Tea-Bomb Time

January 16, 2008 § Leave a comment

Al-Hayat ran these two photos along side each other in their Wednesday edition.

Bush sips tea in Saudi with the King…

while Beirut is on fire.

According to Beirut-based al-Nahar, Tuesday’s bombing killed three (two unidentified Lebanese citizens and one Syrian) and injured 26. The paper labels the bombing a “terrorist crime” and mentions that Bush’s visit to the region has been cited as possible motivation. A “diplomat source” told the paper that this is the first time since 2004 that American interests have been attacked in Lebanon. Meanwhile, the Majority (al-aktharia) and the Opposition (al-mu’aarida) continue meetings related to the presidential crisis.

The Majority in Lebanon refers to “pro-Western” political parties such as the Mustaqbil or Future coalition comprised of Sa’ad al-Hariri and Druze leader Walid Junblatt. The Opposition refers to Hezbullah, Amil, and Maronite Christian Michel Aoun’s followers, also know as al-Tiyar al-Watani al-Hur. Technically, both sides have agreed on a president: Army Commander Michel Sulaiman, yet there are continuing disagreements over the shape that the government will take after the election of a new president. I’ll include a more thoughtful post on the Lebanese presidential crisis later. I don’t presume to be an expert on Lebanese politics — I know that the situation is incredibly complex and I would only present the known facts to people and limit my personal opinions.

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