Editorial articles

On your own

On your own

If you moved back to Lebanon after the civil war during your late 20s with the dream of rebuilding the nation—and of course, haven’t held any public office—we predict you’re going to be working until you drop dead. Yes, Lebanese are known to be successful entrepreneurs—it’s a reputation that a few outliers have given us—but

On the frontlines

The worst kind of despair is the type that creeps in over time and contaminates our behavior, our character, and our life, becoming routine. We have survived wars, but never have Lebanese felt as exiled from the world as during the last seven years, and this has created an anxiety that manifests itself in how

Trickle down trash

The destructive nature of the Lebanese never ceases to bewilder. While we claim to be the most civilized nation in the Levant, we have managed to slowly hollow out our mountains, toxify our rivers, turn our seaside into landfills, and contaminate our air with heavy metals and cancerous fumes—and we do not even care. With

Pursuit of excellence

The vicious survival cycle that Lebanese corporates are stuck in comes at a price. To sustain their existence, they have to constantly bend the rules and outsmart the system, while suffering the inefficiencies and lack of vision that come from the absence of the state. In short, corporates adhere to a short-term management style, winging

Break the chains

Watching the fifth masquerade of national elections since my return to Lebanon, I cannot help but recall Amin Maalouf’s masterpiece, “The Rock of Tanios.” In Maalouf’s tale there is an Ottoman sheikh of a mountain village who collects taxes and recruits the able to fight the empire’s wars. In return for his allegiance to the

L’espoir fait vivre

On March 27, before addressing an auditorium filled with our best scholars, academics, researchers, journalists, intellectuals, and experts who have dedicated their lives for this nation, I asked if any of them was granted access to or had seen or even touched one page of the Capital Investment Plan (CIP) CEDRE project—the answer was a

Mother Lebanon

Beirut is depicted as a woman by many renowned artists, like Palestinian cartoonist Naji al-Ali, who—during the 1982 Israeli invasion—drew a caricature of his iconic character Handala offering a flower through a hole in the wall to a woman that he named Beirut. She is the patient carrier of our painful history, she is the

A tale of two worlds

Lebanon’s election season has begun. With it comes hatred, spite, segregation, animosity, and the most vicious deception imaginable. Desperate to sway votes in their favor, our narrow-minded politicians have one strategy in their playbook: isolate and manipulate. Playing on ignorance and fear, they further divide our already fraught communities. Last month we witnessed just how

Enough empty promises

Their crimes must not be forgiven again. For 11 years, Lebanese politicians spent some $130 billion without an audit. To pass the 2017 budget, our lawmakers defied the constitution by promising the audit will come next year instead of now. I’m not holding my breath. Let’s not lie to ourselves: Audits can be manipulated. We

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