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A Requiem For Beirut  
User currently offlineComorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4869 posts, RR: 16
Posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1190 times:

A Lebanese-American Banker friend invited me to vacation in Beirut last month and he was so proud that his country was again becoming the Paris of the East, a budding tourist destination. He said his cousin owned a five-star hotel, and would be well-looked after if I went.

But I didn't go, and I guess it's all gone now.

It is so sad to see not just buildings, but hopes and dreams dashed to pieces. Without taking sides (plenty of other threads for that) I do hope that the Lebanese will be able to build their country back again. What a terrible misfortune to befall a innocent civilian population...and where will they find the $10B to rebuild their country?

I do hope the nations of the world will join in generously in the reconstruction of this land.

24 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePulkovokiwi From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1178 times:

The French have always had great affinity with the Lebanese perhaps they will be able to help for a start. Establishment of an effective defence force would also be could to prevent a recurrence.

User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1167 times:

Quoting Comorin (Thread starter):
It is so sad to see not just buildings, but hopes and dreams dashed to pieces. Without taking sides (plenty of other threads for that) I do hope that the Lebanese will be able to build their country back again. What a terrible misfortune to befall a innocent civilian population...and where will they find the $10B to rebuild their country?

I do hope the nations of the world will join in generously in the reconstruction of this land.

Before we rebuild Lebanon, I hope we empower their government so that they can prevent the situation that prompted the current exchange from ever happening again.


User currently offlineComorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4869 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1139 times:

All good points, though I'm hoping that this thread provides an non-political outlet for for those that just feel bad for civilian Beirut - hard to do that on the other threads!

User currently offlineME AVN FAN From Switzerland, joined May 2002, 13920 posts, RR: 25
Reply 4, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1134 times:

Quoting Comorin (Thread starter):
Beirut last month and he was so proud that his country was again becoming the Paris of the East, a budding tourist destination. He said his cousin owned a five-star hotel, and would be well-looked after if I went.

But I didn't go, and I guess it's all gone now.

it is NOT all gone now. A lot of damage, true, but most still intact. And Beirut will re-start and move up further.

Quoting Halls120 (Reply 3):
Before we rebuild Lebanon, I hope we empower their government so that they can prevent the situation

No, the rebuilding has to start immediately. And what do you mean by "we" ? it will be the Lebanese with assistance from outside investors.

Quoting Comorin (Thread starter):
and where will they find the $10B to rebuild their country?

the amount needed is difficult to estimate anyway, and will not be needed in one push, but gradually. If the matter in the South gets under control somehow, investors will be even more ready to get into business then previously


User currently offlineComorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4869 posts, RR: 16
Reply 5, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1126 times:

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 5):
it is NOT all gone now. A lot of damage, true, but most still intact. And Beirut will re-start and move up further.

That's good to know! But there will be the long-term effects of lost tourism and investment. The first will be harder to overcome than the second, which will need sovereign loan guarantees.


User currently offlineME AVN FAN From Switzerland, joined May 2002, 13920 posts, RR: 25
Reply 6, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 1119 times:

Quoting Comorin (Reply 8):
the long-term effects of lost tourism and investment. The first will be harder to overcome than the second, which will need sovereign loan guarantees.

well, such losses in tourism have been seen in the region repeatedly in recent decades. In 2002, you could stay in the Ramses Hilton in Cairo for just 45 US-Dollars, and in luxury hotels in Dubai for 55, due to the heavy after effects of 11Sep01, and a year later you had to "re-plan" into "lesser" hotels already.
-
Tunisia, which also saw a return of tourism in 2003, had a terrorist attack against a synagogue in about 2003 or 04 which lead to a drastic reduction of tourism for a full your, until tourism recovered in 2006 .
-
In case of Beirut, absolute priority will be given upon the repair of the airport and the seaport, as they are vital for all fields of the economy


User currently offlineVirginFlyer From New Zealand, joined Sep 2000, 4537 posts, RR: 42
Reply 7, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 1091 times:

Quoting Comorin (Reply 3):
All good points, though I'm hoping that this thread provides an non-political outlet for for those that just feel bad for civilian Beirut - hard to do that on the other threads!

Good thought.

Everyone, please keep this thread for non-political comments about the civilians of Beirut, and the future for the city.

Political commentary will be removed - there are other threads for that.

V/F

[Edited 2006-07-20 06:29:11]


"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
User currently offlineLY7E7 From Israel, joined Jun 2004, 2232 posts, RR: 19
Reply 8, posted (7 years 9 months 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 1043 times:

The heart of touristic Beirut is left intact. IDF mostly tagets souther Beirut - shia neigbourhoods that host hezbollah HQs. So I believe it won't be long after the situation is over for tourists to return, an Lebanon surely will need their money.


2 things are endless: ignorance and space
User currently offlineComorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4869 posts, RR: 16
Reply 9, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 999 times:

I'm having some difficulty reconciling the images on CNN of the destruction of bridges, oil tanks and so on with some of the more re-assuring posts so far (LY7E7, ME AVN FAN) , and also the reports of 140,000 Lebanese refugees streaming into Syria. Does anybody have contacts on the ground ? From what I understand, is all the bombing only in the southern suburbs? maybe I'll check out the blogs...

Anyway, here's hoping the suffering comes to an end soon, and the civilians can resume their interrupted lives.

Quoting VirginFlyer (Reply 7):
Political commentary will be removed - there are other threads for that.

Thank you.  thumbsup 


User currently offlineNAV20 From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 9909 posts, RR: 36
Reply 10, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 990 times:

Quoting Comorin (Reply 9):
and also the reports of 140,000 Lebanese refugees streaming into Syria. Does anybody have contacts on the ground ? From what I understand, is all the bombing only in the southern suburbs?

Apparently there are continuing airstrikes across the whole of South Lebanon, not just the Beirut suburbs. Transport in particular is being targeted. The UN currently estimates up to 500,000 people 'displaced' so far:-

http://www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2006/s1692426.htm



"Once you have flown, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards.." - Leonardo da Vinci
User currently offlineBravo45 From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2165 posts, RR: 11
Reply 11, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 986 times:

I hope Lebanon build up its land, air and naval defences before any other major reconstruction. Just in case...
Good luck Lebanon, I am sure they will rise again.


User currently offlineNAV20 From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 9909 posts, RR: 36
Reply 12, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 968 times:

Paul McGeough is a notable correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald and the Melbourne Age, and is on the spot - video interview with shots of damage in Beirut etc, here:-

http://media.theage.com.au/?rid=2055...H&ie=1&player=wm7&rate=186&flash=1



"Once you have flown, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards.." - Leonardo da Vinci
User currently offlineME AVN FAN From Switzerland, joined May 2002, 13920 posts, RR: 25
Reply 13, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 947 times:

Quoting Comorin (Reply 9):
re-assuring posts

"re-assuring" in regard to the future. AND in view of the size of Beirut. I however have to admit that I after the attacks against Beirut Airport was fuming with anger and rage. And when reading a full report about the southern quarters of Beirut, not beautiful quarters but apartment blocks with homes for thousands, and the unbelievable destruction there, and remembering to have driven through these quarters last October, and also have been in one or two shops there and in a cafe, I was sad and angry. But personal emotions lead nowhere. My personal wish is that the whole mess, all these attacks against Beirut AND that "blockade" are stopped, so that the economy can re-start and the re-building begin. What Lebanon needs is NOT "corridors" for refugees out, but "corridors" for trade and travel out and in, and that NOW. And whenever it is obvious that tourists at this moment need to have the possibility to return home, THE emphasis is and has to be to REVIVE tourism as quickly as possible.


User currently offlineBeaucaire From Syria, joined Sep 2003, 5252 posts, RR: 25
Reply 14, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 930 times:

The Lebanese population has found their "instincts de guerre" behavior again-that's what french TV journalists report.
Some people seem-despite heavy shelling and destruction-relatively immune to the war and just behave like any other day.
You still see the old men sitting sipping their cafe on sidewalk shops,other dare to do their jogging,others just try to refuse to fall into misery -feelings and behave just like nothing happened.
In German you call this "Trotz-reaktion" or just a reaction of resistance to what-s happening to their country.
Everybody here in France admires the Lebanese for their indestructible sens of motivation to re-build and start all over again.I am sure France will assist Lebanon particularly to rebuild it's infrastructure .But money is just one aspect-providing the Lebanese with moral support is important as well.It would be a disaster to give them the impression they are left alone in their misery.
I do see the pain of Israelis who suffer from Hezbollah strikes as well -but there is no common comparison with what's going on in Lebanon and Israel.
I wish the Europeans would stop just paying lip-service to support Lebanon and dig deep in their budgets to help rebuild.The country deserves to become the Swiss of the Middle East again!
May their future leaders have enough brains to seek a peaceful settlement with their neighbours.



Please respect animals - don't eat them...
User currently offlineRolfen From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 1796 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 915 times:

Quoting LY7E7 (Reply 8):
The heart of touristic Beirut is left intact. IDF mostly tagets souther Beirut - shia neigbourhoods that host hezbollah HQs. So I believe it won't be long after the situation is over for tourists to return, an Lebanon surely will need their money.

I feel it will be more then one year before toursim comes back to this level, the image of lebanon has tremendously suffered.
Most of all, the investment and stability reputation has taken a big hit.
And of course... assuming that all this destruction will stop soon, which is not so sure.



rolf
User currently offlineFrequentflyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 736 posts, RR: 3
Reply 16, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 912 times:

Quoting Pulkovokiwi (Reply 1):
Establishment of an effective defence force would also be could to prevent a recurrence.

Well that would help. Right now Lebanon has proven not to be sovereign, and unable to defend itself.

Good thing to be optimistic about the future, however I am not sure you can realistically relativize the impact of current operations on infrastructure and people's -read prospective tourists- minds.



Take off and live
User currently offlineComorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4869 posts, RR: 16
Reply 17, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 912 times:

NAV20, thanks for the links! I wish I knew how to pronounce "McGeough" though  Wink

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 13):
THE emphasis is and has to be to REVIVE tourism as quickly as possible.

You're right. The tourists have to return first so that the world knows its safe out there. Tourism and Cross-Border Investment are closely linked, as both are based on perceptions of stability and safety.


User currently offlineNAV20 From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 9909 posts, RR: 36
Reply 18, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 894 times:

Quoting Comorin (Reply 17):
NAV20, thanks for the links! I wish I knew how to pronounce "McGeough" though

Believe it or not, 'MgYeo', Comorin. Thank my Irish mother for teaching me some of the Irish language!

Quoting ME AVN FAN (Reply 13):
And when reading a full report about the southern quarters of Beirut, not beautiful quarters but apartment blocks with homes for thousands, and the unbelievable destruction there, and remembering to have driven through these quarters last October, and also have been in one or two shops there and in a cafe, I was sad and angry.

ME AVN FAN, and others with links to the Lebanon, we mostly dive straight into politics/technicalities on threads like this. But let me say, 'for the avoidance of doubt' as the lawyers say, that I am deeply ashamed of the way 'The West', led by Israel and the United States, is treating not just the Lebanese, but all the peoples of the Middle East; and the way that Australia, while not playing a big part, is undeniably helping in the process.

I've had the luck to travel to most parts of the world; and meet and work with people from pretty well all the rest. My abiding impression is that, wherever you go and whoever you meet, people are very largely just 'people' - and just want to be left alone and given a 'fair shake' to allow them to get on with their lives. If you treat them fairly and openly, 99% of the time you receive fairness and openness in return.

But if you start treating them unjustly, they will start to resist. And, once they start, they won't give up until their grievances are redressed; whatever it costs, and however long it takes.

It's always seemed to me a pity that so many politicians don't realise that simple fact about people.



"Once you have flown, you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards.." - Leonardo da Vinci
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 19, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 878 times:

There is one word that never seems to be mentioned, the R word - reparations.

The legalities might be tricky, but if one country were to rule in favour of Lebanon on that issue, it could make life tricky for companies and be as effective as if there were an enforceable treaty that required reparations.

I don't suppose Israel is going to be responsive to the reparations concept, which is ironic given their own history of demanding reparations payments.


User currently offlineLy001 From Israel, joined Jul 2006, 52 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 878 times:

i hope stability will be in the region and both sides will live in quite and peace. sounds easy but difficult to implement. maybe one day, who knows

User currently offlineBeaucaire From Syria, joined Sep 2003, 5252 posts, RR: 25
Reply 21, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 863 times:

Quoting Ly001 (Reply 20):
i hope stability will be in the region and both sides will live in quite and peace. sounds easy but difficult to implement. maybe one day, who knows

The funny thing is that usually Arabs and Jews don't have cultural problems when meeting on "neutral" territories .In Paris you have quite a many Arabs ans Jews mixed in certain areas and there is no problems with racism among them.Also in Morocco,Tunisia,Turkey..
Everybody with a normal mindset can only call for hold of attacks and a negotiated solution.
That saying,I re-endorse my respect for the Lebanese people and are saddened
to see what is happening.



Please respect animals - don't eat them...
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 22, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 853 times:

Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 21):
The funny thing is that usually Arabs and Jews don't have cultural problems when meeting on "neutral" territories .In Paris you have quite a many Arabs ans Jews mixed in certain areas and there is no problems with racism among them.Also in Morocco,Tunisia,Turkey..
Everybody with a normal mindset can only call for hold of attacks and a negotiated solution.

It is not really odd at all, the problem is a dispute over the land where the Palestinians lived until 1948, or 1968 as the case may be.


User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 23, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 843 times:

The Saturday 22 July Sydney Morning Herald contains an article on why action against Lebanon at that time was a mistake

http://www.smh.com.au/news/opinion/i...59.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap1

If the tail end of that gets lost, it can be obtained from:

http://www.smh.com.au/news/opinion/index.html

It presents an argument in support of the proposition:

"With the wisdom of Solomon, Israeli leaders would have held off responding to provocation, writes Akiva Eldar.

THERE is an assortment of telltale signs of the Iranian-Syrian scheme, executed by Hamas and Hezbollah, to ignite the Arab-Israeli arena. All of the signs converge on the G8 gathering in Russia. It is hard to tell which is more serious - that the political and military leadership of Israel saw the signs and disregarded them, or that it did not see them at all."


User currently offlineOD720 From Lebanon, joined Feb 2003, 1924 posts, RR: 33
Reply 24, posted (7 years 9 months 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 835 times:

I'm a regular visitor to the southern suburbs of the city. I used to go there at least 3 times a week, do some part time work at a clinic there.
They say the whole area is a mess now. I've seen so many footages on TV of the area but I still do not recognize neither the area nor the buildings. The destruction is such that the neighborhood I know quite well is unrecognizable.

I will go back there once they agree on a cease fire.

As a regular spotter at BEY, I think I will see extenssive destruction in that area as well. They say some of the bridges are bombed and destroyed. Spotting may become a thing of the past as well.

The rest of the city is almost intact. Roads, bridges, buildings, shops, malls, banks are functioning. I may be mistaken but as far as I know, no movies are being showed at major theaters.

One big shame is the bridge at Mdeirej, which was completely bombed today morning and the tall columns were destroyed. The bridge is located in the mountains, on the Beirut-Dmascus highway and they say it's the tallest in the middle east. Building it was an engineering challenge and now it has to be done all over again. It was bombed realtively lightly a week ago and was made unuseable but today they completely destroyed it. I don't know why.

They say, destruction is disastrous in the southern regions and the Baalbek area.

The Beirut port has suffered little damage, at least so far.

Internet, cell phones, electicity, water supplies have not been effected in a major way yet.
Food supplies and fuel are still available. It is said that there is some shortage on diesel.

Recovery will take at least a few years.

[Edited 2006-07-21 19:12:44]

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