Posts Tagged ‘Lebanon’

SaraetKarim is a newly opened coffee shop in Tripoli and its neo-hippie setting with quilts and dream catchers is the absolute opposite of what this place has to offer.

It’s a very small place that despite its decoration is cold as is almost always empty and when there are people it’s never regulars or friendly faces but mostly unfriendly strangers that are always there to criticize and gossip about the other customers and, the only regulars are a bunch of neo-hippy conservative closeted gays that show hostility to any outspoken  LGBTQ people or activists.

The expensive cakes and teas are not even worth the try and they don’t serve anything else but these and a coffee selection.

The owners are judgmental conservative homophobes but that are ok with closeted and under the cover gays.

They obviously told some LGBTQ activists that they’re not welcome because it ruins the image of the place (obviously the image of the place is that of conservative closeted gay neo_hippies).

The owner stated on many occasions that he prefers to have ladies seated at the entrance of the coffee shop than a bunch of male patrons (so much for objectifying women and sexism)

The coffee shop didn’t even complete his legal status and it hasn’t got a certificate from the ministry of tourism and one from the ministry of health and apparently the employees aren’t registered in the social security at the ministry of labor.

Receiving lots of negative reviews and ratings they blocked the rating section on their Facebook page not to be exposed to their bad management, and food and deleting all negative comments.


On the 24 of April this year coincides with the memorial of the Armenian Genocide Centennial,the first genocide of the century.

The memorial gained force this year by the recognition of Pope Francis of the genocide,calling it the first genocide of the century,as Armenians all over the world are preparing for it.


Many countries already recognized the genocide including Lebanon as in 1997 the Lebanese Chamber of Deputies recognize and condemns the genocide perpetrated against the Armenian people and expresses its complete solidarity with demands of its Armenian citizens.

This year the Lebanese Education Minister considered the 24 of April a national holiday and called for closure of all educational institutions.

A National Choir Festival is happening in Lebanon during this period in many Lebanese cities including Tripoli on the 24th of April noting that some of the Choirs participating are Armenian and Tripoli’s own pride and joy Choir,The Fayhaa Choir is lead by Maestro Barkev Taslakian a Tripolitain from Armenian origins.

fayhaa choir

Through all that and to everybody’s surprise rose some cacophonous noises objecting  the recognition of the genocide by the Lebanese Government and attacking the Choir Festival held in Tripoli saying it’s a declaration of war on Tripoli’s Sunnis threatening the responsible and inviting Sunni Tripolitans to hold a massive Friday prayer in Tripoli’s Oscar Niemeyer’s Fair and to display Turkish flags on the balconies.

The most dangerous thing is that this is coming from a Sheikh holding post in highest Sunni authority “Dar Al Fatwa” in Tripoli and he’s called Sheikh Majed Derwish

mag derv

What Derwish stated is very dangerous for it is a stir of confessional strife and that is punished by law in a lifetime imprisonment penalty (articles 308 and especially 317 of the Penal Code) and thus the North Lebanon General Attorney should persecute Derwish according to these articles.

There’s a new specie in Tripoli that consider itself the defender of the Sunni sect and this specie that is a big fan of Isis has only brought to Tripoli terror,harm,war and economical collapse and abuse and distortion of Islam.

Noting finally that the Ottomans reflects only terror and crimes not just to  Armenians but to all the Lebanese population as they are responsible for the execution of Lebanese citizen in 1916 in what is called today Martyr’s Square and we still celebrate their martyrdom  and that the Lebanese in all their sects  should reject any linking or simply sympathy to the Ottomans.

gen 100

Today is the first session of the Lebanese presidential election and there is only one serious runner for the post 14 March’s  candidate,a convicted war criminal and murderer ( convicted for killing Prime Minister Rachid Karame,MP Tony Frangieh and Dany Chamoun his wife and his 2 kids Tarek 7years and Julien 5years among others), Samir Geagea.

Another war criminal Walid Jumblat has named Henry Helou and 8 March decided to vote blank.

The other probable candidates are:Michel Aoun,Boutros Harb,Soleiman Frangieh,Amine Gemayel and Jean Kahwaji,names that have stained the Lebanese political life.

Add to that the upcoming President will be elected by an illegal and an unconstitutional Parliament.

But who’s responsible for the dead end we’re in??? US the Lebanese people who’s been brainwashed into confessional camps facing each others,dependent on the services provided by the “ZAIM” ( Clan Master) instead of having recourse to the governmental institutions  as tax payers (our tax money is gone to the pockets of our incompetent politicians).

The solution is pressuring the MPS into taking their full responsibility not to vote to people who have stained their hands in the filth of war,to thieves and criminals or to incompetent subordinates.The pressure can take many forms from an internet campaign to a large street demonstration to the taking over the parliament.Yes taking over the parliament.



Fouad Chehab maybe the only Lebanese President that paved the way to modern and institutional Lebanon.


فؤاد شهاب للجمهورية

الرئيس فؤاد شهاب  (1958 – 1964)


تميز عهد الرئيس شهاب بإعادة أحياء مؤسسات الدولة البنانية وتثبيت المصلحة الوطنية وجعل الوحدة بين اللبنانيين أولوية سياسية. عمل الرئيس على استراتيجيات تنموية لبناء الثقة بدور الدولة القادرة العادلة. عرف عهد الرئيس شهاب بالعهد الأصلاحي الشامل الوحيد في تاريخ لبنان.

دأب الرئيس شهاب منذ اليوم الأول لتسلمه الحكم متابعة الملفات التي تهم المواطنين والمواطنات والتي يجمع عليها اللبنانون بجميع أطيافهم. شهد عهده ولادة سلسلة من المشاريع والمؤسسات والقوانين لم يسبق للبنان أن شهد مثيلاَ لها والأهم أنه وبعد أكثر من 44 سنة لم يشهد لبنان مثيلاَ لها، من أهمها:

قانون تنظيم التعليم العالي

أنشاء المجلس الوطني للسياحة

تنظيم وزارة الاعلام

تنظيم وزارة التخطيط

إنشاء المجلس الوطني للبحوث العلمية

قانون التنظيم المدني الشامل لكل لبنان

وضع أول خطة وطنية مبنية على بحث شامل لكل لبنان

إنشاء المشروع الأخضر البيئي

وضع قانون النقد والتسليف

إنشاء مصرف لبنان المركزي

أنشاء الصندوق الوطني للضمان الاجتماعي

توسيع التعليم المهني والمدارس الحكومية

إنشاء مديرية الرياضة والشباب

تنظيم عمل الاجانب بما يتناسب مع المعايير الدولية

وضع المخطط التوجيهي العام لضواحي بيروت

أنشاء تعاونية موظفي الدولية

وبقي أثر “الشهابية” ملموساَ لأجيال من بعد انتهاء عهد الرئيس بسبب أنجازات أساسية أخرى في اخر ثلاث سنوات، منها:

أنشاء مصلحة الانعاش الاجتماعي

إعادة تنظيم مصالح المياه والكهرباء

إنشاء هيئة التفتيش المركزي

أنشاء مجلس الخدمة الوطنية

إعادة تنظيم التفتيش المالي وديوان المحاسبة

إعادة تنظيم مجلس القضاء الأعلى

إنشاء كلية الحقوق في الجامعة اللبنانية

إنشاء مكتب الإنماء الاجتماعي

وضع كتاب التنشئة الوطنية

عرف الرئيس شهاب برجل العلم والاخلاق والبناء وبرهن أن عندما توجد الارادة السياسية بالاصلاح فأن الدولة اللبنانية قادرة على خدمة أبنائها من دون تفرقة. استطاعت مؤسسات الدولة في عهد الرئيس شهاب ان تجعل من التنوع غنى ومن حاجات المواطن فرصة لإعادة احياء المؤسسات.

لذلك اليوم نقول: فؤاد شهاب للجمهورية…




I’m usually picky in my musical likes as in any artistic likes,I’m not easily satisfied and in Lebanon the music scene although is not terrible but never comes with something original and powerful.Few are the bands worth checking.

Many Lebanese musicians and bands are overrated and become your Lebanese artsy scene “must like” and mentioned in any in their conversation as the majority of this scene is stereotypical,repetitive and…somehow lame.

My favorite Lebanese band is Scrambled Eggs that have been hibernating and cancelling shows lately,There’s Mashrou’ Leila,Lazzy Lung and The incompetents that can put on wonderful show without forgetting to provide us with some amazing tunes.

And then there is PINDOLL


My first experience with Pindoll was when they opened for Red Hot Chili Peppers.I’ve never heard of the band before,never cared to check them as I was becoming more and more bored of the lame Lebanese bands popping out everyday.

I was pissed of Pindoll for replacing Mashrou’ Leila and I went to the Red Hot Chili Peppers hating them preparing to bash them at any given moment and sharpened my sense of sarcasm for that.They won themselves a place on my shitlist for replacing Mashrou’ Leila even before knowing anything about them.

Erin Mikaelian (Pindoll Vocalist) entered the stage and like magic all my senses were drawn to the Band.The fabulous music ,the Gwen Stephani like vocals,the show Erin put drew every single one’s attention.

In just one show Pindoll joined the team of my Favorite Lebanese band and the next day I downloaded “Stop Me” and their amazing “Tainted Love” cover that both played on repeat on my Itunes.


My second encounter with them was at the “Beirut Rock Festival 2013”.

There were plenty of bands playing in this festival but I booked my ticket the first day they were put on sale for the sake of Skunk Anansie one of my favorite international bands.It was a dream come true seeing Skin live on stage.Pindoll was in the lineup and I was thrilled to see them again.

During the show many shitty ass bands passed on stage while waiting for Pindoll and off course Skunk Fucking Anansie and when Pindoll showed their head I was relieved.Erin looked tense ,I could sense there was something wrong going with the band still they succeeded to provide a wonderful show but I was disappointed they didn’t play “Stop Me”.It was obvious there was something wrong going on with them.Even my friends noticed it.


Three month ago a new song of theirs called “Keep Walking” went viral then a video of the song “Fed Up” both were wonderful and got me hooked and on the 1rst of March their debut album launch.I couldn’t be more excited.

The week before the launching gig.I had a crazy week of work that left me jaded.The night before the gig I went partying with friend for the wee hours of the morning knowing I had urgent work on Saturday.Saturday afternoon I was left with no energy whatsoever and I was considering skipping the Pindoll Album Launch.I decided to sleep/rest a bit then decide what am I to do.

Around 8 pm I called my friends who bailed on me and decided not to go.The Idea of driving all the way from Tripoli to Beirut and back alone made me think it wasn’t worth it.But,but it was FUCKING PINDOLL DEBUT  ALBUM LAUNCH and I wouldn’t miss that.So I made up my mind and drove all the way to Beirut.

As I entered MyBar alone grabbed  a drink took a corner and waited for the gig to start as I knew no one from the people there.The Jim Beam girls were offering shots and I drank my way to the gig.Some acquaintances came latter and I bumped into Lazzy Lung’s Allan and Imad and a couple of friends that I joined dancing to Ziad Nawfal that was spinning great tunes (Nawfal is my favorite DJ).

When I saw Erin joining the crowd I rushed  like a groupie to say hi and take a picture with her.


When the gig started I pushed my way to the stage and was instantly spellbound by Erin’s performance as she outdid her self through her originals and a couple of covers (The usual “Tainted Love” and a first time “My Own Personal Jesus” ).I found my self insanly singing along and jumping to her songs.She was like a magician mesmerizing the crowd.The band wasn’t less astonishing,especially the lead guitarist(noise as the band put it) Miran Gurunian with his riffs and solos.


I left right after the EPIC show happy and satisfied,forgotten all my tiredness pick the free Album(The cherry on top of the cake) on my out and drove all the way back to Tripoli listening to it.

Pindoll made my night.Pindoll are to big for a country that doesn’t give credit to its talented musicians.

I’m gonna wait impatiently for their next gig and watch them go international.I’m sure.

Two days ago some leaked half naked pictures of Jackie Chamoun a professional Alpine Skier representing Lebanon in 2014 Olympics in Sochi/Russia caused a stir in Lebanon and divided the Lebanese between supporters and opposed what she did as defying Lebanese morals.


It didn’t matter that these pictures were taken three years ago while she was posing for an Australian Ski calendar still instead of supporting her during the Olympics, Minister Faysal Karame demanded an investigation about Chamoun’s nude photos detouring the interest of the Lebanese from the Olympic competition.


Many Lebanese persons,especially youngsters supported Chamoun rejecting the attack against her and making fun of Minster Karame’s decision and how some Lebanese were offended by these photos while the country is being targeted by terrorist,suicide bombers,corruption and lack of security while no one lifts a finger.


A campaign was launched on the internet through facebook,twitter and instagram supporting Chamoun by posting their own nude photos using the hashtag #stripforjackie.



This campaign stirred even more attacks on Chamoun and her Lebanese supporters especially the ones that stripped.

The attack was led by three camps:

1-The religious and conservative camp:

Off course no one expect from those people other than holding the religion,tradition and morality excuse to attack forgetting about the crimes committed in the name of religion,tradition and morality from suicide bombing to wife beating and killing sometimes to the oppression and cultural terrorism.

To that camp I say nudity is beautiful,natural and harmless  unlike your rules and God sent orders that oppress,kill and terrorize so go with your bigotry and hypocrisy and stay in your ugly caves.

2-The condescending camp:

That camp accused the supporters of being moved only by nudity and flesh and not for a certain cause.

To that camp I say that surely some Lebanese were only interested in Chamoun’s issue because of the nudity but most of the supporters were revolted by the campaign against Jackie while other more important issues were forgotten by them and chose to strip for her as they knew well that nudity will draw the attention of the majority of persons that are usually apathetic to certain human rights issues.

3-The Self-Righteous camp:

Some persons criticized the supporters by saying that instead of supporting more humanitarian issues related to  women’s rights like the killing of Manal Assi by her husband and other crimes and oppression against women.

To this self-righteous camp I say that the issue is not that Chamoun nudity is more important than Assi’s killing but it is purely about freedom of expression and women’s essential rights in a patriarchal society that strips the women from her most natural right and where most women are more patriarchal against themselves than men and enjoy being submissive to men.

What led to Assi’s murder is our culture of taking the freedom of  women from by our patriarchal religious education  that teaches them to be submissive to their male(father,husband,brother,religious man)and staying shut on all kind of abuse from beating to denying their right to give their sons and daughters their nationality to veils and burkas to forcing them to marry their rapist to calling them sluts for posing naked while the male clan brags about his multiple sexual experiences,can marry up to four women and so on……

If we stayed silent towards what happened to Chamoun,and deny her the right to dispose of her body the way she likes,we’ll be accomplice in denying any woman her right to stop her husband from beating her to death or stripping her rights.

It’s not about enjoying Chamoun nudity that we her supporters raised hell but it’s about her freedom to dispose of her body the way she likes,about our sick minds that focused on her nudity instead of her talent and her strength and our pride in her for representing Lebanon,about her courage in challenging our patriarchal society that strips women from their rights leading sometimes to their death.


“One must be absolutely modern” (Arthur Rimbaud)

While the Lebanese fashion scene gets lame,similar and pretentious,Lara Khoury jumps out of the box and throws her magical touch in the fashion industry and reveals some marvelous pieces different from all we witness in the Lebanese scene and even the international one.

I was always a fan of Lara Khoury,this pretty petite woman with a shaved head and a huge charisma all around her after stumbling on some of her work.I followed her page on facebook,repeatedly checked her website hoping for some Men’s collection and I even requested a facebook friendship (thing I rarely do) thinking she’ll reject it,but to my surprise she accepted it.


Lately I received an invitation from her to the event of her New Fall Collection launching “Insectified” .


I was really surprised by the Insect inspiration and thought the collection’s gonna be some unwearable weird pieces like many of the fashion designers that create pieces of cloth to be worn only in catwalks.

During my teenage,when my sister and I wanted to describe something ugly we used to refer to insects so I was exited to see what will come out of this collection.

Her studio where the collection was exhibited was in Gemmayzeh  a small and humble but warm and charming Studio.It was buzzing with the Beirut Hipster scene and a couple of Mondaine Dames.

My friend and I were greeted by Lara with a large generous smile who introduced us to her collection hanging from the ceiling with chains and hooks.


I was mesmerized with what I saw  of beautiful dresses,skirts,shirts…. They were really inspired by insects and were different in a beautiful way from any Lebanese Fashion Designer’s work.


Every piece was a Gem,a unique piece of forms and colors.A beautiful insect,not Butterfly(I don’t like Butterflies),but a strange beautiful insect that you have never encountered.

The collection Jewelry were wonderfully designed for Khoury by Roula Dfouni.Great pieces of futuristic insects that complete the collection’s charm.


Forget the Yohji Yamamoto,the Alexander Wang,the Martin Margiela.Larak Khoury is the next big thing.

Keep an eye on this young beautiful talented girl,you’re gonna hear a lot about her and she’s gonna go places.

Dear Robert,

Yesterday I was participating in the protest against the illegal self prolongation of the Lebanese parliament and while I was there I thought Of you.

I know well you don’t resemble most of the parliamentary heard and that you’re a decent civil person who believes in institutions and law.A man who spoke but wise words during his term and never took but decent decisions.A man loved and respected by Tripolians.

I’m not saying that because you’re a friend and that I know you and your  family personally well but maybe I’m saying that because I know you well and I know your awesome wife Hala whose great deeds for Tripoli and Tripoliains can’t be numbered and who fits the shoes of a First Lady in a non confessional system.She’s simply a treasure to Tripoli.


Until….Until you voted for the prolongation of the term of the parliament.

I was shocked and disappointing in you for I never expected from you in particular such an action.

But humans make mistakes sometimes.Big deadly mistakes,like the one you did.But because I know you well I know it isn’t late for retaliation.Because I know well that deep down inside of you,you know that you did wrong by not respecting the law and allowing you co-ex-MPs to steal our votes.

It’s not to late for you to be the Robert Fadel we know once again and step out of the heard of puppet MPs.and resign from the bunch of losers  and reject the illegal prolongationand the stealing of our voices and be the hero we all expect you to be.