25 July 2007

Digitizing Eco-Tourism in Lebanon

Lebanon’s rural eco-tourism sites represent a great tourism attraction for international tourists visiting Lebanon as well as for the Lebanese themselves.

Although a relatively small country, Lebanon is naturally blessed with many eco-tourism sites of great diversity.
The first Personal Digital Assistant (PDA) navigation guide to tourism and eco-tourism sites in Lebanon was launched this month at the Ministry of Tourism. The PDA Navigation Guide fully utilizes the power of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to increase the competitiveness of rural tourism by encouraging tourists discover landmarks and natural beauty hidden in rural and remote areas. The PDA Guide to tourism provides hand held digitized maps of Lebanon with directions and guidance to over 11,000 Points of Interests across Lebanon.
Now this news may seem strange or even surreal given the current state of affairs in the country but nevertheless it was done with the hope that things will eventually get better. So if you are a Lebanese and believe in the power of prayers, well you know what to do, and God bless.

More on the topic can be found here and here.

21 July 2007

Incompatible with peace

"The problem is that Israel in its current version is not compatible with peace. Maybe version 2.0 will have that option programmed into it but until then it’ll be war." - Jamal

Lebanon: One year Anniversary of the July War

Last year, around this time, Israel was waging what it later dubbed as “Second Lebanon War” against Lebanon. So last week, most Lebanese bloggers wrote about this war. The posts were about their recollections, reflections, analysis, etc, focusing on the 33 days of summer 2006 in Lebanon. The posts reflect the diverse opinions and perspectives regarding this conflict. This summary attempts to give a sample of as wide a variety of points of view as possible. Anyway, more bloggers can be reached through links on the blogs quoted below or in previous (or later) summaries of the Lebanese blogosphere. Here we go:

Beirut Spring recalls how the war began as his family was preparing for his engagement party. He mentions how the party went on as planned on July 13, the second day of the war. In his post, which contains many links to posts during the war, he states his position at the time of the war:

We will support Hezbollah for now. We will unite behind them as long as we’re
under attack. We will not criticize them publicly. They are welcome in our
houses and in our cities. This is a time for unity, not squabbling.[but after
it’s all over]We will make it clear to the world that Hezbollah is not speaking
for all the Lebanese. We will make it well known that we will no longer accept
unilateral decisions pertaining to war and peace

For Jamal, there was more to that war than met the eye. He sees it as one battle in a long war that has and is taking place in the region. A war which he doesn’t seem to see an eminent end to:

The war did not start on July 12, 2006. I have memories of war stashed away
right next to the memory of my first electronic Spelling game that my parents
got me to accelerate my learning of the alphabet in the pre-kindergarten years
of the pre-Atari era. The war started in the year 12 b.h.n. (before Hassan
Nasrallah) and it hasn’t ended yet. The July, Lebanon’s Second, or Sixth labels
are just chapter titles to distinguish the 33 days of open military warfare as
opposed to the covert military ops that preceded and continued after that
period.

The problem is that Israel in its current version is not compatible
with peace. Maybe version 2.0 will have that option programmed into it but until
then it’ll be war.

>>> read the rest of this summary here ...

 

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