UN is a failure, here’s why.

UN is a failure in the way it was built and in the way it is dealing with conflicts.

UN Security assembly, the permanent five, a “vetocracy”.

When I was a child, school taught me that five members of the security council were permanent. They are sitting there because they have “won” World War Two. If one member-state of the security council disagreed, it had veto power. It means that the permanent member can stop the adoption of any “substantive” draft Council resolution, regardless of the level of international support for the draft. School (and life itself) also taught me that it is not very democratic to have one voice against all the others.

The five permanent members of the security council constitutes just another set for adversity between, but not exclusively, France, the UK, the USA on one side, and China and Russia on the other.

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The Security Council meet at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York City, 2005. Jim Watson-AFP/Getty Images

 

A recent example was the vetoing from China and Russia against a draft resolution that condemned the state of Syria. (05/22/2014). Russia is fully and militarily supporting the Syrian government since September 2015.

World war two has not ended a very long time ago, but in a few dozens of years, when the politics and power dynamics will be completely altered, the position of five permanent members will be understandably and inevitably challenged. In 2055, 110 years after the end of WW2, how much “the winners” of WW2 will still matter to new generations? How logical will it sound? And more practically, how many countries will want to have their own place among “the permanents”?

The permanent members existence is a denial of democracy.

UN patches up conflicts, doesn’t really stop them or prevent them. 

UNIFIL, the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, is the example I can relate to. UNIFIL deployed in Lebanon in 1978 to confirm Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon which Israel had invaded 5 days prior. Its goals are to restore “international peace and security” and help the government of Lebanon restore its effective authority in the area.
UNIFIL is still active, it has witnessed many Israeli invasions, and worse, their compound has been directly bombed by the “Israeli Defense Forces” in the sad massacre of Qana in 1996.
On April 18 1996, the IDF bombed a UN compound where civilians had taken refuge amid heavy fighting between IDF and Hezbollah, during the Israeli Operation “Grapes of Wrath”. A UN investigation found that it was unlikely that Israeli shelling was a procedural or a technical error; an Israeli drone was spying on the compound before the shelling. More than 800 people were taking refuge in the compound, 106 civilians died in 17 minutes of constant shelling. Two thirds of the shells were equipped with proximity fuses, meaning that the weapon explode above the ground, to kill more.

UNIFIL_pic_1
French peacekeepers of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) take part in a military parade to mark Bastille Day in the French UNIFIL base in Tiri village, southern Lebanon,14 July 2010. (Photo: REUTERS – Ali Hashisho)

Israel was never really punished, despite a decision from the General Assembly stating that Israel should be the one paying for the $1.7 million needed to repair the compound. They voted every year until 2003 with the same pattern, one-third for, one-third abstaining and two voices against belonging to Israel and USA.

UN General Assembly vote.

If you ever wondered why we see so many resolutions but no real actions, its explanation is simple.

The UN General Assembly is democratic, where one state equals one vote. They could pass resolutions with a simple majority or with two-thirds from the member’s states present and voting. Two thirds are required when they are dealing with “important questions”, i.e. the matters that deal with international peace and security and UN internal matters. But resolutions are generally non-binding, meaning they have no real legal power and consequences. A resolution is really just a piece of paper. The real power lies within the Security Council, where “vetocracy” and political adversity reigns.

Questionable morality and impartiality. 

UN wish of impartiality is understandable, but it usually ends in a moral and political fiasco. Impartiality is often an obstacle against action.

In Syria, the UN asks the green light from the Syrian regime to deliver basic humanitarian aid. Despite the regime almost constant refusal to allow the delivery of aid, a UN official said it would be too dangerous to deliver aid without the government consent, reported the Washington Post.
But how can the UN ask for the consent of the party responsible for so many besieged areas in Syria?

In a letter addressed to Stephen O’Brien, the UN undersecretary for humanitarian affairs, 112 Syrian civil society activists accused the agency of complicity in government-imposed blockades that violate the laws of war. The activists wrote that international law and that a 2014 UN Security council resolution oblige all warring parties not to disrupt the delivery of humanitarian aid.
In other words, the UN is violating its own resolutions in Syria, and its desire of impartiality is sadly indirectly helping the suffering of the Syrian people.

Security Council Meeting: The situation in the Middle East - Report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of Security Council.
Stephen O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator briefs Security Council on humanitarian situation in Syria. Credit: UN Photo/Loey Felipe

UN is also subject to the Syrian regime “inputs” into its documents and reports. In an alarming report from Foreign Policy, the newspaper discovered that the U.N, after consulting with the Syrian government, “altered dozens of passages and omitted pertinent information to paint the government of Bashar al-Assad in a more favorable light”. The UN doesn’t deny this.

Linda Tom, an OCHA spokeswoman replied that “it is standard procedure in each country for the UN to consult with the government of the country”. Amanda Pitt added more: “I assume it was done in consultation with a range of partners including the Government, as is normal practice”, she said in an e-mail to Foreign Policy.

More recently, Stephen O’Brien told the security council that the organization will formally ask the Syrian government to approve airdrops of humanitarian aid. The Syrian government has said there is no need for airdrops because no one is starving.
The decision to use airdrops was taken by US, Russia, and other powers. The use of airdrops was to be applied if the Syrian regime refused aid to be delivered by land.

UN is subject to pressure from countries over its decisions.

Earlier this month, U.N put Saudi Arabia in a blacklist of nations and armed groups responsible for killing children. Saudi Arabia didn’t stay very long on the list; UN removed it after pressure from Saudi Arabia itself. Saudi Arabia is leading a coalition that is bombing relentlessly Yemen since March 2015. Saudi Arabia and its coalition are responsible of 60 per cent of the 785 children killed in Yemen last year, according to the UN.

UN bowed down to Saudi Arabia after mounting pressure and threats from the Kingdom and its coalition to remove their financing from UNRWA, the UN agency that deal with Palestinian refugees.

“Bullying, threat, pressure”, a diplomatic source told Reuters on condition of anonymity. The source added it was “real blackmail”.

Vote manipulation. 

Saudi Arabia didn’t only remove the blacklisting with pressure, it has its own seat on the UN Human Rights Council because of a phony deal with Britain. In 2013, the kingdom of Saudi Arabia gained a seat in the UNHRC, in an “exchange of support”. It was basically trading votes and money. The Saudi Cables that were released last year in 2015 by Wikileaks revealed an alarming case. UN watch, an NGO based in Geneva, translated the cables.

“The ministry might find it an opportunity to exchange support with the United Kingdom, where the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would support the candidacy of the United Kingdom to the membership of the council for the period 2014-2015 in exchange for the support of the United Kingdom to the candidacy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”

Another cable uncovered that KSA transferred $100,000 for “expenditures resulting from the campaign to nominate the Kingdom for membership of the human rights council for the period 2014-2016”.

Recently, Amnesty and Human Rights Watch urged UN member-states to suspend Saudi Arabia from the UNHRC over the killings of civilians in Yemen and repression in their own territory.

UN is a failure because of its structure, the security council is a place where bickering powerful nations deal with each other, on the other side, its extreme impartiality pushes the agency to inaction and to asking dictators to allow helping starving civilians. Votes can be bought, it is dependent on funds and will bow down to pressure from unhappy and unsatisfied countries.

The United Nations should be either heavily reformed, or dismantled to let space for the creation of an agency that will at least ensure quick help of civilians in war-torn countries. It should be funded by individuals, not governments.

France crackdowns on Free Speech following Charlie Hebdo attacks.

Earlier this month, the world were shocked because  of the attack on Charlie Hebdo cartoonists. The succeeding days were terrifying for French citizens, as two hostages operations were happening at the same time. One resulted with the death of four French Jews in a Kosher market.

The following Sunday, Millions of Frenchmen took the street to show solidarity with Charlie Hebdo and with Freedom of expression. But of course there were debates about the limits of it.

And in France, there is a limit, you do not touch or mock the Jews. Manuel Valls said it : “You do not confound Freedom of speech with Antisemitism”. Few years ago, a cartoonist from…Charlie Hebdo were fired because he mocked the marriage of Jean Sarkozy (son of then French President) with a Jew.

But that’s to sum it up.

I didn’t mention the very shallow “pens vs guns”, rendering the whole attack an attack on freedom of speech, omitting the context, the American invasion, the French bombings on Iraq. I didn’t mention “The West civilisation loving freedom and the backward Middle East civilisation that could not understand what it is” the shameless debates that happened after the attack. A journalist with too much boldness asked the family of Ahmed, the French Muslim policemen killed cowardly by the extremists. “What did you think about Charlie Hebdo cartoons on Prophet Muhamad ?” Silence were the answer.

I didn’t mention a French speaker that shamelessly blamed Islam on the attack, saying that the Muslims installed “shit” in France. I didn’t mention the dozens of Islamophobic attacks that were barely mentioned in the French Media.

But what happened next is the most interesting, the French government responded to the attack with more surveillance, more “vigilance”, to conclude, less freedom. It arrested dozens of persons following the attack, blaming them for “apologie du terrorisme”, terrorism apologia or justification. Seems great on paper, but it isn’t when the French police questions a 8 years old child.

It consequently jailed dozens of people because of ironic comments on Terrorism and Charlie Hebdo, one notably for France begins jailing people for ironic comments  online.

A 16-year-old high school student was taken into police custody on Thursday and indicted for “defending terrorism,” national broadcaster France 3 reports.

His alleged crime? He posted on Facebook a cartoon “representing a person holding the magazine Charlie Hebdo, being hit by bullets, and accompanied by an ‘ironic’ comment,” France 3 states.

The picture is heartless, but it’s an answer to Charlie Hebdo front page following the massacre of Muslims brothers after Sisi’s coup.

The government crackdown on freedom of speech is very hypocrite, especially for a nation that was proudly celebrating freedom of speech. It is dangerous because it antagonises the Muslims in France, already blamed by the very well-listened Eric Zemmour, that suggested that the Muslim people of France could be very well deported from the country. The crackdown were criticised by Amnesty.

More dangerously, it calls for normal citizens to be vigilant, to observe any “weird” behaviour and report it. The behaviour that could lead to the “Jihadist radicalisation” are on the following picture.

How bad can it get ?

What if a Muslim wanted to have a diet, so he changes “radically” his way of eating, but he also like the traditional clothing of his own country, so he wears it from time to time, what if he stops listening to music because he thinks it’s better off?

After the damage is done it adds. “It doesn’t necessarily mean that a radicalisation is happening, but if you have doubts, call this number ! The official website claims that the extremists comes out from every culture, religion, poor or rich, etc, it washes its hands off the amalgam, stereotype it’s already creating and already creates in the media.

Les jeunes qui ont été endoctrinés et convaincus de partir sont issus de tous les départements, de tous les milieux, favorisés comme défavorisés, urbains comme ruraux, des centres-villes comme des banlieues.

My translation : The youths that are indoctrinated and convinced of going [to Jihad] are from all departments, from all environments [classes], favoured as unfavored, urban as rural, from downtowns as suburbs.

So much for calming down the country’s situation. So much from freedom of speech.

France is transforming into a country where vigilance, the fear of the other, the suspicions, the crackdowns will likely become common language.

Ali Bazzal’s Execution and his family response. [Opinion]

A Lebanese policemen has been executed by Jabhat el Nusra. May Ali Bazzal rest in peace.

One could understand the anger and the frustration of the families, their impatience with the government that is slowly, barely acting. But a family can’t use force and violence and act as it will go unpunished.

Rana Fliti and Ali Bazzal and their daughter Maram (Photo courtesy of Rana Fliti) –

A family can’t demand the execution of other people because their sons has been executed, as much as they are frustrated. A family can’t decide on its own to block international aid to refugees. This is not the answer for your child vile execution.

A family can’t decide to kidnap others people. Yes, the families are on the good side of the fight, but how do you expect the terrorists to respond if not by executing more Lebanese soldiers and policemen. You don’t respond to execution with executions.

Yes, the state is useless here, and I stand with every civil, peaceful act they used, road-blocking, pressure on the government, etc. They have every right to do so, but they have absolutely no right to act as vengeful blood-thirsty citizens.

We stand by the side of the families that have their sons and brothers kidnapped. Just don’t make things worse by escalating the tension already untenable for all the country.

Let the army do its job.

France’s Hypocrisy or the illusion of Freedom.

France is always showing off with its history, its revolution, the declaration of the rights of Man and the Citizen, the monarchy abolition. And it has the right to brag about its past, but the present France doesn’t respect itself regarding its history.

Why does France is somehow the first country to welcome the new dictator of Egypt Sisi, a leader that massacres his own people at protests. A “leader” that closes the border of Rafah, the only exit for Palestinians in Gaza that wanted to save their lives during the last Israeli massacre, and that still want to evade the Israeli blockade.

Liberté-Égalité-Fraternité is France national motto, yet it seems that this is only applicable to Frenchmen and not the citizens of the world.

Hollande isn’t the first president to develop a friendship with a dictator, nor France the first country ; Sarkozy welcomed in Paris his late friend Gaddafi, ex-bloody dictator of Libya, and it has been revealed that Gaddafi had paid for Sarkozy’s presidency campaign. Years later, Sarkozy was the first to call for international action in Libya, talk about dirty politics…

At every speech  about freedom and equality, you will be laughed at, because you openly ally yourself with Egypt, Saudi Arabia and other dictators of the world.

Continue reading France’s Hypocrisy or the illusion of Freedom.

The Policing tendency of some Lebanese citizens.

I wrote that us, Lebanese citizens, were too much blaming each others for misconducts or our “uncivilized” tendencies, for example some will blame the people that won’t respect laws. In my point of view, this tendency to blame the “uncivilized” other should be redirected on the government’s lack of control in the country. With control, the incivilities would shrink and eventually stop.

This lack of control is dangerous because it also leads to policing each others ; in other words, everybody becomes everybody’s police because there is a clear lack of authority and appliances of existing laws. We begin to point out our fingers on some incivilities, shaming some in public thinking it would help to improve the society.

This is clearly visible on Twitter regarding the violation of driving laws, the dangerous of some vehicles and the illegality of some license plates. Some may tweet an image to the Traffic Control, and they will retweet you. I also did that, thinking it was enough. But it’s not. Let’s look at some of these revealing tweets.

https://twitter.com/AngRy961/status/535096775854788608

This brings us to another result. We police each others and report it to the formal authority, consequently, the formal authority will “reshame it”, pointing out a finger on the citizen, omitting that it is their lack of control that is the base of this situation. Let’s stop with taking pictures of entire families on tiny motorcycles and be surprised about it. Some families may have not the money to buy good cars, and some may find that getting on those tiny motorcycles is better than using the public transport. In some areas of Lebanon, the public transport is rare, sometimes nonexistent. Those people know that they risk their lives, we mustn’t me surprised every time we see these “backward” people, we must go to the origins, the lack of the control, the lack of basic transport. If the police were effective, we wouldn’t see them much, and if the government were effective, it wouldn’t exist.

Let’s say that the Police will act after the pointing out, great you may think. But is it our role as citizens to help the police solving clear road safety and law issues ? The common citizen may help the police to solve a mystery when it is asked to do so.

The lack of control doesn’t come from the citizen but from the government.
Another outcome of this could lead to expressing short but strong outbursts of Power from the government ; it is clearly shown with the minister of Health Abu Faour iron fists on food and water irregularities. The current government, lacking power over the people on social and sanitary issues, will try to inverse this situation. Abu Faour strikes the restaurants, shaming them and blaming them for their lack of control and their disrespects expiration dates etc. But is it not the origin, the base of all this debate the lack of the government control on food and water ? Abu Faour clearly wants a better country, but is the way of doing it ?

Let’s stop this nonsense, and point our fingers at the correct persons responsible for all the irregularities, the misconducts, the disrespect of laws, the “shocking” pictures you could see on twitter. Let’s point our fingers on the government because it simply can’t do a proper job.

Is the Taxi-Service reliable ?

Have you ever been expelled out of a service because other customers where able to pay more or because their destinations were relatively closer to your destination ? I have, and several times I’ve been left out in a street I don’t even know. You also have some drivers that will tell you “I will drop you here because It’s not my way even if you didn’t arrive yet at your destination but hey gimme your money”

A Lebanese taxi.   From This is Beirut Blog

1)Services have too much bargaining power.

They could expel you, decide whether to take you, bargain a price, and put ten other customers in the taxi when the car just allows 4 or 5 passengers. Consequently some customers will “choose” their services. “No I don’t get in this car”, Urgh, too much passengers”. This will considerably slow the transport.

Oh and have you ever been cheated on ? I have.
Me : “Look khaye we made the deal right ?” Driver : “No I want more because you made me go in this neighborhood and there’s a lot of traffic and I need money for gas”

Also, you could wait and wait and wait for a service to pass by and get rejected while you are losing precious minutes.

The drivers have too much bargaining power, some could use this and arrange or cheat with a price. It’s also because there’s not really a  clear prices to arrive at your destination. I am not stereotyping  the drivers or generalizing them, but I believe these stories are frequent among passengers.

2) The constant drop/entry of passengers.

Services, because they can get more than one person, will constantly and suddenly change lanes to get newcomers, sometimes they will talk and bargain a price, and you are miserably waiting for them to finish their chats, slowing all the traffic behind them. With a price based on distance, there would be no time to bargain, just get in the car, and announce your destination.

3) You can’t go far with a Service.

A service will never take you from A to B if B is too far. You will have to bargain a huge price but first you have to find an empty service (or break the hearts of passengers that get expelled) Good luck with that.

There are some benefits in the service system…

More passengers means less pollution ; if every citizen needed a cab to get moving, more cars are needed or more movement, so more pollution. But this is manageable by sharing cabs.

Fixed prices : with only 2000 L.L you can get very far if you are lucky. But sometimes it’s just not enough.

 

I believe it’s time to install honest counter in every service, with fair prices for both of the driver and the customer. This will empower the common citizen and the use of public transports could grow.
And if it’s too complicated, it is time to ameliorate this system and find a common ground for both of the frustrated parties.

Dear Syrian Refugees, Citizens, Brothers.

I am sincerely sorry if you have felt threatened, badly treated by some Lebanese citizens.

Yes, Racism is present in my country, and it is present in all of the countries of the world. The difference here is that racism may go unpunished by the law, sometimes applauded by watching citizens.

After Arsal incidents and beheading, some lost men released their anger and adrenaline onto you and made some of you fear for their lives, that fear you fled. This illegitimate anger is growing, and it is unfortunately not being stopped by the leaders of our country, and if it is, their voices is not really heard.

The racist behavior is deep down explainable, but will never be accepted by the majority of Lebanese citizens. There are many institutions here to help you and welcome you, to make you feel safe and at home as much as they could.

Many are proud of Lebanon different cultures, religions, origins, many are also proud to receive you.

The number of the Syrian refugees is a problem yes, their accommodations is the question, not expelling them. We don’t have any right to say :” they should return to their country, some towns are at peace”. “They” forget or close their eyes on the fact that the war is killing dozens every day. The moment the civil war is finished, and the moment the refugees that fear for their lives are welcomed back in Syria, they will return. Because no one runs away from his home.

Generalization is dangerous, if some Syrians are from terrorist groups, that doesn’t mean that one should be beaten and ashamed.

If some Lebanese are racists, that doesn’t mean all the Lebanese are racists.

I insist on the fact that this unpunished Racism is very dangerous, it could lead to the resentment of the Syrian refugees towards the Lebanese, again here a generalized response, an explainable one, not a legitimate one.

So, Dear Syrian citizens, don’t play this game, don’t allow yourselves to feel resentment, anger. All of this lead to extremism.

I advise all of us, Lebanese and Syrians, to feel and act responsibly to close this awful door of hate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Will USA bombardments stop “IS” ? (“Islamic State”)

I consider myself as an anti-interventionist.  I don’t want “boots on the ground” nor intervention. Simply because it led to more chaos, more deaths, more hatred. US, the only so-called superpower in the world, is the master of intervention.

It is very important to say that being against an intervention does not mean being with the government the interventionist want to fall.

Example : Being anti-interventionist in Iraq 2003 does not mean being pro-Saddam. Look at France.

Being anti-interventionist in Syria 2013 does not mean being pro-Assad.

These examples may sound naive, but the number of people I’ve seen blaming everyone to be pro-Assad because they were against an intervention is huge.

Of course I was happy when Saddam fell, but I was not happy when I saw that the bombs were killing mostly civilians. And in fact, the weapons of massive destruction never existed, it was just an excuse to finish Saddam.

Iraq chaos have not created Al Qaeda and terrorism, but it led them in the country for sure and it also led to bloody instability. Saudi Arabia terrorist Wahhabits began to flow into the country, to blow themselves up and join Paradise in their views.

Years later, US left Iraq, but before leaving, they trained and armed the Iraqi army. As soon as USA left Iraq, an Iraqi insurgency began. Some Sunnis of the country were malcontent of the Shi’ite-led government. Again, more violence, more hatred and chaos. Maliki, the Shi’ite prime minister, left his seat after Iran and USA advised him. This move were to appease the insurgency. But in fact, it is too late.

“ISIS” have become a “state” with or without a Shia Prime Minister, and I am certain that the group won’t step down after seeing a Sunni Leader. ISIS have grown, fed itself from the chaos in Syria, and now promise war to the United States and Europe.

US began strikes against IS, not because they fear a massacre from IS, but because they have  interests in Erbil, a city not far from Mosul.  IS have massacred well before the US bombardments, and it will continue their massacre, their ethnic cleansing after the bombs.

If US strikes finish them off, (that is doubtful), what’s the plan after this ? I see no real plan, and please, if you have a link, share it.

With no real plan, IS and terrorism will re-organize, re-exist. The hatred against USA will grow, and the strikes will be very useful for the “Islamic State” propaganda.

Nonetheless, I am supporting US bombardments for multiple reasons.

1) IS needs to be stopped, their expansion is very dangerous and is already destroying Middle East Culture and minorities.

2) If they are not slowed down, this expansion will continue, Baghdad may fall. More chaos.

3) IS is killing innocents.

I will not support a military ground operation or intervention.

And as soon as the bombs are killing mostly civilians, my support will end.

Bomb ? Who cares, Brazil Won. / Fashet 5ele2.

Yesterday, terrorism struck again. No, there were no “peaceful” period between the previous bomb and yesterday’s. Just a clock, tickling, and people living in an illusion of peace.

Illusion, yes. We, the Lebanese people, are into it.

Sorry for the Lebanese ego-centrism. When I see tweets like : “can’t we have a peaceful summer”. I just become disgusted. People die, and you just care about beaches and parties. Sorry about that, next time we’ll tell them not to spoil your VIP summer alright ? ( and it’s not like your summer will be really spoiled ).

When I see fireworks because this or that country won a world cup match, not even an hour after the explosion, I want to vomit. Would you like to light some fireworks if it was your neighborhood, your friends sitting in the coffee shop near the explosion ? I don’t think so.

So next time an explosion occurs ( let’s hope not ) show some decency, some respect, civility, show me the patriotism you all claim to possess.

Heck, celebrate in your house, but don’t show your happiness when a bomb just exploded and wounded and killed innocents. Is it that complicated ?

Peace.

 

 

Lycée Abdel Kader, one hundred years old school in Beirut, might be relocated. OPINION

http://www.thetechbug.com/2011/12/16/what-will-you-do-when-you-grow-up/#more-36
Picture of ex Lycée Abdel Kader Students in 1977.
Photos from the blog : The Tech Blog. belongs to Rabih Sukkar

You might haven’t heard of Lycée Abdel Kader. It is a school, it teaches from Maternelle (kindergarten) to Lycée (high school) and prepares its students for the French and the Lebanese Baccalaureate.

It is located in Zarif, at the end of the Mar Elias Road in Beirut, Lebanon.

Lycée Abdel Kader is more than 100 year old, its walls have seen the best years of Beirut, and the worst, and its 2000 students know how much history it witnessed.

Its walls have seen old cars and buses take children from the school and to the school, children who will be parents, parents who intend to have their own children go to the same school they attended.

Its walls have seen the bullets, the missiles, the blood during the Lebanese Civil War, yet it still stands, education beats war.

But Business might beat Education, and when we speak of a 100 years old school, we also speak of History. The Lycée Abdel Kader might be relocated within 5 years, and the whole area will be destroyed. The school is a part of MLF (Mission Laïque Française  ), AEFE ( L’Agence pour l’enseignement français à l’étranger) and the Rafic Hariri Foundation. 

The latter sent a message to the Lycée Abdel Kader, it was posted on the Facebook Page LAK Forever, a group that reunited professors, students, ex-students and parents to protest the idea of the probable relocation. It has now more than 1600 members.

Here’s the message in French.

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Roughly,

“Fondation Rafic Hariri is studying the project of relocating Lycée Abdel Kader in a Beirut Suburb, within the delay of 5 years, to answer needs of development and modernization of the establishment. No decision have been made yet. AEFE stays Fondation Hariri Partner, whether the decision of relocation is taken or maintaining the school in its current location.”

Why Mrs Salwa Sinionra didn’t think of renovating the school instead of destroying/relocating it ?

The school was established in 1909, Rafic Hariri Foundation began to manage it in 1985. Legally, you have every right to relocate, even bomb it, morally, it’s another story.

Some rumors say a mall will be constructed at this place…

Here’s what I read in Hariri foundation website :

The Hariri Foundation for Sustainable Human Development greatly values the rich cultural legacy Lebanon has inherited from past civilizations with five World Heritage Sites designated by UNESCO and considers safeguarding this distinguished culture among its top priorities.

Don’t destroy the cultural Legacy of Lebanon. Lycée Abdel Kader is a cultural legacy. And it’s a part of the history of Beirut.

And oh how ironic, Solidere is a part of this empire, and Solidere was criticized with the “development” and “modernization” of post-civil war Beirut’s Down Town.

Why are we allowing corporations to destroy our patrimony ? I always hear how proud are we, how we’ve known so much different civilizations, yet we don’t do a single thing to stop this massacre. We have so much beautiful ruins that are being destroyed for soulless modern buildings. Don’t get me wrong, I am with modernization, but I believe that preservation is a part of it.

Lycée Abdel Kader is not more important than the other schools, all the other schools that might one day get relocated, must fight this war. It’s Education Versus Business.

See also the report from LBCI on the matter. Click on this Link

 

Bonus : Some pics of Lycée Abdel Kader classes and court are seen on the very popular movie West Beirut made by Ziyad Doueiri.

One of the first seen depicts the Bus massacre of 13th April 1975, official date of the Lebanese Civil War. The Massacre did not happen near the school, but in Ain el-Rammaneh.

Lycée Abdel Kader Well known Chateau seen in this shot.
Lycée Abdel Kader Well known Chateau seen in this shot.
a Lycée Abdel Kader Corridor
a Lycée Abdel Kader Corridor
Lycée Abdel Kader Class
Lycée Abdel Kader Class
Lycée Abdel Kader court.
Lycée Abdel Kader court.