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Friday, July 21, 2006

Lebanongrad

 

This is a report and comment on the current situation in the Lebanon from a Lebanese Orthodox Christian of the Patriarchate of Antioch.

Lebanongrad: 25 days of hell (updated 5th August)

Facts

* On Wednesday 12 July, early morning, Israel began its open destructive war against its weak northern neighbour Lebanon.

* On Thursday 13, the Israelis created a land, sea and air blockade around Lebanon.

* From the very beginning, no part of Lebanon was safe: the South, Beirut (i.e. the capital), Mount Lebanon, the North and the Beqaa Valley. Southern Lebanon became a burnt land, and Beirut a levelled land.

* The Israeli Army has a massive arsenal of destruction at its disposal with very advanced technology capable of attack over land, sea, and air. During their current bombing they are using phosphoric and other chemical and other weapons forbidden by international laws.

* They are targeting innocent civilians breaking all international laws and principals of the civilised world and all human conventions. They have already committed carnage and numerous massacres amongst Lebanese civilians. This is an immoral, unjust, inhuman and barbaric war. These are WAR CRIMES.

* The Israeli Army is bombing fiercely the country by land, sea and air. They are systematically destroying the entire civilian infrastructure: airports, ports, bridges, roads, highways, dams, electricity factories, water factories, telephone and mobile towers and cables, petrol stations, food factories, hospitals and infirmaries, ambulances and fire brigades, schools and universities, TV's and radios, etc. In addition, they are also bombing religious places, Christian and Muslim alike, and civilian houses. This is what we call state sponsored terrorism.

* There is a shortage of food, water, medication, shelters, petrol and gas. The water, electricity and telecommunications, have been cut. As a result of this, there is a great fear of disease spreading.

* People are living in great despair, depression, fear, panic and terror. It is a huge tragedy, disaster, and catastrophe. All Lebanese, Christian and Muslim, are hostages under the Israelis’ fire and terrorism.

* This aggressive and fierce bombing is affecting all Lebanese without any exception, Christian and Muslim alike, including the Orthodox Christian community (that belongs to the Patriarchate of Antioch).

* Tuesday 18, at around noon, the Israeli Army bombed - by land and air - the old Orthodox Church of St. George in Rashaiya Fakhar (Hasbaiya, Southern Lebanon) as well as its meeting house, the parish priest house and the Orthodox School with 15 bombs, some of them are phosphoric. It destroyed the southern wall of the church and caused a big fire in it. At that time, many parishioners were hiding and praying with their parish priest asking God’s protection. Ten were burnt and wounded. I have to mention that there was a white flag flying on top of the church.

* Since Wednesday 19, the Israeli Army is trying to invade the country after turning it to a burnt land.

* On Friday 28th July at around noon, the Israeli Air Forces bombed and destroyed the Maronite Catholic Church in Safad Battikh (Southern Lebanon).

* As at 4th August ...
- Thousands of tonnes of Israeli bombs have been dropped on Lebanon every day
- More than 1000 civilians killed, more than one third of them are children (without counting those who are still under the rubble).
- More than 3500 civilians wounded and burnt.
- More than 1,000,000 civilian refugees living in schools, playgrounds, garages, car parks, tents or even in the open air
- More than 200,000 civilians have left the country
- More than 6 billion dollars (approximately 3 billion pounds) has been lost.


* To summarise all that in one word, it is ‘HELL’. From now on you can call Lebanon ‘Lebanongrad’.

The World’s Silence

* The worst of all, ‘the civilised world’ is watching ‘Lebanongrad’ burning; like Nero watching Rome burning.

* On Friday 14, during the Security Council meeting in New York, the US raised a veto against any resolution to condemn Israel. Ever since then, President George Bush has been giving statements that he is against any ceasefire. On Sunday 16, during the G8 Summit in St. Petersburg, he repeated the same statement.

* On Tuesday 18, the UK began to evacuate its citizens from ‘dangerous’ Lebanon. The Americans, French, Germans, and other European countries are also evacuating tens of thousands of their citizens stuck there,
leaving behind the Lebanese suffering alone.

* On Wednesday 19, Prime Minister Tony Blair repeated what Bush was saying that he is also against any ceasefire. Ever since then, Mr. Blair has been giving statements that he is against any ceasefire.

* On Monday 24, Mr. Blair described the situation in Lebanon as a "catastrophe."

Hope and Request

* We have a very powerful mass constructive weapon in hand: Prayer.
Please, pray, pray and pray.
Pray that God grant Lebanon and its people the peace from above, protect them, end their suffering and have mercy on them.

* Pray, especially, for our Orthodox Metropolitans and all their clergy, monks and parishioners.
Remember:
- Elias of Tyre and Sidon (Southern Lebanon)
- Elias of Beirut
- George of Byblos and Botrys (Mount Lebanon)
- Elias of Tripoli and Koura (Northern Lebanon)
- Paul of Akkar (Northern Lebanon)
- Spiridon of Baalbeck and Zahleh (Beqaa Valley) Posted by Picasa

14 comments:

Ian said...

Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

Prayers ascending from Down Under.

Anonymous said...

Hiroshima?
Dresden?

Father Gregory said...

To Abbot Bernardo and all who wonder why I deleted his post ...

I will not tolerate on this thread any threats of violence and murder no matter how terrible the acts of the people concerned.

Bernardo said...

Where is the post I just posted?

JGurrea said...

Please don't take this the wrong way since I am just trying to educate myself concerning this situation, but I have a few questions that I would like responded as honestly as possible:

1) If I understand correctly, Israel's request is that Lebanon take care of the Hezbollah presence inside its own borders and that it deply soldiers to Southern Lebanon in order to keep the raids into Israel from happening in the first place. If Hezbollah controls a big chunk of Southern Lebanon and the government just shrugs their shoulders at them and lets them run loose, why is it that they claim victim status once another country comes to take care of the mess that they won't take care of themselves? I'm honestly curious. Is the Lebanese army that weak? Do they really have the lack of military personnel to control Hezbollah inside their own country? Or is it that Hezbollah is better equipped and such? I'm not very familiar with the military capabilities of third world terrorist groups, so anyone who is better informed, please let me know.

2) Past experiences with armed conflict in the Middle East has shown that violent radical Islamic terror groups work with the populace to further their goals and purposely do things that are against international law in order to further their aims. Examples include use of child soldiers, use of plain clothes personnel disguised as civilians in order to carry out operations under cover, etc. So if a Hamas or Hezbollah cell is purposely using a building with a preschool or a mosque filled with civilians as a home base with the hopes that civilized countries will respect international law and feel sorry about the human shields that they are hiding behind, and said civilized country calls their bluff and bombs them- preschoolers and all- well, were they targeting civilians (as in "Look, pregnant women and children, let's kill 'em!") or is it just that the line between civilian and soldier is purposely blurred by Islamic radicals in order to play the victim and create PR nightmares for their enemies? I've never been in a modern war, and I think they are the most disgusting thing on God's green earth. I'm also rabidly opposed to the neocons in this country (I'm from U.S.A.) and their fearless leader from Texas who makes us all look bad every time he opens his mouth, but I don't know if this is a clear cut case of "bad guys and good guys."

If any of you are more familiar with the details of this current conflict, please, fill me in.

And no matter who is right or wrong, I hope it is over soon. I'm pretty sure God can't be happy with us when we are tearing each other to pieces with incendairy bombs and cluster munitions.

-Julio

clearcreekfan said...

Julio -

You are deceived by a press which has systematically suppressed terroristic behavior by Israel, while trumpeting every terrorist action by Hamas or Hezbollah.

As a Roman Catholic who sincerely attempts to follow Jesus Christ, I condemn violence -- whereever it comes from.

The Israelis are not the innocents that the American press makes them out to be. They have brutally repressed the Palestinian people for half a century, yet all we hear about on American television and in American papers is the latest atrocity from Hamas.

Yes, Hamas and Hezbollah are horrible murderers. But here's a newsflash: so are the Israelis.

There will be no peace in the ME until they embrace Jesus Christ.

Anonymous said...

Father

Ezekiel 28:25-26
This is what the Sovereign Lord says: WHEN I gather the PEOPLE OF ISRAEL from the NATIONS where they have been SCATTERED, I will show MYSELF HOLY among them in the sight of the nations. They will live in their OWN LAND, which I GAVE TO MY SERVANT JACOB. They will live there in safety and will build houses and plant vineyards: they will live in safety WHEN I INFLICT PUNISHMENT ON THEIR NEIGHBOURS WHO MALIGNED THEM. THEN THEY WILL KNOW THAT I AM THEIR GOD.

Our God is the God of ISRAEL, JESUS will return KING OF THE JEWS and ISRAEL (the Jewish people) will have their VEIL removed and will be redeemed as God promised.....to show the HOLINESS OF HIS GREAT NAME...

Father Gregory said...

Dear Abbott Bernardo

This is my personal Blog. I don't HAVE to publish anything. One of my rules is that the advocacy of violence under whatever pretext or justification will lead to a ban unless and until the poster concerned makes public amends. I will leave your last post up so that others may understand this reply.

Dear Julio

In the time leading up the Civil War there had been deep divisions within Lebanese society. The intrusion of Syria and Iran in the aftermath is well documented.

All that Israel has done by its attacks is to weaken further Lebanon politically and economically by its disproportionate and indiscriminate response. This will doubtless lead to further resentment and determination to wipe Israel off the map by the militants.

Quite aside from the moral outrage of what is happening here, this is political ineptitude of the highest order. "Shock and Awe" tactics are only 50% "right." They shock ... but they do not awe. They only lead to further bitterness and violence. Surely Bush and Blair have learned this in Iraq? Sadly, I think not. At least Ms. Rice has now found her passport. Israel will doubtlesx be given more time to "finish the job" whilst she fumbles in her bag for her spectacles.

Father Gregory said...

Dear Anonymous

Read Ezekiel 12 and many other passages through the Scriptures. Every promise of land in the Old Testament in CONDITIONAL on Israel fulfilling its side of the covenant. The claim of absolute title is not biblical ... as Orthodox Jews against Zionism themselves also make clear.

I am not saying that the Jews should be thrown into the Mediterranean .. merely saying that Zionism cannopt base any political or military agenda on the Bible.

"Christian" Zionism post Darby is horrendous and heretical. Arguably it has done more damage through the American right in the Middle East than anything else. The importing of such nonsense into UK by "Christian " chiliastic sects, leading many astray, is to be deplored.

Steve Hayes said...

Father bless,

I have posted a link to your blog from mine, where i have also put a time line of events in the Near East in the last few months, and a link to an article in the US newspaper, which, even when reporting the sufferings of Christians in Lebanon, cannot resist slipping in factoids to brainwash the American public about the nature and causes of the conflict.

I have seen American Christians, even Orthodox ones, claiming that if Israel does not murder children in Lebanon, it will be committing mass suicide. Brainwashing at this level is something that Goebbels could only dream about.

Steve Hayes said...

Perhaps an additional comment to JGurrea may be in order.

I have not read of any Israeli aircraft being shot down by the Lebanese air force. Israel has met with scarcely any resistance from the Lebanese armed for ces at all. Doesn't that tell you that the Lebanese armed forces are weak.

Lebanon was occupied by Syria until recently, and by Israel until not so long ago. It is in no position to resist the attacksd by Israel, nor to act against Hizbollah.

Liviu said...

Dear Christian brothers and sisters,

It is very said what is happened now in Lebanon where a lot of human died or are suffering…

Let's pray together that this tragically events to be stopped very soon. Let's have more confidence in the power of God than into the power of this world...

God, please help all the suffering human been from Lebanon and from everywhere.

With compassion and love,
Liviu
(a Romanian Christian Orthodox who is living temporary in UK)

David Bryan said...

Interesting...

My godfather (who is also Lebanese) said that Lebanon's been able to disarm all other militias out there, but they haven't done so to Hezbollah.

My thoughts are here.

Dory said...

When a Lebanese prays...
http://dory-middleast.blogspot.com/

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