News / Middle East

    Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

    Lebanese and Palestinians hold up placards during a protest against the war in Gaza, in Beirut, Lebanon, July 21, 2014.
    Lebanese and Palestinians hold up placards during a protest against the war in Gaza, in Beirut, Lebanon, July 21, 2014.

    Lebanon’s normally highly divisive television stations have joined together to express their support for the Palestinian cause in Gaza by airing a joint newscast entitled, “Palestine, you are not alone.”

    The highly emotive half-an-hour program on Monday morning by the eight major local television outlets controlled by different antagonistic sects and political groups - including Shi'ite Hezbollah and its Sunni opponent the Future Movement - contained images of Israeli airstrikes, Palestinian mothers mourning over the bodies of their children, and Gaza homes pounded into rubble.

    The joint newscast - billed as the Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip - began and concluded with a poem by the late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish.

    Each station contributed its own report with all airing the final bulletins exploring different aspects of the conflict raging in Gaza.

    “It is simply an attempt to express, through our visual media channels, the Lebanese people’s solidarity with the people of Gaza, who live under a cruel siege and whose innocent civilians are being killed every day,” said Talal Salman, editor of the Lebanon’s As-Safir newspaper, who proposed the joint broadcast.

    The broadcast illustrates the breadth of opposition in Lebanon to Israel’s offensive in the Gaza, analysts say.

    Muted disapproval

    Still, public displays of support for Hamas or disapproval of Israel appear more muted than in 2009, the last time Israel launched a major offensive in the Gaza in retaliation for Palestinian rocket attacks on southern Israel.

    A Lebanese student from the American university in Beirut holds a placard during a protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, in Beirut, July 14, 2014.A Lebanese student from the American university in Beirut holds a placard during a protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, in Beirut, July 14, 2014.
    x
    A Lebanese student from the American university in Beirut holds a placard during a protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, in Beirut, July 14, 2014.
    A Lebanese student from the American university in Beirut holds a placard during a protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, in Beirut, July 14, 2014.

    Small crowds of placard-waving protesters rallied at demonstrations Tuesday across Lebanon condemning the Israeli offensive. The low attendance reflects the high level of anxiety among Lebanese that the conflict raging to their south could draw Lebanon in and trigger Hezbollah’s entry into the fray and a repeat of the Shi'ite movement’s 2006 war with Israel.

    The Lebanese are already suffering spillover from the civil war raging in next-door Syria with suicide bombings by jihadists and episodic but intense violence in the northern city of Tripoli.

    The deepest support for Gaza in Lebanon is on display in the dozen camps housing 400,000 Palestinians. The camps were set up for Palestinian refugees fleeing the 1948 Arab-Israeli war.

    Blood drive

    At the largest, Ain al-Hilweh near the southern city of Sidon, activists have launched a blood drive for Gaza and a campaign to collect money.

    The campaign is supported also by officials from Fatah, the faction of the Palestine Liberation Organization, that is a rival to Hamas. Blood donations from the camp are being given to the International Committee of the Red Cross for onward delivery.

    “The least we can do is donate blood to our families and the people in Gaza,” Fouad Othman of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine told local reporters.

    Camp residents have been rallying in protests and large screens have been erected in the camp and in the evening play pro-Hamas videos and bulletins showing Israeli strikes on Gaza.

    Military parade
     

    Two Lebanese men carry a fake missile to protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, as they take part in a sit-in, in front the United Nations headquarters, in downtown Beirut, Lebanon, July 13, 2014.Two Lebanese men carry a fake missile to protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, as they take part in a sit-in, in front the United Nations headquarters, in downtown Beirut, Lebanon, July 13, 2014.
    x
    Two Lebanese men carry a fake missile to protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, as they take part in a sit-in, in front the United Nations headquarters, in downtown Beirut, Lebanon, July 13, 2014.
    Two Lebanese men carry a fake missile to protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, as they take part in a sit-in, in front the United Nations headquarters, in downtown Beirut, Lebanon, July 13, 2014.

    Last week, one Palestinian faction organized a military parade in the camp displaying replicas of the homemade rockets Hamas has been firing at Israel.

    Nidal Othman, a Palestinian activist, said the parade was a display of the Palestinians’ “legendary resilience.” He condemned what he sees as muted support across the Arab world for Hamas.

    “It is this legendary resilience that Israel is unable to break with the power of aerial weapons and all its destructive and criminal weapons,” he said.

    Lebanese authorities are keen to make sure support for Gaza is limited just to symbolism.  So too is Hezbollah, which has offered strong rhetorical support for Hamas but appears reluctant to join in and fight Israel.

    Sporadic rocket attacks

    Lebanese security forces are mounting operations to try to stop militants firing sporadic rockets from southern Lebanon into Israel and on Monday they arrested the suspected ringleader behind some rocket attacks earlier this month.

    Pro-Gaza militants launched salvoes of rockets from Lebanese territory toward Israel on several occasions last week. In turn Israel launched retaliatory shelling of Lebanese villages along the border.

    Lebanese authorities fear rising escalation of the exchanges.

    A week after Israel launched airstrikes on Hamas positions in Gaza, Lebanon filed a complaint with the United Nations Security Council over Israeli violations of Lebanese airspace.

    Among them was a 21-155-millimeter artillery bombardment on July 11 on the outskirts of the southern Lebanese town of Kfarshouba and a 31-shell salvo on July 14 on the villages of al-Qlayleh and al-Maaliyeh.

    In a statement the Lebanese government said: “The firing of rockets by some individuals or by unorganized or marginal groups does not serve the interest of Lebanon or of the Palestinian resistance in Gaza.”

    It warned that rocket attacks launched from Lebanon give Israel excuses to retaliate.

    You May Like

    How Aleppo Rebels Plan to Withstand Assad's Siege

    Rebels in Aleppo are laying plans to withstand a siege by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces in likelihood the regime cuts a final main supply line running west of city

    Probe Targeting China's Statistic Head Sparks Concern

    Economists now asking what prompted government to launch an investigation only months after Wang Baoan had been vetted for crucial job

    HRW: Both Sides in Ukraine Conflict Targeted, Used Schools

    Rights group documents how both sides in Ukraine conflict carried out attacks on schools and used them for military purposes

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: josep from: California
    July 26, 2014 3:53 PM
    yeah, but still no country for you. =)

    by: John
    July 23, 2014 11:14 AM
    The US taxpayer has been supporting the Palestinians, and Israelis, for over 60 years. The US is in effect fighting a war against itself. This is absurd. The only rational policy is to abandon the Palestinians, the Israelis, and indeed the whole Middle East.

    The money wasted on aid and wars can be used to build synthetic oil plants. Racial Profiling (I know Islam is a religion not a race, but that's what they insist on calling it) will deal with Muslim terrorists coming to America. Once the US stops importing foreign terrorists and is independent of foreign oil, it can ignore the Middle East entirely.

    by: Andrea Christos from: Philadelphia
    July 23, 2014 8:12 AM
    The Israeli's intend to commit genocide of the defenseless Palestinians so that they can control the area which is currently Palestine. Remember that oil has been discovered off the coast of palestine and the Israeli's intend to own it.

    by: Jon Jones
    July 23, 2014 1:18 AM
    What the press fails to mention is that the Palestinians are not welcome in Jordan syria lebanon or any other Arab country. Their arab brothers want nothing to do with them, their arab brothers would rather them languish in gaza and encourage them to prepare for war. the Gazans use their women and children as human shields, and the arab world use the palestinians as a propagando tool against Israel. In both cases it is arabs throwing arabs under the bus, what a fine group of people these arabs are.
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    August 09, 2014 1:47 AM
    actually Lebanon has a refugee camp for palestinians to live so your facts are false!
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    July 23, 2014 11:25 AM
    MAKE PEACE NOT WAR
    In Response

    by: Tim from: Canada
    July 23, 2014 4:28 AM
    how ignorant of you to think like that. there are thousands of palestanians living all over the arab world. and shows your ignorance to state that they use their women and children as human shields. you have been fed lies on the news and you have been munching away, without looking what is being put on your plate. gaza is a small area and densly populated, any rocket would ensure casualties. and if you have been following the news then you know how many rockets israel has sent so far. if you are not moved by the innocent people that are losing their lives among them a great number of children then you do not poses a human heart.

    by: Michael from: America
    July 22, 2014 1:45 PM
    What a shocker. The people in the picture supporting the Palestinians are too dumb to spell Israel correctly. But them being dumb wasnt a question, as they are supporting the Palestinians instead of the Israelis .
    In Response

    by: FRENDLY from: TORONTO
    July 23, 2014 11:28 AM
    STOP SHOOTING ROCKETS AT INNOCENT CIVILIANS
    In Response

    by: Mary from: New Zealand
    July 23, 2014 6:47 AM
    Michael clearly how thick you are says something about who's dumb.
    In Response

    by: Sarah from: America
    July 22, 2014 4:03 PM
    Im pretty sure it's meant to be written Is Real as a play on words for Israel. Seems that went right over your head.

    by: george k from: Florida
    July 22, 2014 12:15 PM
    Sometimes people who are targeted for extermination can behave in unpredictable ways, after all, were these 20,000 missiles (and counting), many sent courtesy of the peace lovers in Iran, for commercial flights? We're the fortified concrete tunnels into a sovereign state (in lieu of building schools and parks) "trade routes"? The mothers wail in anguish: but does anyone remember when they were brought tea and cookies – often courtesy of Saddam Hussein – when their valiant sons blew up crowded commuter buss in Tel Aviv, with pregnant women and toddlers also on board?

    Does the population not pray, even from the start of this, when there was a chance to turn back, that their missiles will hit the densely crowded Israeli cities and buildings? And let's not even mention Sunni on Shia violence or Boko Haram violence against everyone and anyone who is not Muslim, or Isis v almost everyone; or Syrian barrel bombs; lets just focus on the anguish of the cynics who are shocked SHOCKED to see that a

    Life loving people would dare to bomb wherever they out their own weapons, while waiting for the go signal on extermination day. Sorry to not stand still while you aim. From 1948 to the present: Israel's existence is the best proof of the existence of Allah – but I don't think the same can be said for the beheading, barrel bombs and such.

    by: Whisky13 from: Texas
    July 22, 2014 11:49 AM
    the arabs hate jews even while they murder each other. they allow themselves to be governed by terrorists and lob rockets indiscriminately at israel and claim to be victims. you fools are victims by choice. or maybe these folks are simply evil or at the very least fools.
    In Response

    by: FRENDLY from: TORONTO
    July 23, 2014 11:35 AM
    PEACE WILL COME WHEN JEWS MUSLIMS AND ALL NATIONS RESPECT AND PRAY TOGETHER HAR HABAYIT, THE HOME OF JEWISH HERITAGE

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growthi
    X
    February 10, 2016 5:54 AM
    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Russia's Car Sales Shrink Overall, But Luxury and Economy Models See Growth

    Car sales in Russia dropped by more than a third in 2015 because of the country's economic woes. But, at the extreme ends of the car market, luxury vehicles and some economy brands are actually experiencing growth. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Civil Rights Pioneer Remembers Struggle for Voting Rights

    February is Black History Month in the United States. The annual, month-long national observance pays tribute to important people and events that shaped the history of African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins reports how one man fought against discrimination to help millions of blacks obtain the right to vote
    Video

    Video Jordanian Theater Group Stages Anti-Terrorism Message

    The lure of the self-styled “Islamic State” has many parents worried about their children who may be susceptible to the organization’s online propaganda. Dozens of Muslim communities in the Middle East are fighting back -- giving young adults alternatives to violence. One group in Jordan is using dramatic expression a send a family message. Mideast Broadcasting Network correspondent Haider Al Abdali shared this report with VOA. It’s narrated by Bronwyn Benito
    Video

    Video Migrant Crisis Fuels Debate Over Britain’s Future in EU

    The migrant crisis in Europe is fueling the debate in Britain ahead of a referendum on staying in the European Union that may be held this year. Prime Minister David Cameron warns that leaving the EU could lead to thousands more migrants arriving in the country. Meanwhile, tension is rising in Calais, France, where thousands of migrants are living in squalid camps. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Families Flee Aleppo for Kurdish Regions in Syria

    Not all who flee the fighting in Aleppo are trying to cross the border into Turkey. A VOA reporter caught up with several families heading for Kurdish-held areas of northern Syria.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.