Syrian Connection (?)
They thought that they could act with impunity, and tried to hide out in the
This may not be the “Ultimate Black Swan” in
As the robbers escaped, they were chased by the Lebanese army in a massive manhunt. Some of them went deeper into Koura, where ambushed one of the Army’s patrols at the outskirts of Kalhat, before running away form the Army and the inhabitants, to hide into the olive groves and the thick maquis.
The others were “luckier” initially, as they escaped to the Nahr El-Bared camp in
Amid this escalation,
In practice, they are opportunists who follow whatever the “cause du jour” happens to be. They have become more vocal and were overdue for some action; with the approach of the Hariri tribunal, their Syrian masters may have seized their chance to “activate” them. That much was clear to the Mufti, who called for support to the Lebanese armed forces as the fighting got bloodier.
In theory, it was meant to be different, at least from the perspective of the cannon fodder they recruit. The ideology of Fath Al-Islam and similar groups is geared towards a return to the heydays of the Caliphate. While this particular outfit is focused on a return to
Back then, Al Andalus was the scene of the greatest Arab golden age. But they got complacent and far too self-centered, and fell to the Reconquista.
The Castillian kings had undertaken this Reconquista at a great cost to their own treasury. The booty from
Indeed, the “Age of Dicovery” afforded
The Spaniards had fallen prey to another unforeseen event; they had caught what economists call “Dutch Disease”, where the discovery of a resource provokes currency overvaluation, deindustrialization, leading to a greater poverty on the long run.
Not only were their galleons soon falling prey to British and French pirates, all that easy money provoked a de-industrialization of the country, and it became harder and harder to recruit competent crews and construct seaworthy ships. A growing number of ships were being lost in the high seas, and their precious cargoes never reached the Spanish coffers.
Such sunken treasures remained inaccessible till the advent of new diving technologies over the course of the second half of the 20th Century. New companies were formed whose chief purpose was to prowl the oceans, looking for such discarded or forgotten bounty.
The world leader in the field of “deep-ocean shipwreck exploration” is “Odyssey Marine Exploration”, who announced on
The concept of the “Black Swan” was developed by Nassim Nicholas Taleb in his eponymous book. Though my mind finds the coincidence remarkable, I know that “the fact that he is of a Lebanese origin is totally irrelevant”.
Still, I will go further in committing this ultimate sin of narrative fallacy (some sins are fun), by noting that he hails from Amioun, the same village where the current mess started, and where this post began...
Maybe I have a crack at writing for "Connections", if it's still on...