Sunday, January 28, 2007

The General Responds...

Michel Aoun, leader of the opposition FPM, responded to what Samir Geagea said in his press conference by revealing a startling picture of his own on Al Manar TV Friday night. This picture depicts an LF gunman taking aim at one the various road blocks that the FPM and their allies had set up throughout the country on Tuesday. However, something about the picture he held up wasn't quite right....







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(Picture taken from the British Guardian magazine)
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(the LF cross on the sleeve was a nice touch)

Coutesy of lebaneselobby.org

Friday, January 26, 2007

More Important Than Politics

What Lies Ahead is but a Repeat of Things Behind...

As we look forward into the specter of civil war, seemingly looking forward into the past, we cringe once again and wonder “hal na7na aj7al min el j7eish?”

We see the pictures of Thursday's events an eerie reminded of days we thought long gone. They remind us of the war and the stories that came from it. On July 12 2005, the bombing of Defense Minister Elias el Murr occurred… I witnessed directly the aftermath. How different were those days. Civil war seemed far far away… certainly fear was ripe in the air but few if any foresaw the Harb Tammouz of 2006 that began one year to that day… a war that brought days far darker than those of the summer of 2005…

And today we also wonder, will we once again go through a national trauma of civil war? God knows what the days before us hold. Once, while Blacksmith Jade and I were conversing many years ago over the civil war of 1975-1991 he remarked to me “I wish I was there… you know to help out, join the Red Cross or something”. Since then I have remembered those words many a time. For those of us who remember the civil war from afar in expatriate land or who were too young to recall or participate in those events, this desire to help in such times may once again be given a chance to be fulfilled (alas!)… better yet, may it not happen altogether. I wonder too whether I will end up as one of the cadres of young men who took up arms, led by well-meaning but misguided zeal to family and land… and also misled by treacherously cunning leaders (no doubt many men were in it for great wickedness; drugs, money, power, women, blood-thirstiness, or simply hatred). I wonder sometimes whether I will be carried away by the hate and fear mongering of our leaders... in the name of defending land and loved ones of course. It seems that many of our peers at BAU on Thursday already have plenty of misguided zeal and hatred enough to carry batons, knives and kalshnikovs… to kill. The dead of that day have been said to have died for ‘national unity’ by one party leader… what an absurd and poor poor comfort to the mourning ones.

The days ahead, we are anxious, may hold the trauma of being far away from our beloved and our land while war rages (just as it caught many of us unwares in the summer)… we remember the double trauma of the war and everything it brought to our people, along with the second blow… not being there to do something! Alas, the woe of feeling sheer helplessness in the face of such evil was so heavy… all those who love Lebanon will remember 2006 as one of the worst years of their lives, whether they were displaced by that war or lost loved ones, or were watching it from a relatively safe area in the land, or somewhere abroad.

So what can we do to help now? How bout writing blogs? Oh the silliness of it… are we actually making a difference here? This blogging thing is addictive… a good way to meet people and exchange ideas that only God knows when and if they will be implemented… As we fill our minds and hearts with news reports (and blog entries), and as we believe (or not) crazy rumors, we can not but be moved in one way or another towards anger, fear and hate; more of the stuff that fed those young men at BAU… On the practical side of things I tend to be in the habit of feeding off of 2000 year old news that is Good… We can also pray; God will hear our cries, but, you know, His plans are much different than ours (for the better, that is).

Peace to you, our beloveds and to Lebanon.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Beirut Clashes Spread Online



Just yesterday I was wondering when the FPM website would get hacked. Anyways, the title says it all...the FPM website was down for 8 minutes.

Everyone please continue consulting the updates post directly below this one!!

Breaking News: Violent Clashes in Beirut

For Updates! please refer to the Naharnet news website
Reader Updates! welcome & appreciated in Comments Section
Update (11:45 pm):
The streets of Beirut are quiet and calm after another day of deadly clashes and a military imposed night curfew. MP's, journalists, and bakers are exempt from the curfew due to end at 6:00 am local time. All schools and universities are shut until Monday.
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Update (10:55 pm):
No news agencies have reported on a small explosion in the southern coastal city of Saida as yet, so I urge readers to take the last update with a grain of salt.
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Update (9:55 pm):
Unconfirmed (repeat unconfirmed) reports indicate a small bomb went off (around 9:00 pm local time) in dumpster close to the Italian Consulate in Saida!
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Pictures of today's clashes by Abu Jaafar:


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Update (8:00 pm)
Naharnet reports:

Police sappers also defused a rocket that was directed at the Moustaqbal newspaper in Beirut, shortly before it was set to launch. "Luckily they discovered it. It would have resulted in a massacre. The newspaper is packed by journalists at this time of the evening," Editor Nassir al-Assad told Naharnet by telephone.

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Update/Roundup by Wissam (7:30 pm Beirut time):
Moments ago a curfew was declared in Beirut in order to curb the violence.
This announcement is a result of the newest clashes between opposition and government supporters which erupted at the Beirut Arab University. Members of the rivaling Amal (anti-government) and Future (pro-government) parties managed to smuggle weapons with them on campus and subsequent provocations resulted in the two groups clashing. Those clashes spread out to the Tarik Jadideh and Cola neighbourhoods where mostly Amal and Future supporters clashed, armed with sticks, stones and firearms. Repeated gunfire has been heard coming out of those neighbourhoods and camera teams are unable to reach those areas as the roads are closed down.
Other universities, such as the Lebanese International University and the Business & Computer University College were forced to close down as their students unilaterally shut down the respective campuses.
The cars in the parking lot belonging to the International Stadium (i.e. Madiinet el Riaydieh) were reported to be ablaze. So far, 4 deaths have been reported and a myriad of wounded
It is interesting to note, according to eyewitness accounts, that the troublemakers do not engage in skirmishes in their own neighbourhoods. For example a Shia from Barbour (a mixed Shia-Sunni neighborhood) would go to Tarik Jadideh (a mostly Sunni area) to look for trouble and vice versa. I guess they do put some stake in their property values! So far, 5 deaths have been reported and a myriad of wounded have been reported.
There have been several snipers reported along the rooftops on the Tarik Jedideh and Cola areas. Moreover, many independent checkpoints belonging to unidentified militias are popping up along the peripheries of the disputed areas.

1958 + 1973 = 2007... hopefully not.

It was reported today that a Palestinian faction, the Jund el Sham, was involved in a ten minute skirmish of sorts with the Army in Saida, near the entrance to the Ain el Helweh camp in the Taamir district. There has been some of this before, but not to this extent yet as the residents of Taamir have been calling for a government presence in the area which was previously a no go zone for both Palestinian factions of the nearby camp and the Army.

And I was thinking, the days we live in Lebanon are certainly dark by all accounts. But how similar or different they are to the events of the late 50's and the period between the late 60's to early 70's is open to debate. In 1958 there was a period of civil unrest (and burning of tires?) for a period (I'll gladly accept help on the details since I have no time to look it up now). The Army, under the command of general Fouad Chehab took a stance that was neither in favor nor against the civil unrest. Gen. Chehab refused to suppress the unrest on the one hand but also prevented it from spreading to other areas. It suffices to say that the next president after these incidents was none other, than Fouad Chehab... could we say that today the Army has done something that is similar? And just as American troops landed then to help shore up support the government, today this might be a concern (or wanted blessing to some) too? Its true that their are huge factors that are completely different than both of the times... but today clearly we see that as the then President Chamoun was angry at Gen. Chehab's 'inaction' we also see today that PM Sanioura is angry at the Army, under the command of Gen. Suleiman... (Defense Minster, Lias el Murr is also reported to have instructed the Army to refrain from violence totally... Blacksmith Jade's suggestions on how the Army could/should have handled the situation are noteworthy and I recommend you reading them two posts below). Can we compare the government's displeasure with the Army today with the displeasure expressed by March 14 forces???

So, what about the clashes with Jund el Sham then? Well, I posted that because that reminded me of another facet that preceded the Lebanese 'civil' war that initatially began with the fighting of Palestinian factions against the Kataeb, a group that was being trained and armed with the tacit approval of the regime at the time; today some say the same is happening today in respect to the approval of the regime of re-arming civil war era militias and arming new ones. On the other hand, the Palestinian camps have so far remained largely uninvolved in our disputes with eachother. But its not so hard to see how that can change with some armed Palestinians being used by either side...

Finally, the displeasure of the March 14 forces (and government) with the Army, combined with their threats to send down their supporters to unravel the road blockades yesterday are dangerous declarations that risk damaging the internal integrity of the Army. I would also like to point out that, by most accounts including pro-government media, the FPMers did not carry weapons (and Hizbullah). Now, here's the other deja vu; all the debates that phrase I put up 'the FPMers did not carry weapons' will cause. 'Who killed who and who fired on who?'... did the truth really matter then in the 70's?

In my opinion, the government has been going about this issue very dangerously. Hizbullah's weapons have never been used against the Lebanese Army or civilians. But we hear always that Hizbullah is undermining the state institutions (and is a serious threat to the Lebanese entity) in keeping their weapons and certainly by all accounts they must give up their weapons sooner or later. However, according to internal sources the government has been faciliating, if not directly than indirectly, weapon deliveries to various pro-government factions; along with their public rebuke of the Army, this amounts to a great erosion of the State and push towards militia-style governance.

Now what will happen will happen; I'm not trying to say 'more disasters are at our door step'. Nor do I wish to say we are close to yet another civil war (all this is a very really concern to many, if not most, Lebanese today). I am, however, intersted in hearing your comments on whether (and how) you relate today's situations with the 1958 crisis and the pre-civil years.

Allah ma3koun.


PS. The picture: Mou3arada throwing stones (back?) at Mouwalet; Jan. 23.

"Burning Tires is Legal"


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Army Command

Five deaths, and hundreds of wounded later, the day has finally come to an end.


The stated mission of the Lebanese Army throughout this most recent crisis has been to maintain neutrality while defending the state’s institutions and the safety of its citizens. Today, it did neither. Through its inaction the Army was in fact providing tacit support to pro-Syrian rioters as they sought to fill Beirut’s streets, and the balconies that line those streets, with the black acrid smoke that would come to define that city’s skyline.

The facts are clear: the army did not manage to keep open any roads blockaded by pro-Syrian rioters throughout the day; it did not protect private property or citizens’ right to commute throughout the day; it put in an effort, but ultimately failed to ensure citizens’ safety in the face of rioters armed with stones, sticks, and assault rifles; and most dangerously off all, it seemingly disobeyed direct government orders to ensure all of the above.

Analysis

The army did, however, actually manage to permanently remove a number of blockades throughout the country today, but these serious efforts (and accomplishments) only came after the intervention of large masses of anti-Syrian party partisans and leaders, rapidly mobilized to intervene in the face of the army’s refusal to adequately perform its duties. The implications can hardly be missed. After two full days of promises by pro-government ministers and party leaders that the army would be the one to ensure that citizens could get to work (and thereby allow for an unambiguous litmus test of each side’s popularity) safely, the country was forced to endure painful declarations to the tune of “we will be forced to take actions into our own hands [if the army doesn’t act]!”

These statements and the sometimes deadly clashes that accompanied them, will now most likely be turned into valuable ammunition by the country’s pro-Syrian forces in an effort to relieve some of their more malicious cohorts (SSNP members) from the spotlight they have been placed in since security forces discovered a number of weapons and explosives caches secretly stored by them. It would be naive to think that this outcome was anything less than anticipated, if not planned for, given today’s riots’ provocative nature.

Rumors

But exactly how accidental was the army’s ‘tacit’ alignment? Following the resignation of six pro-Syrian ministers from the rainbow cabinet assembled by PM Seniora, rumors have been flying about the Commander of the Armed Forces, General Michel Suleiman, being a ‘Syrian-inspired’ compromise choice (or maybe something less of a choice and more of an imposition – whether it be due to circumstance or fabrication) for the upcoming Lebanese Presidential elections due later this year. These rumors were reinforced by Suleiman’s recent dabblings in the country’s political life and his now frequent visits to the country’s leading religious and political figureheads. Something of a new habit for a man who gave the same, if not less, number of public statements during the July war as he has in the past 8 weeks.

Perhaps a not so surprising development given the fate of his last predecessor, General Emile Lahoud, the President of the Republic that is. An alliance of the two generals in the support of that other renegade general, the one leading today’s riots from Dora to Batroun (General Michel Aoun), would therefore unveil the operations of a Syrian-sponsored junta of sorts made up of three of the country’s former (one current) top military men.

More Analysis

Given the failures of the day, and the attempts of some in the media and among the opposition’s ranks to shore up these failures as a brilliant display of neutrality, it is important to point that some things the army could have done to have actually, truly, been neutral.

The first thing they could have done is to remove the thousands of tires dropped off at opposition hotspots around the country the day before the actual riots, in anticipation of road blockages. This action would not have entailed a rolling confrontation with opposition partisans and would have spared the eyes, lungs and nerves of a frightened population the trauma they endured throughout today’s manifestations.

The second thing the army could have done was to setup both permanent and lightning checkpoints throughout the country - again the day before (follow the awaiting tires) – to limit the movements of armed partisans, from both factions, who seemed to take no heed of the army’s presence. These checkpoints could’ve also been used to stop the massive trucks and tractors used by the pro-Syrian rioters to move dirt, sand, and rubble onto the nation’s highways in order to block them.

If you’re worried that these actions don’t sound neutral at all, then you shouldn’t be. The third action that should have been taken by the army was to allow the pro-Syrian demonstrators to have their day of strikes and road closures, for a few hours (say five to be generous), without the use of burning cars, tires, dumpsters or mounds of rubble, and then have them peacefully disperse, open the roads, and allow the country to go back to a normal way of life. This could have been accomplished through a clear and frank discussion with both factions to let them know exactly where the army stood on the issue of the riots before they took place, something they failed to make clear even to the government from which they are supposed to take orders.

Had it taken these actions, the army might have retained the respect that it lost today and five of our countrymen might have retained their lives.

How Can You Still Be With Them?

To my Lebanese compatriots and brothers (with no exception) I have nothing but good will towards you all and I am not writing this post to belittle or slander you or anyone else. However, I will take off on a rant... How in the world do you support the government during these days?

The opposition has been blamed for being obstinate and dictatorial. Last I checked, it was the government refusing the third way; It was the government shooting down the compromises offered by Salim Hoss and today Mr. Sanioura offered the same thing he did 60 days ago. Nothing new. It was Sayyed Nasrallah that agreed to the Patriach Nasrallah’s proposal a little over a month ago to hold parliamentary and presidential elections as a way out of this impasse. The opposition has been the side to offer any kind of true desire to compromise... this has to do with the non-existent (public) negotations.

The opposition, it has been said, has been impatient and rash. Again, last I checked it was the opposition that demonstrated on December 1st in huge numbers and peacefully (a fact that angered all fear mongerors that foretold only strife)... only to be ignored in their tents that have ‘crippled’ the downtown Beirut. They waited ten days with no results till December 10th where at least half of the residing Lebanese population showed up and again, the only thing noticeable to our government was that dust was accumulating on the streets of downtown due to its inactivity. 53 days from their initial demonstration to January 23 the opposition was camping out peacefully, only to be daily ignored and insulted. Regardless of whether they are right or wrong, how can you just ignore them. How can you just brush them off??? And expect nothing to grow from that? Is this how we build trust between a nation with deep scars? Is this how we even think of our country and land as a 'nation' to begin with? By ignoring half (if not more) of its people???

They have said that it was the opposition that was willing to escalate and not the government... when it was clearly the opposition that was more willing to compromise, being patient for 53 days, conducting peaceful demonstrations (despite the provocations), sit-ins, and civil disobedience campaigns (and what happened today was violence done against the road blockers by pro-government Lebanese citizens nostalgic of the militia days, sitting on balconies shooting at people; whats worse is pro-government forces criticized the Lebanese army for its lenience against the people who are their brothers and relatives). The governments snub of the voice of the people (whether they be half or the majority of the Lebanese matters not) is unacceptable. Form a national unity government, listen to Salim Hoss, the Patriach or anybody else. Nope, nothing of that, they say, we want a victor and a vanquished (‘neither victor nor vanquished’ is claimed to be the way of doing Lebanese affairs). Mr. Sanioura speaks of dialogue and when it is so clearly a lie since he has been so stubborn in his stance. Why should any body be surprised at what happened today? Why? (You will tell me, its their evil nature... ok, and the world is also flat)... I am surprised this didn’t happen sooner. And unless this act (if it is not a theatrical act and will be settled anyways or has been agreed already upon) ends sooner, expect more of the people’s frustrations to swell in the street be it from the opposition’s burning of tires or others trying to beat them up.

I will get responses that I am pro-Syrian and Iranian and stupid and need to wake up. Guys, honestly, away from the slogans and slander for a second, I know its easy but don’t you smell the fish!?... Walid Jumblat for years and years was the man for Syria... there are others like him, but how can a coalition led by such characters claim anything against Syria; and you know thats their whole platform against the opposition ‘they are trying to bring the Syrians in’ they tell you... And you were doing what when they where here, ya Walid Bek??? And yes, you will say that Aoun is Syrian now because he's greedy for Baabda... I agree with Aoun's stance on this issue; when Syria was in here he wanted them out and still does, when Syria is gone why should he pick a senseless fight with them that will plunge Lebanon into regional isolation (we share most of our borders with Syria, not Europe or the US)... and you will say much more I am sure. Walid Bek and some of his co-leaders where with Syria when they where in Lebanon proper, in every way and as for today, when Syria is out they are shouting against the danger of Syria coming back. Forget the slogans for a second... Hizbullah, still the same. But these guys?!!?

Ok, you get the gist of my thoughts... you can remember the slogans now, write me back venomous messages if you so desire and God bless you and all of Lebanon... for real.

Black Days

As I watched the black smoke billow over my beloved capital today, I understood, once again, the degrees to which a large portion of Lebanese have allowed themselves to be deluded, deceived and completely herded into a path which can only lead to the devastation of that which we all hold so dear.

There was nothing democratic about the pro-Syrians’ actions today. It was not a peaceful protest meant to draw attention to one political group’s plight by means of an inconsequential inconvenience - which is what an ordered, democratic day of strike is meant to be. No, what happened today was an all out riot. It was a provocatory act meant to intimidate, threaten and scare a majority of Lebanon’s population into a submission to the will of the few. If anything, it is a reflection of the culture of death, assassinations, repression, submission and occupation from which each of the factions which participated in this monstrosity has sprung.

There was nothing popular about today’s actions. When well over a third of the Lebanese population (approximately 1.5 million people) voluntarily closed their shops and businesses and descended upon the pro-Syrian government of Omar Karami (a Prime Minister who has never completed an appointed term due to his unmatched ability at sparking widespread demonstrations aimed at kicking him out of office), it was not through threats, burned tires, and rubble mounds that they effected a closure of the country, but through a true, national, and popular will. This was not the case today. This was not a popular action.

Today was a black day, just as July 12th was a black day, and all of the 32 days that followed that day. At the source of all this darkness we find one man:

Picture from: Siestke in Beiroet

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

News Video of Today's Riots

Breaking News: Army Deploys - Tires Burn: Updated!

Update (11:50 pm):
Naharnet reports:

The opposition said in a statement broadcast on television stations that it "has decided to suspend the strike which served as a warning to the illegitimate government" of Prime Minister Fouad Saniora. "From 5 a.m. (0300 GMT) until the evening, Lebanese of all different political tendencies and in all regions said 'no' to this illegitimate government," read the statement. "The ball is now in the court of those in power, who will be confronted by a new escalation if they insist on their ways," it warned.

There are reports emerging that opposition forces have begun removal of burned tires, cars, dirt and rubble mounds, as well as all 'blockading' debris from several roads, including that of the airport, tonight.
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Update (10:35 pm):
According to several news reports, prior to the pro-Syrian opposition's announcement of an to hostilities, several pro-government parties, politicians, and religious officials (among them the Mufti of Beirut - Lebanon's highest Sunni religious authority) had declared that unless the army adhered to standing government orders to keep the country's main thoroughfares free of blockage, residents of Beirut and the rest of the country would be forced to take matters in to their own hands in order to open roads blockaded by pro-Syrian rioters today.
Meanwhile, unconfirmed reports are emerging of continued clashes in the Cornishe - El Mazra3a district of Beirut between Sunni pro-government residents and Shiite opposition protesters.
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Update (9:55 pm):
Lebanese news agencies are reporting that the Pro-Syrian Opposition forces have called off further riots and road closures. The announcement comes after a meeting of the Pro-Syrian party officials called in order to coordinate further disruptive actions across the country and comes amid widespread popular resistance to those forces' widespread riots throughout the country today.
Opposition figures have stressed that today's actions, which resulted in 120 injured persons and at least 3 deaths, should be taken as a grave message by the government, adding "we are capable of far worse things".
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Update (7:45 pm): Images from a Country Under Seige:
(Click on photos to enlarge)


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Update (6:51 pm):

Sanyoura on the air!
  • Sanyoura warns that the current protests might lead to escalation
  • Sanyoura says he and the majority are open to dialogue
  • He says trhe goverment never refused Arab mediation
  • PM Sanyoura calls for moving the dialogue from the streets to the institutions and calls for opening a parliamentary session
  • He calls on rioters to think well about their actions especially in light of regional politics
  • End of news conference
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Update (5:51 pm):
Reports are emerging of numerous casualties among pro-government supporters fired upon by the Lebanese Army in the Jbeil district. Anti-Syrian ex-MP Fares Soueid has confirmed that it was the Lebanese Army that fired on him and his supporters earlier in the day. Lebanese news agencies are reporting several deaths in the Batroun and Tripoli regions of the country following confrontations between pro-Syrian militants and pro-government supporters.

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Update (5:15 pm):
Unconfirmed reports from opposition websites of checkpoints being setup across the Aley, Bhamdoun, and Baabda districts of the country by Phalange and Progresssive Socialist Party (PSP) partisans with the aim of preventing opposition partisans from reaching their gathering points.
Harsh criticism of the army's performance in this Hizballah-induced crisis continues to mount as reports emerge of deaths among shooting victims in Akkar. The PM will address the nation in approximately one hour (6:30 pm local time).

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Update (4:41 pm):
Reuter's News Video (don't mind the ad at the beginning)
Roundup:
  • 40 people injured (to date) including 25 with bullet wounds
  • Anti-Syrian MP Fares Soueid attacked by gunmen near Jounieh, escapes, 2 bodyguards wounded
  • Hizballah trucks dump rubble, tractor create earth mounts, along Highway to Airport effectively isolating it and forcing flight cancellations - Army does not intervene
  • Motorists attempting to cross blockades attacked by rioters, with stones, sticks, and assault rifles!
  • Prolonged confrontations in Cornishe-Mazra3a and Tareeq el Jdeedeh districts of Beirut
  • SSNP members are reported to have openned fire on commuters in Akkar (North) and Sofar regions. Numerous casualties reported.

Commentary by Blacksmith Jade:
It would appear that the army has started to open roads in Christian regions north of Beirut. This, following statements by the leaders of anti-Syrian Christian factions that the army is failing in its duty to protect those who which to go to work, and that if roads were not openned soon then the residents of the affected areas would have to take it upon themselves to open them. This has been a disgusting day in which militants have once again imposed their violent, minority will on a peace-loving nation.

To all you fools who have deluded yourselves into thinking that this is an expression of democracy, open your eyes, take another look at our blackened skies, rapidly filling hospitals, and burned out asphalt...then try looking up democracy in a dictionary.

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Update (9:41 am): More images from a Beirut under attack!



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I'm going to sleep (8:20 am local time), all readers and contributors are urged to post updates in the comments section. Comment moderation has been temporarily disabled to allow rapid posting of comments (try to keep it clean ;)).

Update (8:05 am local time):

Reports are emerging of burning cars and dumpsters along Lebanon's highways as protesters continue to block roads across the country. Local news stations are reporting the use of bulldozers by the opposition to move rubble onto roads in an effort to block them. There are also unconfirmed reports that tractors being used by security forces to clear roads have been attacked and burned by rioters.

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Update (7:40 am local time):

Both opposition and pro-government websites are reporting clashes between pro-Syrian protesters attempting to close roads and the pro-government supporters residing along those roads. So far there are unconfirmed reports of at least 2 persons wounded in Korba (Koura district) and the town of Masteeta (Jbeil district).

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Reports out of Lebanon are emerging of a massive army deployment along the country's main highways and traffic arteries as of 3:00 am local time.

The Free Patriot Movement (FPM) opposition website has disclosed a list of the roads, across the country, to be blocked by its supporters and their allies within the pro-Syrian opposition forces. This list is as follows:
  • Batroun Highway
  • Nahr el Kalb
  • Choueifat Highway
  • Majmaa Zein el Aabideen
  • Hadath (Al- Kafa'at)
  • Mar Mikhael
  • Hazmieh
  • Tareeq el Matar
  • Saleem Salam
  • Al Danawih
  • Beshara el Khoury
  • Mar Elias
  • Jnah
  • Raouche
  • Kameel Chamoun Boulevard
  • Jal el Deeb
  • Dora
  • Southern Highway to Saida
  • Zhogharta - Al 3aqba
  • Ehden - Bshareh Entrance
  • Akkar Highway
  • Sham Highway
  • Zahleh Highway
Detailed Map of Lebanon
(the FPM are already reporting the closure of these, and other, roads across the country, but these reports are so far unconfirmed)

For its part, the Lebanese Forces (LF) pro-government website has claimed that several roads into Beirut have been shut down by rioters burning tires. The website claims that the Internal Security Forces (ISF) has moved, and continues to move, on these blockages in order to remove them. They report difficulties in keeping the roads open, however, as protesters return to block roads after they've been open.

The LF website is also reporting confrontations between opposition rioters and supporters of the pro-government Future Movement (FM) residing in affected areas around Beirut, and specifically in the Tareeq el Matar district.

(In collaboration with Blacksmith Jade and Ib)
Pictures courtesy of Yahoo! News

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