[Published here March 4, 2014]
A twenty year-old girl and a ten-year old boy were killed by Syrian government airstrikes last week. It would sound like any other day in Syria, except these strikes took place on the Lebanese side of the border, killing two Lebanese civilians and wounding several others. Porous borders are not new to Lebanon. The Lebanese and Syrian national borders have yet to be properly demarcated, and have never been fully secured. Migrant Syrian workers used to pour into Lebanon, while Lebanese looking for a quiet escape into old Damascus would flow the other way.
[Published here July 25, 2013]
In a long-awaited move, the European Union on Monday designated the military wing of Lebanon’s Hezbollah as a terrorist organization. The months-long discussions were catalyzed by American pressure and proof of Hezbollah’s involvement in a 2012 terrorist attack in Bulgaria. The precise effects of the designation on Hezbollah’s operations in Europe remain unclear; nevertheless, as British Foreign Secretary William Hague and EU officials assessed, the move serves as an important message to Hezbollah that its era of impunity in Europe is coming to an end.