Thought for the day

"I am convinced that if we are to get on the right side of the world revolution, we as a nation must undergo a radical revolution of values. We must rapidly begin the shift from a "thing-oriented" society to a "person-oriented" society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism and militarism are incapable of being conquered." -- Martin Luther King 

Defense Minister Benny Gantz warned on Thursday that Lebanon would suffer dire consequences if the Hezbollah terror group torpedoes US-mediated talks between Israel and its northern neighbor over a maritime dispute.

The dispute, which involves competing claims over offshore gas fields, escalated in June after Israel moved a production vessel near the Karish offshore field, which is partly claimed by Lebanon.

Gantz said ominously that if Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah wants to disrupt the ongoing talks, “he’s welcome to do so, but the price will be Lebanon.”

Another significant section of the devastated Beirut Port silos collapsed on Tuesday morning in a cloud of dust. No injuries were reported — the area had been long evacuated — but the collapse was another painful reminder of the horrific August 2020 explosion.

The collapse left the silos’ southern part standing next to a pile of charred ruins. The northern block had already been slowly tipping over since the initial explosion two years ago but rapidly deteriorated after it caught fire over a month ago due to fermenting grains.

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Gantz warns Hezbollah attack on Israeli gas field may trigger war MikeRivero Tue, 08/23/2022 - 08:24

Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Monday warned Lebanon’s Hezbollah that any attack on its gas assets could spark war, after the terror group threatened to “sever” Israel’s hands if it taps a disputed offshore field.

The warning came amid lengthy negotiations between the eastern Mediterranean neighbors, which do not have diplomatic relations, to settle a dispute over their maritime border.

As delays in the indirect maritime negotiations between Lebanon and Israel have raised concerns, local media in both countries report an increased chance of a final deal in the upcoming weeks in order to prevent a military conflict in the Mediterranean Sea.

Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported on 19 August that Israel sent a message to Hezbollah through diplomatic channels, saying that it accepts Lebanon’s full demands.

An armed man who held a bank hostage for more than six hours in Beirut because he could not withdraw savings has been hailed a hero by the public.

Banks in Lebanon have put tight rules on how much money people can access, amid a deep economic crisis.

The suspect entered the bank with a rifle, poured petrol and demanded his money for hospital bills, AFP reported.

His actions captured public support - with cheering crowds gathering outside and chanting: "You are a hero."

The Lebanon-based buyer of the first grain shipment to depart Ukraine since Russia’s invasion has refused to purchase the cargo, according to Ukraine’s embassy in Beirut.

The buyer has raised concerns over the quality of the grain, due to the five-month delay in its shipment. The charterer is now looking for a new buyer inside Lebanon or the Middle East, an Istanbul-based ship agent with knowledge of the matter told Middle East Eye.

A Syrian-flagged ship named the Laodicea that docked in the Lebanese port of Tripoli was detained last Saturday, preventing desperately needed flour and barley from reaching people in the Middle East. The move came after Western threats against Beirut and unsubstantiated claims from Kiev that the cargo was stolen from Ukraine. The ship, which has been on a US blacklist since 2015 for allegedly carrying shipments from sanctioned Crimea, is now under investigation.

Lebanon’s armed Hezbollah group warned Israel on Sunday against drilling at an offshore gas field, renewing a threat that it could escalate the offshore border demarcation dispute to a war.

Israel has sent “strong warnings” to Hezbollah through diplomatic and military channels amid repeated threats from the terror group’s leader Hassan Nasrallah, according to a Tuesday report.

The messages — passed along through the US and France — warned the terror group that any action taken against the offshore Karish gas field would provoke a strong IDF response, Channel 12 reported.

Listen Libya: The curse of the militias redress Sat, 07/09/2022 - 16:50

Libyan activist and popular rapper Assem Mihirig shares with us a deeply insightful analysis, derived from direct experience, of the workings and power of the militias blighting the Libya and the thinking of their leaders, and offers a view of how they can be dealt with.