This category contains 191 posts

A Levantine Dystopia

Yesterday, following the suicide bombing in Haret Hreik,¬†Hizbullah’s deputy secretary-general Naim Qassem warned that Lebanon was on “the road to ruin”. Such statements have become just as routine as the security incidents that prompt them. Political figures and newspaper columnists tell us daily that Lebanon risks opening the gates of hell, that it teeters on … Continue reading

Mohamad Chatah (1951-2013)

I met Mohamad Chatah in late 2011. I was in Beirut for a couple of weeks, interviewing politicians and civil society members for a research project on bicameralism and consociationalism, and a mutual friend put us in touch. He had been interested in the idea of a Lebanese senate for many years, and so he … Continue reading

Where Will All the Jihadis Go?

Since the signing of the US-Iran nuclear agreement, several curious news items have stoked speculation that some of the major players in the Syrian crisis may be coming around to a more accommodating negotiating posture, in advance of the Geneva peace conference scheduled for January 22, 2014. On December 3, Hizbullah secretary-general Sayyid Hassan Nasrallah … Continue reading

The Generalissimos of Tripoli’s Streets

Two nice little items to note today: (1) The¬†Economist dubbed Qifa Nabki “the leading blog on Lebanese politics.” Sarah Birke mentions several other excellent authorities to follow on Twitter to get your Lebanon news/commentary. Check them out. (2) QN is five years old! The anniversary came and went quietly a couple months ago, but in … Continue reading

Thirty Years Later, Another Embassy Bombing in Beirut

Today’s attack on the Iranian embassy in Beirut recalls a similar bombing thirty years ago against the US embassy in the same city. There is no mystery concerning the identity of the bombers nor the meaning of the bomb. As Bashar presses his advantage across the border, Lebanon remains an opening field for supply chain … Continue reading

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