Just in case the borderline civil war in Egypt isn't enough to inflame hostilities in the middle east region sufficiently so the US finally gets involved, the US-funded, Al-Qaeda backed Syrian rebels decided to launch a second escalation offensive, this time near the very headquarters of the pro-Damascus Shiite group Hezbollah when a powerful car bomb killed at least 14 people and wounded about 200 others, national news agency NNA said. AFP reports that a previously unknown group believed to be a Syrian rebel cell said it carried out the attack. The bombing, reminiscent of the frequent attacks during Lebanon's 1975-1990 civil war, caused enormous damage to buildings. Whether this provocation (US funded or not) will be sufficient to force a Lebanon escalation in the Syrian conflict is unknown, but there is only so much more that the region, already at its breaking point, can take.
Video of the explosion aftermath:
RT has more:
The blast – reportedly from a car bomb – rang out outside “Mafhouz Stores”, an upmarket shopping mall late afternoon on Thursday. A handful of buildings and dozens of nearby cars were damaged, as local TV cameras captured hundreds of bystanders trying to escape the smoke and fire in panic.
An eyewitness reported that several people trapped in neighboring buildings screamed for help from the windows. A car bomb detonation near the same location last month wounded 53 people.
Lebanon has been riven by conflict between its Shia and Sunni populations, which has intensified as a result of fighting in next-door Syria. Syrian president Bashar Assad is a part of a Shi’ite sect, while many of his opponents are Sunni. Hezbollah, which is also Shi’ite, has joined the war on Assad’s side, arousing anger among Lebanon’s Sunnis.
As for those responsible...
Shortly after news of the latest attack broke, an online video surfaced showing three masked men, two of them holding rifles, in front of a white flag inscribed with the Islamic profession of faith.
"We... send a message to (Hezbollah chief) Hassan Nasrallah's pigs," said one of the men, wearing a white mask.
Hezbollah, whose military wing was blacklisted by the European Union in July, has been fighting in Syria alongside Assad's troops to help crush an anti-regime rebellion.
The Bir al-Abed car bomb attack, which wounded 53 people, was the most serious incident in Hezbollah's Beirut stronghold since the March 2011 outbreak of the conflict in neighbouring Syria.
The mainstream rebel Free Syrian Army condemned the attack.
Finally, via RT, some photographic coverage of the latest slaughter whose only purpose is to allow the wealthy to become even wealthier.
Smoke rises behind building from the site of an explosion in Beirut's southern suburbs, August 15, 2013
A woman cries at the site of an explosion in Beirut's southern suburbs, August 15, 2013
People react as the they gather around the site of an explosion in Beirut's southern suburbs, August 15, 2013