Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Autumn Flames

A Lebanese army helicopter drops water over forest fires blazing in several parts of south Lebanon and in the Shouf mountain, November 6, 2007. (REUTERS/Ali Hashisho)

Its been a devastating Autumn for Lebanon's forests. While trees elsewhere in the world have been losing their leaves to the Autumn wind, trees in Lebanon have had their leaves, trunks, and branches scorched by flames set by political arson, criminal arson, economic arson, and the weather.

Here is more on this week's fires; on last week's fires; and last month's fires.


  1. The sad, funny part is that everyone in charge still declare: "we [Suspect] that it's a criminal act..."

    Could it be they're still 'analyzing' the [already knowns] nature of the fire because those in charge are too darn lazy, or worse, unwilling to hunt down the supposedly non-existent arsonists?


  2. Guys, let's face it, criminal arson is a problem in most Mediterranean countries. Every year, thousands of hectares of gorgeous pine forests turn to ashes because of pyromaniacs, real estate mob, politics or personal revenge. Finding the perpetrators is extremely difficult in countries with a functioning State and administration. So you can imagine how much harder it must be in Lebanon where the rule of law is, let's say, approximative...

  3. Most cases of criminal arson that I've heard of over the past month have included one farmer exacting revenge on another by burning his grazing grounds or orchards. In these cases the culprits are, for the most part, known.

    Obviously, the cases of economic arson were linked to villagers burning trees and branches for sale as charcoal. In these cases the perpetrators could probably be traced as they would most likely be repeat offenders and known to the local authorities.

    But despite all this, the cases of political arson are probably the most worrying and perhaps the harder to track. I'm sure there are lists of suspects, but I doubt, with the impending crisis and Hizballah's threatened coup d'etat that the authorities could afford placing any resources aside for the pursuit of those involved.


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