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Author Topic: Lebanese democracy
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 15 June 2004 01:00 AM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
In a thread on this forum(I believe it was in " Arabs for Israel")
liminal said something to the effect that the Lebanese had the oldest democracy in the Middle East. This strikes me as rather odd. In pity the nation Robert Fisk said that Lebanon was founded by the French in order to combat Syrian nationalism. If this was the case, why would the French want to give said nationalists a tool (representative democracy) that they could use to fight European imperialism?
Then again, Mr. Fisk said that the foundation of the Lebanese state took place in 1920 whereas the new internationalist said that it happened in 1926. If he is wrong about that, he might very well be wrong about the reason for the creation of Lebanon.

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mjollnir
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posted 15 June 2004 09:05 AM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
Interesting history,
Prior to 1920, under the Ottoman rule, Lebanon wasn't exactly as we know it today: Mount Lebanon was under an ottoma,n affairs coordinator (and previously was autonomous), while the coast was directly under the ottoman suzerainty, through one of the syrian cities (counties?) such as Aleppo. After the Sharif Hussein and the Arab Revolt, King Faisal ibn al-Hussein declared himself king of syria, and the people of the coast (who wore the ottoman tarboush and spoke turkish from time to time) asked to join him, while the people of the mountain wanted an independent lebanon. The french, after defeating Faysal's army (which had several coastal-Lebanese fighters)in Maysaloun, joined the coast with the mountain with the Beqaa valley and created "The Republic of Great Lebanon", which has the borders we know today.
1920 was the time of creation, in 1926 the Constitution was written and ratified in the Parliament.

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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 15 June 2004 08:24 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
OK, next question: If the Syrians control Lebanese television, why doesn't Assad restrict the criticism being thrown at him by cheeky Lebanese journalists? Is there something that prevents him from doing so?
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mjollnir
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posted 15 June 2004 08:57 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
Syria doesn't control the lebanese TV stations. Lebanese TV frequency bandwidth was divided between the powerhouses in the early 90's, I'll run down over the channels, some are pro syria others aren't, but being pro-syria is different from being controlled by syria:

Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation (LBC): Owned by Pierre al Daher (and the sattelite network co-owned by Al-Walid bin Talal) , probably the most independent of the TVs owing to the fact that it was owned by Ex-Lebanese-forces people, and hence most of the people there are opposition. Its independence is also owing to its immense popularity, both in lebanon and the arab world, and really strong financial muscle. LBC is generally considered the most independent and is oft the haven for the opposition to raise its voice.

Future TV: Belongs to Rafik al hariri, current prime minister and billionaire. Naturally can be considered to be his mouth-piece.

National Broadcasting Network (NBN): Loosely affiliated with the speaker of the house Nabih Berri. It is surprisingly independent in its programming and often critical of the government. Syrian criticism isn't prevalent there.

New TV (NTV): Owned by millionaire Tahseen Khayyat. affiliated with the Leftists and Communists and often champions their causes. Can be Critical of Syria, and is generally vociferous in its criticism of the government, has created some problems with KSA, as I understand.

Manar TV: Hizbullah's Channel, again a mouthpiece for them. Doesn't criticise syria but it generally isn't very kind to the lebanese government.

Tele-Liban: The official government station. Poorly maintained, very dodgy programming, not watched by many. Generally it isn't a factor for or against the government:

Tele-Lumiere: Christian religious channel, generally stays out of politics, recently got satellite transmission and covers the entire arab world.

[ 16 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 16 June 2004 03:11 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Does Assad control any of Lebanon's media?
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skdadl
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posted 16 June 2004 03:41 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Fascinating. I have nothing to add, but I just wanted you to know that others are reading along.
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mjollnir
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posted 16 June 2004 07:50 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
CMOT,
What kind of control do you mean? As I've stated, some of the TV channels do follow a don't-criticize-syria stance as per their owners, others don't. Interestingly, LBCI hosted Gen. Michel Aoun after he had given his testimony in front of the US congress during the Syrian Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act deliberations. Syria wasn't all too happy about the interview.
Now, as for a direct TV channel that tranmits the syrian government propaganda, well...follow the money. Most lebanese despise the syrian presence; and such a station wouldn't last a day in such a competitive market. A shining example is the official government TV station, which was pro-syria and pro-governemnt-it simply couldn't survive in that market and got reduced to dwarf-like status.
A similar thing holds for the papers, some are pro-syria, others aren't depending on the respective owners. The biggest daily paper is Al-Nahar. Its general director and president of the board is staunchly anti-syria. This shows in his weekly editorials. A while back, he openly accused the speaker of the house, nabih berri, of corruption and of linkage to dodgy companies. The guy was furious, he threatened and spoke of lawsuits and demanded an apology. But again, al-nahar was too big and too popular for the government to touch.
Now this isn't meant to white-wash syria. Its presence in lebanon is an occupation of sorts, and must end. But that doesn't mean that lebanon is a de-facto dictatorship by association.
This brings the issues of elections. the way syria controls lebanon is through the political alliances and parties it fostered in the early 90s and eventually bore fruit. Those alliances were constructed in such a way that they are always dominant during the elections. In the end, though, it is the people who are electing the MPs (the elections aren't rigged btw). The pro-syria steam-roller alliances will take a while to break, and it is the people who should decide not to choose them during the elections coming next year.

[ 16 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]

[ 16 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 16 June 2004 10:55 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Now I see. So, it influences the country through politics, but does not have direct control of television stations in Lebanon?

But if Lebanon has such a free press, why do I only hear stories from Turkey and Israel on the morning news?

Is the CBC simply to cheap to station a correspondent there? Does the Beeb have a correspondent in Beirut?


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al-Qa'bong
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posted 16 June 2004 11:44 PM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
But if Lebanon has such a free press, why do I only hear stories from Turkey and Israel on the morning news?

What does this have to do with the Lebanese media?

North American media cover what they think is interesting/important/will sell. That's why you never hear about the hundreds of millions of Arabs and Muslims who lead ordinary, boring lives, but only hear about the Arab and Muslim world when something violent happens there.


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 17 June 2004 06:24 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I'm sorry. I'll rephrase the question to make it more relevant to the current discussion.

From here, it would seem that Lebanon is a fully functioning democracy. It has many television stations and newspapers all of which have a variety viewpoints. What I find confusing, is that nobody on the CBC or American print media seems to acknowledge the fact. On what basis do they deny it? what reasons do they give for handing Israel the title of "the only democracy in the Middle East" while ignoring representative democracy in Lebanon?

edited to add: OK, so I didn't rephrase the question so much as ask an entirely new one, but I think this query is more useful.

[ 17 June 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]

[ 17 June 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


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posted 17 June 2004 07:18 PM      Profile for Publically Displayed Name        Edit/Delete Post
I can maybe answer this one, in that I am largely ignorant of the actual situation in Lebanon, yet realise I do have a model in my head of why I assume it's not a democracy.

So, pre-conceived notions:

1. Lebanon's official government is supposed to be directly controlled by the Syrian gov't.

2. Lebanon's gov't isn't that effective, and the situation on the ground is maybe something like Afghanistan, but less volatile, with armed factions (each probably with an affiliated political party in parliament) actually running the show in different areas.

I'm guessing these ideas could be based on either outdated situations, or half-truths, or outdated half-truths.

----
Just checked the CIA factbook entry, and it looks like the "Israel=only democracy" assumption stems from the situation over 15 years ago, and things have been going pretty well in Lebanon since then.

Here's the CIA page:

Yeah I know. But if this is what the spooks are saying ...


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al-Qa'bong
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posted 17 June 2004 07:37 PM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
On what basis do they deny it? what reasons do they give for handing Israel the title of "the only democracy in the Middle East" while ignoring representative democracy in Lebanon?

The reason could be simple laziness, or that they don't know what's going on in Lebanon.

I don't think there's a conspiracy or anything, but the idea that Israel is a lone democracy surrounded by salivating hordes of irrational, bloodthirsty dictatorships and sultanates has been planted deep enough that it has taken hold in the Western imagination.

Even when certain babblers say that Israel is the region's only democracy one rarely hears anyone raise a challenge - the line is accepted without reflection.

The line fits well with the long-standing prejudice against Arabs that is useful whenever a Ronald Reagan or George Bush want to drop a few bombs. Gaddafi used to be a threat, then Arafat, then Osama, then Saddam and now it's Muqtada Al-Sadr and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi (who may not even be alive). The Saracen is always a safe target.


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 19 June 2004 05:54 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I wrote the following in the "Al Qadahfi puts forward an interesting proposal" thread but I thought it would be more appropriate to post it here. The quote comes from www.al-awda.org:

quote:
The final argument though is a testament to Israel's false claim that it is the only democracy in the Middle East. Israel is a Jewish democracy, and this oxymoron should not be confused with real democracy."

Sorry mjollnir,
If you can call you Lebanon, with its biased covenant a democracy, and the United States can be termed a democracy without ever allowing a black man to be president, then Israel can be a democracy to. Actually, it would be more accurate to call all three countries quasi democracies, since they are only halfway there. How much power do the Arab parties in the Knesset have anyway?

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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 19 June 2004 06:04 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Do other radio networks have reporters in Beirut? I would imagine the French do, since they tend to cover the extra cool fracophile nations like Polynesia.

[ 19 June 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


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mjollnir
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posted 19 June 2004 06:29 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
CMOT,
I never said lebanon was a perfect democracy,but, after all, which country is? What this thread was pointing to is that claiming Israel to be the only democracy in the middle east is fallacious. In truth, like you said, lebanon is a quasi-democracy, but that can be said about any Parliament-based democracy, in which the government comes on the heels of parliamentary elections, and thus rests comfortably on its parliamentary majority.
As for the israeli comparison, well, in lebanon, all citizens are equal, they go to the same schools, colleges, have the same rights to property, same economic and legal rights, etc... The ethnicity/religion do not show on the ID cards of the citizens. Unlike israel, where arabs are clearly labeled on the ID cards "Israeli arab" and they sport different passport numbers from israeli jews (so that they're easily examined on ports of entry/exit)

[ 19 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]

[ 19 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 19 June 2004 07:07 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
As for the israeli comparison, well, in lebanon, all citizens are equal.

So, I can therefore conclude that a rich Lebanese Christian can go to the same school as a poor Shia Muslim

I don't want to be too nasty, since this is one of the few threads on the Middle East forum where the discussion has stayed civil, and you have been part of that, answering all my questions patiently and politely, but I also get nervous when people say that in Ex country all the inhabitants are equal, because chances are, they aren't.

Of course, there are countrys where governments have tried to improve things in terms of equality.
Sweden, for example has tried to decrease the gap between rich and poor. From what you have told me, I gather that the Lebanese are big on socialism, it would appear that there has been a concerted effort to build a comprehensive publicly funded social safety net. Is that right?


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mjollnir
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posted 19 June 2004 07:22 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
What I meant was that all citizens have equal rights under the law, and are not discriminated against based on their ethnicity. Actually, the confessional system also extends to public service jobs, which are also divided so that each sect would recieve its share.

It is a capitalist state par excellence, so no, it's not big on socialism, and the social security services are dismal. In truth, money is what determines the social status of individuals, it always has, it (probably) always will.

[ 19 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


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mjollnir
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posted 19 June 2004 07:24 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post

[ 19 June 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


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al-Qa'bong
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posted 19 June 2004 08:11 PM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
So, I can therefore conclude that a rich Lebanese Christian can go to the same school as a poor Shia Muslim

A class analysis of populations in Canadian schools would be of equal interest.


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 19 June 2004 09:39 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by al-Qa'bong:

A class analysis of populations in Canadian schools would be of equal interest.


It certainly would.


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Khadiija
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posted 04 July 2004 01:10 AM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
I came across an interesting web site that ranks countries according to their press freedom and corruption.World Democracy Audit
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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 04 July 2004 06:41 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Interesting. Who runs the site? It classifies India as a free nation when the Indian government endorses the caste system.

This article is also worth a read www.newint.org/issue345/democracy.htm

Afendi is very critical of Turkey and says that tunisia is the arab worlds best hope for a truly free society.
How is the struggle for democracy doing in that country? You never hear about these things on the news.


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Khadiija
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posted 04 July 2004 07:29 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
I've been to both Turkey and Tunisia and I felt more comfortable in Turkey. It is not scientific just my feelings.
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Jack01
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posted 06 July 2004 10:32 AM      Profile for Jack01        Edit/Delete Post
Khadiija,

Another ranking site is web page

The #1 reason for living in a "non-free country" used to be Communism. Today it is Islam.

The top 20 countries or "most-free" on the list from World Democracy audit have what in common?

People who want to argue religon or types of government hate these lists because they point out what everyone knows but no one wants to say.


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Khadiija
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posted 06 July 2004 12:05 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Jack01,
quote:
they point out what everyone knows but no one wants to say.


I'm not sure what you mean. Lebanon does not do well on either list.

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Jack01
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posted 06 July 2004 01:24 PM      Profile for Jack01        Edit/Delete Post
Khadiija,

Lebanon is estimated to be 70% Muslim and 30% Christian.

At some point the balance of power will tip in Lebanon and the Muslims will dominate.

When that happens will there be a Free-Secular-Democratic Lebanon? No.


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Courage
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posted 06 July 2004 03:33 PM      Profile for Courage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jack01:
People who want to argue religon or types of government hate these lists because they point out what everyone knows but no one wants to say.

I don't think anyone is really afraid to say it. There are problems in many Muslim-dominated states just as there are in 'Western' states. The nature of the problems in Muslim-dominated states is multifaceted and cannot be laid solely at the doorstep of 'Islam' - whatever your particular monolithic projection of that is.

What many of the crusaders against Islam fail to address is the will of the demos in these countries. Do they want Islam? What if they do? Take Algeria for example: democracy worked too well. Free elections brought conservative Islamic parties to power. What then for the 'freedom-loving' West? Help subvert the elections, that's what...

The problem of self-determination is an old one. J.S. Mill - for example - spilled plenty of ink arguing against the imposition of 'democracy' from outside, and how this practice is fundamentally against the creed of individual and collective self-determination. It is, in effect, nothing more than imperialism and self-aggrandisement. It is, in fact, a narcissism of sorts.

If self-determination is - as ol' Hobbes suggested - a game of increasing and maintaining one's own individual power against the attempts at power made by others, than how can one justify intervening in anyone's affairs? Most especially, how can one will to change someone else's position to make them more 'free'? There is a fundamental paradox here. Any conception of 'revolutionary intervention' must be based in an ethical system that places responsibility for others highly in its system of values. But wait! Isn't responsibility for others considered a kind of weakness by our right-wing crusaders? Isn't it the controlling paternalism which these individualists oppose when they conjour their images of 'communism' and 'Islam'?

As for 'Freedom Site' - it's too much to get into here, but I would take serious exception to A) their conception of political freedom as seperate from economic freedom and B) their conception of economic freedom being the 'freedom' to make one's own profit as opposed to the freedom from the constraint and control of poverty enforced by a heirarchical economic class system.

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: Courage ]


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Blind_Patriot
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posted 06 July 2004 03:51 PM      Profile for Blind_Patriot     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This is a facinating thread, until the last assumption that was made. To simply say that Lebanon would become a dictatorship if the scale were to tip, is absolutely ignorant. Lebanon has always been a place where religious moderates always lived peacefully, even during the bloody civil war that ended about 14 years ago. It was a civil war where Christian & Islamic extremists were fuelled against each other. The moderates, were sidelined even though they were a majority of the population. When a moderate came to power, trying to restore peace for all citizens, they were assassinated (eg. Kamal Jumblatt).

Jack01, It isin't fair to say that Muslims/Arabs hate democracy. But it is fair to say that outside powers hate Muslims/Arabs to have democracy. Fundamentaly, a democracy is power to the people. The people of the Near East don't have much say whether they get a democracy or not, because foreign forces prefer dictatorships. Can you imagine a democratic Saudi Arabia? A democratic Saudi Arabia would not serve the Americans best intrest. Actually it would probably be the beginning of economic ruin for the U.S. The Americans, have done, more than their fair share in maintaining these dictatorships. Saudi arabia, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Libya, Jordan...

Lebanon, by size and population is not strategic from an American economic point of view. So, yes they can have their quasi-democracy. And that is what it is, regardless of their occupiers... they are a democracy.

BTW Iran is a young developing Democracy.

quote:
As for 'Freedom Site' - it's too much to get into here, but I would take serious exception to A) their conception of political freedom as seperate from economic freedom and B) their conception of economic freedom being the 'freedom' to make one's own profit as opposed to the freedom from the constraint and control of poverty enforced by a heirarchical economic class system.
I also found the site, hypocritical to the exportation of democracy, and legitimizing these acts, like the Iraq situation. The politics of the Near East will change and the people will change it. We can't advocate (Freedom Site) shoving it down their throat, while our Western regime's are stopping it from happening.


add last para

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: Blind_Patriot ]


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Jack01
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posted 06 July 2004 04:41 PM      Profile for Jack01        Edit/Delete Post
Courage/BP,

You kind of make my own point. Algeria or Turkey given Democracy might take a hard line and vote the Islamists in.

Then like Iran it will take another 20-40 years before people realize what they bought into.

On what level does Islam allow for self-determination? To go one step further where or when does Islam provide for Secular government?

Like Iran, Lebanon could be a democracy. Would it be a free secular democracy? No.

I guess quasi-democracy would equate to being partly free.

If Saudi Arabia has to go down the same road as Iran to also figure out that going from a King to a Theocracy is a bad choice then maybe thats whats necessary.

Today Saudi Arabia is busy using its petro dollars to Islamicize and move moderate Muslim countries towards its model.

Lebanon like Turkey, Algeria and Jordan will be and continue to be under huge presure from the Islamists.


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CMOT Dibbler
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posted 06 July 2004 07:27 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
On what level does Islam allow for self-determination? To go one step further where or when does Islam provide for Secular government?

Christianity dosen't provide for secular government either, yet countries such as Holland and Sweden (which were predominatly christian at the time of secularization) managed to become secular and democratic.

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jack01
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posted 06 July 2004 09:39 PM      Profile for Jack01        Edit/Delete Post
CMOT,

I have to disagree. Use what ever list you want.

Western Christian countries are free and generally secular.

Communist countries are never free. How many are left? Vietnam, North Korea, China, Cuba.

The Ex-Communists are trying to move to free.

Hindu, Jewish, Shinto, Buddhist, Pagan, Aboriginal Faiths are usually free.

Islam. 1 Free country Mali. A few are partly free most are not free.

If you look at where Lebanon was why would one expect that at a minimum it could return to its past glory?

I don't see the Islamists letting that happen.


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mjollnir
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posted 06 July 2004 10:55 PM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
Ok, there have been some mis-truths circulating around this thread, please allow me to clarify some points:

a) The percentage of christians in lebanon is much higher than what some claim. The number is anywhere between 40 to 45%. I have no idea who is spreading the rumours that it is 30%, probably the CIA factbook, a source I don't generally trust.

b) Do you seriously think that lebanon would turn to an islamic country? a) The demographic doesn't allow it (being 40-45% christian) b) The muslims of lebanon won't allow it. The support for fundamentalists in lebanon is pretty low: In the sunni circles they are mainly concentrated in tripoli, and somewhat in Sidon. In beirut, which contains 1 million of the 3.7 million population, they have very small support. So small, that in the Parliamentary elections, their candidates constantly lose. Even in tripoli and Saida they can rarely get an MP in. As for the Shia, 2 groups are in power: AMAL and Hizbollah. AMAl is not a religious fundamentalist party, Hizbollah's support is due to its social welfare programs and due to its battles with Israel: It has proved that it's a corruption-free party that is willing to help its local community, and shed blood for the country, not the least the blood of it's president's own son. The support is not due religious ideology. No more than 2% of the population would go for an Islamic state, trust me.

c) Freedom and democracy are NOT the same thing. Lebanon is a free country, much more so, than ,say, israel. The number of papers, TV's, internet users, political parties etc... is on par with most western democracies. The freedom part is fine, the democracy bit needs some work, and the syrian influence must go, but this has nothing to do with islam, now, does it?

d) Has any of you been to downtown beirut lately? Please do and let me know of the huge influence from the islamists there. I guess the coffee shops that are open till 2:00 am, the nightclubs that are open till 6:00 am, the rock and jazz festivals, the sale of alcohol in all supermarkets (with no minimum age limit, cough, cough), the extremely revealing cloth (no comment!) , the beauty pageants, etc... are all signs of an evil islamic country, aren't they?And before you say it's only in christian parts, I assure you that it isn't the case.

e) Not to point fingers, but if you look at lebanon prior to 1982, and look at it after 1982, you'll see that there was a huge dent that took years to heal. The destruction of a major part of its capital, including the downtown area and the famed pine forest was done through F15 jets, not through islamists.
Will lebanon return to its former state? Maybe. This year the number of tourists will exceed the number of tourists before the war (1.5 million). Yeah, perhaps tourists are over-fond of islamist states.

f) Golly g batman! Perhaps I've been mistaken, why bother and go back for the summer? Perhaps I'd be better off spending it in Saudi-Arabia, or Afghanistan, or Somalia! After all, they were
Way ahead of lebanon on the democracy and freedom list Khadiija provided! Perhaps I've been living a lie my entire life! And while I'm at it, perhaps I shouldn't participate in the elections next year; they must be rigged. (even though the votes are tallied live on TV!). Oh yeah, and perhaps I shouldn't go to rock concerts or nightclubs, because they aren't there, and the muslims that go to them aren't real people, they must be a figment of my imagination. The Wineries and Araq (local alcoholic drink) factories can't be real either and the bottles I buy aren't real; how could they be real in an islamic state? The fact that my college class (2002) had one girl with a veil (out of 24 girls) can't be true.

So thank you all, for teaching me a valuable lesson, the first 22 years of my life weren't real, and my experiences were pure fallacies. I am so happy that I ran into some babblers who finally woke me up!

ps: About islam and democracy, egypt pre-52 refutes this claim. People were religious, Very religious, and yet they were secular, Very secular. Egypt was moving towards becoming a genuine muslim-majority (80% of population) secular democracy. It took Abdul Nasser to destroy the democracy bit, and Sadat to destroy the secular bit. But I can bring ample proof that people were both religious and secular at the time.

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


From: NY | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 06 July 2004 11:45 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
mjollnir,How delicate is the Lebanon's democracy? If Lebanese Prime Minister did stand up in Parliament and say something like " the covenant is a piece of stinking French colonialism! I think a Druze should have a shot at leading this country!" And then proceeded to put forward an initiative that would alter the legislation, would the country fall apart? Would the fragile balance you talked about before be ruined?

P. S. I realize that the possibility of Hariri dissing anything French is a remote one. It's just an example.
I do think it would be kind of neat to have a Druze as Lebanon's Prime Minister though.

[ 06 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
MyName
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posted 06 July 2004 11:45 PM      Profile for MyName        Edit/Delete Post
Hi, all.

Seems to me there are some people here who believe that a you can’t have democracy or freedom in a state unless there’s an absolute separation between church (or mosque or synagogue) and state. I’m not sure why we have to buy into this American idea.

Some Muslim intellectuals believe you can have a Muslim democratic state. Below is one example…


http://www.memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD73804

The director of the Association for the Defense of Journalism in Iran, Dr. Mohsen Kedivar, participated in a seminar titled "Towards Democracy" at the Law and Political Science Faculty of the University of Tehran.

In a speech, he addressed the issue of tyranny and democracy in Iran, noting that Iranian society had experienced two types of tyranny: secular tyranny under the Shah's regime, and religious tyranny under the regime of the Islamic Revolution.

According to Kedivar, there are two perceptions in Islam. One is a totalitarian perception that maintains that Islam contradicts democracy. The adherents of this perception see the establishment of a religious regime and repression of the people as legitimate. The second perception maintains that Islam promotes freedom and does not contradict democracy.

It should be emphasized that Kedivar, who is a cleric and a prominent intellectual of the reformist stream, does not rule out a religious regime; he only fears that religious tyranny might take over the running of day-to-day affairs, which will bring religious totalitarianism.

Kedivar states that Islam is a religion related to time and location, and that it is the people who must decide how society should be run. He sees democracy as the best way of managing society's affairs, but does not preach secularism, and even opposes secularists who call for separation of religion and state. He has in the past been tried and imprisoned for his writings.

The following are excerpts from his speech at the seminar:

Both the 'Constitutional Revolution' and the 'Islamic Revolution' Have Failed to Solve Tyranny'

"Since the Constitutional Revolution in Iran, we [Iranians] have had experience with two forms of tyranny, secular and religious. [2] Like the Constitutional Revolution, the Islamic Revolution has failed to solve the problems of tyranny in Iran. The most controversial [political and social] discussions in the past century have erupted between the followers of two different schools of thought and the followers of two different interpretations of Islam.

"According to one interpretation, the social affairs of a country are entrusted to one man, while according to the other, trust is placed in the people and its freedom is respected [i.e. 'Islamic democracy']… The two interpretations have advocates, both among the intellectuals and among the clerics…”


From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 06 July 2004 11:54 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
I am so happy that I ran into some babblers who finally woke me up!

Hey! Don't look at me. I think Jack 01 is full of beans.


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
mjollnir
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posted 07 July 2004 12:21 AM      Profile for mjollnir        Edit/Delete Post
CMOT, wherefore did I look at you with reproach?
After all, you're a fellow Pratchetter, thus I can't really hold a grudge against you!

Regarding the fragility of democracy and the covenant (50%-50%). I'd say it's pretty fragile.
This raises an interesting point,
Sectarianism and religious fundamentalism are two separate things in lebanon: While people wouldn't want a religious state (islamic or christian), they still wouldn't want the *other* sect to dominate, at any cost possible. It's more of a tribalism thingie than a religious zealous. e.g.: a sunni who would abhor an islamic state, would fight tooth and nail if he feels that maronites are gaining too much power, and vice-versa. This somewhat deeply entrenched sectarianism is what lots of groups are fighting against, and it is more of a political manifestation of a sociological Phenomenon than the other way round. Now, until sectarianism is removed from the society as a whole, abolishing the political national-unity covenant is pretty dangerous: It might lead to "We are more by number, so we are more equal than you" scenarios; while, as it stands, it is insuring that the society remain open minded. Remove sectarianism from society, and then it'll die away from politics; but it is a slow, painful process.

So, while lebanon has all the aura of an open society, there is some mistrust between sects, leading to a sectarian divide, leading to the necessity of the national-unity covenant.

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: mjollnir ]


From: NY | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 07 July 2004 04:16 AM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Then like Iran it will take another 20-40 years before people realize what they bought into.


so?

Big problem with your arguement is simply this: It is the Islmaic Sunni Ottomans who originally invented the idea of a suclar state. It is not something indiginous to Christian culture, and more importantly not something that is alien to Muslim culture.

While Swedish protestants were trying to enforce their ethical ideas on Orthodox Christians in the Baltic states the Catholic Spanish were teaching the Mayans the advantages of christianity under the boot of the Conquistadors.

In other words your whole racist anti-muslim ditaribe is full if shit.

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 10:14 AM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
mjollnir,

I am concerned about the treatment of women in Lebanon. As you can see from this United Nations report the situation is not that great.
Lebanon


765. Lebanon acceded to the Convention on 16 April 1997. Lebanon’s initial report was due 21 May 1997. Reservations were made to articles 9, paragraph 2; 16, paragraphs 1 (c), 1 (d), 1(f) and 1 (g); and 29, paragraph 1; four States filed objections to all or some aspects of the reservations.

Legislation

766. According to the Penal Code, a man who kills his wife or other female relative may receive a reduced sentence if he demonstrates that he committed the crime in response to a socially unacceptable sexual relationship conducted by the victim.[296] In 1999 the law was amended to increase the severity of the sentence for perpetrators of "honour crimes". Several instances of honour crimes are reported in the media every year, and reportedly there were an average of two to three cases of honour crimes each month in 2001. No person has been convicted in a case legally considered as an honour crime.

767. In 2000 the Government amended certain labor laws affecting women. For example, maternity leave was extended, and women no longer are forbidden from working at night. In 2001, Parliament adopted a law providing equal pay for equal work for men and women.

768. The law prohibits rape the minimum sentence for a person convicted of rape is five years in prison. The minimum sentence for a person convicted of raping a minor is seven years.[297] Prostitution is legal but regulated; however, in practice most prostitution is reportedly unlicensed and thus illegal.

Issues of concern

769. Violence against women is a common problem in Lebanon. The press reports cases of rape with increasing frequency and cases reported are believed to be only a fraction of the actual number. There are no authoritative statistics on the extent of spousal abuse, but most experts agree that the problem affects a significant portion of the female population. In general, battered or abused women do not talk about their suffering due to fear of bringing shame upon their own families or accusations of misbehaviour upon themselves. Many women are compelled to remain in abusive marriages because of social and family pressures. Possible loss of custody of children and the absence of an independent source of income also prevent women from leaving their husbands. In most cases, the police reportedly ignore complaints submitted by battered or abused women.

770. Foreign domestic servants in Lebanon often are mistreated, abused, and in some cases, raped. Asian and African female workers have no practical legal recourse available to them because of their low status, isolation from society, and because the labor laws do not protect them. Because of such abuse, the Government prohibits foreign women from working if they are from countries that do not have diplomatic representation in the country.

771. Thousands of foreign women, primarily from Russia and Eastern Europe, engage in prostitution. The country is a destination for trafficked persons, primarily women.

INTEGRATION OF THE HUMAN RIGHTS OF WOMEN AND THE GENDER PERSPECTIVE VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
aRoused
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posted 07 July 2004 10:35 AM      Profile for aRoused     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Those issues of concern might as well refer to: Germany, Britain, the USA, Canada, ....

It's going on in all those places too, trust me.


From: The King's Royal Burgh of Eoforwich | Registered: Dec 2001  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 10:58 AM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
aRoused,

Sorry, I would prefer not to trust you on this one. Please tell me what legislation in Germany, Britain the USA or Canada allows for a reduced sentence for an "honour killing"?

quote:
a man who kills his wife or other female relative may receive a reduced sentence if he demonstrates that he committed the crime in response to a socially unacceptable sexual relationship conducted by the victim.

There is so much work to be done to protect the rights of women. Life is not perfect in Germany, Britain the USA or Canada for women but these countries are advanced enough in their thinking to understand that an "honour killing" is wrong. It does not matter if the sister/wife/daughter/mother did something that was an affront to the honour of the family. Killing her is wrong and deserves the same punishment as murdering any other woman. Freedom? Freedom to kill their spouse and get a lighter sentence because after all, freedome extends only so far.


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
aRoused
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posted 07 July 2004 11:30 AM      Profile for aRoused     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I was responding to the 'Issues of Concern', which was a carbon-copy of what could be said about pretty much any Western democracy on the planet.

Edited to add:

And for that matter, what of the 'heat of passion' defense that gets trucked out in the 'States and Canada when these crimes are committed? Isn't that essentially the same thing?

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: aRoused ]


From: The King's Royal Burgh of Eoforwich | Registered: Dec 2001  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 11:37 AM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
And for that matter, what of the 'heat of passion' defense that gets trucked out in the 'States and Canada when these crimes are committed? Isn't that essentially the same thing?

Are you kidding me about such a serious thing? We are talking about a reduced sentence for killing a woman because she may have done something to affect the honour of her family.


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Blind_Patriot
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posted 07 July 2004 11:46 AM      Profile for Blind_Patriot     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by mjollnir:
Ok, there have been some mis-truths circulating around this thread, please allow me to clarify some points:

a) The percentage of christians in lebanon is much higher than what some claim.........


I couldn't have said it better myself. I have been to Lebanon and I was amazed by the moderation of the people there. Of course you would run into fanatics of various religions, but they were not much. I also found the Druze to be very neutral in Lebanon. They are well respected. And they did have their turn in power. Jumblatt was a Druze.

I must say that I have to agree with MyName about democracies don't nessesarily have to be secular. Freedom or Democracy are better than No Freedom or Democracy at all, whether it be secular or not.

Khadiija, the treatment of women in Lebanon is horrible and these laws should end. I condemn them yet Lebanon is a fairly young state that needs to develop. It won't go away at the flick of a switch. It took the U.S. over 1 1/2 centuries to get rid of it's laws discriminating against women and slavery.


From: North Of The Authoritarian Regime | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
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posted 07 July 2004 12:21 PM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Blind_Patriot:

Khadiija, the treatment of women in Lebanon is horrible and these laws should end. I condemn them yet Lebanon is a fairly young state that needs to develop. It won't go away at the flick of a switch. It took the U.S. over 1 1/2 centuries to get rid of it's laws discriminating against women and slavery.

Do you hold Israel to the same standard? It too is a "fairly young State".

From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 12:49 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Macabee,

The same document also has a section on Israel. Although Israel seemed to be doing better on rights for women the issue of honour killings still happens in Israel. I am not familiar with honour crimes in Israel. Are honour killings and forced marriages also done in Jewish families? And while I am asking (if you don't mind) is circumcision done to female babies?

1028. Every year, women and girls in Israel are murdered in order to preserve the so-called “family honour”. According to data provided by the police, 20 women have been killed for crimes committed on what they call a “romantic basis” in 2001.[456] According to reports, between 1990 and the end of 1999, there were 67 murders of women for reasons related to “family honour”.[457] Many of these crimes have not been resolved; this is reportedly partially because of a lack of willingness to pursue the issue, and partially because of the complicity of the community itself – an unwillingness to help bring the killers to justice.[458] It is reported that most judges, as police, continue to regard “honour” crimes as a private issue and as a phenomenon that stems from the social norms and values of traditional Palestinian society, and they take the view that their judgments must be sensitive to these “cultural concerns”.[459]

1029. It is reported that female genital mutilation was practiced.[460] However, the procedure has reportedly been modified to a non-cutting ritual in more recent years. However, the phenomenon of forced marriage still exists in Israel. Particularly in Muslim communities and especially among the Bedouin, young women are reportedly sold by their fathers or other male relatives to significantly older men for marriage, or families decide for their daughters on the day of their birth whom they will marry when they reach marriageable age, or in some cases women do not sign their own marriage contracts, but have rather their fathers or other male relatives sign it.[461] Although the Ministry of Interior has the ability to trace these cases by checking the signatures, to date it has reportedly taken no action.


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jack01
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5211

posted 07 July 2004 01:15 PM      Profile for Jack01        Edit/Delete Post
mjollnir,

What you described is what I knew Lebanon to be before the civil war.

If its moving back to being the Paris of the Middleast good for Lebanon.

Left alone I don't see why it wouldn't suceed.

This article talks about voting in Lebanon.

lebanon wire

So what happened between the 1950's and today?

If you had more freedom in the Muslim world in the 50's and 60's why the slide towards less today?

Cueball thinks that when I point out the fact that freedom follows one set of circumstance but doesn't follow an other that its racist to point that out. Why?

Regarding the honour killings a month doesn't go by where I don't read about one happening locally. Not just male on female but also female on male.

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: Jack01 ]


From: Windsor, ON | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Blind_Patriot
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posted 07 July 2004 01:28 PM      Profile for Blind_Patriot     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Macabee:
Do you hold Israel to the same standard? It too is a "fairly young State".
No, because Israel is systematically oppressing a whole people through their military. We are talking about 2 different things. The in Lebanon law does not directly encourage this treatment of women. The state of Israel encourages discrimination of a whole race by law. There are laws that deny palestinians equality regardless of their sex. Palestinians in Lebanon are also suffering from discriminating Lebanese laws, but the difference there is they are not native to Lebanon, but they are native to Israel and that's their homeland.

As Khadiija pointed out, it seems that Israel has it's own idea of "Honour Killings". Now the discussion is at the same level.


From: North Of The Authoritarian Regime | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 02:11 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Blind_Patriot,

quote:
As Khadiija pointed out, it seems that Israel has it's own idea of "Honour Killings". Now the discussion is at the same level.

Please do not misquote me, that is NOT what I said at all. I know honour killings are done by Arabs in Isreal but I asked Macabee if it is also done by Jews too. From the UN report it sounded like the honour killings in Isreal were being done by Palestinians only.

quote:
Lebanon law does not directly encourage this treatment of women

What do you call laws that give lighter sentences for killing woman who shamed their family? And why have there been NO convinctions even though it happens way too often? Maybe they should just give the equivalent of a traffic ticket but why bother, they won't have any convictions and who cares "outside of a small circle of friends".

quote:
There are laws that deny palestinians equality regardless of their sex.

We have laws that deny equality to Muslims here in Canada "regardless of our sex." You can't send Muslim children to a Muslim school (for free) in Ontario even though Catholic kids can go to Catholic school and not pay a cent. We have discrimination here too and people are quick to be critical of descrimination elsewhere but forget to stand up for rights of Canadian kids.


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Scout
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posted 07 July 2004 02:40 PM      Profile for Scout     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Macabee what in the hell does Israel have to do with this thread? Could you please not hijack another thread, you tried in PA's pity thread as well.
From: Toronto, ON Canada | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Blind_Patriot
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posted 07 July 2004 03:27 PM      Profile for Blind_Patriot     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Khadiija:
I know honour killings are done by Arabs in Isreal but I asked Macabee if it is also done by Jews too. From the UN report it sounded like the honour killings in Isreal were being done by Palestinians only.
I see, it's an Arab problem. Go figure! Does the apartheid atate of Israel punish the Arabs commiting "Honour Killings"?

You don't understand what I'm saying. I said Lebanon doesn't promote "Honour Killing", in the same way that Israel is actively punishing the native Arabs through government legislation laws.


From: North Of The Authoritarian Regime | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
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posted 07 July 2004 03:47 PM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Khadiija:
Macabee,

The same document also has a section on Israel. Although Israel seemed to be doing better on rights for women the issue of honour killings still happens in Israel. I am not familiar with honour crimes in Israel. Are honour killings and forced marriages also done in Jewish families? And while I am asking (if you don't mind) is circumcision done to female babies?

.



Sadly amongst the Arab population "Honour Killings" (I even despise the name) still occur. It is a crime of murder in Israel and as it should be is vigorously investigated and prosecuted.

There is no such concept as "honour killings" in Jewish culture.

The same is true for female circumsision. Indeed I don't believe it is widely practiced amongst Arab Muslims in Israel and certainly against Israeli law. Once again there is no such concept in Jewish law or practice.

quote:
You don't understand what I'm saying. I said Lebanon doesn't promote "Honour Killing", in the same way that Israel is actively punishing the native Arabs through government legislation laws.


They may not promote it but they also do little about it. That is seen by many as passive or tacit approval of murdering women.

So while Israel must still work on its human rights policies surely the murder of women in Lebanon with little to no police interference is a much sadder and frankly more important an issue to resolve, no? Or are you so caught up in your Israel-hatred that women's lives in lebanon and other Arab countries is just not that important?

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: Macabee ]


From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
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posted 07 July 2004 03:50 PM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Scout:
Macabee what in the hell does Israel have to do with this thread? Could you please not hijack another thread, you tried in PA's pity thread as well.

This bizarre concept of threads being hijacked is ridiculous. You are all intelligent people here. I asked one question that was ancilliary but linked. If others wish to run with that it is frankly their business and none of yours. If you dont wish to respond dont. But to blame me for everything that goes wrong here on this thread is just plain stupid...but typical.

From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Courage
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posted 07 July 2004 04:48 PM      Profile for Courage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
So while Israel must still work on its human rights policies surely the murder of women in Lebanon with little to no police interference is a much sadder and frankly more important an issue to resolve, no?

Sure, because the problems regarding women's rights in Lebanon negate The Occupation. You know, that little 'problem' complete with outrages like summary executions, torture, bulldozing, an entire population (male and female) left to the devices of the IDF...

Nothing to see hear folks, move along, nothing to see hear...


From: Earth | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
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posted 07 July 2004 05:32 PM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Courage:

Sure, because the problems regarding women's rights in Lebanon negate The Occupation. You know, that little 'problem' complete with outrages like summary executions, torture, bulldozing, an entire population (male and female) left to the devices of the IDF...

Nothing to see hear folks, move along, nothing to see hear...


WOMEN'S RIGHTS???? You mean the right to live is now classified by you as a "woman's's rights" issue?

I call it MURDER. And that you think so little of women being murdered in this fashion frankly sickens me.


From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 07 July 2004 06:03 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
When a moderate came to power, trying to restore peace for all citizens, they were assassinated (eg. Kamal Jumblatt).

Did he use soft power in an attempt to end the Civil War like Michael Collins did?

quote:
CMOT, wherefore did I look at you with reproach?
After all, you're a fellow Pratchetter, thus I can't really hold a grudge against you!

No worries. I just didn't know who you're rant was directed against

quote:
So, while lebanon has all the aura of an open society, there is some mistrust between sects, leading to a sectarian divide, leading to the necessity of the national-unity covenant.

So, what you're saying is that it doesn't really have a cat in hell's chance of being modified? Jesus, that does suck.

I guess it's too soon to rush into these things. *sigh*

quote:
While Swedish protestants were trying to enforce their ethical ideas on Orthodox Christians in the Baltic states the Catholic Spanish were teaching the Mayans the advantages of christianity under the boot of the Conquistadors.

Was Turkish imperialism really more benevolent then Spanish imperialism? If that's the case, why did the Bedouin Join Lawrence of Arabia in revolt against their rule? Is the treatment of the Arab tribes of the Arabian Peninsula an atypical example? Did the Sultan treat his other subjects with more respect?

quote:
I must say that I have to agree with MyName about democracies don't nessesarily have to be secular. Freedom or Democracy are better than No Freedom or Democracy at all, whether it be secular or not.


That maybe the case, but countries that mix religion and democracy have always made me a little twitchy. For example, Ireland in the 1940s was a democracy, but the church still maintained a great deal of influence when it came to public policy. This pseudo theocratic approach to government led to strict laws about abortion and divorce, which hobbled the cause of gender equality for years.

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
wei-chi
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posted 07 July 2004 06:22 PM      Profile for wei-chi   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
d) Has any of you been to downtown beirut lately?

I was there last year. Fascinating! We drove out from Syria, and coming into Beruit at sunset was fantastic. Suddenly, the mountain splits and concrete spills down its slopes and falls into the Sea - the sky an umbrella of light! Towers and roads everywhere.

In the cafes you hear French and English and Arabic. The new downtown is beautiful, rebuilt on the ruins of the civil war, right along the Green Line. Jurisdiction and ownership was handed to a company a few years ago, and they are rebuilding that part of the city on a for-profit basis.

My two-cents. I think the constitution of Lebanon restricts who can be in certain political positions: the Christians get the PM and the muslims get Deputy-PM, or President, or something. There are strict power-sharing rules for the different factions.

Can anyone be more specific here?

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: wei-chi ]


From: Saskatoon | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6142

posted 07 July 2004 09:09 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
I see, it's an Arab problem.

Blind_Patriot,
It appears you did not read the UN Report I linked to. It came from the report that honour killing women is an Arab problem in Israel. I was asking if it is a problem in the Jewish population as well. Giving parking tickets for killing women is wrong. It does not matter what country or what religion. It is WRONG. Of course Israel should be punishing Arabs that murder their wives. Why are Arab women being murdered by their husbands/brothers/fathers and why is it not happening amongst Jews in Israel?

It should not take 150 years to teach men that killing women is wrong. What kind of civilization murders their loved ones for the honour of the family?


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 07 July 2004 09:36 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
What kind of civilization murders their loved ones for the honour of the family?

An extremely patriarchal one. The thing is that the murder of women for reasons of "honor" isn't restricted to Arabs. It isn't even restricted to people from the Asian continent. Henry VIII killed all his wives for "family reasons" too. It would be more accurate to say "What kind of civilizations murder their loved ones for the honour of the family?"

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]

[ 07 July 2004: Message edited by: CMOT Dibbler ]


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Khadiija
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posted 07 July 2004 10:12 PM      Profile for Khadiija   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
The number of papers, TV's, internet users, political parties etc

mjollnir, I couldn't care less how many newspapers, TVs and internet users there are in Lebanon when sisters are being butchered.


quote:
I was amazed by the moderation of the people there.

Blind_Patriot, obviously the moderation of the people there does not apply to murdering wives.

quote:
As for the israeli comparison, well, in lebanon, all citizens are equal

mjollnir, if all citizens are equal, are women citizens too or are they just bought, sold and traded in marriage?

CMOT Dibbler, I stand corrected and ask my question again. What kind of civilization murders their loved ones for the honour of the family?


From: the twilight zone between Canada and the U.S. | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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posted 07 July 2004 10:29 PM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It feels like your baiting me. Please stop
From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
rabble-rouser
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posted 07 July 2004 10:32 PM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by CMOT Dibbler:
It feels like your baiting me. Please stop

Oh please, she asks a legitimate question albeit a tough one, and that becomes baiting. I dont think so.

From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Starbuck
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5920

posted 07 July 2004 11:49 PM      Profile for Starbuck        Edit/Delete Post
This thread started on June 15/04 and below are some of the times Israel was mentioned.

CMOT Dibbler posted 16 June 2004 10:55 PM                   

But if Lebanon has such a free press, why do I only hear stories from Turkey and Israel on the morning news?

CMOT Dibbler posted 17 June 2004 06:24 PM   
                
what reasons do they give for handing Israel the title of "the only democracy in the Middle East" while ignoring representative democracy in Lebanon?

Publically Displayed Name posted 17 June 2004 07:18 PM                
Just checked the CIA factbook entry, and it looks like the "Israel=only democracy" assumption stems from the situation over 15 years ago...

al-Qa'bong posted 17 June 2004 07:37 PM

I don't think there's a conspiracy or anything, but the idea that Israel is a lone democracy surrounded by salivating hordes of irrational, bloodthirsty dictatorships and sultanates has been planted deep enough that it has taken hold in the Western imagination.

mjollnir posted 19 June 2004 06:29 PM    
           
What this thread was pointing to is that claiming Israel to be the only democracy in the middle east is fallacious.

These are just some of the times Israel was mentioned.
Today, Scout posted the following post:

quote:
Macabee what in the hell does Israel have to do with this thread? Could you please not hijack another thread, you tried in PA's pity thread as well.

Scout, did you not notice that Israel was posted nineteen times before Macabee posted today? Why can people bash Israel then when Macabee tries to defend Israel HE is hijacking the thread? What a double standard!


From: Toronto | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
CMOT Dibbler
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Babbler # 4117

posted 08 July 2004 01:02 AM      Profile for CMOT Dibbler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Macabee:

Oh please, she asks a legitimate question albeit a tough one, and that becomes baiting. I dont think so.

I would love to Mac, the problem being I don't have the facts at my fingertips at the moment. My original answer is the best I can come up with at this time. I'm trying to be as diplomatic as possible.
I would like to hear Moj's response to the questions posed about chattels and honor killings etc. but I fear that emotions are running far too high for anyone to have a decent discussion about this new topic.

Starbuck: Israel is mentioned so often in this thread because we are comparing the two nations. There is nothing hypocritical about that.


From: Just outside Fernie, British Columbia | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Starbuck
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Babbler # 5920

posted 08 July 2004 01:26 AM      Profile for Starbuck        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Israel is mentioned so often in this thread because we are comparing the two nations. There is nothing hypocritical about that.

CMOT Dibbler, I understand why Israel is mentioned and I believe a comparison is healthy but I object to Scout's phony complaint that Macabee was writing about Israel.

Scout wrote:

quote:
Macabee what in the hell does Israel have to do with this thread?

Is Macabee now a 2nd class citizen in a thread about democracy?


From: Toronto | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Macabee
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5227

posted 08 July 2004 09:13 AM      Profile for Macabee     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The sad reality here is that anyone who is seen as pro-Israel, even if the poster is progressive or a social democrat, is treated by many (sometimes even a moderator or two) as a second class citizen. You sadly get use to it.
From: Vaughan | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Briguy
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 1885

posted 08 July 2004 10:23 AM      Profile for Briguy     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Anyone who cries wolf continually about the supposed antisemitism of regular babblers, and who often starts threads with statements such as "a majority of babblers will disagree with this article, but it points out that leftist anti-occupation activists are a bunch of feces-flinging baboons" will be met with hostility, yes. Sometimes, even in other threads in which he or she participates. Strange, that.

Also, posters who continually seek to change their identity (even while still posting under an older identity), and who create multiple handles in order to gratify themselves, will be met with hostility. Strange, again.

Of course, such posters will always cry that they are a victim. Such cries should be and are routinely ignored as foolishness.


From: No one is arguing that we should run the space program based on Physics 101. | Registered: Nov 2001  |  IP: Logged
josh
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Babbler # 2938

posted 08 July 2004 10:30 AM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Macabee:
The sad reality here is that anyone who is seen as pro-Israel, even if the poster is progressive or a social democrat, is treated by many (sometimes even a moderator or two) as a second class citizen. You sadly get use to it.

Okay, now that the Four Tops are done singing in the other thread, let's bring out the strings for poor, put upon Macabee.


From: the twilight zone between the U.S. and Canada | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 08 July 2004 10:34 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Well that was fun.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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