As casually as one would state things, like “I ate two apples, I drank two glasses of wine or I smoked two cigarettes,” Lebanon’s interior minister, Mohammed Fahmi, gladly mentioned to Imad Marmal, his interviewer on the Al-Manar TV channel, “I killed two people”. He mentions it as he nonchalantly draws his pen onto a paper in front of him, as if he had been quickly calculating an old debt owed to a shopkeeper. It seemed for a while, his interviewer could not believe what his guest had said during his discussion about his “sentimental” relation with the Lebanese Republic’s President, General Michel Aoun. “What did you do?” Marmal asked him with astonishment. With the pride of someone who had scored two goals in a football match, he replies: “I killed two people.” There was a short moment of silence before our Minister of Interior completed the story. He showed no sign of remorse, during his explanation that he had killed two people because he used to have a problem with a “powerful party” in 1981. The minister killed two people, and it seems from his speech that the two men were related to one of the Lebanese parties that had participated in the war. Our Minister of Interior was engaged in a personal battle with people from “a very powerful party”, and for this reason murdered two men. After committing his crime, General Michel Aoun called him to his office and lovingly told him, “Mohammed, as long as I breathe, no one would harm you”, the minister quoted. What was Marmal’s response to this story? He whistled, as an expression of his admiration for Aoun’s position, simply ignoring the previously mentioned crime witnessed in front of him, and continued to ask his guest naively and in an incredible provocatively: “Are you speaking sentimentally?” in terms of questioning the minister’s relation with Aoun. Fahmi replied: “I’m a loyal person; what the president had done for me neither I nor my family will forget. He protected me from death”.
The story goes unnoticed, while people in Lebanon are busy getting distracted with the “courageous” judicial decision of the Lebanese judge, according to which the American ambassador is now prevented from passing statements, as well as preventing the media from reporting her statements. This judicial decree came as a clear victory over America, and it was distracting enough for no one to concern themselves with a crime that happened forty years ago.. Who cares about two people who were killed twice, once by bullets and the other by shameless underestimation?
This took place in a live episode of a political talk show with an interlocutor and presenter that is supposedly known to be “experienced and skillful” in his profession. The whole conversation simply happened, just like many other events happen that have no logic to stand on in these troubled countries in terms of economy, politics, security and morals. It just so happened that somebody died with stray bullets with no guilt or reason for it. A human being has simply died in the past, because someone else decided to shoot the air, as a sign of joy or anger. The minister has done the same; he shot two people and killed them live on TV. It is true that the incident took place in 1981, but when the minister casually narrated the event in this reckless manner, it felt like he was loading his gun and shooting them again live, in front of Marmal’s eyes. Two shots live on the air, and then they die and nothing happens after that. This crime was witnessed by Imad Marmal, live on Television, who remained passive and nonchalant. The two men he spoke of fell and passed, as if they have never been on earth, they were just numbers. They bleed, but their blood was not seen by anyone. He killed them as if he was casually deleting two numbers from his contact list on his cell phone record, or as if he was simply blocking two accounts on Facebook or Twitter. After all of this goes on, the explanation continues. The Minister of the Interior continues explaining his “sentimental” relation with the President of the Republic, without batting an eye after his confession. He killed two, two mere numbers, nearly forty years ago, and today he tells the audience about this incident in the context of affirmation in terms of the sentimentality of his relation with Aoun. Our Minister of Interior found nothing else to remind him of his intimate relationship with Aoun rather than this bloody incident in which he murdered two people.
In the Arab world, a Minister of Interior can confess on live TV, to the murder of two people, without any notable consequences to that action! The story goes unnoticed, while people in Lebanon are busy getting distracted with the “courageous” judicial decision of the Lebanese judge, according to which the American ambassador is now prevented from passing statements, as well as preventing the media from reporting her statements. This judicial decree came as a clear victory over America, and it was distracting enough for no one to concern themselves with a crime that happened forty years ago.. Who cares about two people who were killed twice, once by bullets and the other by shameless underestimation? Speaking of the two people whom “His Excellency”, the murderer, killed; they have names, eyes, properties,families, friends, loved ones, and maybe children, who knows! Those people or some of them must have heard the minister talking about killing their loved ones as if they were worthless insects. He killed them, and then walked away and washed his hands of their blood while singing a military song. After that he put on his spotted clothes and answered Aoun’s call to meet him. They heard Aoun encouraging Fahmi for his crime, reassuring him not to worry, that justice is absent and he will survive under the protection of the General, and that he will one day, after about forty years, become the Minister of the Interior in a technocratic “rescue” government!