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FACTS

The results of the Lebanese war were surprising in that all of those Lebanese factions that took part in the fighting actually came out of it much more worse off than they were before it started. Those that claimed that they were deprived and were fighting for a better living are now living in slums where before they lived in nice villages. Those who were fighting for more political power have no more now than they did then. Those who fought to keep their power lost it, and those who sided with outsiders and fought their own people are now the servants of foreign powers. The cost of the war to Lebanon and the price that individual Lebanese had to pay was massive:

144,240 killed, 129,816 were civilians.
197,506 wounded.
17,415 missing.
3,641 car bombs exploded during the war, killing 4,386 people and wounding 6,784.
950,000 left the country, 650,000 Christians and 300,000 Muslims.
800,000 were displaced: 450,000 have not yet returned to their native region, 300,000 Christians and 150,000 Muslims.
62% of the displaced are from Mount Lebanon, 24% from South Lebanon, 8% from Beirut.
Currently there is over 30% unemployment.
Over 1.5 million foreign workers in Lebanon, the vast majority Syrian.
Inflation increased from 7% in 1983 to 487% in 1987.
The minimum monthly wage was USD 243 in 1983, 41 in 1987, 58 in 1990, 110 in 1995.
The U.S. Dollar was equal to 2.5 Lebanese pounds in 1975 but 2800 LP by 1992, then 1615 in 1995, 1550 in 1997, 1505 in 1998. The national debt was USD 7 billion August 1995, USD 13 billion in 1997 and almost USD 20 billion by the year 2000.

Michel Aoun accuses Lebanese intelligence of church bombing
Former Lebanese Prime Minister and prominent figure of the Lebanese opposition General Michel Aoun held a press conference for Lebanon in the French capital to express his stances as to the latest developments on the Lebanese scene in recent weeks. Aoun said the wave of arrests that started since the 7th of August was unprecedented and was implemented by direct collaboration between the Lebanese intelligence, the general security and the Syrian secret services. Aoun added that the Lebanese system could not be cloned from the Syrian one because the process would produce a monster unable to live. Answering journalists questions Aoun assured the existence of legal flaws in the accusations directed to the anti-Syrian Christian activists. Aoun accused the security services of bombing the Lady of Salvation's church and accusing the Lebanese Forces of it. Finally Aoun expressed his readiness to meet with Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri when he will visit France.

US diplomat: Detentions violated law
Carol Kalin, the US Embassys deputy chief of mission, met with Justice Minster Samir Jisr on Wednesday to discuss the latest security sweep.
The detentions violated the law and undermined freedoms, she said, noting that among those detained and released on bail was attorney Fady Barakat, a US citizen.
Kalin stressed the importance of expediting trials and said she would relay questions from members of Congress on the events to local authorities.
She assumed her duties here on Aug. 10, having previously been deputy director of the Office of Egyptian and North African Affairs in the US State Departments Near East Bureau

Mystery Shrouds Returning Syrian Troops,Tanks Rumble in
A local media de facto blackout turned the whereabouts of Syrian troops re-dispatched to Lebanon into a mystery Tuesday as the media elsewhere in the Middle East went to sensational proportions in describing the Syrian move as a probable reversal of the redeployment.
Some 48 hours after the 100 truckloads of Syrian infantry units were reported to have crossed the border at the Masnaa checkpoint in the direction of Beirut, there has been no word about their arrival in the Lebanese capital or its environs.
An Nahar, who originally broke the news of the reinforcements moving back to Lebanon, reproduced its report on Tuesday along with a story that 15 Syrian tanks crossed the frontier in east Lebanon's Bekaa Valley on Monday.
The report was the top news item on most of the Gulf's satellite networks and the BBC all day Monday. Many wondered whether the move was a counter-redeployment to face possible Israeli destabilizing schemes.The Syrian and Lebanese army commands withheld any comment.
The reported return of the Syrians coincided with a vow by Syrian Defense Minister Mustafa Tlass to stand fast behind President Lahoud and Army commander Gen. Michel Suleiman to thwart any Israeli-inspired disorders by Lebanese opposition faction.

"These movements may be an extension of the Syrian redeployment operation that was staged in June," said Transport Minister Najib Mikati in response to a question whether the returning reinforcements meant the redeployment has been reversed.

The Syrians redeployed out of Beirut, the presidential palace area in Baabda and the defense ministry compound in neighboring Yarze last June. They left behind only a token unit to guard the command headquarters of Syrian military intelligence chief in Beirut, Brig. Gen. Rustom Ghazaleh

Hindi Retracts Duress Confessions to Army Officers
Toufic Hindi has retracted his confessions to army intelligence interrogators about alleged contacts with Israel, saying they were made under duress.
Media reports said on Friday the political advisor to Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea made retraction as judicial authorities took charge of his case from the military.
Hindi denied any contacts or meetings with Israel's Lebanon coordinator Uri Lubrani or his media advisor Oded Zarai in Paris or Cyprus, contrary to reports leaked to the local media by he army intelligence bureau.
Nonetheless Hindi was formally charged by magistrate Abdullah Haj with contacting and collaborating with the Israeli enemy, a charge that carries the death penalty in case of a court conviction.
Another star defendant in the case, journalist Habib Younis of AL HAYAT newspaper, also made a similar retraction when he appeared before magistrate Haj Thursday after a weeklong interrogation by army officers at the defense ministry, his newspaper reported.
Haj nevertheless formally charged as well as journalist Antoine Bassil with collaboration, too. Three other Lebanese defectors to Israel were also charged, including Cesar Saqr, who died in 1998.

Beirut, Updated 24 Aug 01, 15:11

اذا الاوطان تبنى بهذه الاشكال فيا زمن التعتير بدل

The carlito way

Same old song
HINDI'S INTERROGATION

The Lebanese Forces rejects squarely accusation of collaboration with Israel
events of the last two weeks proved that the campaign was targeting political various groups, including the Lebanese Forces with a political cover and through alleged security means. The Christian community has paid the price of this campaign, taking its toll on the freedom, dignity and rights of its youth. The Lebanese Forces assured its total rejection to the accusation directed to it and to some of its detained members, namely in the issue of the alleged collaboration with the Israeli. The statement said it considered the investigation and the arrest as unlawful based on the communique of the Bar's Association and the reports of Human Rights organization. It said that the Lebanese Forces despite the persecution and oppression since 1994 has only gambled on dialogue and reconciliation.

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