفريغها من شحنتها بمرافعات مضادة وكيدية غالباً (سجال منذر مصري في مقاله «ليتها لم تكن» وردود الأفعال الغاضبة في تفسير مقاصده، واستبعاد رواية أسعد الجبوري «ثعابين الأرشيف» عن جائزة دمشق للرواية العربية بتهمة الفحش، وتهديد وزارة الثقافة بمحاكمة الصحافيين)،

أو ما يمكن تسميته «حروب الإلغاء». هذه الحروب تجري في الداخل، وفي الخارج (ثقافة ما وراء البحار) بالوتيرة نفسها، وبأدوات متشابهة. وفيما تتسلل ورشة ثالثة ما بينهما بصوغ مشاريع ومقترحات بديلة في الكتابة والمسرح والسينما والتشكيل، يسعى الطرفان الآخران إلى اطاحتها باعتبارها سلالة هجينة ومنبوذة ولقيطة.
لا فهرست نهائياً إذاً، للأجندة الثقافية السورية في لحظتها الراهنة، على غرار ما يحدث في عواصم عربية مجاورة أو بعيدة. فالارتجال السطحي هو من يتحكم بجهة البوصلة التي يوجهها موظفو مكاتب في المقام الأول، في توزيع الغنائم، ذلك أن فكرة التجديد تعني في جوهرها تجديد أثاث المكاتب، ولون الستائر، والسكرتيرة، وماركة المياه المعدنية.
«جعالات» ضخمة تُهدر في غير مقاصدها. صالات تحتضر، ومراكز ثقافية بالكاد تجد جمهوراً، ودار أوبرا اقتحمها مطربو الملاهي. لكننا سنقع على اضاءات هنا وهناك بقوة دفع
فردية.
سنتذكر «اختطاف» أيمن زيدان على خشبة «مسرح الحمراء»، و«ستاتيكو» جمال شقير (جائزة أفضل نص، وأفضل ممثلة وممثل/ مهرجان أيام قرطاج المسرحية)، و«هنّ» آنا عكّاش، على خشبة «القباني»، و«عرض البحر» لمجد فضة في المعهد العالي للفنون المسرحية، وفيلم «مطر حمص» لجود سعيد، و«حرائق» لمحمد عبد العزيز (جائزة أفضل فيلم/ مهرجان روتردام للفيلم العربي)، والمقترحات النوعية لورشات مركز الفنون البصرية، ومعرض يوسف عبدلكي «عاريات ضد الموتى» في باريس، ومعرض بطرس المعري في غاليري «تجليات» في بيروت، و«جائزة الملتقى للقصة العربية» لشهلا العجيلي عن «سرير بنت الملك»، وإصدار الأعمال الشعرية الكاملة للشاعرة الراحلة دعد حداد، والأعمال الكاملة لفراس السواح، و«بيروت ثدياً للضوء» لأدونيس (دار التكوين)، والأعمال القصصية الكاملة لحيدر حيدر (الهيئة العامة السورية
للكتاب).
ما لم يتغيّر، هو منع الكتاب السوري من عبور الحدود لمعظم معارض الكتب العربية، وأحياناً منع الناشرين والكتّاب، في حصار عبثي مستمر منذ سنوات.
في قائمة الراحلين سنفتقد الموسيقار سهيل عرفة، ورائد السينما السورية صلاح دهني، ومعلم السينوغرافيا نعمان جود، والمؤرخ والآثاري عفيف
بهنسي.

Can we resolve Lebanon’s child labor crisis?

India Stoughton published in The Daily Star on Oct. 29, 2013

BEIRUT: Mohammad says he’s 13, but it’s hard to believe him. With his tiny, hunched form, cavernous cheeks and emaciated limbs, he looks closer to 8 or 9 years old.

Having fled Syria without his family, Mohammad works as a shoe-shiner on the streets of Hamra, beginning at 7 a.m. every day and working until 7 p.m. At the end of his 12-hour shift he will have earned a total of LL 5,000 ($2,5).

As the influx of Syrian refugees into Lebanon continues and the economic situation in the country declines, the number of child laborers is increasing.

Solving Lebanon’s child labor crisis

Thousands of Syrian children are working to support their families, while the country’s declining economy has also had an effect on Lebanese and Palestinian children, who are increasingly expected to work.

Mohammad, who says he dreams of going back to school and studying to be a doctor, does a job that falls into one of the worst categories of child labor: work that exposes a child to physical, psychological or sexual abuse, puts their safety or morals at risk, or prevents them being educated.

But while the number of children like Mohammad who sell gum or roses or shine shoes on the streets has increased significantly in the two years since the Syrian crisis began, they represent a fraction of the true scale of the problem.

“What you see on the streets of Hamra or Gemmayzeh is only the tip of the iceberg,” says Andres Gonzalez, the country director of Dutch non-governmental organization War Child.

Most children are working in workshops and garages and things. Now the conditions are even worse because the competition is so high.”

The total number of children engaged in illegal labor in Lebanon has never successfully been established.

An estimate issued by the Social Affairs Ministry in 2002 was recently increased from 100,000 to 180,000, but Hayat Osseiran, a child labor consultant for the International Labor Organization, says she believes the real number is probably closer to 300,000.

Lebanon’s population of just over 4 million has been swelled by over 1 million Syrian refugees over the past two years, many of whom arrive in the country with no papers, making it almost impossible to find legal work.

“Adults are not engaging [in the workforce], either because they’re having difficulty in getting work or [because] they fear that they would be arrested because they don’t have papers,” says Anthony MacDonald, chief of child protection at UNICEF.

“Very often children have become the main breadwinners in the household, which means they’re exposed to huge risks, huge responsibilities.”

There are two main factors forcing young children into work, explains Haifa Hamdan, War Child’s child labor adviser.

“The pulling factor is that they are from poor families, they want additional income,” she says. “And the pushing factor is that they are not able to go to school because the expenses are [increasing] and sometimes there are no places.”

Although education in Lebanon is supposed to be free and compulsory until the age of 15, the cost of registration, books, uniforms and transportation proves too much for some families, Osseiran says, and attendance is not monitored or enforced.

The result is that for children from poorer families, work is easier to come by than an education.

Reem, a mother of four who fled to Akkar from Tal Kalakh in rural Homs last year, says she can’t afford the LL90,000 ($60) per child needed to register her children, aged 5, 8, 9 and 10, for school. Her husband is injured and can’t work, and she has to find $200 a month for rent, she says, so she has no choice but to send her children to pick olives. She says she and her kids collectively earn between LL8,000 and LL10,000 a day, working from dawn until dusk.

Another woman from the same Akkar community of Syrian refugees says local farmers would rather employ children than adults, as they have more energy and never complain – even if they are verbally or physically abused. Money is also an incentive for employers – children are paid half as much as an adult.

“Only 20% of the adults are working, but 60% of the children,” she says.

When it comes to tackling the problem, Lebanon already has a good legal framework, Hamdan says, but the problem is the lack of implementation and awareness.

A survey of 1,500 children working in the southern suburbs of Beirut, conducted by War Child just before the Syrian crisis in 2011, found almost all the laws governing child labor were being flouted and that the children surveyed were totally unaware of their rights.

Labor inspectors were equally uninformed, Hamdan says.

At the time the study was undertaken, none of the Labor Ministry’s 73 inspectors were familiar with the child labor laws.

War Child subsequently trained 19 of them, and now some 50 out of a total of 109 inspectors have received training in child labor legislation, according to Nazha Shalita, head of the ministry’s child labor unit.

As the child labor problem continues to worsen, local and international organizations are attempting to tackle it on a number of fronts.

Lebanon has committed to international agreements, including the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the ILO Conventions on the Minimum Age of Admission to Employment and the Worst Forms of Child Labor.

After taking office in 2012, Labor Minister Salim Jreissati reactivated the stagnant child labor unit within his ministry as well as the defunct National Steering Committee for the Elimination of Child Labor.

He also issued Decree No. 8987: the prohibition of employment of minors in jobs that may harm their health, safety or morals, which details jobs unsuitable for those under 16 and 18 years of age.

But although Lebanon’s laws are increasingly coming into line with international standards, there is still a major problem with implementation.

On a practical note, UNICEF has begun using education as a tool to combat labor among refugees in the country’s tented settlements.

“We try to bring children out of the workplace completely but because we know that the problem cannot be extinguished overnight we try to mold our education programs,” MacDonald says.

“So in the morning we cater for the younger children and then for those who are working in the fields … we’ve persuaded their families that they just work half a day and come to our programs in the afternoon.

“That allows us to at least begin to engage with them [and] to eventually try to look for other alternatives, but also accept that for many of them stopping immediately is not a reality.”

Several other plans are in motion to chart the growing problem and find a way to tackle it.

The ministry’s child labor unit is working with the ILO and the Central Administration for Statistics to conduct the first large-scale mapping of child labor in Lebanon, based on household surveys, Shalita says.

It is due to be completed by the end of 2014 and should reveal the real extent of the problem for the first time. UNICEF is also partnering with the ILO to conduct a countrywide survey of street children.

On a larger scale, the Labor Ministry and the ILO have teamed up to produce the National Action Plan to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor by the end of 2016, which is due to be presented to President Michel Sleiman and other ministers and parliamentarians on Nov. 7.

It will be the first time a project of this scale has been attempted, Osseiran says. The action plan will detail practical steps for the eradication of child labor, including improved legislation, better access to education and a zoning solution.

It will be put into effect as soon as the funds come in. Some money is expected to be provided by the state and the rest by international organizations, Osseiran says.

The National Action Plan’s launch is coming at a critical time, as the urgency of the Syrian crisis has diverted attention and funding from long-term local problems such as child labor.

MacDonald emphasizes that working long hours can have tragic effects on children psychologically, as well as physically. “The children that we spoke to were already receiving psychosocial support for the trauma that they’d been through in Syria,” he says.

“But in some cases the child labor that they were undertaking here to survive was almost tipping them over – in the case of one particular child she just said: ‘I don’t want to live anymore.’”

Related
Refugee crisis: thinking outside the classroom
Kid: Count the angles and say the number out loud.
The numbers used in ancient Syria 0, 1,2,3… were designed to count the number of the angles they form. Zero has No angle. The Islamic civilization adopted, especially after the invasion of the Mogul Hulago and then the Ottoman Empire.
Although the Babylonian counting was based on 6, a good system for many activities, the Syrian counting was based on 10 for scientific usage, thousands of years prior to the adoption of the west to this base.
لمن لا يعلم هذه هي ارقامنا السوريه وتعتمد على عدد الزوايا  كل رقم يحمل عدد الزوايا التي يتألف منها..
الأرقام السورية هي إحدى مآثر الأمة السورية , و التي تدل على أن السوريين و منذ القدم لهم منحى عملي في الحياة فلم تكن الغيبيات تشغلهم كثيراً عن العمل و التفوق في الحياة أهمية الأرقام :
تعود أهمية الأرقام إلى دلالتها فكان لاختراعها أهمية كبيرة في تطور العلوم النظرية و التطبيقية ،حيث تشكل أساس علم الرياضيات و الفلك و الهندسة و الفيزياء و الكيمياء ….
الأرقام تاريخياً : نجد ان الإنسان على مرالعصور استخدم طرقاً كثيرة للعد ،
فابتدأ بأصابع اليدين و الحصى و الصدفثم استخدم الأرقام التصويرية كما نجدها عند إنسان الكهف ، و الأرقام الرمزية و الأرقام الهيروغليفية و الأرقام الألفبائية .
و لكن أرقى أنواع الأرقام التي توصل إليها الإنسان هي
أرقام رومانية :I II III IV V VI VII IIX IX أرقام سورية 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 6 – 7 – 8 – 9 أرقام هندية: و لم يقبل حاسبي الخاص إظهارها وهي الأرقام المستخدمة في المدارس السورية و الدوائر الرسمية .
و إن ما يجمع الأرقام الهندية و الأرقام السورية هو اعتمادهما على نظام التعداد العشري في بناء الأعداد الأرقام السورية و تطورها : أولسوري وضع مخططاً للأرقام مرتكزاً على أساس الزوايا هو راهب سرياني من دير ” قنسرين ” على ضفاف الفرات اسمه : “ سفيروس ” و كان يدرس الرياضيات والفلسفة ،
ثم تلاه راهب آخر من نفس الدير هو ” مر داس ” سنة ( 663م .) حيث جعل لكل رقم رمزاً ذا صفة علمية مستنداً إلى قاعدة رياضية فيتحقيقه و ذلك باستخدام الزوايا الحادة و القائمة كأساس لبناء الرقم حيثاعتبر عدد الزوايا الحادة و القائمة هي علامة تقييمه ،
فنجد في العدد واحد (1) زاوية حادة واحدة و في العدد ( 2) زاويتان و هكذا يكون الرقم صفر ( 0 ) بدون زوايا .
هذا من حيث الترميز ، ولكن الأهم من ذلك هو اعتماد نظام التعداد العشري الذي يمكن من بناءالأعداد الأكبر في مجموعات أخرى هي الآحاد و العشرات و المئات —- الخ وهكذا إلى المالانهاية .
و يعتبر ذلك تطوراً هائلاً تحرزه الأرقام السوريةعلى سابقتها حيث قدمت حلاً لمشكلة كتابة الأرقام ذات القيمة المرتفعة ،بينما لم يستطع الرومان حل تلك الإشكالية لأنهم اعتمدوا على كتابة الأعداد على شكل رموز حيث أنهم أعطوا لكل عدد رمز  أرقام رومانية: M – D – C – X – V – IV – III – II – I أرقام سورية : 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 – 10 – 100 – 500 – 1000 و كان لاختراع الصفر أهمية كبيرة حيث تم تحديد الرقم الذي بانتهائه يبدأالواحد و بذلك فتح المجال لابتكار الأرقام السالبة .
و الأرقام العشرية هيعشرة بالفعل إلا أنها تبدأ بالصفر و تنتهي بالتسعة ( 9 ) و ليس بالعشرة كما يظن البعض . و لغايات فنية تتعلق بحسن الخط أصبحت الأرقام السورية كما نعهدها اليوم بعد أن كسرت زواياها و أصبحت منحنيات .
استعملت الأرقام السورية بشكل قريب إلى شكلها الحالي في مدرستي : ” نصيبين “و” الرها “و استمرت حتى نهاية القرن الثامن ،
و كذلك استعملهاالخوارزمي( 770 – 850 م . ) في كتابه ” حساب الجبر و المقابلة ” و في علم اللوغاريتم ، و كذلك استخدمها :أبو الوفا ( عالم في الرياضيات )في القرن التاسع الميلادي أما من الذين حسنوا الأرقام السورية فنذكر العالم الفلكي الأندلسي نور الدين أبو اسحق الطبرجي 1133 – 1204م. الذي وضع كتاب الهيئة فعالج فيه صورة الأجرام السماوية .
انتقال الأرقام السورية إلى العالم :وصلت الأرقام السورية إلى أوروبا من خلال عدة طرق أهمها :بعد احتلال بيزنطة لحلب961 م . حيث صادرت محتويات و وثائق قصر سيف الدولة الحمداني و الذي كانت جميع مدوناته الحسابية بالأرقام السورية .
و كذلك الأمر من خلال دخول الفاطميين إلى صقلية عام 983 م . و بذلك انتقلت إلى أوروباو من خلال الأندلس وصلت إلى أوروبا الغربية ، كذلك عن طريق الصليبيين الذين دخلوا سورية الطبيعية عام 1190 م. و في الكتابات الغربية نجد أن الأرقام السورية معرفة باسم الأرقام العربية : أ – ففي معجم
لاروس LAROUSE الفرنس يعرف هذه الأرقام بأنها عربية و أنها أصبحت معروفة في فرنسا منذ القرن العاشر الميلادي .ب – و في كتاب ” الرياضيات قيد الصنع ” لصاحبه ” هوغبن “ LANCELOT HOGBEN يقول :” لا ريب أن المسلمين هم الذين نقلوا إلى الغرب حوالي 1100 م . الأرقام التي
يستخدمها الأوروبيون اليوم و كانت جامعاتهم في اسبانيا تعتبر منارة للعلم ” .ج – جاء في كتاب LE CHIFFRE لصاحبه PEIGNOT ADAMOFT يقول : ” إن الصفر يدل في اللغة العربية على الفراغ و قد زعم بعضهم أن ليسبين لفظتي الصفر و الشيفر إلا فرق يسير في الصوت إلى أن يقول : و منالغريب حقاً أن يجعل بعض علماء الغرب من فكرة الفراغ و لفظتها شيفر اسماًيطلقونه على العقود كلها ” . بالإضافة إلى ذلك نجد أن الأوروبيون أخذوا معالأرقام السورية طريقة استخدام السوريين للعمليات الحسابية الأربعة : ( + ، – ، × ، ÷)
أي من اليمين إلى اليسار و لكنهم يقرأون النتيجة حسب لغتهم .
كيف جاءت الأرقام الهندية إلى البلاد السورية :كان أول وصول للأرقم الهندية إلى البلاد السورية على يد العالم الفلكي الهندي ” كانكا ” ( 773 م .) ، حيث وصل بغداد عاصمة العلم و المعرفة في العالم في ذلك الزمان . و أول من استعمل الأرقام الهندية الجديدة هو الخوارزمي الذي قسم الأرقام إلى نوعين : هندي ، و غباري ( سوري ) .
و نشأ تضارباً في أسبقية نشوء الأرقام من قبل الهنود أم من قبل السوريين لأن الاختراع كان قد تم في فترة زمنية واحدة. و لأسبابٍ دينية و جغرافية غزت الأرقام الهنديةسورية الطبيعية عبر بلاد فارس و عن طريق احتلال ” هولاكو ” لبغداد و إقامةدولة المغول ، فأدى ذلك إلى تثبيت الأرقام الهندية ، ثم جاء الأتراك العثمانيون و زادوا في تثبيتها .
ما هي مزايا الأرقام السورية و ما هي أهمية استعمالها : إن الأرقام السورية لا تقبل التزوير بسهولة في الوثائق المكتوبة دون أن يظهرالخلل على شكل الرقم ، أما في الأرقام الهندية فيمكن تحويل الصفر( . ) إلىأي رقم ، و كذلك الرقم( واحد) يمكن تزويره إلى ثلاثة و ستة و سبعة وثمانية و تسعة . و في الرومانية هنالك سهولة في التزوير ، فالواحد(I)يمكن تزويره إلى II أو VI أو III . و بنفس الوقت نجد أن الأرقام السورية هي السائدة في العالم و في لغة العلم
.وقد تنبه أنطون سعادة باعث النهضة السورية القومية الاجتماعية إلى حقيقةهذه الأرقام و هويتها القومية فأقر استخدامها لأنها من خلق و إبداع الفكرالسوري العظيم و لميزاتها المذكورة أعلاه .
و قد جاء في رأي الأمانة العامة للمنظمة العربية للمواصفات و المقاييس بتاريخ 25 \ 5 \ 1982 من الأجدى اتباع سياسة تهدف إلى استخدام الأرقام العربية 0 – 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 —– ، حيثما أمكن لتحل محل الأرقام الهندية و بشكل خاص في المجالاتالعلمية و التعليمية ، بينما يمكن الإبقاء على استخدام الأرقام الهندية فيمجالات خاصة كما بقيت الأرقام الرومانية في أوروبا ) *
و إذا كان العالم كله يعترف بماقدمته الأمة السورية له من مبادئ الأرقام و يتخذها و يستعملها فيتوجب علينا نحن أحفاد من أوجدوها أن نعمل بها حفاظاً على تراثنا الفكري الذيبلغ من القيمة و الأهمية مكانة أهلته ليصبح عالمياً ، حيث كل إبداع ذو قيمة يتأنسن لتحيا سوريا
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Visible risks are not real risks… What you don’t know is categorized as random events
Nassim Nicholas Taleb wrote: THE LEBANESE WAR THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN.
Lebanon is much safer than anywhere else.
The casualty rate from car bombs in Lebanon over 2013 was 2.5 per 100,000 people.
It remains < a tenth of crime in NY in the 90s, <20th of crime in Brazil, etc.
Outside bombs the homicide rate is very low.  Why? Simply, a bomb is immediately noticed by the press, series of isolated crimes don’t make the newspaper.
Antony Veich wrote: “in the case of Belfast the press usually stayed at The Europa, so the IRA took the bombs to the hotel… 28 times.”
Sadly, people in 2014 make more irrational decisions than they did in 1900. Visible risks are not really risks.
The other good news is that everyone is worried about “future risks“.
The risks in Lebanon are not hidden. They are open for everyone to see, and nobody is wondering why in spite of all these incidents the war DID NOT happen?
Every bomb that does not cause generalized warfare makes the system more robust to war (see Antifragility).
In 1975 the Palestinians had nothing to lose from civil war. Same with Syria.
Today all parties in Lebanon have skin in the game, and are deep into real estate in Beirut.

adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

January 2018
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