Lebanon arrests five Syrians, one Palestinian suspect in Beirut bombings: security source | Reuters – {World solidarity with victims absent but progress made finding perpetrators.}

Lebanese authorities arrested five Syrians and a Palestinian in connection with the twin suicide bombings in central Beirut on Thursday that killed 43 people, a senior security source said on Saturday.The bombings in a busy residential and commercial area that is a stronghold for Lebanese Shi’ite movement Hezbollah were claimed by Islamic State.”Within 24 hours the network was arrested in the fastest uncovering of a bombing incident in the country,” the source said.

Source: Lebanon arrests five Syrians, one Palestinian suspect in Beirut bombings: security source | Reuters

Right way for refugees with Poland′s new Left | Europe | DW.COM | 14.11.2015

And yet for Swist, the real breakthrough was the emergence of a young, new leftist force, one with no ties to the old communist guard, and with a real social agenda to fight intolerance. Razem, or Together, the newest kid on the Polish political landscape, rose fast: It failed to win a seat in the Sejm, the lower chamber of parliament, but received enough support to bring it government funding.”I hope that the standards set by Razem will become standards in politics,” says Maciek Mandelt, another Nomada community worker.New ally in the fight against intolerance?”It’s time for a new Left in Poland, one that is no longer associated with communism,” says Katka Reszke, a Wroclaw-born documentary filmmaker working on the post-communist Jewish experience.”Because Poland has been homogeneous for so long, the refugee crisis will always trigger extreme reactions,” she says. “But what I read and hear in post-election discussions is very promising: People want to get involved, many young people who are making it a mission to fight xenophobia.”

Source: Right way for refugees with Poland′s new Left | Europe | DW.COM | 14.11.2015

Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad denounce Paris attacks | News | DW.COM | 15.11.2015

The leaders of Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad all issued statements Saturday denouncing the attacks in Paris, where 129 people were killed and more than 350 people were wounded on Friday night.Dozens of Syrian rebel groups have also denounced the attacks in a joint online statement as “against human values.”

Source: Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad denounce Paris attacks | News | DW.COM | 15.11.2015

Geena Davis on Gender Equality in Hollywood, Hillary Clinton, ‘Frozen’ and Bradley Cooper – Hollywood Reporter

Geena Davis is making it her mission to educate Hollywood in gender equality.For years the actor has been very vocal about the dire need for equal gender representation in movies and has backed up her words with research from her Institute on Gender in Media. A few days after giving a keynot speech at ArcLight’s Women in Entertainment event, Davis spoke with The Hollywood Reporter in a telephone interview.Davis explained that she specifically collects data on family movies because she wants to change what children see as they are growing up and creating their first impressions of gender in society.”We are training kids from the very beginning, from the first contact they have with pop culture, that girls don’t take up half the space,” said Davis, speaking about a study her institute did which discovered female characters make up only 17 percent of crowd scenes.

Source: Geena Davis on Gender Equality in Hollywood, Hillary Clinton, ‘Frozen’ and Bradley Cooper – Hollywood Reporter

RIP Adel Termos… A Hero from Lebanon


Rather than running for his life, Adel sacrificed it to save

This is Adel Termos, a young father of two. 


Adel spotted the second ISIS
suicide attacker heading towards the Mosque in Burj Al Barajneh, Beirut’s
Southern Suburb, Lebanon, to blow himself up, and take100s of lives gathered to
Adel ran and tackled the bomber who quickly dispatched his bombs taking
both of his life and Adel’s with him. 


Adel sacrificed his life for the sake of 100s others. 


Adel… May your Precious and Heroic soul Rest in Peace.

From Beirut, This Is Paris: In A World That Doesn’t Care About Arab Lives 

When a friend told me past midnight to check the news about Paris, I had no idea that I would be looking at a map of a city I love, delineating locations undergoing terrorist attacks simultaneously. I zoomed in on that map closer; one of the locations was right to where I had stayed when I was there in 2013, down that same boulevard.

The more I read, the higher the number of fatalities went. It was horrible; it was dehumanizing; it was utterly and irrevocably hopeless: 2015 was ending the way it started – with terrorists attack occuring in Lebanon and France almost at the same time, in the same context of demented creatures spreading hate and fear and death wherever they went.

I woke up this morning to two broken cities. My friends in Paris who only yesterday were asking what was happening in Beirut were now on the opposite side of the line. Both our capitals were broken and scarred, old news to us perhaps but foreign territory to them.

Today, 128 innocent civilians in Paris are no longer with us. Yesterday, 45 innocent civilians in Beirut were no longer with us. The death tolls keep rising, but we never seem to learn.

Amid the chaos and tragedy of it all, one nagging thought wouldn’t leave my head. It’s the same thought that echoes inside my skull at every single one of these events, which are becoming sadly very recurrent: we don’t really matter.

When my people were blown to pieces on the streets of Beirut on November 12th, the headlines read: explosion in Hezbollah stronghold, as if delineating the political background of a heavily urban area somehow placed the terrorism in context.

When my people died on the streets of Beirut on November 12th, world leaders did not rise in condemnation. There were no statements expressing sympathy with the Lebanese people. There was no global outrage that innocent people whose only fault was being somewhere at the wrong place and time should never have to go that way or that their families should never be broken that way or that someone’s sect or political background should never be a hyphen before feeling horrified at how their corpses burned on cement. Obama did not issue a statement about how their death was a crime against humanity; after all what is humanity but a subjective term delineating the worth of the human being meant by it?

What happened instead was an American senator wannabe proclaiming how happy he was that my people died, that my country’s capital was being shattered, that innocents were losing their lives and that the casualties included people of all kinds of kinds.

Everett Stern - 1
Everett Stern - 2


When my people died, no country bothered to lit up its landmarks in the colors of their flag. Even Facebook didn’t bother with making sure my people were marked safe, trivial as it may be. So here’s your Facebook safety check: we’ve, as of now, survived all of Beirut’s terrorist attacks.

Paris Attacks France Flag Colors

When my people died, they did not send the world in mourning. Their death was but an irrelevant fleck along the international news cycle, something that happens in those parts of the world.

And you know what, I’m fine with all of it. Over the past year or so, I’ve come to terms with being one of those whose lives don’t matter. I’ve come to accept it and live with it.

Expect the next few days to exhibit yet another rise of Islamophobia around the world. Expect pieces about how extremism has no religion and about how the members of ISIS are not true Muslims, and they sure are not, because no person with any inkling of morality would do such things. ISIS plans for Islamophobic backlashes so it can use the backlash to point its hellish finger and tell any susceptible mind that listens: look, they hate you.

And few are those who are able to rise above.

Expect the next few days to have Europe try and cope with a growing popular backlash against the refugees flowing into its lands, pointing its fingers at them and accusing them of causing the night of November 13th in Paris. If only Europe knew, though, that the night of November 13 in Paris has been every single night of the life of those refugees for the past two years. But sleepless nights only matter when your country can get the whole world to light up in its flag color.

The more horrifying part of the reaction to the Paris terrorist attacks, however, is that some Arabs and Lebanese were more saddened by what was taking place there than what took place yesterday or the day before in their own backyards. Even among my people, there is a sense that we are not as important, that our lives are not as worthy and that, even as little as it may be, we do not deserve to have our dead collectively mourned and prayed for.

It makes sense, perhaps, in the grand sense of a Lebanese population that’s more likely to visit Paris than Dahyeh to care more about the former than about the latter, but many of the people I know who are utterly devastated by the Parisian mayhem couldn’t give a rat’s ass about what took place at a location 15 minutes away from where they lived, to people they probably encountered one day as they walked down familiar streets.

We can ask for the world to think Beirut is as important as Paris, or for Facebook to add a “safety check” button for us to use daily, or for people to care about us. But the truth of the matter is, we are a people that doesn’t care about itself to begin. We call it habituation, but it’s really not. We call it the new normal, but if this normality then let it go to hell.

In the world that doesn’t care about Arab lives, Arabs lead the front lines.


Filed under: Lebanon, Thoughts Tagged: Arabs, Beirut, death, France, ISIS, Lebanon, Paris, terrorism

Cal State Long Beach Student Killed In Paris Attacks: LAist

The L.A. Times reports that Nohemi Gonzalez, from El Monte, was attending an exchange program at the Strate School of Design, according to a statement posted on the school’s Facebook page. Strate’s director, Dominique Sciamma, wrote (in translation):Yesterday, with unbridled violence, women and men are dead, dead simply for living in a free space. Others will continue to be marked for their lives, in their body, their spirit. I hoped with all my heart that no one in our community had been touched in some way by these criminal acts. It is unfortunately not the case. One of our international exchange students was the victim in yesterday’s massacre. Her name was Nohemi Gonzalez. We join in the pain of her family and relatives. There are others who have been injured and are now out of danger. We wish them the courage to overcome such a hardship. Our response must always be the same: Live

Source: Cal State Long Beach Student Killed In Paris Attacks: LAist


RIP and bless her soul and all those who died in Paris and in Beirut this week from terrorist attacks.