Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Attn: US Citizens in Lebanon - Urgent Update

Travel Alert: Lebanon

The lede:

The State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs issued the following updated Travel Warning on May 2, 2006:

This Travel Warning updates information on threats to American citizens and interests in Lebanon. It supersedes the Travel Warning for Lebanon issued November 7, 2005.

The Department of State urges U.S. citizens to carefully weigh the necessity of their travel to Lebanon in light of the risks noted below. U.S. citizens in Lebanon are encouraged to register with the U.S. Embassy in Beirut where they may also obtain updated information on travel and security in Lebanon. See registration details below.

You know what's amazing to me? This was the travel warning published on May 2 and these folks went on their merry way to Lebanon anyway. For beach holidays. What were they thinking? Now they are bitching and moaning about having to wait for a few days. OR THEY ARE COMPLAINING BITTERLY ABOUT THE INCOMPETENCE OF THE US GOVT BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT ABLE TO REGISTER WHEN IN FACT, THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO REGISTER WHEN THEY ARRIVED IN COUNTRY. Oh, and they want the US citizens to foot the bill.

Hell, let's just post the whole thing so you too can feel your blood pressure rise as you watch the media Katrina-fy Beirut.

Recent events in Lebanon underscore the need for caution and sound personal security precautions. Former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri was assassinated on February 14, 2005 in a car bomb attack in which at least 22 other people were killed and many others seriously wounded; the potential for violence remains. Since March 2005, there have been 13 separate bombings in Lebanon, resulting in the deaths of at least 11 people and injuries to more than 100 others. Historically, Americans have been the targets of numerous terrorist attacks in Lebanon. The perpetrators of many of these attacks are still present and retain the ability to act. American citizens should thus keep a low profile, varying times and routes for all required travel. Americans should also pay close attention to their personal security at locations where Westerners are generally known to congregate, and should avoid demonstrations and large gatherings. In January 2006, Lebanese authorities arrested suspected members of an al-Qaeda group in Beirut. The presence of al-Qaeda in Lebanon raises the potential threat to U.S. citizens and interests. In February 2006, demonstrations against newspaper cartoons that satirized the Prophet resulted in damage to the building housing the Danish consulate, as well as surrounding homes, commercial enterprises, a church, and vehicles. The U.S. Government considers the potential threat to U.S. Government personnel assigned to Beirut sufficiently serious to require them to live and work under a strict security regime. This limits, and may occasionally prevent, the movement of U.S. Embassy officials in certain areas of the country. These factors, plus limited staffing, may hinder timely assistance to Americans in Lebanon. Unofficial travel to Lebanon by U.S. Government employees and their family members requires prior approval by the Department of State. U.S. citizens who travel to Lebanon despite this Travel Warning should exercise heightened caution when traveling in parts of the southern suburbs of Beirut, portions of the Bekaa Valley and South Lebanon, and the cities of Sidon and Tripoli. Hizballah has not been disarmed, it maintains a strong presence in many of these areas, and there is the potential for action by other extremist groups in Tripoli. American air carriers are prohibited from using Beirut International Airport (BIA) due to continuing concern about airport and aircraft security arrangements. For similar reasons, the Lebanese carrier Middle East Airlines (MEA) is not permitted to operate service into the United States. Official U.S. government travelers exercise additional security measures when using Beirut International Airport. Palestinian groups hostile to both the Lebanese government and the U.S. operate largely autonomously inside refugee camps in different areas of the country. Intra-communal violence within the camps has resulted in violent incidents such as shootings and explosions. Occasionally this violence spills over into neighboring cities and towns. Travel by U.S. citizens to Palestinian camps should be avoided. Asbat al-Ansar, a terrorist group with apparent links to al-Qaeda, has targeted Lebanese, U.S. and other foreign government interests. It has been outlawed by the Lebanese government but continues to maintain a presence in the Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp. Dangers posed by landmines and unexploded ordnance throughout south Lebanon are significant and also exist in other areas where civil war fighting was intense. Travelers should be aware of posted landmine warnings and strictly avoid all areas where landmines and unexploded ordnance may be present. Tensions remain in Lebanon's southern border with the possibility of Hizballah and Palestinian militant activity at any time. The Embassy is located in Awkar, near Antelias, Beirut, Lebanon. Public access hours for American citizens are Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. However, American citizens who require emergency services outside of these hours may contact the Embassy by telephone at any time. The telephone numbers are (961-4) 542-600, 543-600, and fax 544-209. American citizens may register with the Embassy online by visiting Information on consular services and registration can also be found at or by phone at the above telephone numbers between 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday local time. Updated information on travel and security in Lebanon may be obtained from the Department of State by calling 1-888-407-4747 within the United States or, from overseas, 1-202-501-4444. Additional details can be found in the Department of State's Consular Information Sheet for Lebanon, the Worldwide Caution Public Announcement, the Middle East and North Africa Public Announcement and the Travel Publication A Safe Trip Abroad, all of which are available on the Department's Internet site at

Not had enough?

The Majority of Americans in Lebanon are Hezbollah Supporters
from Debbie
Most of them are Shiite Muslims, many of whom hold dual U.S. and Lebanese citizenship. Many are anchor babies born here to Muslims in the U.S. illegally. Some are illegal aliens who became citizens through rubber-stamping Citizenship and Immigration Services (and its INS predecessor) coupled with political pressure by spineless politicians.

Of the 25,000 American citizens and green-card holders in Lebanon, at least 7,000 are from Dearborn, Michigan, the heart of Islamic America, and especially Shia Islam. These 7,000 are mostly Shi'ite Muslims who openly and strongly support Hezbollah. Ditto for many of the rest of the 25,000 that are there.

Many of the 7,000 plus Detroiters in Lebanon are active in Dearborn's Bint Jbeil cultural center (the Lebanese American Heritage Club also features mostly Hezbollah fans). Bint Jbeil is a Hezbollah-dominated city in the South of Lebanon, a frequent destination of Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, who is very at home there. Bint Jbeil is a frequent source of shellings on Northern Israel.

Bint Jbeil natives now living in our country so strongly support Hezbollah that they got Republican Congressman Joe Knollenberg (and his then top staffer, Paul Welday) and then-U.S. Senator Spencer Abraham to give Hezbollah forces in Southern about $86 million of our tax money, no strings.

Given this information, and the fact that several Shi'ite Muslim Lebanese U.S. citizens from Dearborn have been indicted and/or convicted of laundering money to Hezbollah, is it a good idea to rush to bring 25,000 such persons back to the U.S. at a time when Hezbollah is at war against our strongest U.S. ally? Does the fact, that Hezbollah numerous times--and especially now--has announced veiled and not-so-veiled intentions to attack Americans on U.S. soil, make the case to quickly bring these terror-sympathizing Americans back to U.S. soil? Many are individuals whose activity should have mandated prosecution and jail-time. But they are free because a spineless U.S. Attorney, Stephen Murphy III, and equally weak federal law enforcement chiefs of Michigan FBI and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) who pander to them.

These are people who hold U.S. citizenship but support a group that murdered over 300 U.S. Marines and civilians, some through torture; a group that is part of the Al-Qaeda network; a group that is training insurgent terrorists against our troops in Iraq and giving them IEDs to blow them up; a group that worked with Qaeda to bomb the Khobar Towers. Americans who support this group are not American. They merely possess the proper paperwork.

Can't speak to the accuracy of this information but I am sad to say that it wouldn't surprise me.

7/19 = 9/11?

According to USNAVYSEALS.COM at this link:

The Higgins Counterterrorism Research Center would like to alert you to the fact that the Islamic calendar anniversary of the 9/11 attacks (23 Jumaada al Thani) falls on July 19, 2006.

Just saying.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Remember the big bad Iranian Bourse?

You know, the one that the Iranians feel will bring the great Satan to it's knees. (See Dude, Where's My Bourse and Remember the Iranian Bourse)

Supposedly one of the arrows in Almondjoy's quiver is the formation of an Iranian oil market to smash the dollar to smithereens and take care of our tacky asses once and for all. The only problem? Who the heck knows? But it's been postponed a bunch of times.

Here's the latest I've been able to find from the Persian Journal. Iranian Bourse to Open in September

The lede and some choice tidbits:

Iran will start the initial phase of its planned Iranian oil bourse at the end of September.

The building that will house the oil bourse has reportedly already been purchased in the southern Iranian island of Kish in Persian Gulf.

Petrochemical and oil-related products will be made available to customers in the first phase but the volume of the shares to be traded is not yet clear, the official told.

The exchange will have a positive impact on oil sales, not only in Iran but in the wider Persian Gulf region and is slated to replace the current dollar-based oil exchange with one based on the euro, he said.

The International Petroleum Exchange in London and the New York Mercantile Exchange, on which oil is currently traded, both use the dollar.

Iran argues that as long as 60% of global oil and 25% of natural gas needs are met by Persian Gulf states, oil dealing in either New York or London made no sense.

Time will tell. I guess. I'll believe it when I see it.

For the most succinct breakdown of why it will not bring old Uncle Satan to his knees see Analysts Skeptical of Iran Oil Plan.

In the interim the Middle Eastern markets have their own dead cat bounce to deal with.

From Trade Arabia: Beirut bourse stays closed, dollars hoarded

Escalating Violence Batters Mideast Markets

Monday, July 17, 2006

Oy! Do I even have to tell you my life has been crazier than a shit house rat's?

Fugue State: R.H Menzel

Pardon the vulgarity, dear readers. It's been somewhat trying here in Lord-ville.

Once again, Dinah's been MIA from the blogosphere, being all caught up in the fugue state that is her life. Hope this finds you all well in your own personal orbit.

It is a kinda crazy world out there, isn't it?

Hate to be like a broken record, but I must say that you know you have a crazy existence if you feel great joy being back at the keyboard fighting the Islamic menace one keystroke at a time instead of dealing with real life. But there you are.

Remember this? It wasn't that long ago.

Spoke to my dear Lebanese friend J**** today. His family in Lebanon is safe and sound. I continue to pray for a free and peaceful Lebanon. Speaking of Lebanon, did you see the Lebanese Prime Minister today? What a basket case. Like night and day from his previous statements. It looks to me like Syria or somebody got to him. Poor thing. I hope Condi or somebody offers the Lebanese Air Force some help. Why not? If Iran and Syria feel they can arm Hezbollah why can't we help out the fledgling democracy in Lebanon. Their air force is kind of limp and could use a hand.

Where do I start? Israel, Iran, Korea?

Oh heck. Let's go back in time for a bit. Hearing about the capture of the Israeli soldiers makes me take a trip in Dinah's personal wayback machine, back to the bad, old days of Jimmah Carter and to the Iranian hostage crisis. Makes me want to smack Jimmah down. Him and those lousy Mullahs. Talk about faulty intelligence.

I date myself when I tell you that I attended the ticker tape parade down Broadway in NYC when those hostages returned to the US.

My friend, Peggy, and I slipped away from our work at a Wall Street firm and headed up Broadway to cheer their return.

No need to remind you that it was a different world back then. Office windows still opened and there was no such thing as a paperless office.

People in the office buildings lining the streets tossed shredded (and whole) computer print outs, data punch cards and chad confetti out the windows with wild abandon. We waded up the street in paper up to our hips.

There were a lot of trees killed that day.

How happy we were to get the hostages home. Hope our friends in Israel will soon feel the same joy when their captured soldiers are returned.

God bless Israel.

Speaking of Israel if you haven't seen this yet over at Atlas Shrugs - enjoy.

Regarding Korea: With all the activity in the ME, I have a feeling that Kim Jong Il if feeling pretty ronery tonight. Look for him to pull some kind of stunt, don't you think?

Cheers - Dinah