Listening to the Wind of Change …

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I consider myself lucky as in few hours, I will be listening for the second time to the “Wind of change” performed live by the legendary Scorpions.

Will I be more than lucky someday, and listen to the real wind of change on a glory night, in my country?

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You care for the Army? Change your votes

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Lebanese are so good in sharing statuses and photos on Facebook each time soldiers from Lebanese Army are martyred. Unfortunately, this kind of support is not really effective and do not change the situation.

An effective support would be not to vote for the same current political parties, which never gave the Lebanese Army an unconditional support and a green light to deal seriously with EVERYONE holding illegal arms.

After all, they all proved that the Lebanese Army is not their main priority.

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Ramiz Dyoub sold the dream of a nation

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Exactly 1 year from now, I was full of hope about Lebanon reaching the World Cup, a dream that I always thought impossible. I rushed to Beirut Sports City stadium on that sunny Sunday to watch the game against Qatar, the first step to reach the big dream after we qualified to the final round in the Asian qualifiers. Excitement was all over the place, especially that Lebanon managed to dominate the game and was very close to open the score. 60,000 were cheering for every ball until …

Ramez Dyoub decided it’s time to sell the game by doing this.

Some considered it was an accident, but his back-pass was too strange to be accidental. Few months later, it was all clear. Many Lebanese players were accused of match fixing, Ramiz Dyoub and Mahmoud el Ali getting the most severe punishments as they were banned for life from playing football.

I believe this punishment is not enough and should be harder so it can be a lesson to whomever might think of betraying his country in such a cheap way.

Here’s what Theo Bucker, who turned down huge offers for the love of Lebanon, commented after knowing about the scandal:

Personally I’m very disappointed with a couple of guys I really trusted. Ramez was a senior player, he was a player who, after the game my wife said he did something very bad, I stood up for and told her she must be mad, I put my hand in the fire for him. 

It’s a funny world we live in, what to do? For us this situation was clear a few months ago, directly after the first match against Qatar. By watching the film, you can tell by watching our friend Ramez he tried several times to play the striker through on goal until he was successful, that was the first time we thought something might be wrong.

It took me a while to believe myself, because I thought there was no way these guys would ever do something like this. Here we have the proof, if you see how he gestures for the ball all the time and then makes a bad pass, several times with real intention. Of course, (he says he’s innocent) now they might find out what they have been doing.

It is so sad that corruption in our country got even into sports fields and affected the national team.

Posted by Vincent Eid
Posted in Sports | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Lebanon-Cyprus Bridge: A Lie?

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The recent article about a possible bridge connecting Lebanon to Cyprus dominated Lebanese websites and social networks in the past 2 weeks as it was shared more than 12K times. The article was firstly published in Ad-diyar newspaper in Arabic, than on Beirutnightlife website in English without citing the source. Unfortunately, it was full of mistakes which question the professionalism of these media.

The original article states that:

A U.S. based company presented a project to connect Cyprus to Lebanon with a 150km highway/bridge from Dbayeh to Limassol. Drivers can reach Cyprus from Lebanon within 80 minutes. Passengers between the two countries will pay a fee to use the bridge between the two countries and will be a great opportunity to promote tourism and bilateral economic ties.

The proposal also suggests that after 10 years from implementing the project the bridge will be owned by Lebanon and Cyprus. The project will also include a path for ships, similar to the bridge between KSA and Bahrain which is 14 times larger than the proposed highway between Lebanon and Cyprus.

Some true facts:

  1.  The minimum distance between Dbayeh and Limassol is 240Km and not 150Km. So one has to drive with a regular speed of 200 Km/Hr to arrive in 80 minutes.
  2. The bridge between KSA and Bahrain – King Fahed Causeway – is of 25Km length,  which is 0.10 times – and not 14 times – larger than the proposed highway.
  3. The longest over-water bridge in the world is the Hangzhou Bay in China and is 36Km long. It costed 1.70 billion USD and 600 experts spent 9 years to finalize it in 2007 . So I guess a bridge between Lebanon and Cyprus could take around 90 years to be done.

That said, such a project is unlikely to happen in my opinion and is just another fib.

Posted By Vincent Eid
Posted in Rumours | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Lebanese citizens have no protection under the law. The wealthy developers can smash us like ants !

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Those were the last words of “Habib Battah” in his article about how he got physically assaulted by District S contractor’s staff, just because he took a picture of the historical ruins at the construction site. The ruins were destroyed so a multi-million dollar luxury apartment project situated near Martyrs Square can progress.

When Habib went to report the incident, the police officers told him to “Forget It”. I believe this is the saddest and most flagrant part of the story, as it officially indicates that we are living under “the law of the jungle”.

District S is owned by a Lebanese firm called Estate. I hope that the three shareholders of Estate apologize publicly to Habib and take actions against the staff involved in the incident.

Full story here.

Posted by Vincent Eid
Posted in Injustice | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lebanese Passport: Only better than Sri Lanka, but the most expensive in the world ?!!!

Ranked 219 over 220 passports existing in the world, the Lebanese passport is surprisingly the most expensive one worldwide.

With only 5,296,760 Km2 that someone holding a Lebanese passport can visit without a visa, a Lebanese citizen should pay a world high 40$ ( and 70$ if you need it the same day ) to get that famous blue passport for 1 year. On the other hand, Danish and Japanese passports for example, allow for more than 73,000,000  Km2,  which is more than 15 times than our passport. But a Danish pays 10.4$ for a year ( 104$ for a 10 year passport), while a Japanese pays 13.5$ (135$ for 10 years) .

A simple search on Google about the most expensive passport in the world will point out to the Turkish passport, that was, in fact, the most expensive one, before its cost was halved in June 2010 after increasing public demands, leaving the first position for the Lebanese passport. A Turkish now gets a 10 year passport for 247$.

Such a public demand is far from happening in Lebanon where people are too busy getting in conflicts with each others, and supporting to death their political leaders. Moreover, the majority of Lebanese ministers and deputies have dual citizenship and therefore do not give a shit about the Lebanese passport condition, so we can’t expect neither from any interior minister to lower the passport fees, nor from any foreign affairs minister to improve the passport ranking through negotiations with other countries anytime soon.

It’s Lebanon, where amazing happens.

Sources:
Passport ranking
Passport Prices1
Passport Prices2
 
Posted by Vincent
Posted in Corruption | Tagged , , , , , , , | 54 Comments