Dan Azzi

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Welcome to Lebanon Carlos-San

[This article was originally published in An-Nahar on December 31, 2019] Let’s say a certain hugely successful Lebanese automotive executive ran into legal troubles in a country which has an usually convoluted judicial system, which tends towards “guilty until proven innocent.” Staying back to fight and salvage his international [...]

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A tale of two Lebanons

(This article was originally published in An-Nahar on June 2, 2019) I heard that one of my favorite restaurants is closing. I love that place, not because you can glimpse the who’s who in the country, but the food and service are great, and the charming manager reminds me of a bygone era. I dress like I don’t belong there, so one waiter, [...]

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Exorbitant Privilege

[This article was originally published in An-Nahar on February 2, 2019] The United States buys a Japanese Toyota, German BMW, Korean Kia, or Chinese Dongfeng, made of steel, leather, glass, computer chips, engines, and significant workmanship and design. They pay using pieces of paper (water-proof cotton, to be precise); with “In God We [...]

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Random Encounters

Actual Message sent September 14, 2017, from the US Consulate in Beirut to its citizens: Due to ongoing threats to locations such as the Casino Du Liban in Jounieh, Lebanon, the US Embassy in Beirut has barred any movement of US government staff to that Casino. As always, the U.S. Embassy will continue to evaluate the movements of its [...]

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Gentrification in Beirut

When you think of wars, to most people they seem so theoretical, so academic, so “high school history.” Like when you’re walking through the ruins in Rome and being told about Roman history and its vast empire. Like when you’re walking through a tour of Gettysburg and being shown where General Lee was applying his brilliant tactics [...]

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Nouveau Riche & Lebanese Culture

If you want to understand Lebanese culture, you can start by examining some of the idioms. Let’s look at the term “nouveau riche” which, in Lebanon, is a derogatory term, meaning someone who is recently wealthy, as opposed to inherited wealth, and therefore does not behave properly like people who are accustomed to wealth.  The [...]

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