There is a war going on in the Middle East - the least we can do is stay well informed. Here are some messages we received recently and want to share with you: testimonies from the civilian front line, arab news updates and links for action and protest.

this page brings posts of July 22.
most recent posts are here

follow these links for previous posts:
July
21 / 20 / 19 / 18 / 17 / 16 / 15 / 11 / 8 / 6

From: Emily Jacir
Date: Saturday 22 July 2006 21:16
Subject: U.S. speeds up bomb deliveries to Israel

I am horrified and sick to my stomach.
I feel like throwing up.
The Israelis are massing on the border, all the foreigners are leaving and now the Americans are rushing in weapons.....I am so fucking scared....
what are they planning? what are they planning?
I can't even describe to you the dread and fear I feel inside me....

Over 300 Lebanese civilians have been killed. Air attacks have destroyed all parts of the civilian infrastructure and today targeted transmission towers for television stations and mobile phones in the north. 500,000 have been forced to leave their homes and what do the Americans do??
Send a peace envoy?
Support a cease-fire?
NO!
They send WEAPONS!
When will the American people take responsibility?
Do they not realize that their hands are dripping with blood?
They speak about it as if America is not involved.
I even just saw a poll on CNN where they asked the American people if they should get involved or not!!!???? How laughable is that?!!!!
AMERICA IS IN INVOLVED!

There truly are no words to describe this move by the American Administration.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/07/22/world/middleeast/22military.html

July 22, 2006

U.S. Speeds Up Bomb Delivery for the Israelis

By DAVID S. CLOUD and HELENE COOPER

WASHINGTON, July 21 The Bush administration is rushing a delivery of precision-guided bombs to Israel, which requested the expedited shipment last week after beginning its air campaign against Hezbollah targets in Lebanon, American officials said Friday.

The decision to quickly ship the weapons to Israel was made with relatively little debate within the Bush administration, the officials said. Its disclosure threatens to anger Arab governments and others because of the appearance that the United States is actively aiding the Israeli bombing campaign in a way that could be compared to Irans efforts to arm and resupply Hezbollah.

The munitions that the United States is sending to Israel are part of a multimillion-dollar arms sale package approved last year that Israel is able to draw on as needed, the officials said. But Israels request for expedited delivery of the satellite and laser-guided bombs was described as unusual by some military officers, and as an indication that Israel still had a long list of targets in Lebanon to strike.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Friday that she would head to Israel on Sunday at the beginning of a round of Middle Eastern diplomacy. The original plan was to include a stop to Cairo in her travels, but she did not announce any stops in Arab capitals.

Instead, the meeting of Arab and European envoys planned for Cairo will take place in Italy , Western diplomats said. While Arab governments initially criticized Hezbollah for starting the fight with Israel in Lebanon , discontent is rising in Arab countries over the number of civilian casualties in Lebanon , and the governments have become wary of playing host to Ms. Rice until a cease-fire package is put together.

To hold the meetings in an Arab capital before a diplomatic solution is reached, said Martin S. Indyk, a former American ambassador to Israel, would have identified the Arabs as the primary partner of the United States in this project at a time where Hezbollah is accusing the Arab leaders of providing cover for the continuation of Israels military operation.

The decision to stay away from Arab countries for now is a markedly different strategy from the shuttle diplomacy that previous administrations used to mediate in the Middle East . I have no interest in diplomacy for the sake of returning Lebanon and Israel to the status quo ante, Ms. Rice said Friday. I could have gotten on a plane and rushed over and started shuttling around, and it wouldnt have been clear what I was shuttling to do.

Before Ms. Rice heads to Israel on Sunday, she will join President Bush at the White House for discussions on the Middle East crisis with two Saudi envoys, Saud al-Faisal, the foreign minister, and Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the secretary general of the National Security Council.

The new American arms shipment to Israel has not been announced publicly, and the officials who described the administrations decision to rush the munitions to Israel would discuss it only after being promised anonymity. The officials included employees of two government agencies, and one described the shipment as just one example of a broad array of armaments that the United States has long provided Israel .

One American official said the shipment should not be compared to the kind of an emergency resupply of dwindling Israeli stockpiles that was provided during the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, when an American military airlift helped Israel recover from early Arab victories.

David Siegel, a spokesman for the Israeli Embassy in Washington , said: We have been using precision-guided munitions in order to neutralize the military capabilities of Hezbollah and to minimize harm to civilians. As a rule, however, we do not comment on Israels defense acquisitions.

Israels need for precision munitions is driven in part by its strategy in Lebanon , which includes destroying hardened underground bunkers where Hezbollah leaders are said to have taken refuge, as well as missile sites and other targets that would be hard to hit without laser and satellite-guided bombs.

Pentagon and military officials declined to describe in detail the size and contents of the shipment to Israel , and they would not say whether the munitions were being shipped by cargo aircraft or some other means. But an arms-sale package approved last year provides authority for Israel to purchase from the United States as many as 100 GBU-28s, which are 5,000-pound laser-guided bombs intended to destroy concrete bunkers. The package also provides for selling satellite-guided munitions.

An announcement in 2005 that Israel was eligible to buy the bunker buster weapons described the GBU-28 as a special weapon that was developed for penetrating hardened command centers located deep underground. The document added, The Israeli Air Force will use these GBU-28s on their F-15 aircraft.

American officials said that once a weapons purchase is approved, it is up to the buyer nation to set up a timetable. But one American official said normal procedures usually do not include rushing deliveries within days of a request. That was done because Israel is a close ally in the midst of hostilities, the official said.

Although Israel had some precision guided bombs in its stockpile when the campaign in Lebanon began, the Israelis may not have taken delivery of all the weapons they were entitled to under the 2005 sale.

Israel said its air force had dropped 23 tons of explosives Wednesday night alone in Beirut , in an effort to penetrate what was believed to be a bunker used by senior Hezbollah officials.

A senior Israeli official said Friday that the attacks to date had degraded Hezbollahs military strength by roughly half, but that the campaign could go on for two more weeks or longer. We will stay heavily with the air campaign, he said. Theres no time limit. We will end when we achieve our goals.

The Bush administration announced Thursday a military equipment sale to Saudi Arabia , worth more than $6 billion, a move that may in part have been aimed at deflecting inevitable Arab government anger at the decision to supply Israel with munitions in the event that effort became public.

On Friday, Bush administration officials laid out their plans for the diplomatic strategy that Ms. Rice will pursue. In Rome , the United States will try to hammer out a diplomatic package that will offer Lebanon incentives under the condition that a United Nations resolution, which calls for the disarming of Hezbollah, is implemented.

Diplomats will also try to figure out the details around an eventual international peacekeeping force, and which countries will contribute to it. Germany and Russia have both indicated that they would be willing to contribute forces; Ms. Rice said the United States was unlikely to.

Implicit in the eventual diplomatic package is a cease-fire. But a senior American official said it remained unclear whether, under such a plan, Hezbollah would be asked to retreat from southern Lebanon and commit to a cease-fire, or whether American diplomats might depend on Israels continued bombardment to make Hezbollahs acquiescence irrelevant.

Daniel Ayalon, Israels ambassador to Washington , said that Israel would not rule out an international force to police the borders of Lebanon and Syria and to patrol southern Lebanon , where Hezbollah has had a stronghold. But he said that Israel was first determined to take out Hezbollahs command and control centers and weapons stockpiles.

Thom Shanker contributed reporting for this article.


Yahoo! News
US speeds up bomb deliveries to Israel

Sat Jul 22, 5:51 AM ET

The United States is rushing a delivery of precision-guided bombs to Israel, which requested the expedited shipment last week after beginning its air campaign against Hezbollah targets in Lebanon, citing unnamed US officials.

The decision to expedite the weapons to Israel was made with relatively little debate within the administration of President George W. Bush, the officials said Friday on condition of anonymity.

The New York Times reported Saturday the disclosure threatens to anger Arab governments and others because of the appearance that the United States is actively aiding the Israeli bombing campaign in a way that could be compared to Irans efforts to arm and resupply Hezbollah.

According to the officials, the munitions being sent are part of a multimillion-dollar arms sale package approved last year that Israel is able to draw on as needed.

But Israels request for rush delivery of the satellite- and laser-guided bombs was described as unusual by some military officers, and as an indication that Israel still had a long list of targets in Lebanon to strike, the newspaper said.

The new US arms shipment to Israel has not been announced publicly, and the officials who described the Bush administrations decision to rush the munitions to Israel would discuss it only after being promised anonymity.

Pentagon officials declined to describe in detail the size and contents of the shipment to Israel , and they would not say whether the munitions were being shipped by cargo aircraft or some other means, the Times said.

An arms-sale package approved last year provides authority for Israel to purchase from the United States as many as 100 GBU-28s, which are 5,000-pound (2,268-kilogram) laser-guided bombs intended to destroy concrete bunkers. The package also provides for selling satellite-guided munitions, the newspaper said.

One US official said normal procedures usually do not include rushing deliveries within days of a request. That was done because Israel is a close ally in the midst of hostilities, the official told the Times.

____________________________________________________________________

From : jan ackenhausen
Date : Saturday 22 July 2006 21:04
Subject : lebanon update 22/7

JULY 22 2006 20:44PM - SUBJECT: MAP OF ATTACK

dear friends

for the past 4 days, a number of people and myself have been working on putting together a map of Lebanon that shows the scale of the Israeli attack. It is a work in immediate progress: other than the daily updates, we hope to include the (missing) first three days, add an infrastructure reading and have it downlaodable as a pdf for detailed viewing. well, we needed the image/message to get through to many as fast as possible. this is our humble and quick attempt under such circumstances for now.

it is on

http://lebanonupdates.blogspot.com

check it out and pass it on

 ahmad

new weblinks:

news

information clearing house: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/index.html
radio france international: http://www.rfi.fr/communfr/dynamiques/Podcasting.aspx

blogs

kerblog: http://mazenkerblog.blogspot.com/

stuff

messages from war: http://www.squarevzw.be/war/

--
????

________________________________________________

From : Ashkal Alwan (through jan ackenhausen)
Date : Saturday 22 July 2006 19:59
Subject : Fwd: Apeal for Support

Dear all,

You all know about the current situation in Lebanon . Still, and in spite of these horrific circumstances, many Lebanese artists are trying to produce work, probably as a way of resisting, of rendering their homage to a devastated country. But the problem is that funding for these works is practically non-existent; a lot of you have written, asking us what you could do from where you are- what we need now most of all is financial aid to cover the costs of production of these works (which are mainly video works, that will serve to document the current situation in Lebanon).

If you wish to contribute, kindly send your contributions to:

SOCIETE GENERALE DE BANQUE LIBANAISE (SGBL)
MAIN BRANCH
SIN EL FIL
BEIRUT
SWIFT CODE: SGLILBBX
ACCOUNT NUMBER: 001004360221121016

Hoping that this email finds you in good health,

Sincerely yours
Christine Tohme
Director,
Ashkal Alwan

________________________________________________________________

From : Emily Jacir
Date : Saturday 22 July2006 15:57
Subject : Palestinian citizens of Israel Unprotected and Unwarned + Azmi's excellent article

emily
news from haifa
the rockets hit 50 meters from my mums house, the post office in my neigborhood in haifa is smashed. and my mum left for jaffa..my sister works in the hospital in haifa .
mostly all the injured in haifa are palestinians...i am just against war by default and what does this do?..i didnt have any sleep for a week.
my mum and sister and large family and friends are in haifa ..my deebi part, all my uncles are in bierut...
i call haifa and beirut ...
what realy makes me angry, is the Arab world, the have left Lebanon and Palestine alone....
aissa


Friends -
The media is not covering the fact that Palestinians are under attack in their cities and towns...Nazareth, Haifa, Majd il Krum....their numbers are often included as "Israeli victims" or "Israeli deaths".....
There is a lack of bunkers, shelters and alarms for all the Arab villages inside Israel .
Palestinians inside the 1948 boundaries are citizens of the state of Israel . The Israelis like to call them "Israeli Arabs".
Many obviously have relatives throughout Lebanon due to the Israeli expulsion of Palestinians in 1948.
Often forgotten by the rest of the world, unable to travel or visit Arab countries because of their citizenship, they are completely abandoned...

Today I am including an excellent article at the end of this email by one of my FAVORITE Palestinian leaders writing from inside Israel .
- Azmi Bishara - Palestinian from Nazareth .
His article is entitled "Blackmail by Bombs"

Here are some links to websites of Palestinians on the inside....fil dakhil...

http://www.arabs48.com
http://www.aljabha.org
http://www.assennara.net
http://www.panet.co.il

We are one.
Salamaat
Emily




http://www.imemc.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=20200&Itemid=1
Palestinian Citizens of Israel Unprotected and Unwarned: 2 Children killed in Nazareth
Until the deaths of the children, the media had demonstrably ignored the bombs and missiles that have landed on Druze and Arab communities and the despair of those citizens has not been heard. 
Home Front Command does not publish its announcements in Arabic, and the Palestinian towns themselves don't qualify for government aid for being in the "line of fire.".  At times of war the state deals only with the Jewish home front

Nazareth: No one told us, the Arabs, to take shelter
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3278550,00.html

Israel's Arab citizens caught in a war they never wanted
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/article1183353.ece


http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2006/804/op1.htm
Blackmail by bombs
Azmi Bishara.

Any comparison between Olmert's and Nasrallah's political rhetoric must conclude that the latter is the more rational. His speeches are more consistent with the facts and rely less than Olmert's on religious expressions and allusions. Nasrallah would never dare seal a parliamentary speech with a lengthy prayer, as Olmert did in his latest speech before the Knesset.

Israeli politicians have no cultural or moral edge over resistance leaders. The latter are far less attached to Iran than the former are to the US , and Hizbullah's constituency is less attached to Iran than the organised Jewish community abroad is to Israel . The people who unleashed the brutal war against Lebanon are neither intelligent nor courageous. Quite the opposite; they are mediocrities, cowards and opportunists, but they happen to have military superiority. And they possess the keys to the machinery of a state, a real state, one that is secure in its identity, that has clear national security goals and channels of national mobilisation, as opposed to a long deferred project for statehood and a states built on the fragmentation of national identity. On the other side is a resistance movement operating in the context of a denominationally organised society, a Lebanese government neutralised to everything but sectarianism, and an Arab order parts of which are rooting for Israel to do what it is incapable, or too embarrassed, to do itself, which is to deal with the resistance as a militia because it foregrounds their own lack of national and popular legitimacy.

Israel has nothing to show for ten days of barbaric vandalism and the deliberate targeting of civilians. It cannot claim a single military victory against the Lebanese resistance. It can, though, point proudly to whole residential quarters that have been reduced to rubble, to the burned out hulks and ruins of countless wharfs, factories, bridges, roads, tunnels, electricity generators and civil defence buildings. In terms of explosive and destructive power Israel has thrown an atom bomb on Lebanon , it is the Israeli Hiroshima. True, Israel suffers a paucity of intelligence on the whereabouts of Hizbullah members, which is why it has been targeting the homes of their families. But this does not justify the systematic bombardment of Lebanese society, and the attempts to destroy its economy. This is the epitome of terrorism: the incitement of terror in a civilian populace by unleashing massive violence and destruction against it in an attempt to compel the people's political leaders to act against the Lebanese resistance or to change their positions.

The current Israeli assault against Lebanon has nothing to do with freeing two captured soldiers. That is a purely tangential concern, and Israel will probably agree to a prisoner exchange when the time comes. Of prime concern, on the other hand, is an agenda that has bearings on Lebanese domestic, as well as American agenda for regional, politics. The issue is not why the resistance chose this particular time for its operation. Timing, here, becomes another pretext for vilifying the resistance and justifying the aggression. The fact is that, over the past few months, the resistance made several attempts to capture Israeli soldiers. The difference is that its last attempt succeeded. Also, the Israeli soldiers that died in this
operation were not killed in combat, but rather because their tank rolled over a landmine while pursuing the kidnappers. A more important question is why Israel choose this time to launch a full scale attack?

The timing is an Israeli-American one. And the answer resides with the Arabs and the US , and their inability to implement UN Security Council Resolution 1559 and dismantle the Lebanese resistance with Arab tools. So Israel stepped forward. The only difference between today and the earlier bombardments -- the "Day of Reckoning" and "Grapes of Wrath" between 1993 and 1996 -- is that Syrian forces are no longer present in Lebanon . Instead there is an American-sponsored project for the country, involving the rest of the Arab world, which was to change the structure of government in Lebanon and transform it into an ally of the US , a good neighbour to Israel and a participant in US- oriented alliances in the region.

The project took off following the assassination of Al-Hariri, but in recent months it had run aground as it became increasingly clear that the Arabs had no practical means to keep it afloat. What kept discussions in Beirut from collapsing completely was the fact that the only alternative was internal violence and civil war. But while it was obvious that the talks were useful in keeping violence at bay and, hence, good for the tourist season, they were not helping to advance the American project in Lebanon . It was equally obvious, therefore, that those who wanted to push this project were expecting something to happen -- a US strike against Iran , for example, or an Israeli strike against Lebanon . Given the Iranian option remains currently out of bounds Israel knew it could count on a tacit green light from major Arab powers for its attack against Lebanon, and they did not disappoint it. It was the scope and vehemence of Israel 's actions in Lebanon that came as the surprise. This is neither an Iranian nor a Syrian war.The fist is just being involved in dialogue with the Americans and the second has been trying to avoid a war with Israel for decades.


Israel 's aim is to change the rules of the game between Israel and Lebanon and, therefore, within Lebanon itself. This is the only point of similarity between the current campaign and the war of 1982. The major differences are that, on the negative side, international and regional circumstances favour Israel , while on the positive side the resistance, which is not Palestinian but Lebanese this time, is much stronger and better organised. To these two we can add another, which is that the Lebanese are not heading towards another 17 May; that experience they have put firmly behind them and no one wants to rake it up again. Even after the Syrian withdrawal the Lebanese society has much more positive attitude towards the Lebanese resistance than it had towards the Palestinian resistance, in those days of 1982 a part of the Lebanese people fought on the side of the Israelis. The initiative now lies in the hands of the Lebanese people and the resistance. They, alone, have the ability to thwart the conspiracy.

International delegations will soon appear in Lebanon to reap the fruits of the aggression. They will promise the Lebanese a ceasefire if they implement 1559, saying that there is no longer any excuse for delaying implementation now that the Israeli army has demonstrated the consequences of non- implementation.

Roed-Larsen's visit was not a fact-finding mission. Sending Roed-Larsen was in itself a political statement. He is not only the Israeli Labour Party's man on the conflict with the Palestinians, he is also the spokesman of the Israeli position with respect to the Lebanese resistance. He is the one who is after blood-money to compensate for Barak's loss of honour after withdrawing from Lebanon and the one who was called in to supervise the implementation of Resolution 1559. Larsen has not only drawn a red line at crossing the blue line, he regards the Lebanese resistance as a local militia. He is also a foremost exponent of that now old term, "the New Middle East", by which is meant, at best, the normalisation of Arab relations, ie according inter-Arab relations no more priority than bilateral relations between individual Arab states and Israel . Larsen was the sworn enemy of Yasser Arafat, who spoiled the Oslo recipe and refused to behave as he was supposed to. He is filled with a mixture of hatred and bitterness against "Arab extremists" and harbours low expectations of, and disappointment with, "Arab moderates" who should always demonstrate that they are up to the Israeli establishment's expectations. That's what it's all about; the rest is décor. We'll see Larsen in the garb of mediator, which hardly suits him since he is not an arbitrator and nowhere near the middle. And, we'll be inundated with details about ceasefires, truces, and preparations for implementing 1559. The resistance isn't playing the role of victim. It didn't ask for international sympathy with the victims but for solidarity among freedom-seeking peoples. These are the rules of another game, a language that Arab regimes have forgotten, if they ever really knew it, though they owe their own existence to such a discourse. I am speaking of the language of liberation movements that exact a payment for colonisation from the coloniser. Resistance movements attempt to exact a price that their adversaries cannot afford and that the societies of their adversaries do not wish to pay, and they try to encumber their adversaries in a manner that inhibits the full use of force. This is how resistance movements try to neutralise military superiority.

The resistance was not being unduly reckless; it did not even select the timing. It was Israel that chose to open a broad battlefront against the resistance. It feared that putting off an inevitable battle with the Lebanese resistance would only give the resistance time to grow stronger and increase its arsenal. One reason why Israel chose this time in particular was that it already knew how key Arab regimes would react. The situation, therefore, is the opposite of what is being portrayed: the charge that the resistance has courted disaster betrays the existence of an Arab camp that regards robust resistance in Lebanon and Palestine as an adventure.

The US , meanwhile, is futilely trying to regulate Israel 's cowardly assault against civilians and its destruction of civilian infrastructure. It wants Israel to target the resistance and the society that supports it without jeopardising the American project in Lebanon . It wants Israel to bully and blackmail America 's allies without crushing them, alienating them completely or driving their supporters into the arms of the resistance. The difference between the Israel and the US, here, maybe tactical, but it is important. It is one of degree, of pushing or not pushing people over the edge.

Whereas the US wants Israel to promote the American project in Lebanon rather than throw out the baby with the bathwater, Israel wants the US , Washington 's allies and all the international agencies at their disposal, to negotiate with the Lebanese government a ceasefire that fulfils several conditions. The first is to disarm Hizbullah, the second to deploy the official Lebanese army in the south and substitute the international force with a proper NATO force, the third to release the Israeli captives. But it is the first condition that is the one that counts; meeting this will be sufficient for Israel to agree to a ceasefire. The political order that emerges from the rubble of Israel 's destruction in will see to the rest. Israel , in other words, has decided to settle internal Lebanese dialogue by Israeli force of arms.

A Nato force accepted by the government without the consent of the people will be considered an occupation force and will be the next target of the resistance thus creating a new Iraq , a fragmented Lebanon . If the Lebanese government agrees to the proposed settlement that includes dismantling Hizbullah a process of attrition will start also from the inside aimed at getting Lebanese society to pressure the resistance into conceding. This is how internal strife is ignited and it is part of the plan.

Israel decided that this would not only be a good time to go on the offensive but that the battle would be decisive. If the Israeli terrorist project and military adventure is not to prevail, it is not just the resilience of the resistance that matters but also the unity of the Lebanese against Israeli aggression and its political aims.

______________________________________________________________

From : Lydia (through jan ackenhausen)
Date
: Saturday 22 July 2006 1:20
Subject : Fwd: Please help

Hi everyone,

As most of you know, I'm living in Damascus at the moment.  The war in Lebanon is very close; geographically (it used to be 45 minutes by car from my apartment, but now the border towns have been bombed and so only one crossing, further away in the north, is currently open) and politically (Syria is widely blamed and is doing nothing to calm the situation).  I've tried to describe what it's like to be here, but nothing was as powerful as what I've read so I'm also sending links and excerpts from blogs...the pictures are not being reproduced in the
western press.

I am so angry and desperate and sad for people and places I love and also for the state of world politics: a country is being comprehensively destroyed with complete disregard for international law, yet the international community is actively supporting it. Contrary to the Geneva convention civilians are being targeted; a country is being collectively punished and is now living without electricity in 40 degree heat and with little access to the outside world (the first thing to go was the airport); the only ways out are on evacuation boats or via one road crossing into Syria.  Roads and bridges are being systematically bombed, along with all urban areas. Supplies are running out and so are the Westerners, and as soon as there are no westerners left to provide eye-witness accounts the aggression may well get worse.  Whatever you think the rights and wrongs of this situation are politically - who is "to blame", for example - this collective punishment is wrong in every way; legally, morally, logically.

Please write to your representatives - every single email counts and is counted - take part in any protest you can, email the papers, forward this on and talk to people and keep telling them that civilians are dying every day, and their country and their homes are being torn apart.  These people are losing everything - last week they had homes, parents, children, lives; now some, too many, don't.

Let me know if you don't want any more information, as I will be emailing regularly.

Lydia

For some terrible pictures see:
http://www.waronlebanon.net/

For the most reliable and regularly updated news:
http://english.aljazeera.net

Here is an entry from http://www.beirutlive.blogspot.com/   by Ramsay Short, the correspondent for the Telegraph (Britain); it is from Monday 17th July and so is out of date - the number of dead civilians is now closer to 400:

WE ARE DYING here. The nation is in ruins. Bombs are dropping over my head as i write this. I don't know when they might fall on me. I keep ducking. I woke up this morning to a bomb. It was directed at Beirut Port immediately next to where I live. It hit some trucks and killed two civilians. where was hezbollah? Immediately I was doing a live phone in with Sky News as a long time journalist in Beirut . My image was on the tv screens at home in the UK
next to flames everywhere. The Beirut we know is gone. The years we have worked are over. It is already like a dream. We are in a new era. The region is in a new era. A dark era. I thank you all once again for your wishes but the one thing I don't really hear from any of you is unequivocal condemnation of Israel's murderous, barbaric and cowardly assault on this country - one of the only countries in the arab world that is actually a democracy albeit one based on religion. Egypt , Syria , Jordan , Saudi Arabia , the Emirates are all autocracies or dictatorships. Where is the international support that was so present last year during the Cedar
Revolution.
Once again it is all a lie. A game for America 's and Israel 's plan to control the Middle East and its oil with absolutely no regard for human life, or human rights. Over 200 people are dead. All of them civilians or Lebanese army. None of them Hezbollah. ISrael 's attacks will never beat Hezbollah. They will fight to the last man becasue as they see it they are fighting a
war of resistance to occupation, much like the Palestinians. And if you call these people terrorists what is Israel ? Terrorising a whole nation of people who have nothing to do with Hezbollah.
How can moral Israelis sit there and let the name of their nation which once stood for so much be dragged into the darkest of hells. This attack will not be a solution. it will not destroy hezbollah. And it will only worsen the situation for normal, Israelis because all it is doing is creating more and more hatred towards their nation. Where is the dream? Peace is not brought about by war. It never has been. See Iraq .
Find a way to neutralise HEzbollah but not this way. There can only be a diplomatic solution.
I urge all of you to stop this madness before it is far, far too late. And to remember that Arabs are not illiterate scum as the Western media so often portrays. Extremists are extremists but there is a deep, rich culture in this part of the world made up of Arabs (who are not just Muslims) and who beleive in all religions. It is this that we were partly documenting with TIme Out Beirut.

I am writing as human being not as a journalist here. Forgive me if I am strained. But people must hear the voices from here. And I am so deeply sad that this Time Out Beirut dream that we were forging with such conviction, a personal dream for me to be part of Time Out international, is over so tragically and so murderously.

I leave you with this story - My TOB photographer Roody real name Nadim Khalil is kid who grew up most of his life in the US . He is a Shiite Lebanese from the South. He doesn't have much to his name but is a damn good photgrapher. He now sees his one time home in the
SOuthern Suburbs of Beirut demolished under Israeli bombs (manufactured in America ), his brother is staying in his small studio apartment wounded from the attack, and his parents are stuck in the SOuth of LEbanon and can't escape because all the roads have been destroyed. A week ago he was taking pictures of rock bands and nightclubs. Now he is photographing the ruins of his home, desperately trying to get his parents out of no mans land and putting his life at risk to get pics for newspapers valued at a mere $50 bucks a pop.

With the best and sincerest regards for all.

Ramsay

____________________________________________________________

From : jan ackenhausen
Date : Saturday 22 July 2006 0:33
Subject : Lebanon updates

hi…

as you all know, I used to live in Damascus for quite a while. I left the city a few weeks ago, not knowing what was going to happen. I spent a lot of time in Beirut , made many friends there, and started considering it a place of my own. what is happening now, is unjust, inhuman, and completely out of proportion. it is not my goal to discuss who is right or wrong, who started what, or who should be doing what. I only want it to end, to end the destruction of a country that has been rebuilding itself for 15 years, after a devastating civil war, and is again, bombed back into history, for no proportional reason whatsoever. I want everyone who can, to join demonstrations, action groups, protesters, all over the world, to make this madness stop. I am in constant contact with friends in Beirut and Damascus , and I follow the situation constantly. it is important that these messages reach the outside world, as the (western) mass media only report regarding their own population in the region, and when all foreigners have left, no media channel will be listening to the Lebanese left behind in the country.

every day I will be sending a selection of e-mails that I have received throughout the past weeks, days… at the end of the mail, you will find a list of relevant weblinks. feel free to forward them to as many people as possible, MP's, officials, etc… if you do not wish to receive any more of my e-mails, please let me know, I will delete your address from the list.

these are the e-mails I have been receiving from my friend Chrystèle Khodr. She is a young theatre student, who was about to leave Lebanon as she received a grant to study theatre in Belgium .

JULY 15 2006 1:21PM – SUBJECT: (NO SUBJECT)

marhaba.

juste pour vous dire que je vais bien.
je ne garde pas le moral.
pour les libanais qui sont bloqués je comprend inkone ktir m7ar2asine bass ca va.
les médias européens sont près de la plaque.
je n'ai pas peur.
tout ira bien.
on a tjs l'eau et les téléphones. si je ne vs envoie plus de mail c qu'il n'y a plus de connexion.
pour finir; entre le parti de dieu et le peuple choisi de dieu il va falloir executer dieu avec des miciles et de la katyocha.
je vous embrasse tous.

JULY 17 2006 2:56PM – SUBJECT: YALLA

tayeb,

je vais de moins en moins bien.
je ne dors pas la nuit a cause des avions israeliens et des miciles.
je ne suis plus a furn echebbeck pour l'instant vs savez a quel point c pres de la banlieu sud.
la je suis a antelias juste en dessous de l'EDL qu'ils menacent de bombarder ce soir.
je n'ai pas peur et n'ayez pas peur pour moi c'est juste que je veux dormir et je suis tt le temps sur mes nerfs.
je n'ai plus de travail comme tout le monde.
je ne sais rien.
le hezbollah a fait tombe aujourd'hui un avion et bombarde sur haifa.
il y a plein de refugies, voyons voir si ahmadi najad akhou sharmouta va faire un truc pour eu.
kiss ekhet la resistance islamique kiss ekhet israel.
ayre bi allah.

JULY 18 2006 10:49PM - SUBJECT: S.O.S.

je ne peux plus.
je vous remercie infiniment pour vos mails très chaleureux.
je ne peux plus supporter d'être emprisonner comme un rat.
j'ai envie de sortir, de voir des gens dans la rue quand j'achète un paquet de cigarettes.
je voudrai dormir chez moi, dans ma petite maison sans entendre les miciles et les avions.
je voudrai me coucher sous le soleil de juillet, il y a plus de soleil ici, il fait tout le temps gris à cause des incendies (ceci n'est pas une métaphore).
ils veulent évacuer les étrangers pour qu'ils fassent ce qu'ils veulent après.
Après tout l'opinion internationale est avec eux et personne ne dira rien.
aujourd'hui ils ont bombardé 2 ambulances transportant des médicaments sur l'autoroute de jbeil.
après tout ils ont eu la shoha eux, les pauvres, ils se sont fait massacrer par des monstres  ils ont toujours raison de toute façon ils se défendent, les 6000 réfugiés du Sud sont de sales terroristes arabes.
chaque nuit avec leurs avions il font descendre des papiers qui nous menacent, des brochures où ils s'adressent aux "habitants libanais" pour eux on est ni des civils, ni des citoyens, ni un peuple on est que des habitants et eux c'est l'Etat d'Israel.
et moi je leur dit c'est vous les habitants juifs de la Palestine. nous sommes les citoyens libanais, nous sommes un peuple. le plus beau, le plus accueillant, le plus généreux, le plus jovial.
je suis volontaire dans une école (les gens du sud liban s'y réfugient) à hamra; vous ne voulez pas voir ce que je vois.
vous qui aimez tellement beyrouth, faites quelque chose pour elle.
dans une semaine on aura plus de gaz, ni de fuel, ni rien.
dans une semaine peut-être je ne pourrai plus vous écrire.
descendez dans les manifestations, je ne sais pas faites ce que vous pouvez pour le pays que vous aimez tant tous.
personne ne peux plus rien  supporter.
la situation est tragique.
faites quelque chose.
je ne peux plus vivre.

JULY 21 2006 7:10PM – SUBJECT: MON PAYS EST BEAU

tout cela va bientôt finir.
je suis sûre.
nous allons reconstruire tout après la guerre.
nous allons vivre en paix et nous ne nous souviendrons plus du passé ça ne sera qu'un mauvais cauchemar.
le liban va redevenir la perle  de l'orient. le plus beau pays du moyen orient. avec sa belle côte, les belles pleines de la bekaa et l'anarchie de sa capitale.
nos voisins juifs seront très jaloux tellement jaloux qu'ils mourront de rage comme la belle mère de blanche neige.  les quelques juifs restant seront ceux qui marchent maintenant pour la paix et revendiqueront la nationalité palestinienne et revivront tous en paix en palestine.
et tout cela va bientôt finir.
je vous embrasse tous très fort.

WEBLINKS:

news

tayyar (english translation through link at bottom of main site) http://www.tayyar.org
al jazeera http://english.aljazeera.net/
daily star http://www.dailystar.com.lb/
updates on the aggression http://lebanonupdates.blogspot.com/
electronic Lebanon http://www.electronicintifada.net/lebanon/
ya yibnan http://yalibnan.com/site/
al-bab lebanon (news review) http://www.al-bab.com/arab/news/lebanon.htm

relief centers and aid coordination

sanayeh http://sanayehreliefcenter.blogspot.com/
maowatinun http://mowatinun.blogspot.com/
save Lebanon http://www.saveleb.org/
urgence liban http://urgence-liban.blogspot.com/
lebanese lobby http://www.lebaneselobby.org/

blogs

siege of Lebanon http://siegeoflebanon.blogspot.com/
blogging Beirut http://www.bloggingbeirut.com/
beirut live http://www.beirutlive.blogspot.com/
war on Lebanon http://www.waronlebanon.net/


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