Park or investigation?

The Daily Star

There’s an interesting piece from in The Daily Star today about a new park named after intelligence chief Wissam Al Hassan, who was assassinated last October.

Apparently the park covers 18,000 square meters; welcome news for a city and a country where urban green space is mocked by public officials.

But the surface area is about the only thing we know about this park. Out of 13 paragraphs in the article, only one speaks about the park.

In fact this article is not really about the park itself, it is about those who spoke at the inauguration ceremony, namely former police chief Ashraf Rifi, whose face can be seen everywhere in Lebanon’s second largest city.

Rifi spoke at length about the investigation into Hassan’s killing, claiming he already knew most of the results:

“I know most of [the results reached] … those who committed the crime are professionals, but the investigators are also professionals and the criminal will brought to justice,” he added.

But will he/she really be brought to justice?

So far it seems it was easier to build the park–a colossal bureaucratic and financial challenge in Lebanon–that it is to release any evidence about an assassination.

Hassan’s murder, like dozens of bomb attacks that have struck this country over recent years, fits the bill of “mystery terrorism” a particular brand of Lebanese violence, it seems.

What’s also interesting is Rifi’s intimate knowledge about how the investigation is progressing. And this isn’t the first time the retired official is discussing security matters.

Perhaps the lack of investigations will lead to more parks being built in Lebanon.

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Thanks Hadi for posting the Daily Star article.