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Posts tagged ‘ecosystem’

Cedars of God, Reloaded

So after all the problems that have taken place a couple of months ago, the amphitheatre built for G.T’s son’s wedding has finally been destroyed. it unfortunately took too long for the Lebanese people to notice and do something about the problem.


The only reason why Bcharre, as well as NGOs and the Lebanese Cedar Committee agreed on the construction of the amphitheatre in the first place was after reassurance from G.T that no cedar trees whatsoever will be harmed in the process of construction, as well as the assurance that once the wedding be done, the runway shall be removed and the place brought back to its original face.



Three crimes took place during the construction of this place. For starters, cement was poured all over the area to make the runway, unfortunately that means that all pores of the land will be closed, making it impossible for Cedar trees to recieve water from rain, as well as extract the nutrients it needs for its survival.

The second was the fact that even after the wedding, G.T decided not to remove the runway, saying it might have other uses later for concerts and whatsuch, which is obviously going against the terms of a contract that he had previously agreed to; to make his point valuable he even used his influence over the people of Bcharre and his previous lawmaker image to protest the removal of his “art piece” for a better future.



But these two crimes are nothing compared to the third one, sometimes they say pictures speak louder than words, so look for yourself dear friends, this is what G.T did:


Nearly 200 cedar seedlings were ripped out of the ground and hidden between rocks and under cement plastered areas in an attempt to hide this crime committed towards a helpless and endangered species of plant here in Lebanon. Shame on those who hurt any living creature for their own pleasure.

Finally our (people for the protection of the Cedars) prayers have been answered! On October 30th, the whole runway was destroyed, bulldozed back to its original form, unfortunately leaving blocks of broken cement where agricultural soil used to be, leaving the earth tired and unfruitful. But the Cedars were finally able to breathe easily once again, knowing that the threat was removed, unfortunately it paid heavily the price of loosing 200 of its children in the process.



On a better note, Cedar committees all over have been joining efforts in reforesting all Lebanese mountains with its original Cedrus Libani, planning to join the forests of Tannourine, with those of Ehden and Bcharre. This 20 year project started on November 2nd in Hadchit. Villagers, Ngos, and volunteers, with the help of NGOs as well as funding and contributions from big scale companies such as Holcim will be working on making Lebanon once again the Land of the Cedars.


Looking forward for a greener, more cedar full Lebanon that I’ve been reading about growing up. Simply press reload and I will hopefully be able to see a Cedar on the Lebanese flag once again.

For further reading about the Cedars of Lebanon you can follow the Facebook group “The Friends of the Cedar Forest Committee – Bcharre”.


Cedars… RIP

Lebanon, land of the Cedar trees… More like WAS.

Brief history overview:

The farthest I’ve been in the mention of cedar trees over the years is 2500 BC, in the tablets of Gilgamesh [tablets 4, 5, and 6] where the cedar forest is considered as the realm of the gods of mesapotamian mythology. Namely known nowadays as the “cedars of God” aka “أرز الرب”.

There was one a time when cedar trees used to cover all the lands of lebanon (a very very long time ago), now barely any forests survived; most of which were turned into eco-areas. But even then they are not respected as they should be.
Though over the years people have tried new ways of preserving them, and sometimes replanting them. Unfortunately cedar trees [the original cedrus libani) cannot fully grow and develop majestically like it’s ancestors workout get mother and grandmother by her side, their roots stay linked hundreds of meters underground to form a single Web where all help each other in sharing nutrients and water.

Now I know I’ve gone a bit astray in history and biology; but this information is vital to explain my story.

Take the cedars forest mentioned in Gilgamesh’s tablets.  The eldest one still barely standing in lebanon. Their roots reach up to 400 meters underground in a calcarious rocky and dry area to reach the underground water bin.
In the 1800’s Queen Victoria commissioned a wall to be built around the forest to protect its seedlings from sheep grazing; and for the past 20 years more than 4000 cedars were planted in a half circular way surrounding the forest to help young seedlings reach a mother to grow tougher and reach maturity faster


Oh but wait! Here comes the surprise!

A couple of months ago a well respected man decided to make his son’s wedding in the forest. After many complaints he agreed to simply build an amphitheatre next to it to hold the wedding party; unfortunately no one knew how close. ..

He partially destroyed a side of the ancient wall, adding to the fact that he built the whole thing in the middle of the new forest, severing the lines between mother and Child.



So I don’t know about you, but I honestly think the lebanese people should make a choice: either protect these majestic and rare creatures; or stumpy change the emblem of the lebanese flag.



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