Smoking Lebanon

Its the end of summer and I’ve been way too busy with the garden here at Siddhartha Towers to be blogging. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t been reading them. The great thing about gardening is that you can think about all the great blogs you’ve read and be concurrently constructive all at the same time.

Brian Whitaker is the Guardian’s Middle East editor and he keeps a tight blog on CiF. I find my thoughts completely unanimous with what he writes in general but thats because I flatter myself that I’m an intelligent man. The Whit on the other hand is an intelligent man, no flattery. His last few posts have been so brilliant that I believe that its worth your while I link to them so that you can read them all.

Here then are three articles by him that have a common thread that runs through them; Lebanon: the country, the war and the weed. Start with this article from last week where he points out all stakeholders of the Lebanese conflict can interpret UN Resolution 1559 to their advantage, thanks to the language of ‘UN legalese’.

Despite the pussy-footing language of 1559, there’s no doubt that it does seek the withdrawal of Syrian troops (completed last year) and the disarming of Hizbullah, among other things. The other main offender covered by the resolution - who hardly ever gets a mention in the media - is Israel, which has the gall to demand that the resolution be implemented (or at least the bits it happens to like) while continuing to breach the resolution itself.

Continue with this post in which he mulls over the UN security council resolution 262, and Israel’s responsibility to pay for war reparations to the people of Lebanon.

There is little doubt that Israel ought to pay for this; actually getting