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Daily News Analysis

A broader evaluation of the explosion in Beirut

Crescent International

As details of the massive explosion in Beirut continue to trickle out, with no source, including the Lebanese government being fully informed as to what caused the explosion, the region’s geopolitical tensions and history of sabotage must be kept in mind when evaluating possible causes.

For the time being, the primary narrative is that the blast of large quantities of ammonium nitrate — a highly explosive material — stored in a warehouse at Beirut port for six years blew up due to mismanagement.

According to prominent Palestinian journalist and media consultant Laith Marouf, ammonia-nitrate confiscated in 2014 was destined to NATO backed Wahhabi militias in Syria.

There was also a container nearby of fireworks and somebody in the vicinity was doing welding work. The sparks from welding set off the fireworks that in turn resulted in ammonium nitrate exploding.

Last month Crescent International highlighted that the main battleground of economic warfare on Syria is Lebanon. It is not by accident that just as the US was giving final touches to its recent sanctions, the Lebanese currency was depreciating.

It should also be remembered that in June, Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah stated that “I have confirmed information that Chinese companies are willing to inject money into this country. Like on light rail from Tripoli to Naqoura, which would improve economy in Lebanon. I’m speaking to you, officially, Chinese companies are ready to help us.”

Last month the Washington Post reported that “Lebanon’s northern port of Tripoli has been expanded in recent years and could be a terminal in China’s trillion-dollar “Silk Road” project that’s carving a trade route from east Asia to Europe.”

Tangible negotiations over Chinese investment into Lebanon’s Tripoli port were ongoing since 2019. It could very possibly be that the Chinese were eying the Beirut port as well, although there is no confirmation of this at the moment.

On the same day as the Beirut explosion occurred, Washington based www.al-monitor.com reported that “fire erupted at an Iranian industrial facility this morning, state TV reported, marking the latest in a wave of unexplained blasts at civilian and military sites across the country.”

Taking all of the above into consideration, the latest blast in Beirut must be fully investigated with no angle ignored. It could very well be the result of welding sparks, fireworks and ammonium nitrate setting off a chain reaction, but other possibilities must be fully explored to preclude other factors.

Lebanon is the only country in the region which ended the Israeli occupation on its own terms through Hizbullah’s resistance.

Israel is the same entity which orchestrated the notorious false flag operation known as the Lavon Affair, when in 1954 it targeted British-owned civilian targets: cinemas, libraries, and American educational centers.

So, while we are prepared to accept the explanation that explosions were the result of gross incompetence and mismanagement by people at Beirut port, other possibilities must also be explored.

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