Malala celebrates her 18th birthday by inaugurating a school for refugees in Bekaa, Lebanon.

“Invest in books, not bullets” advocated Malala during her speech for the inauguration of a girls school in Bekaa, Lebanon. Malala is a Pakistani young adult, she won the Nobel peace prize in 2014, making her the youngest winner ever.

Lebanon has witnessed the huge influx of Syrian refugees since 2011. Days ago, UNHCR announced that the number of Syrian refugees attained 4 millions persons. Lebanon has today among its population about 1.2M refugees. It has also the highest ratio of refugees in the world, Lebanon has a population of 4 Millions.

Malala Yousafzai is today not only the symbolical young face of peace but she’s also a face of resistance against patriarchal societies.

The Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, not far from the Syrian inland, has today more than 400,000 of refugees. Roughly half of them are toddlers, children or teenagers.

A young Syrian girl in a refugee camp in Bekaa, Lebanon

The UN agency that managed the refugees, the UNHCR has very low funds to help those in need.

When Malala says “Invest in Books, not in Bullets” it may sound simplistic and symbolical. But she has all the reasons to claim that. Just 8 days of global military spending could fund 12 years of free, quality education for every child on the planet. A year of global military spending could fund roughly 547.2 years of free quality education! Picture the huge amount of money that goes towards war and destruction.

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The war in Syria, which is now in its 4th year, is depriving the young Syrians of school.  A single school brings much needed hope.

The children of Gaza shaken by three wars.

You don’t have to be the most compassionate and altruistic human being to understand the injustice in Palestine in general and the despair and plight of those who live in Gaza in particular.

The Data here doesn’t explain the political context of the war, but it does reveal one component of the zionist ideology : Ethnic cleansing and psychological war.

A child who is 7 years old today has lived through three wars, and every war was worse than the previous one. The last one killed more than 550 children and has put hundred of thousands under heavy traumatic stress. In Israel, a child was killed by the unguided rockets of the resistance in Gaza.

Save the Children, an NGO, brought up the data in a report: 70% of children in Gaza have nightmares, 89% of the parents reported that their children leave in a constant fear, 75% of children usually wet their beds.

30% of children feel listlessness and a lack of motivation, 50% have a fear of attending school, and 20% of children isolate and withdraw themselves.

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Israel’s minister of defence threatens to kill Lebanese children, yes, children.

If you wanted a proof that Israel doesn’t really care about killing children, you have it here.

The Israeli defence minister said the following in a conference in Jerusalem :

“we are going to hurt Lebanese civilians to include kids of the family. We went through a very long deep discussion … we did it then, we did it in [the] Gaza Strip, we are going to do it in any round of hostilities in the future.”

In the last onslaught on Gaza, the so called IDF “managed” to kill 2257 Palestinians. OCHA (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairsclaimed that 70% were civilians, including more than 500 Palestinian children. Today, more than 370,000 children in Gaza requires psychological support. Many of them, not 10 years old, have already witnessed three devastating wars, in 2009-2010, in 2012 and in 2014.

Israel ministers have never been so open about killing civilians. Moshe Yaalon, the defence minister, admits that Israel purposely target civilians. Is it to “defend” themselves? Defence, it seems, is about the extermination of whole families. The “IDF” killed 25 members of the same family Abu Jamaa in a single strike last summer.

To put the cherry on the cake, Netanyahu, Israel’s PM, appointed Ayelet Shaked to be the next Minister of Justice. Shaked infamously called for a genocide against Palestinians, including mothers and children, whom she portrayed as “little snakes”. What a team.

To systematically kill children or to call for a genocide are war crimes, you don’t need to be a lawyer to understand that. Moshe Yaalon must be tried and condemned in front of the International Criminal Court, just like Netanyahu, Olmert and all their teams.

Many Israeli soldiers testified and implied that civilians were considered as legitimate targets  in the operation “Protective Edge”. Here’s one of the testimonies.

“If you spot someone, shoot.”

“They told us: ‘There aren’t supposed to be any civilians there’.”

“If you shoot someone in Gaza it’s cool, no big deal. First of all, because it’s Gaza, and second, because that’s warfare.”

Every time Israel boasts about its army being the most “moral” in the world, remember those words.
Every time countries and Israel cry about the “right to defend itself”, ask yourself: “from whom? Children?”

13th April 1975 – Lebanon still led by warlords 40 years after start of civil war.

Today’s a sad anniversary, 13th April 1975 is considered to be the “official” date of the beginning of the civil war in Lebanon. A war that killed more than 150,000 and 17,000 disappearances.
It is a sad day even for the generations that were born after 1990, the end of the civil war. It reminds them how fragile is the situation, and a date like the 7th may 2008 comes back to their minds. A “mini” civil war between political parties militias, urging them to make the Doha agreement.

Look at today’s leading politicians of Lebanon and you’ll see many war faces. The elections of a president in Lebanon are disputed between two old warlords, Michael Aoun and Samir Geagea. Geagea was the only militia leader that was imprisoned, the remaining were in a way “pardoned” following the Taif Agreement. These men have activity participated in war, killing dozens of people, sometimes in massacres. Today they act as salon gentleman. We stil call Michael Aoun general, a reminder of his role in the civil war, and Samir Geagea doctor, even though he never received a diploma.

We still have a Joumblatt, his son is also playing politics with him, we still have Gemayels in the ineffective Lebanese parliament. We still have Hariri’s, because “if you kill my father, that will launch me into politics”. We still have Nabih Berri, because his chair is so confortable, and of course, he’s also an ancient (literally) warlord. Hezbollah revere the sons of slain leaders, making them leaders at their places.

Many questions run in my mind, and I have not yet found the answers.
How come these same parties still hold so much power after their crimes? Are we dependant to them? Is this because we feel that they defend our sect during political turmoil? What about our civil rights? In the last global competitiveness report from the World Economic Forum, Lebanon is the country that trust the less their politicians (out of 144 countries), the country also ranks 142 for irregular payments and bribes and the judicial independence ranks 138. How come these results don’t translate in a change, a movement from the people? The current political parties hold too tightly the political set, and independents are often ousted quickly from the government or leave it themselves because of the bribery, the nepotism, and the strong power of warlords. How come all feel the MP’s will come back to their seats after the next elections, when they illegally extended their mandate?

How come some of us, the “new” generation, post-90, have so much hate and resentment against the other?

Two Sad Anniversaries : Halabja massacre and the Syrian Civil War.

Yesterday marked the 4th year since the start of the Syrian Civil War and today marks the anniversary of the Halabja Chemical massacre that happened in 1988.

From the 80’s to today, the Middle East changed a lot to say the least. Saddam was toppled in 2003 following the American Invasion, what resulted was a sectarian war and the growth of terrorism due to the power vacuum. IS, the acronym of the so-called “Islam State” was born indirectly because of the 2003 war. It also grew substantially because of the Syrian Civil War and the Chaos it created. That’s just the big picture.

The Halabja Chemical attack killed between 3200 and 5000 people, most of them civilians. It targeted the Kurdish people and punished them in the al Anfal campaign. Saddam wasn’t too happy with the Kurdish rebellion and the Iranian support. He answered with blood and gas.

Here’s what a witness remembered it :

It was a beautiful spring day. As the clock approached 11:00 in the morning, I felt a strange sensation; my heart convulsed as if it were telling me that we were on the verge of a major calamity. Within minutes, artillery rounds began to explode in Halabja and planes began dropping bombs on the town. The bombing was concentrated on the northern neighborhoods, so we ran and hid in our basement. At 2 o’clock in the afternoon, as the intensity of the bombing wound down, I carefully sneaked out of the basement to the kitchen and carried food to my family. When the bombing stopped, we began to hear noises that sounded like metal pieces falling on the ground. But I didn’t find an explanation.

I saw things that I won’t forget for as long as I live. It started with a loud strange noise that sounded like bombs exploding, and a man came running into our house, shouting, ‘Gas! Gas!’ We hurried into our car and closed its windows. I think the car was rolling over the bodies of innocent people. I saw people lying on the ground, vomiting a green-colored liquid, while others became hysterical and began laughing loudly before falling motionless onto the ground. Later, I smelled an aroma that reminded me of apples and I lost consciousness. When I awoke, there were hundreds of bodies scattered around me. After that I took shelter again in a nearby basement and the area was engulfed by an ugly smell. It was similar to rotting garbage, but then it changed to a sweet smell similar to that of apples. Then I smelled something that was like eggs.

When you hear people shouting the words ‘gas’ or ‘chemicals’ — and you hear those shouts spreading among the people — that is when terror begins to take hold, especially among the children and the women. Your loved ones, your friends, you see them walking and then falling like leaves to the ground. It is a situation that cannot be described — birds began falling from their nests; then other animals, then humans. It was total annihilation. Whoever was able to walk out of the town, left on foot. Whoever had a car, left by car. But whoever had too many children to carry on their shoulders, they stayed in the town and succumbed to the gas.

One cannot but parallel this chemical attack with the one in Syria that happened in Ghouta back in August 2013. Sarin use killed hundreds, yet the responsible is still not known.

The Syrian Civil War killed more than 220,000 people, the UN estimates. It has displaced more than 3.5 millions Syrians and may have destroyed a generation of Syrians, thus their future.

The Arab Spring brought hope to the Arabs civilians that were repressed by dictators. Tunisia, the first country that saw changes, is the only country that didn’t go into full chaos. Egypt replaced one dictator with another. (and of course he is supported by the Western democracies). Libya is divided by literally half and Syria divided the whole world.

I still have a candid hope for this region, a foolish hope, I cannot allow myself to have none. I know many have the same feeling. I have especially hope for the Palestinian struggle, despite the relentless massacres on Gaza, Israel has never been so lonely, and without any support, Israel will have to stop its racist apartheid.

Israel won’t pay the $856 Million in compensation to Lebanon.

Israel fought a war against Lebanon in 2006, killing more than 1000 people, 30% children under 13. It also bombed the Jiye electric power plant, (which is basically collective punishment), this bombing led to a disastrous oil slick.

The UN general assembly just voted a resolution, (170 votes on 179) asking Israel to pay $856 million in compensation.

On the paper, it is great, but Israel won’t act. Paying the sum would seem as a loss to them, especially against Hezbollah.
UN resolutions are already not being applied, Israel violates Lebanese airspace almost daily. (Resolution 1701).

Israel won’t pay because their goal were the destruction of the Jiye Electric power plant, and even if they had not foreseen the oil slick, they were probably content with it.

Oil from the bombed power plant of Jieh (south Lebanon) contaminating the beaches of Beirut – August 2006 – ZeNahla.

Israel won’t pay a single dollar because to them, it is an act of being forcefully bowed. Justice isn’t really their platter.

Never forget Palestine.

Palestine exists, their people exists, they have a dialect, origins, culture, history and patrimony.

They lack something primordial, self-determination. Palestinians are hostages of the world blindness. Yet the world has proofs and facts, it sees, but close their eyes. People of the world will be forced to admit Israeli apartheid, segregation, separation, racism and lies.

Do I have to present you facts ? Do I have to point at every injustice the holy land witnesses ? Do I have to tell you that Israel continues to steal land in the West Bank, and that in fact, no one recognizes those lands as legal propriety ? Do I have to read the names of every victim, every war, every massacre committed, every entire family wiped out ? Do I have to remind you of the inhuman blockade of Gaza, world biggest prison ?

Israel apartheid regime will fall, not with weapons, but will self-awareness and love, with international support and call for justice.

Palestine, Israel, call it whatever you want, will be one country where everybody shall be free and equal, regardless of their origins, color, religion.

It starts with you.

What is the difference between Death Penalty and Drones Strikes. [Opinion]

Defining the Death Penalty.

The Death Penalty or Capital punishment is a legal process when a person is put to death by the state as a punishment for a crime. Death Penalties must occur after the accused face a just court. The accused person is punished after concluded that he is the perpetrator of the alleged crime.

The Death Penalty must then be applied in a predefined and installed “just” system. A set of laws that indiscriminately judge people in Justice and Fairness. In Justice, all men must face legal courts and a judgment before being punished. All men have the right to claim they are falsely accused and prove the accuser is wrong.

I really stress on the All men, yes, even Ben Laden or Hitler. Personally, I wish they faced Justice before being punished, even when it is a fact than Ben Laden conducted 9/11, even when it is a fact that Hitler led to awful massacres in WW2. That is justice. All men are equal before the law all man must face just and legal action based on a fair set of laws.

Death Penalty and War.

But what about war ? Is it legal or fair to kill a person before he is judged ? Let’s imagine a small scene.

A group of armed man enter your neighborhood with a clear goal to destroy it and kill. They begin to fire, you and your neighbors take weapons and kill them all.

In this previous scenario is killing a person “death penalty” ? Not really, it is a direct act of self-defense. The Armed men were going to kill you, so you decided that you are going to kill them first. So in a state of war, when faced to a direct lethal threat or attack, you respond and kill without really facing prison.

That’s the whole debate here. The difference between threat and factual attack. The difference between a very well defined threat or a probable threat.

Are drones strikes considered to be conducted in a state of war ?

I said previously that in a state of war you could act in self-defense and kill without facing prison. But is killing alleged terrorists considered as an act of war, in a state of war ? Pro “war on terrorism” will come and say : “yes, it is a war against terrorists that pose a direct threat to the Security of USA and the world so it is legitimate to kill those terrorists”. But what if they aren’t direct ? (Here again define direct threat), Will they be able to conduct terrorists acts in USA ? When ? How?

Those are questions that should be answered.

Personally, I think that drones strikes aren’t considered to be acts of a state of war. Those that are preparing an act of terror in USA or anywhere else in the world, didn’t act yet. Of course we must not wait until they act to judge them or stop them. Those terrorists will try to find ways to destroy USA and their enemies. But destroying them before judging them is dangerous. It is better to stop them and judge them and put them in jail [or face death penalty]. Today it is highly possible with Interpol and the international police force. In fact, it is way more instructive to understand why they want to attack America and their allies. This only could end the endless conflict against terrorists.

So what is the difference between death penalty and drones strikes to my opinion ?

Drones strikes are unjust because they happen 1) before the crime of the alleged terrorist and 2) before he is judged.| Death penalty is an act of justice whereas drones strikes are unjust death penalties.

PS : What I have said in this article doesn’t make me pro-terrorist or pro-death penalty. But it does make me anti-drones strikes.

Tripoli Wars – Satire

“Tripoli is so different from other Lebanese cities, maybe it should not be in Lebanon.

They annoy us with their clashes, I mean c’mon grow up like in Beirut, we have clashes from time to time but we stay cool, you just kill each other like it was the middle ages…

Have you seen their beards ? Can’t they just buy a razor or something ?

Why don’t we let them kill each other, they will finish their bullets and everybody can party again with a clean conscience.

This is not the image we want to give to the tourists ! Lebanon is about partying, about living, who cares about the clashes in the North.

Beirut is a great city, we don’t have any problems, I mean just look at the life in Gemmayzeh, if I were Syrian I’d be jealous. We’re the only Arabs that have so much nightclubs and I’m very proud of that.  We have the only real democracy in the Middle East.

So please stop hating each other and put an end to these clashes !

Maybe they should have a Gemmayzeh street in Tripoli ?”

George W. Bush Talked to Chirac about Biblical Prophecies.

The other day I have found an amazing story on the internet, a story that was highly over-looked by main media.

I’m writing this post to show the immense stupidity of war. The War in Question ? USA invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Georges W Bush, before invading Iraq , called the former French President Jacques Chirac and said :

“Gog and Magog are at work in the Middle East. . . . The biblical prophecies are being fulfilled. . . . This confrontation is willed by God, who wants to use this conflict to erase his people’s enemies before a New Age begins.”

Who are Gog and Magog ?  Figures, monsters, mentioned in the Ancient Testament, the New Testament, and the Quran, nothing wrong or bizarre about that in monotheist religions with the same God.  Gog and Magog in the Ancient Testament of Ezekiel are two mysterious and destructing forces that will menace Israel. In the Book of Revelation in the New Testament, Gog and Magog will be fought by a gathering of nations,  “and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.”

Chirac says he was boggled by Bush’s call, and “wondered how someone could be so superficial and fanatical in their beliefs”.

And I completely understand Chirac, the leader of the so-called only superpower in the World, in order to convince and gather nations to invade Iraq, spoke about biblical prophecies ? Now I wonder if Bush called his English friend Tony and spoke about this.  Did Tony Blair say :”Bloody Hell…Bush must be right, Gog and Magog are obviously plotting against Israel in the Middle East, we must fight this war.”

Maybe Bush was really thinking that France was going to be convinced when he talked about prophecies ? The question is, did Bush really think that biblical prophecies were being accomplished ? Or it’s just to disguise his attack against Iraq, or both ? My heart go to both of the allegations.

Maybe entire families of US troops were destroyed because some biblical prophecies.

Maybe approximately a million men woman and children were killed because of some biblical prophecies.

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