Thursday night there was a peaceful protest in solidarity with Gazans on the beach in West Beirut. The events included poetry reading, live music (traditional and hib hob), a painting, candle lighting and finally a traditional Palestinian debke dance performance. The crowd wasn't enormous, but it was a good gathering nonetheless.
Now, I've never known the Lebanese government to be punctual about anything, and especially not about electing a president. But the protest's permit was for until 8 pm, and when the second hand hit 12, the army came down like clockwork to tell the protesters that they had to leave. It seems that the Saudi ambassador, whose apartment is among those lining the overpriced and unlit towers that line the sea, was responsible for such punctuality. I was wondering if he was acting as a member of the rich Gulf residents of Ramlet al-Bayda annoyed with debke music wafting in from the sea or as the Saudi representative who's hostile to Gaza because of Iran's sponsorship of Hamas. I can't say for sure, but I have a feeling that it's probably a bit of both.