Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Beirut Syndrome

American professor proposes that Israel “flatten Beirut”? Why?

And how Israel is planning to “flatten Beirut”?

This current one million-person city has been previously decimated and flattened through several earthquakes and pandemics

Note: Re-edit “Amitai Etzioni, who teaches at renowned universities, says Israel may have no choice but to destroy Lebanon — again February 22, 2016″

A prominent American scholar who teaches international relations at George Washington University, and who has taught at a variety of prestigious U.S. universities, including Columbia, Harvard and Berkeley, has publicly proposed that Israel “flatten Beirut” — a city with around 1 million people — in order to destroy the missiles of Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah.

Professor Amitai Etzioni served as a senior advisor in President Jimmy Carter’s administration — made this proposal in an op-ed in Haaretz, the leading English-language Israeli newspaper, known as “The New York Times of Israel.” Haaretz represents the liberal wing of Israel’s increasingly far-right politics.

Etzioni’s op-ed was first published on Feb. 15 with the headline “Can Israel Obliterate Hezbollah’s Growing Missile Threat Without Massive Civilian Casualties?” (the answer he suggests in response to this question is “likely no”).

The rubble of Beirut’s southern suburbs (Dahiyat Janoubiyat) in August 2006, after Israel’s war in Lebanon, which destroyed tens of thousands of homes (Credit: Reuters/Jamal Saidi). It also look as Gaza under the ruin.

“Should Israel Flatten Beirut to Destroy Hezbollah’s Missiles?” was the next, much more blunt title, chosen sometime on or before Feb. 16.

As of Feb. 18, the headline is “Should Israel Consider Using Devastating Weapons Against Hezbollah Missiles?”

Etzioni served in the Haganah — the terrorist army that formed Israel after violently expelling three-quarters of the indigenous Palestinian population — from 1946 to 1948, and then served in the Israeli military from 1948 to 1950. He mentions his military service in both the article and his bio.

(Question: If a Palestinian or an “Arab” was discovered to have joined any military group, would he be teaching in the USA)

In the piece, Etzioni cites an anonymous Israeli official who estimates that Hezbollah has 100,000 missiles in Lebanon. In January, the U.S. government put that figure at 80,000 rockets.

The anonymous official also says the Israeli government considers these weapons to be its second greatest security threat — after Iran. (Actually, Israel repeatedly claimed that Hezbollah is the first and foremost threat to Israel existence)

Etzioni cites Israel’s chief of staff, who claims that most of Hezbollah’s missiles are in private homes.

Whether this allegation is true is questionable. Israel frequently accuses militant groups of hiding weapons in civilian areas in order to justify its attacks.

On numerous occasions, it has been proven that there were no weapons in the civilian areas Israel bombed in Gaza.

Assuming it is true, Etzioni argues, if Israeli soldiers were to try to take the missiles out of these homes one at a time, it “would very likely result in many Israeli casualties.” (Why am I still reading this stupid article?)

In order to avoid Israeli casualties, Etzioni writes: “I asked two American military officers what other options Israel has. They both pointed to Fuel-Air Explosives (FAE). These are bombs that disperse an aerosol cloud of fuel which is ignited by a detonator, producing massive explosions. (What? They want to destroy Beirut or burn 1 million Lebanese citizens?)

The resulting rapidly expanding wave flattens all buildings within a considerable range.”

“Such weapons obviously would be used only after the population was given a chance to evacuate the area. (Really? Like in Gaza, where people were supposed to flee to?)

Still, as we saw in Gaza, there are going to be civilian casualties,” Etzioni adds. “The time to raise this issue is long before Israel may be forced to use FAEs.” (As people in Gaza were given 5 minutes to vacate an area and succumb to the shrapnel?)

Etzioni concludes his piece implies Israel has no other option but to bomb the city of Beirut.

“In this way, one hopes, that there will be a greater understanding, if not outright acceptance, of the use of these powerful weapons, given that nothing else will do,” he resumes his foolish racist idiosyncrasy. (How about desist from the preemptive wars strategies and abide by UN resolutions?)

Belén Fernández, an author and contributing editor at Jacobin magazine, published a piece in TeleSur responding to Etzioini’s op-ed, titled “No, Israel Should Not Flatten Beirut.” Fernández points out “that Israel has already flattened large sections of Lebanon, in Beirut and beyond.”

She recalls visiting a young man in a south Lebanon village near the Israeli border who “described the pain in 2006 of encountering detached heads and other body parts belonging to former neighbors, blasted apart by bombs or crushed in collapsed homes.”

A day before the agreed upon cease fire, upon the urging of Israel to US to work on it, Israel flattened 5-block radius in Beirut.

And Blair PM of England dispatched 1.5 million cluster bombs to spread in South Lebanon. Thousands of Lebanese have died or injured due to these illegal bombs.

Note 1: Beirut was destroyed by 2 major earthquakes in 550 and 560. The first earthquake destroyed Beirut and the second set fire on the city. Between 150 and 250, Beirut was the Central Jurisprudence  of Rome and 5 eminent jurists set the laws for the Roman Empire.

Beirut and Lebanon was shaken with an earthquake in 1958. I was in boarding school and the adults carried out the sleeping children to the outside yard. For an entire decade, Lebanese had to pay the additional “Earthquake Tax”

Note 2: Lebanese journalists and activists have expressed outrage at the article.

Kareem Chehayeb, a Lebanese journalist and founder and editor of the website Beirut Syndrome, said in response to the piece “Should Israel kill me, my family, and over a million other people to destroy Hezbollah’s missiles? How about that for a headline?”

Chehayeb told Salon Etzioni’s argument is “absolutely absurd” and reeks of hypocrisy.

“If some writer said the only way to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is just to bomb Israel,” he said, “people would go up in arms about it.”

“I’m just speechless. It sounds ISIS-like, just eradicating an entire community of people,” Chehayeb added.

Salon called Etzioni’s office at George Washington University’s Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies several times with a request for comment, but no one answered.

After this article was published, Etzioni emailed Salon a statement. “I agree with you that any suggestion to bomb or ‘flatten’ Beirut (or any other city) would be beyond horrible and outrageous,” he said. He said Haaretz had changed and then later corrected his headline.

“Ethics aside — Beirut is not where the missiles are housed,” Etzioni added. “The issue though stands how is a nation to respond if another nation or non-state actor rains thousands of missiles on its civilian population?”

Salon also reached out to the university.

Jason Shevrin, a spokesperson, told Salon “the George Washington University is committed to academic freedom and encourages efforts to foster an environment welcoming to many different viewpoints. Dr. Etzioni is a faculty member who is expressing his personal views.” The spokesperson did not comment any further.

Etzioni is by no means an unknown scholar. He notes on his George Washington University faculty page that, in 2001, he was among the 100 most-cited American intellectuals. He has also served as the president of the American Sociological Association.

Note: Hezbollah General Secretary, Hassan Nasr Allah, replied: All we need is launch a couple of small-range missiles on the Ammonium plant in Haifa. The conflagration is as powerful as an atomic bomb.

Beirut Syndrome, and all kinds of Trouts?

Note: Re-edit of “Beirut Syndrome, the Hermel Trout, northern Bekaa Valley October 29, 2013″

Hermel Trout, pink Ocean Steelhead Trout and white Rainbow trout…

An old friend is in town.

He used to live and work here for 23 years, but after an absence of more than 10 years, he is back in town, searching for something that he hasn’t figured out yet.

sietske-in-beiroet.blogspot. com posted

Lebanon can leave you with an experience that cannot be equaled by most places, especially the more organized ones. Somehow after Lebanon, life always remains a little diluted, it seems.

This feeling may be because living here requires you to use all your senses and resources, thus giving you the feeling of being truly alive.

I have written about the fact once, that “the pace of living and the average stimuli are well beyond the ordinary” and although you may not realize it, it does mark you.

First, you catch the trout (or have someone do it for you)

Life after Lebanon always seems a little dull.

Many may search for this dullness and quietness, but having lived here for a substantial amount of time, especially during the war, it leaves a mark that cannot be erased.

My friend is in this predicament.  He currently lives in a French town, on a boat on the seaside. Something most people would wish for. But it is not giving him what he had in Beirut.
He’s searching, but not quite sure what it is he is searching for.
It could be spiritually settled, a desire to leave oneself behind in order to find another.
You choose your fish. Pink trout has a ‘pinkish’ stripe along its belly
Another friend, who also spend a considerable amount of time living in this country, is also back. Just for a short visit, connecting with friends, and she is no longer searching for something; she’s figured out what it is about Beirut.
The energy of the town heightens and amplifies all emotions.
This is an excellent thing when you’re feeling good, because this town will make you feel even better.
A constant high is a good thing (I do disagree). And since she had a job here, and it always seemed summer, times were good. But as she can vouch for, “lows’are also amplified”.
And although she agrees that you somehow leave something of yourself here, and  that after Beirut, you can never fully feel as if you belong in your own country anymore.
Other places can still give you that satisfaction that will help you forget Beirut. Although, ‘forgetting Beirut’ completely is not possible.
The fish gets weighed with odd-looking weights. The contraption that looks like something that came out of an engine is the one that counter-balances the weight of the bucket on the other side of the scale.
I, on the other hand, had the dilemma of fish. I do not like fish.
Difficult when you are married to a man who – no longer though, due to my lack of enthusiasm – fishes as a hobby.
He used to go spear fishing, and come home with all kinds of exotic Mediterranean fish, which I then had to clean and cook, both with little gusto, and to top it all off, eat as well.
There is no pleasure for me in eating fish. The fish bones, the milky white flesh;  not my cup of tea.
He’ll clean the fish as well
However, some time ago, I was served in a fish from a Hermel farm that tasted like salmon. It was delicious.
And so we bought that fish (locally raised trout in the Orontes river, or Nahr el-Assi), took it home, and cooked it.
Unfortunately, the same scenario ensued; fish bones and milky white flesh, not at all what I had eaten.
It was obviously a ‘case of the incapable cook’ (me). I don’t know how to cook a fish. And so this weekend I had a mission; how do you cook the Hermel trout? We went to Hermel to find a cook who can cook the famous trout.
This one came with eggs; ‘kaviar, as he called it.
The first thing I found out is that there seem to be two kinds of trout: the white trout and the pink trout,
The white one is called the rainbow trout, the other one is called the Steelhead Trout, a variety of the rainbow trout . And although I had eaten the pink one, I had bought the white one.
It seems a little impossible, because steelhead trout are ocean versions of the rainbow trout, which is clearly impossible in Lebanon.
Some say the pink one isn’t really a different trout, but just one that has been fed on a diet that is mixed with a synthetic carotenoid pigment, but I do not agree with it.
It’s definitely a different meat structure, and the taste is different as well.
Ready for the grill
The second thing I learned is that it is all about the mixture of spices, a jealously guarded secret by most chefs.
However, the chef in the restaurant of that excellent fish, while pretending to throw away garbage, quickly passed by my car on the parking lot, just as I was getting in, and shoved me a bag of the magical substance in my hand. “Don’t tell anyone I have given you this,” he whispered.
And so while my friends ponder about the finer mysteries of this Beirut Syndrome, I’ve figured out how to cook a Hermel troutSuum cuique.
Note 1: The Oronto River gushes from Lebanon and crosses 500 km within Syria.
Note 2: When bored, my brother-in-law goes fishing. And he leaves the task of the cleaning and cooking of the fishes to my old 85-year-old mother who suffers acute arthritis in the fingers and arm joints.
Note 3: Before 1975, Beirut had a special charm and many international activities and could be selected among the 5 most pleasant cities to visit and live with https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2010/10/19/movable-fairs-beirut-1970-74/
The hole in front of you, and the top of some trees, is the place where the Orontos River (Nahr el-Assi) begins. In the middle of a desert, the water comes gushing out of this rocky hill (on which I am standing here). The wonders of geology.

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