I recently caught up with a friend of mine, Omar Khouri, with whom I spent a few summers as a kid in Lebanon (along with other luminaries like Omar Naim and Fadi Baki). Khouri’s star is rising in the art world; his paintings have been exhibited in New York and Beirut, and some of his recent stuff is available for sale at Saatchi online. I suggest that well-heeled readers go out and buy his work now before it becomes outrageously expensive.
We sat down for a virtual chat about fine art, comics, film, and politics.
QN: What have you been up to these days? You’re busy.
Khouri: I’m preparing for my upcoming solo exhibition, starting on the 10th of March, 2015, at Agial Art Gallery in Beirut. The opening will coincide with the release of a book of my work, published by Plan Bey, that dances the line between comics and painting. I have also recently begun to exhibit and sell my work through the online gallery Saatchi Art, where i am mainly displaying my gouache portraits.
Plus, there is a brand new Samandal issue in the works. Its the magazine’s debut as a yearly anthology instead of a quarterly magazine, that is scheduled for release in December, and even though I don’t have a story in it, there are a still a number of administrative and editorial duties for me to fulfill.
QN: I’ve found that much of your recent work is expressly political in a way that many visual artists tend to eschew. Is this a programmatic decision for you? Or are you simply drawn to political material?
Khouri: For quite a long time, I was one of those artists who avoided politics in both their work and their everyday life. Growing up in Lebanon, politics in my mind was always equated with war. Engaging in any political act was only a way to reinforce one’s prejudices against their fellow countrymen and tribal fidelity to their narrow-minded warlord leaders. In many ways, the situation remains unchanged to this day. I believed that avoiding “politics” and anything to do with it was the only way to step out of that vicious circle of hatred afflicting not only my country, but the rest of the world as well.
However, after spending five years in the States, then returning to Beirut, I came to realize that politics was an implied aspect of everything I did. I was beginning to understand that even my refusal to engage in any political act or discussion was in itself a political statement.
At the same time, the country was at a democratic crossroads after the assassination of Rafiq Hariri and the 2006 war with Israel, and I was frustrated with the direction the country was taking since it seemed to be heading inevitably towards a reigniting of civil war. The first of my art that was consciously political was also my first comics story entitled Salon Tareq el Khurafi (or “Tareq’s Mythical Barbershop”) dealing with censorship and the separation of religion from the state, which began publication in 2007 in Samandal Comics Magazine issue Zero. Since then, even though politics is not the main focus of my work, I have stopped shying away from it and I deal with it in my work whenever the need arises.
QN: Tell me about your latest portrait series, and why you choose to mix political leaders with personal acquaintances, celebrities and artists.
Khouri: This recent series of portraits is an exploration of what it means to “know” a person in this digital age of smart phones and social media. Today we express our identities and connect and interact with our friends, families and colleagues in the same ways and same places where we get news of politicians, celebrities and fictional characters. It all comes to us through our digital screens, on our computers and tablets and smartphones, as concepts of people rather than separate physical entities.
Since physical proximity and direct contact are no longer necessities of our interactions, the lines blur between friend and stranger, reality and fantasy, private and public, truth and lie… My portraits of political figures in this context, juxtaposed with the other subjects in this series, is an attempt to depoliticize their image and highlight the human aspect of their nature in search of aspects in their personalities that one can connect with on a more basic level regardless of their political views. Once this connection is established, it is my opinion that it is then easier to revisit and more honestly analyze their actions and political ideals.
QN: You grew up in Lebanon during the Civil War. What was your experience of it?
I was born in London in 1978, but grew up in Beirut between ’79 and ’86, then spent the rest of my childhood and adolescence in the Koura area of north Lebanon. My earliest memory is from 1982: a stormy night spent with my mother, brother and sister in an over-crowded, violently-rocking ferry to Cyprus to escape the Israeli invasion of Beirut. Though the memory is in no way clear, the orange yellow background and vine flower pattern of the cushion my siblings and I had to share as a pillow that night is still vividly burned into my mind.
The rest of my time living in the capital city was colored with countless nights spent in our building’s bomb shelter, or days huddled in our apartment’s hallway after lining its walls with our beds’ mattresses for added protection. As a kid, I had not yet developed a realistic sense of mortal danger, even though those times were inexplicably scary due to the loud noises and shaking buildings. But they were also, strangely, a lot of fun since we got to hang out all night with our friends, excused from our homework, and sometimes had no school the next day (or for several days). During my early teen years, after the Civil War had already “ended”, I began to understand what had happened, and this manifested itself as exceptionally vivid nightmares of the conflict that my younger self had experienced.
During the second half of my childhood, I lived in the villages of the Koura plateau and I was very fortunate to experience an unspoiled rural Lebanon complete with recreational tree climbing, wood fire stoves, filling water gallons at the mouth of the village spring, and the wonderful ad hoc aesthetic of traditional hand-built stone houses with unskilled concrete extensions.
QN: What were some of your formative influences as an artist?
My earliest artistic influence was my father, who is an architect. Because of his profession, I became familiar with drawing tools from an early age and my visual vocabulary was always stimulated by the architecture and art history books in his library. My second formative inspiration was the sophisticated color palette and fine detail of my maternal grandmother’s needle work. These two, combined with my classic attention-seeking middle child syndrome, unconsciously drove me towards the artistic nerd category of social grouping, even though I was quite good at sports and part of my high school basketball varsity team.
My first conscious realization that I wanted to dedicate my life to art came during 1993, the year I discovered the work of my three greatest influences today: the French comics master Moebius, whom I had the pleasure of meeting that year at my first eye-opening exhibition of his work in Beirut; the English comics author Alan Moore, whose masterpiece Watchmen blew my mind wide open to the idea that comics could be as powerful and insightful as any other art form when dealing with the depths of the human soul; and the Japanese painter and concept artist Yoshitaka Amano, whose work continues to shatter the boundaries of my imagination to this day.
QN: At some point, you received some formal training, right?
After graduating from high school and spending a couple of years as an economics major at the American University of Beirut, I moved to Boston and became an illustration student at the Massachusetts College of Art with the intention of becoming either a comics artist or concept designer for video games and movies. During my four years there, I learned a lot about art history and the fine arts and became more and more interested in the freedoms of painting. This created a division within my work that I’ve oscillated between ever since: let’s call it a division between Media Arts and the Higher Arts.
At first, after graduating, I worked on painting and comics separately and in parallel. But with time, the language of comics began to seep into my paintings, and I decided to merge the two into one focused stream of work which culminated in my first exhibition in New York in 2006.
After that I returned once again to a separation of the two, in order to strengthen each in its pure form before I attempt a proper and more powerful recombining. This led me to my first realized traditional picture story, the aforementioned “Salon Tareq el Khurafi”, and the creation of Samandal as a space for people like me to practice the art of comics. My upcoming exhibition and accompanying book release in March will mark a return to the marriage of the two art forms. If you are in Beirut at the time and curious about what that might mean, please stop by and have a look.
My degree project during my final year at art school was concept art and storyboards for a science fiction movie that one of my best friends, Omar Naim, wrote and was hoping to direct. He had recently moved to LA and gotten great response to this script and needed supporting visual material to show that he had a vision and was able to direct it as well, so asked me for my help. As a result, my first proper job out of college was on this movie, called The Final Cut, where I got to work with a number of amazing people whose films I grew up on, such as the Director of Photography Tak Fujimoto, the editor Didi Allen, and Robin Williams. Robin specifically was a great surprise because, besides being humble, hilarious and extremely talented, I discovered that he had quite a similar taste in comics and video games as I do and we spent some time together “nerding out” about our favorites. I was very sad and shocked when he passed away; he was truly and amazing person.
QN: Tell me a little bit about the project of co-founding Samandal, a groundbreaking publication and the first tri-lingual comic book published in the Arab World. What have been some of the biggest challenges and surprises you’ve encountered while working on this project?
When we first started publishing Samandal in 2007, the greatest challenge was to convince local audiences that comics were not only children’s entertainment, but could also be aimed at adults and deal with interesting and mature topics of a personal, social, political or artistic nature. After several years of organizing workshops, conferences, artists talks and comics jams, and putting out over thirty publication, I can safely say that we have converted a large number of people to our cause. Actually, one of the greatest positive surprises was the emergence of a number of other comics publications in Lebanon and the Arab world, some of which were even founded by former Samandal contributors and supporters.
Another very difficult obstacle is censorship. People have the impression that Lebanon is very liberal, but that is only true in comparison to the very extreme conservatism of the surrounding countries. In truth, Lebanese censorship is quite strict, while keeping the guidelines very ambiguous and up to the discretion of General Security and those with direct influence over their decisions. Politics, religion and sex are generally topics that one is advised to steer clear from if you want to avoid trouble with the law, yet they are three of the very few topics that are worth exploring if you are an artist. As a result of these conflicting conditions, there is an ongoing illegal lawsuit against the editors of Samandal, myself included, for a piece that was published in issue 7, back in 2010.
QN: Tell me about the work you’ve done on memorializing the Civil War.
The project you are referring to here is called “China” by Raed Yassin and was selected for the 2012 Abraaj Capital Art Prize. It consists of seven vases that each commemorates one of the major battles of the Lebanese civil war. I was commissioned by Raed, who is a friend and long-time collaborator, to design and illustrate these vases, in the flat and decorative style of Islamic Miniatures, on canvas and paper after choosing the appropriate shapes and measurements of the vessels that would wear them. Once these were ready, we took them to a small town in China called Jingdezhen that specializes in hand painting and firing porcelain in the traditional fashion, were we oversaw the reproduction of my designs by the hand of very skilled artisans.
This experience was very enriching in a number of ways. First, I learned a great deal about the history of visual representation in our region in order to teach myself the necessary skills needed to emulate the master miniature painters. Second, due to the detail oriented nature of this painting style, I finally had a practical motive to learn everything there is to know about the Lebanese civil war in its minutia. Not only did I visually study every single weapon, costume, tactic and terrain utilized by each faction, but I also came to understand the complex and ever shifting political alliances, the reasons behind them, and every horrid atrocity committed in their name. I have to admit that the more I learned, the more I was filled with disgust at the world around me and self-loathing for being a product of this nightmare, yet at same time it was very helpful in my attempt to come to terms with the chaos of my childhood and the origins of the present situation of the country.
Lastly, living in China for a month, interacting with people and eating authentic food in the residential and artisanal town where we were basically the only foreigners, was quite an amazing adventure. Raed’s girlfriend Monira, who was my painting assistant on this project, as well as my wife Nidale were also with us and we spent the greatest New Year’s Eve of our lives there. As a result, Jingdezhen is now one of my favorite places of all time, up there with Tokyo, Vancouver and the village of Qalhat in northern Lebanon.
QN: Who are some Arab artists you think are doing interesting work? And what do you think of the situation of contemporary visual art in the Arab world? It’s sort of exploding in popularity these days: big Arab art auctions at Sotheby’s and Christie’s, big museum exhibits in New York, an Islamic art museum in Doha, etc. Do you have a particular read on these developments?
There are a number of contemporary artists whose work I admire. Ayman Baalbaki, Ali Cherri, Raed Yassin, Monira Al Qadiri, Barraq Reema, Mazen Kerbaj, Ghadi Ghosn, the artist collective Atfal Ahdath… The list can go on for a while.
As for the recent boom of interest in Arab art, I think it is a very positive side effect of a horrible situation, since it comes as a result of constant political turmoil and endless wars. The foreign powers that choose to fight their battles on our soil, both directly and indirectly, bring in their wake a mixed wave of guilt-driven and genuine interest to understand the local culture and somehow “give back” to the affected communities.
At the same time, the situation itself provides artists with a plethora of very pressing, loaded, and interesting subject matter that a number of them are using to create really inspiring work, which in turn rewards the interest of the outside world. On the other hand, we have the young Gulf nations who are investing their overly abundant wealth in the realms of leisure and culture, which thankfully include the fine arts, in an attempt to advertise the region as something more than politically and religiously extremist place people make it out to be. But, in the end, artists are making a lot of great art here, and people are paying attention (and money) to it. Let’s just hope the art boom stays, but the wars end soon.
- Diptych (Saad & Bashar), 2014: Gouache on paper, 60 cm x 42 cm
- Diptych (Rafic & Hafez), 2014: Gouache on paper, 60 cm x 42 cm
- Hassan, 2013: Gouache on paper, 36 cm x 51 cm
- Yoshitaka, 2014: Gouache on paper, 56 cm x 76 cm
- Utopia, episode 16, 2009:Ink and watercolor on paper, 30 cm x 21 cm (winner of Best Arabic Comic in 2010 at the Festival International de la Bande Dessinee d’Alger)
- Salon Tareq el Khurafi, 2007, Chapter 1, pages 4 & 5: Ink on paper, 76 cm x 56 cm
- Samandal #6 cover illustration, 2008
- War of the Hotels (China), 2011: Gouache on canvas, 180 cm x 120 cm
- Balfour’s Promise #2 (Gaza by Night), 2014: Gouache on paper, 36 cm x 26 cm
Reblogged this on Cyber Salon Tareq el Khurafi and commented:
An Interview with me by Qifa Nabki’s Elias Muhanna about painting, comics, politics and film
Has he painted a portrait of the Wise King?
I’d file this article under “Double Standard”
Maybe we should continue our discussions here since it isn’t weighted down by hundreds of posts.
I don’t agree with the Haaretz editoral, and I rarely do. Haaretz is the most liberal Israeli newspaper and, not suprisingly, has the smallest readership.
Sheik Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s interview with Brent Baier of Fox News was great. Need more leaders like this man.
I second that. And also add a vote for HH Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed. The UAE should be an example for all the Arabs to follow.
The Empire strikes back
After more than 200 years of wandering in the wilderness, the empire would be very delighted to reintegrate its wandering rebels back to the realm of the Royal House. Canada would be eager to facilitate the process by considering the events of 1812 as they never happened. Her Majesty would favorably consider appointing B.H. Obama as a Vice Regent of the colonies. Your 250 years of anarchical rule looks like is coming to an end and for good reasons
His Wise Majesty of the Wise Kingdom, on the other hand, would be delighted to welcome a new member to the club despite past incomptencies of the would-be regent, hoping that the new position would spark wisdom in the new Regent.
What a fool you are.
Samer was right about global warming. It’s happening and the end is near for everyone,
We already established your foolishness gringa V.
Funny !? So does this blog. But you’re on it 🙂
Oh what a real Muslim mysoginist … I find your deep insecurities such a true sad result of your cult..
Sherly Levine 😎
What will be the Saudi stance on the outcome of the Iran talks in Vienna this week?
That will be a tricky one for them during the OPEC meeting 🙂
They are now pretty much a flapping fish that need to guess how long they can survive out of the water or jump back into the “wide sea and figure out an alternative model of survival and progress.
Imagine Whirled Peas
Like I mentioned a few posts back, the UAE expressed their concern about Iran on Fox News, and I found it to be rather eye-opening.
Here in the US, the assumption is only Israel is concerned about Iran, and that only Israel is forcing Obama to do something about Iran. In this narrow view, many here in the US have the impression Israel is going to force a war that the rest of the world doesn’t want. Israeli and Zionist “warmongering” is blamed; not Iran.
Sure would be good if arabs and jews could work together, don’t you think?
The world must come together to put an end to Israel’s lust for war,
The world must come together to put an end to Israel’s lust for war
Maybe if the world wasn’t so busy burying her dead by muslim fanatics, they could come together “to put an end to Israel’s lust for war”.
So Americans went there and got caught in Israel’s lust for war.
May be they should have stayed home instead of going there for incitement.
If Khamenei nukes Israel, it’s because of Israel’s lust for war – the more reasons or the world to come together to put an end to this lust.
Aghbara is the one who has dust all over the face and he usually doesn’t live in a palace – Looks more appropriate to what we have here.
Seems like another disciple of the “wiser” bunch. These “philosophers” drink from the same cool aid.
Micheal Rubin and many like him in and outside the US admin are furious about Erdogan because he’s taken the most principled stand on this so called American war in Syriac. Erdogan continues to refuse to open Incirlik to the American war machine until his conditions are met.
Despite all his pitfalls, Erdo got this one right. He definitely possesses his own kind of wisdom.
Let America go down on its knees….or she can do another white wash – something she’s exceptionally good at as we have seen last night.
Long live the Wise King and the beacon of justice, the wise Kingdom.
After all, no one really knows this region better than the Ottomans.
They set the code.
I really miss 3issa. Where is he? I remembered him today when I heard that his Royal Majesty of Morocco banned trade with Israel.
Isn’t that just the ultimate manifestation of Wisdom?
I hope 3issa sees that and becomes a faithful subject of the Wise Monarch of the Moors instead of hanging around with anarchists, misfits and so-called resistance bums.
Good luck counting on these art paintings coming to any worth.
Time to close down this blog and move on.
Erdogan strikes again “..women are not equal to men..”
America lethally stricken again and by its own ISIL…………………..
America tweet-nuked. One look at the live tweet stream and you should convince yourself,
Shame on you B.H. Obama. You can’t even bring justice to one of your own, while the KKK goes rampant under your nose.
Who said a black man can have justice in this waste land of America? C’mon, MLK and stuff was all lies and is meant only to keep the black man caged. This is the land where truth becomes falsehood and falsehood becomes truth….in other words a Wonderland on the screen near you right out of the Woods of Holly.
Why should QN close the site? There’re lots to talk about, especially today.
FYI, you Wild Kingdom has a primitive and backward judicial system compared to the US and even the Zionist Entity, no matter how you parse it. Denial is just a river in Egypt. So If the Wild Kingdom is as Utopian as you claim, go live there. I’ll buy you your first glass of Ouzo.
Blacks have so many more rights in the US compared to the many Gulf slave states, it is laughable. What you don’t see on the news is black police officers gunning down violent black criminals are the unheard of violence blacks unleash against blacks. Fortunately, most blacks are doing pretty well here, even those that can’t or won’t work or earn a living.
We do appreciate your comic relief, and your daily reminders that adults can act like little islamo-fascist babies.
Just dusted some dust off his dust-covered face.
Be aware of uncontrolled impending sneezing, ghabara.
You and your Zionist and US entities my ass ouzo glass.
Long live the Great Wise Kingdom, the ultimate beacon of justice.
Getting closer to the truth?
Proof that not everyone is a Wesistance Pro…
Gee, I hope Israel doesn’t retaliate for this, because it could make someone mad…
Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding !
$70 Oil Price is here and counting down.
Courtesy of His Wise Majesty, you may continue to enjoy your honeymoon at the pump for a while longer. You may also enjoy a warm home in the upcoming expected cold winter at a cheaper cost – again courtesy of His Wise Majesty.
The Wise King deemed it important to keep the taps open as normal rather than artificially squeeze production creating artificial shift in supply and demand curves as some non-Wise fools demanded such as the mullahs and their Venezuelan buddies. The Russians tried to play a sly hand in the background but it also didn’t work against Wisdom. Their gambit was caught and foiled in the bud.
Long Live his “Wiserdom”.
Of course! But, still no going to Baabda for mountaineers.
Dedicated to the Lebanese Christians, Muslims … and Mustap 🙂
“It’s sad, so sad
It’s a sad, sad situation
And it’s getting more and more absurd
It’s sad, so sad
Why can’t we talk it over
Oh it seems to me
That sorry seems to be the hardest word”
“What do I have to do for you to behead me?
What do I have to do for you to be heard?
What will you do when it’s all over?
And you return to living … in the KSA.”
No one is going to KSA.
But also no agent orange will ever set foot in Baabda either.
Don’t worry, Mustache.
Zorro is near. #Hariri
طق حنك اصفر
While we continue to enjoy filling gas tanks at record low prices, thanks once again to His Royal Wisdom, Putin is squirming and panting,
I also heard the mullahs cut down on their favourite chicken banquets. Chicken prices skyrocketed in the mullahstan.
I thought the Wise King had laid it all out for Putin which the Czar heeded with gratitude, as per your older post.
What happened, Mustache?
طق حنك اصفر
My color guess for you.
Assad’s barrel bombs will soon become obsolete courtesy of Erdo’s special wisdom,
Finally, Erdo forced his will on Obama and co.
Good for him.
U.S. plays down idea of safe zone along Syria-Turkey border
By Lesley Wroughton and Phil Stewart
Erdogan is a creepy Daesh like you Mustafa. Back to the sword dance! You seem to be perpetually high on the fumes of camel dunk !
We understand how furious you are about your beloved, the mountain guy. But, honestly what you call daesh is far more civilized than him or anyone of you. What do you call yourselves? اووات. تلحس انتا وهن
Sorry for interfering here, but clarification on your stance of “Christians” in the Levant needs to be clarified.
Agent Orange is from Beirut and the Mountain Guy is from … the Mountains.
What area of Lebanon would you like the next President of Lebanon to stem from ?
There may not be need for president in Lebanon considering the available so-called candidates.
It also looks like this position has become redundant.
The resident Daesh is basically saying he has no need for anything non Sunni!
I don’t think Mustap is Lebanese.
Just like Jews who consider themselves a nation…The resident daesh belongs to his caliphate…He is allergic to Non Sunnis. I wonder how can he allow his wife or boyfriend intermingle in our society?
You guys, mountain and orange, are bunch of morons.
Presidency is an obsolete institution. What does your nonsense have to do with it?
So, suck up or shut up. Did you forget that you’re both losers?
Losers in what way ? 🙂
Is Sunni Islam education for you a fact?
Hey moron, even the mountain guy doesn’t make such stupid comments like yours.
Actually, it’s been determined that Christian education is bad for your health. Are you visiting your doc. regularly?
Guys, if you’re interested in flaming each other, please head over to Naharnet. Otherwise, there’s nothing wrong with radio silence…
So, you’re skeptical, I take it?
Don’t feel bad. The mountain guy makes enough stupid comments regularly. But you surpassed him by light years.
Don’t complain about being losers. There’s only one such outcome for guys like you (and him).
Glad to know QN is alert to comments concerning among other things nothing but Christian education.
Really? you’re kidding me? with all the ad hominem going on about other groups? You just woke up now?
Your sense of objectivity cracks me up man.
Thank you. Now please, all of you, chill out with the pointless jibes.
Idiotic sectarian phoenicians on this blog are finally showing their true colors,,, seems like the death of their beloved Sharon groupie aka Saeed without Aql has reignited the age old superiority feelings of the Enfants de la France
Funny how the very word sectarian has been implanted in our brains. The majority of a group cannot be sectarian. The Sunnis are sunnis and they have always been the largest, oldest and core segment of the Muslim ummah. And to a large extent the people of the MENA region have always been constitued mostly by Sunnis since the expansion of Islam. So what’s the problem with that ? I don’t get it ?
Having Sunnis fighting for their lives or at least for their right seems impossible to understand for some people.
Why are you perturbed girl?
O’ 3issa is back and is furiouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuus.
Hey, look man, I tried to take care in your absence, but I’m only one hand which cannot clap solo. I’m outnumbered, And even so I managed, one way or another, to return as many favors as I was offered.
Nevertheless, I find the problem of blacks in America subjected to a holocaust by the KKK police force to be very disturbing, even more so than Sunni or Christian education. Apartheid never left this land of so-called America.
Don’t worry about these offsprings of France. They turned out to be pathetic losers regardless of color.
Long live the Ummah. Down with all the jealous-filled distracters. Let their own jealousies eat away at their hearts and consume their very being.
Cheer up buddy.
I just have one question before I retire and will respect this blog’s owner’s request.
When will the Wise King have a twitter account?
So you will go visit you doc. regularly to check for any effects of your Christian education on your health, if I answer your question and give you the links to what you’re looking for?
As you can see nothing comes for free.
Say yes, and you will get the answers you’re looking for and MORE.
يا أُمَّةً ضَحِكَتْ مِن جَهْلِهَا الأُمَمُ
See you next year 😉
I’ll continue with my Sunni education all the same.
I know your health is your own concern and none of mine. I’m just a reminder.
And His Wise Majesty will just go on with his Royally Wise schedule as usual, with one less distraction to deal with.
” Having Sunnis fighting for their lives or at least for their right seems impossible to understand for some people.” says Morocco Mole.
I guess the Abaya clad defender of the faith, who hacked an American teacher to death in Abu Dhabi, is a real hero to you, you Fez-wearing midget.
Now you don’t need to worry about the Ummah anymore, because we have a concerned enlightened saviour from Vulcan who is going to turn all the darkness into light with a magic wand. Just read the good news and rejoice: يا أُمَّةً ضَحِكَتْ مِن جَهْلِهَا الأُمَمُ
This looks like genuine concern to me. What more do you want?
O’ people, Salvation has landed (beamed down). Wear you Fezes and don’t look midgets.
This guy… I mean how much frustration and self flagellation can you encapsulate in one same person ?
This whole Light Vs Darkness is basically a couple of lebanistanese living in northern amreeka are supposed to bomb megatons of Light to their Darkish brethrens back home not cool with the western project.
Besides that nobody cares.
Except those lebanistanese, who, on Monday morning at the office, are totally terrified that their Amreekan colleagues do not notice how enlightened they are. And God how sad it is to see them giggle when their colleagues tell them that they love Shawarma and narguile…
Mustafa and 3issa an odd couple indeed…Keep high the Salafi flag!
You’re calling us lebatease because we call you Mooriscus?
So, you’re coming back fresh for a new round of name calling game?
What about all the blacks that are getting gassed out by the KKK police in Amreeka? Don’t they also love Shawarma and getting high on a shishas and hookahs?
Next time, I’ll call you couscous.
It was not aimed at you Mustapha, but to that classist type of Lebanese (usually the diaspora) who believe they really have something interesting to put forward. There’s a big difference between the Lebanese people and the Lebanistanese desperatly trying to get the White Man’s tap on the back.
Couscous is absolutely delicious by the way.
By the way these silly jokes about coming from Lebanistanese about Fez, hashish and couscous are just a display of they utter ignorance of the Islamic / Arab-Berber complexities of NorthAfrica. Even racist Frenchies don’t dare these stupid jokes anymore, what gives ?
I had no problem with it. In fact, I liked it. It also seems to fit the classist perfectly and the so-called France offsprings.
There’s no more idiocy than the idiocy of these so-called classists (or French offsprings) who think that the sun can only rise if and only if they let it out of their rear ends.
Long live his Wise Majesty, the descendant of the Royal House of the Almighty’s Prophet, the Monarch Ameer al-Mu’umineen of the Ummah, the Moors, the Berbers, the Arabs and all of North Africa, and the heir to the throne of al-Andalus.
What Does it Take to Get the Owner into our Discussions NewZ
Here’s an example why I have an “anti” academia mind set. Of course, you’re excluded…
I’m here. Just swamped with work. End of the semester. Off to Beirut in 10 days. Hope to post something then.
….Mustafa and 3issa an odd couple indeed…
….another flirtation with the wise king’s “disciple”: “It was not aimed at you Mustapha…”. this is getting interesting. AP are you jealous of them?
@Mustapha agree… Except the last royal bit
I mean come on… The rational behind your support for royal gangs is pretty clear but sooooo moraly flawed. Anyway I don’t think we will ever agree on this.
I’ve always appreciated your anti Baathist thugs point of view.
I am afraid you have switched from a “liberal” to a chador/burqa wearing daesh admirer lol. 😀
QN, watch what you eat while in Beirut, especially meat, if you succumb to the urge and must have a ribeye steak, go only to the steak house at the Four Seasons, they fly their cuts in and never use locally slaughtered.
Mention my name and you’ll get special treatment from Sarah and Faten 😀
Classist… Like I said.
Here it’s Four Season bragging but even when they are supporting the so called resistance they still brag about their Ivy League non sense.
You don’t get the classist 3issa.
He’s saying he doesn’t eat from the products of darkness such as shawarma. He only eats the enlightened french biftek. Never mind he said ribeye. That was just a camouflage for being a jarhead in the US.
You keep eating couscous and shawarma if you like and be deprived of the lights of the blue, blanc, rouge for your peril.
I think the mountain guy is trying to make peace with me.
Who is supporting the so called résistance dimwit ? Last I checked it was you applauding the Hamas murderers and also you earlier (before you had to choose sides between Sunni and Shia) you had your head all the way up in Nasrella’s ass.
Just to be clear, F*#% you and all Islamic resistance no matter which denomination.
Vulcan. Can you prove that I supported Nasrallah or the yellow jacks?
If you can’t. Would you apologise for your comment?
Thank you Enfant de l’Amerique
Why don’t you prove your statement first. Enfant de Falastine
I’m disappointed that you don’t see the efforts of Ameer al-Mu’umineen, His wise Majesty of all the Maghreb and Andalus to destroy the statelet of so-called Izrahell.
Don’t you know that he recently banned any trade with this entity?
It seems you have lost it altogether. If it suits you to get high on Daesh dunk…no issues here. You were so enamored by the Seyyed and his great divine victories against the joos. Now you switch…then you realize that the Sunnis are fighting for their survival and don your Chador and pledge allegiance to the scum of Daesh.
Snap out of it….As for Lebanese; don’t fret; all Arabs are envious of us. It is an inferiority complex that will drown you in your sorrows! Long live the Wiser bunch!
Ice baby…what’s up? We were friends once, until your Salafist beard twitched. 😀
It is cooler in the mountains then the dastardly desert. Wiser always!
Just to be clear, F*#% you and all Islamic resistance no matter which denomination.
Once again, Vulcan summed it up perfectly. Wesistance has turned the ME into a blood bath for mostly Muslims.
I’d just like to wish all my fellow Lebanese brothers a Happy Makhlouta, and hopefully a better Next Year.
Happy new year to all from Orange Sun-Rays.
If you’re orange you can make a happy new year even in August – benefits of being orange and senile ex-general.
I think it should be changed to happy orange year.
Suggestions for parents seeking to bring up neutral babies:
April, August, June, July ?
If I call my new kid April, should I send her to a Sunni school? I think I should. That should be the norm. Doesn’t general orange think so?
And should I celebrate the new year in April?
But, I don’t think August is neutral. It’s too F&&%% Roman. Did the general approve?
Orange figured it all out.
Call me, Christopher Walken.
I don’t know. What? … do I know?
It’s just all … Very … Confusing.
Do you want me to call you Christopher Walks Daily to Christian School?
Why do you think it’s so confusing? I thought the general made it all clear.
Y dont you just f off
Daesh seriously get the hell F outta here like the old Ice did. You are so pathetic and disgusting.
The mountain guy is upset now.
May be it’s not that cool for him in the mountains.
Daesh it is disgusting to listen to your crap!!!!…Still F^^%%&^*^*K off!!!
Mountain guy,I find you equally disgusting and extremely crappy.
But I find much more coolness in the desert than you find in your mountain.
May be you should try it sometimes.
Or else shut it.
Some Things can be Overlooked* NewZ
He said in hindsight, it was preferable. “The problem with Islamic State is that they have killed Muslims.”
*unless your jooish
Echo? You are an idiot and I was somehow bored the past couple of days and thought you are the perfect moron to kick around… Brush your lice laden beard ya man eating daesh…
You mountain guy,
You think you’re the only one who can call others idiots from behind a keyboard.
Shut up and get lost. You’re only kicking your own bone-filled butt.
Sorry. Can’t help myself. Have a question.
I have recently learned that Shi’ites have a Pope like Christians.
This might be a dumb one. but who is the Sunni one? Honestly confused?
Do you like to become the one?
No. But really. Who is the Sunni Ayatollah/Pope?
There isn’t one.
Islam doesn’t need a “pope”.
The Ayatollah is fake and no one really cares about him, except for sheeples of course.
But again, if you’re interested in the position, an exception can be considered for a Christopher who may walk daily to Mosque.
What does it pay ?
Do I have to tap dance ?
On demand and with swords, Ray.
What is it about Sunnis that the neocons so admire? They are sooooooo protective of the sect know for birthing the throat-slicing liver eaters.
Dance on! to the tunes of cognitive dissonance.
Oh? It was about time for Ms Wilayah El Faqih to chip in. Seriously, is it not silly to hate the Sunnis (90% of the ummah) just because they don’t get cozy with the murderers in Tehran.
The question is : are resistance groupies worse than Enlightened Sectarian Arabs in the West? I thought that the fake Arab nationalists were the worse kind of hypocrites… I was wrong.
What is it about Sunnis that the neocons so admire?
I think the neocons admire a sect that doesn’t beat itself in public until they bleed. Or doesn’t vow to wipe Israel off the map. I can check on this. Do you have any info?
So now we know layla is biased towards shia. We don’t know if she’s shia, a question she refused to answer few months ago.
So, why are you so PRTOTECTIVE of Shia sect?
I’m not protective of my being Sunni.
I say it without any fear or dissimulation. You know what that last word means?
So why did Shia have to practice dissimulation or taqiyya for ages and most still do? (By the way, I met a Lebanese the other day. The first thing he told me his name was Omar, a lie that was uncovered later on. He turned out to be Shia but pretended to be Sunni behind a fake name which Sunnis know Shia never use).
Why the Sunni don’t practice such deception?
Dissimulation is pathetic and worse than bleeding yourself to death sometime for the apparent reason of mourning for a so-called martyrdom that clearly took place due to political motives.
C’mon layla you consider that worthy of protection.
Wikileaks and friday-lunch-club.blogspot.com as evidence at the STL.
That must be a first 🙂 ?
To the resident Israeli terrorism supporter. Who told you Sunnis don’t want the shutdown of the Zionist monstrosity ?
I don’t know. It seems sunni arab states are the only countries that signed peace tweaties with Iswael.
I find it laughable when some Iranian spokesmen make such statements like ‘Islam is against nuclear weapons’ like Rida Najafi did today. Najafi is Iran’s ambassador to the IAEA.
I searched in Islamic sources for a verification of this assertion, and couldn’t find any.
However, I did find many references to the Shia practice of dissimulation.
In a nutshell, dissimulation as practiced by the Iranian Shia means: behave and act low key until you gain advantage, at which point you may expose your canines to the world as wide as you can.
I, for one, believe that whatever the al-Mighty allows to come into existence, there is a purpose behind it.
So, if nuclear weapons are allowed to come into existence, then so be it. But, I, for one, do not practice dissimulation. Could that be the difference with the Iranians?
That’s also why I have no problem with Pakistan having nuclear weapons.
Make humans smell the money.
The neocons protect Sunni, esp Ksa interests in the Halls of Power. Who is surprised that the kings of hubris think they can do business with other terrorists of THE BOOK? Helllllooooooo…….
The Israelis just got a crazed American Xtian nutjob dumb enough to get caught before he could roast some Pals in Mosques. Ya’ll don’t listen and continue to welcome those who would slaughter in your name into the very bosom of your security state. Holy Warriors one and all.
Portrait(s) of the scariest leader in the region as a young man.
He looks so benign and cheerful and pleasant, doesn’t he?
Which Holy Warrior from the other side is the creepiest?
Sure looks like a familiar type to this American….
Bret McGurk, US undersecretary of something, finds the Iranian militias roaming the streets of Baghdad and other cities the creepiest of them all.
I, of course, agree,
Hey lall, you want your Iranian idols to have a place under the sun? Then, my advice they should stop pretending to having any credible Islamic credentials. IMHO, no one buys their claims, not the least of all the Arabs of course. May be they should try something more genuine like their long-sunken Persian credentials. So, let’s see how Persianism sells among the Arabs.
Since no one is sure if you’re Arab or Iranian, I’ll volunteer an English rendition of a widely used Arab saying pertaining to the Iranians trying to sell themselves to the world, and particularly to the Arabs, as some kind of Islamic authority.
We say to someone trying to sell someone else something the presumed buyer has in abundance, the seller is trying to sell water to the water sellers in the district of water selling.
There is another widely exchanged saying specific to my dear Gulfie friends: A remedy was found for every ailment except for the utter stupidity of an Ajami. Ajami is how they refer to an Iranian in the Gulf.
I know, on the other hand, that the Iranians have similar stereotypical terms they use against the Arabs and they even composed poetry in order to blow off steam.
Even so no offense is intended if it’s mutual in every respect.
I’m just wondering if the mullahs are still holding their chicken banquets at $59 a crude.
They may have to start organizing bird hunting expeditions if things continue at this rate. That is if they want to maintain the standard of living of their own class to the detriment of sheeple folks.
The chief ayatollah was deeply concerned about US violations of human rights and made those concerns abundantly clear for everyone to know.
Didn’t America turn out to be the greatest villain in the world after all?
Let’s pause for a moment. Forget for a moment that muslims are killing scores of muslims everyday. The real news is the following. Israeli settlements are squeezing palestinian tourism. Please write your your congressman.
let’s get this straight.
The US insists that it is a virtuous entity worthy of emulation just because it’s willing to wash its laundry in the open. In other words, the US, which now seems to be the worst villain in the world, enjoys telling the world that it can practice abuse of the worst kind with impunity as long as it comes forward with this abuse and tell the world about it, nevere mind if 90% of it is redacted. 10% admission is good enough from US perspective.
So, who’s the hypocrite? The regime which admits 0% abuse or the one which makes 10% admission. Me thinks the 0% folks do so because they know it is abuse and are ashamed of making any admissions. On the other hand we cannot say the same for the regime which makes 10% admission. The latter thinks the mere admission, or 10% of it, is an act absolution.
Also, it looks more and more evident now that Baghdadi was a favorite of the Americans while in camp Bucca. It makes one think if his purported quote of “see you in NY” was actually no more than bidding good friends farewell in hope of meeting again as buddies would normally do.
Today’s Muslim Murder Watch
Taliban kills 120 school children. I wonder what Iranian-supplied missiles these children were firing from their classrooms…
The world cannot afford to have another Bush idiot becoming prez.
We have Assadistan, Khomeinistan, and soon will have Bushistan.
You left out Putinistan, Erdogan, Saudistan and Mustapian.
And, off course, Bibistan !
You’re right about Putinistan but NOT the others.
Luckily, there’ll be no Aounistan or Gaegaeistan. Not while Nasrallahistan is around.
And, of course, Hamastan and Hezbostan.
Bibistan may turn into Livnistan or Lapidistan….we’ll just have to wait until after the free election to find out.
It has long been proven that the so-called free election propaganda is nothing but a misnomer, a tool used by the oppressor to sanitize its oppression.
Bushistan is oppressing its own black people using rampant KKK police. It’s also oppressing other people using rampant KKK CIA.
Ziostan has long been an instrument of oppression, no argument there.
Uh oh. Looks like there could be Geageabandarstan on the horizon for the Levant.
Khomeinistan’s favorite tool for oppression is Acid burning, especially for women,
Do you think, Lal, you may survive if you go back to Khomeinistan? Assuming you survive Bushistan to begin with?
Yup lally.. It seems that the mustafa’s mountain murderer has tied the knot with Daesh sponsor. 😛
Looks like mountain breeze is not cool enough for mountain idiot douche bags.
Desert is cool.
But still no setting foot on Baabda hills.
Desert, even though cool, is full of shifting sand dunes, just like when idiot Bush drew a line in the sand.
So is this what douche bags are hoping to do?
Better find a cave in the mountains where territory is familiar and there are some discernible landmarks.
Beware of the Wise King’s sword descending on your idols’ neck.
…zzzzzz….echo? Anybody home?…It is a fact that desert heat with camel dunk fumes causes delirium. 😀
That too. They packed him with dunk fumes and sent him back to the mountains in a state of delirium.
Congratulations douche bag.
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt…bandar and Gea kissing up. Typical Saudi “machismo”.!! …as for camel dunk; you should know as your are always up it!
You got that wrong douche bag.
Geagea went to kiss Bandar’s ass. He had to bend as he went through the door and went straight down on his knees to the princes behind.
Do you imagine in your life a murderous mountain guy would stand equal to a giant?
Your delirious state could be the result of the dunk he offloaded on you when he went back to the cave you both share.
Mustapha you are the worst and most disgusting of trolls…Keep on talking to yourself! I am sure the echos are frightening. I guess the Daesh book has you all acting civilized!
No more to add about a non entity…
It’s obvious from your outrage, that I’m talking NOT to myself.
If you don’t want to be trampled upon or if you love your idol so much, then you should NOT try to look higher than your eyes should look upon.
An eye cannot see above its brow as you know from a very common Arabic saying. You should heed respect to your MASTERS (and your idol’s MASTERS), in other words.
The reason normal and intelligent people abandoned either commenting or visiting this site is because of your filth and low class …
I do not expect a disgusting filth like you to comprehend anything…Keep up your idiotic comments…An idiot moron like you is good for laughs. Yalla Merry Christmas to you. May out lord Jesus have mercy on your screwed up soul.
Remember who your LORD is and seek mercy from none other than HIM. I don’t seek mercy from entities ‘undivine’. You know that, right??
Again, I seem to be speaking to someone who obviously is desperate to have the last word.
Christmas, Jesus blah blah, blah…………. he said!!!!!!!
I’m amused by the blog owner going to Beirut to solve a crisis.
I think the Wise King over-extented his hand playing Texas Poker with his Trillion Dollar, all in call, in the Oil game.
Iranians survived $20 Oil and will never convert nor accept the staunch Islam imposed by the … Saudi Ayatollah.
Me thinks the Wise King and his family is most likely going to get devoured by the creatures they financed.
Me thinks the Wise King and his family is most likely going to get devoured by the creatures they financed.
The whole ME is getting “devoured be the creatures they financed”. “They” aren’t just the Wild Kingdom, “they” are also Iran, the billionaire giraffe of Syria, and the intolerant, murderous, self-appointed muslim clerics.
As Anwar Malik stated in his famous/infamous criticism of the ME, the creatures the ME have created are indicative of the culture. We shouldn’t be surprised.
Billy Ray was the son of an ayatollah man
Are you, Orange Ray, afraid that General Orange will get thrown to the wolves soon? In other words when your ayatollah daddy gets devoured by the collapsing mullocracy due to falling crude prices?
The Wise Kingdom’s 2015 budget continues with unprecedented growth on track,
Whichever way you look at it, Billy Ray, your daddy and general orange are looooosers.
The Wise Kingdom is like the mountain which doesn’t get shaken by the wind.
Sorry to bust your bubble.
I am not Maronite. Nor a big fan of them.
What bust and what bubble are you talking about?
Obviously, you’re a son of an ayatollah man.
And the ayatollah is the ONE getting busted.
Nor am I Shi’ite and nor were, either my father or mother.
But, please, do proceed.
Why do you think I care about what you are?
Don’t you see that I only care about what you say?
You obviously say you are fan of both your dad and general orange.
Glad to have busted you in no time.
I don’t think you care about anyone but yourself. You are a case study for humankind that care about life and the future of mankind on what to do with the reality of children that have grown up into becoming humans like you.
You obviously must be insane to only care about what I say.
My father died two months before I was born.
But please proceed.
You must be Lebanese … and I obviously Saudi.
Tunisia held an election and elected a new president.
Sounds like a good idea.
Would it be inappropriate for me to wish Mustap, this blog’s owner and all his followers a very Merry and adequately expensive Christmas?
Prosperity, kindness, consideration and cooperation … # Lebanese.
No. Merry Xmas to our Christian friends.
If a state is perfectly secular, shouldn’t it have as official holidays, selected holy days for all its citizens of various religions, or none at all!
Actually, I’m having great days these days with the markets behaving the way they are. I’m not sure if that can be called merry. But call it what you want, who cares? Up and up we go.
The only thing I don’t want is to be be in Amreeka, soon to become Bushistan, these days, and definitely not while its KKK police force is rampant without control conducting a hollocaust against the black people.
The story of Ameriki in a nutshell:
An idiot president of the KKK clan bankrupts Ameriki and turns it into Bushistan. The clan figures, while bankrupt, this is the best time to hand over the reigns to a semi black president and let the outcasts eat the bare bones.
Surprisingly, the outcast turns Amriki back to its best ever. The clan gets envious and jealous. It turns its KKK arms loose into the streets.
Problem is Bush now wants Amreeki back for another bankruptpcy round.
Welcome to Bushistan.
I pray this brave Jordanian pilot will survive. Considering how these barbarians treat their captives, I doubt it.
What is it with these Frankis who always seem to feel threatened of becoming extinct?
Does anyone in his right mind prepare kebab like this French idiot Thiery Marx?
Having authentic Turkish and North African kebab for lunch and dinner for the next ten days.
Probably a Moroccan or Algerian living in the US.
طق حنك اصفر بامتياز
Live long and prosper
At the service of her Majesty
You fucking Klingon
Happy New Year allayah!
From Miam to Beirut to da woyld meng.. Que Bueno
Long live 2015
Year of the divine intervention or the eternal damnation
Cry Havoc!! Like every year
Yes, but can you go to Havana, Vulcan?
No bueno for moi & a.palace.
Even the Mia Cubans are now divided on this and other issues, sort of like the Lebanese Maronites😁…I say the embargo never worked..at least now, we won’t have to settle for Dominican cigars in Miami Beach. And we can all go to Habana as “cultural” reps 😃
Can’t you already travel to Havana on a Leb passport? I don’t know how to become a cultural rep; I have a need to see old cars and architecture, taste primo rum and hear music, visit the city and country campos, sample local foods…. shop….etc. What do I have to bring to Cubanos but $ and appreciation?
Hola! what a bountiful feast for the senses.
Are Maronite divisions generational or homeboys vs exiles? I would think that since ISIS, security issues loom large.
Lally, book with these guys, they will take care of everything..it is now legal for all Americans to go.
Thanks, Vulcan. That’s a great lead.
I think we should give the Castros a big round of applause for their continued resistance against American hegemony.
Of course the people suffered, but hey, since when do the people matter. Resistance always comes first.
But now all has been forgiven if Obama praises Communism and allows the cruise ships to anchor there. A win/win for both communism, capitalism, illegal immigration and American safe haven cities.
The wise kingdom is leading the world towards the age of renewable energy,
Mohammed Abdallah Abou Nayan, CEO of ACWA, has proven that US businesses are short-sighted and backwards when it comes to world energy. US businesses are wrecking the earth with their frackings and squandering billions of dollars on projects that are now being shelved as they prove not feasible. Mohammed also proved that the Ayranians are liars, stupid and double faced when it comes to their claims about their needs for new energy sources, a bluff they continue to employ in their so-called nuke talks. Obviously, if they need other sources of energy, as they claim, they need to learn from the Wise Saudi, Mohammed, as they have been learning for the last 14 centuries when Omar destroyed their paganism. They should also stop misleading the world about their nuclear ambitions. You want energy? Well, go talk to Mohammed.
Obama too has a lesson or two to learn from Mohammed when he nuke-talks to the Ayranians. he can simply call their bluff by referring them to Mohammed
Mohammed did not go to college and his highest education was high school.
But he is definitely WISE and long-sighted. Long Live Saudi Wisdom.
And please keep the crude prices falling.
Wild Goose Chase NewZ
And now the search for that ever elusive, “vocal” and “enraged” moderate muslim(s) begins.
Let’s not make an idiot bigger than an idiot just because he was killed.
Charlie was an idiot and died an idiot,
That’s my exercise of free expression of gore satire. End of story.
Not so fast “Mustap”, yes or no: was the killing justified?
Still Stuck in the Middle Ages NewZ
Meanwhile, the government of Egypt is throwing people in jail for being atheist…