"Before any investigation into the Ethiopian aeroplane crash off Beirut coast, the Lebanese president ruled out any act of sabotage behind the incident since no statement has been released from a terrorist organisation to claim the responsibility," observed Abdul Rahman al Rashed in an opinion piece for the London-based newspaper Al Sharq Al Awsat. Some pointed to a human fault: the captain possibly made mistakes in the flight course and lost control. They argued that there were no storms at the take-off and after, and that the Boeing 737 is technologically reliable.
Others contended that the aeroplane was bound to a hot spot where radical groups were active, and it was carrying such a very important person as the wife of the French ambassador to Lebanon, who could be the target. Aviation statistics show, however, that most accidents are either caused by human or technical mistakes. But because terrorists have recently tended to commit sabotage acts in mid-air led people to first think of terrorism as behind any air crash. These all remain yet hypotheses and even though official statements tend to appease the general feelings, only formal investigation by specialised agencies based on the black box recordings can determine the real causes. "Meanwhile, we hope this tragedy is a normal incident because Lebanon and the region can no longer stand more political crises and more accusations."
These all remain yet hypotheses and even though official statements tend to appease the general feelings, only formal investigation by specialised agencies based on the black box recordings can determine the real causes. "Meanwhile, we hope this tragedy is a normal incident because Lebanon and the region can no longer stand more political crises and more accusations."
"Movie theatres in malls in Saudi Arabia. This has happened yet. I thought the debate on this issue has long subsided, but the Riyadh newspaper's symposium this week raised this subject anew, in a more mature manner. Participants thought cinemas are inevitably coming because they are a legitimate right for those who desire to go for entertainment or for cultural pursuits," remarked Abdul Rahman Al Shalash in an opinion piece for the Saudi newspaper Al Watan.
There are no statistics about those who support cinemas and those who oppose them in Saudi Arabia, because no thorough surveys were undertaken to understand the attitudes of members of society towards such a thorny question. Yet some indications reveal that many would like to have movie theatres, as thousands of families visit neighbouring countries for that particular sake. However, there are many also who consider cinemas as "evil" and oppose even talking about them. If cinemas are allowed, they will receive wide attention from the public; this is natural. But "insisting on preventing cinemas is not healthy and may produce further reactions, because all forbidden is desirable. Prohibition alone is not a solution, and unchecked permission is likewise. Therefore, I think, there should be some reconciliatory suggestions that satisfy at least moderate views."
"It obvious to any observer that Israel does not look forward to peace in Lebanon. Israelis would like to wedge further the divide between the government and the resistance, and then to gradually bring damage to the unity of Lebanon," remarked Bassam al Dhaw in an opinion article for the Qatari daily Al Watan. Confronted with frequent Israeli threats, and despite the difficult domestic conditions at home, Lebanese are still trying to overcome the post-war trauma. Lebanese political forces are determined to create a suitable atmosphere for holding positive dialogues. Most political factions are keen to enter a national dialogue conference next February, maintain good relations between the government and the resistance and improve relations with Syria. The aim is to stand as one front in anticipation of a potential Israeli attack.
A question then arises: can a new Israeli aggression achieve its objectives and take revenge of the resistance that defeated it in 2006? "Form what we have seen, there is a high level of coherence between resistance and community, and between it and the state institutions. Today the resistance is more prepared than it was in 2006, and it is supported by a rising public awareness that Israel is an enemy threatening stability of the country." Based on these facts, Israeli aggression is possible, but new defeat is certain.
"The statements by the Yemeni foreign minister, Abu Bakr al Qirbi, warning of the possibility that his country may become a failed state should be taken seriously by Yemenis and by Arab countries, as well as by the international community," noted the UAE newspaper Al Khaleej in its editorial. The term "failed state" summarises the failure of a country on many levels, including security, politics, economy and development. Yemen fears to reach that level after years of conflicts that have been intensified in the last months with Houthis in the North, the secessionists in the South, and al Qa'eda. All these have impeded the course of normal development.
Is money alone enough to save Yemen from its present situation? This question is raised in the Conference on Yemen taking place in London. The country was previously promised financial aids worth $5 billion during the donors' conference, but that had never materialised, according to Yemeni foreign minister. "Yemen direly needs money to finance development projects, to combat poverty, to improve education, to establish basic infrastructure. But the country also needs an internal responsible dialogue ? and that all its social constituents should work together towards Yemen's safety."
* Digest compiled by Mostapha Elmouloudi firstname.lastname@example.org