The Day I Lost My Grandfather

It never crossed my mind, as I kissed you goodbye on the forehead in that ER room on that last day I was home, that that would be the last time I touched your skin, that my promise of seeing you again in 3 weeks, in which I was whole heartedly convinced, would end up as broken as the heart of the body whose hands are typing these words, as nothing engulfs me but emptiness.

How do you feel, they ask me, as my consciousness tries to process the idea that my grandfather and I do not share the same world anymore. I hate being away. I hate not being able to see him one last time. I hate not being there to somehow make it all okay. I hate not being there for my grandmother, whose broken voice over a broken FaceTime call broke my resolve not to break today. I hate not being there for my father whose tear-soaked words were: “It’s the end of the story.”

But Barbar Fares’ story does not end there. It is but the beginning.

Forever young, you are my pride and joy in everything I do. People mistake me for your son. I smile, correct them, but revel at the idea that your legacy is that perpetual. Those deep blue eyes hold the tales of lifetimes in them: from war-torn trips to far away countries to make ends meet for your growing family back home, to seeing your family disperse all over the world, each of your sons and daughters making a name for themselves that resonates across oceans and entire worlds.

And then there’s me, the first grandson you’ve met.

The one that was glued to your hip, tagging along to your card games and rooting for you in all that you did. The one who smiles at the thought of you chanting those Christian prayers in a voice as off-tune as a voice could get. The one you refer to as sheikh el shabeb when you’re asked about. The one you think anyone in a white coat in a hospital room would know. The one you think is the best doctor who knows everything there is to know, even though he’s not.

The one who is worlds away but always has you in his heart, with whom your daily encounters were at first to complain about something hurting before your ailments somehow disappearing and you reverting to being entirely engrossed in what you’d have for lunch. The one who won’t be there at your funeral tomorrow, because I never thought – in any way possible – that today would be something that would happen.

I can picture it now, that event that shall not be named. Priests fielding altars, going about a routine act that doesn’t befit a man of your greatness, and that eulogy spoken by someone who will never truly know you, colored by numbers from the pre-existing sample they paste onto every passing over. “He founded a good Christian family, raised on nice Christian principles. He was a good man.”

My grandfather isn’t just good. He is among the greatest people to exist in this world. There are two kinds of people in this world: those who had the pleasure of encountering that beautiful face, and those who didn’t. I am humbled and honored to be carrying you in my heart and in my body, to be carrying your last name and to hopefully honor it in all the ways it can and should be honored. I am humbled to have had the honor to meet someone as kind-hearted and warm-spirited as you, for there are no kinder people in this world and tonight, everyone sleeps in a colder place with you not being there anymore.

There’s nothing I can say that can pay justice to a man as great as Barbar Gerges Fares. What I can promise is for me to make you as proud as you’ve always been, and then some, in everything I do. From being that grandson who gives you a headache with the “mess” I get into online, to that doctor saving lives hundreds of countries and thousands of miles away, you are there with me in every step that I take.

Barbar Gerges Fares. That is the name of my grandfather. I refuse to refer to him in anything other than present tense because my grandfather is and will forever be present in every fiber within my body, a perpetual echo shaping every decision I make and every breath I take until I am no more. I will carry you with me, till I see you again.

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The Day I Immigrated: There Are Homes Better Than A Home in Lebanon, Which Is Why Lebanese Expats Are Expats

Today is the day I become a Lebanese expat and my country of residence, in all those forms that we have to fill, becomes something else than the home I’ve known for all of the 27 years I’ve existed so far.

On my possibly last drive to the airport as a Lebanese citizen permanently living in his home country, I was thinking about how sad my mother was next to me, as she prayed her rosary, probably for me to have safe travels and a beaming future in the United States, the country that’s offering me a home.

I was also wondering if, in the upcoming few months, I’ll be one of those Lebanese whose entire purpose in life is to sell the country they’ve left, hiding away all of the flaws that made them leave it. Then I realized, I’m probably already the target of those videos, such as that Byblos bank ad that went viral about two days ago, titled: There’s No Home Like a Home in Lebanon:

I will miss my grandma’s cooking, but most of all I will miss her and those sweet teary eyes that bid me farewell, in a hospital room this morning, as I said goodbye to my sick grandfather before heading to the airport.

I will miss that man’oushe, those Sunday lunches with my family, road trips to areas I haven’t yet discovered with friends who mean the most to me.

Yes, this is the country where I was born, where my family and friends live, where I’ve had my first kiss and my first heartbreak, and in whose airport I’m currently writing this post as I look on a whole bunch of other people like me leaving, in planes carrying my national symbol.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t tearful and grateful for what I’ve been offered as I write this. But on that last drive to the airport, I realized once more that emotion and reason can’t mix in determining the future that we ought to demand for ourselves, starting with myself.

There comes a time when hummus and man’oushe over sensational music isn’t enough anymore to sell a country, no matter how many times the same disc is spun. I’m sorry to say, that disc is broken – nay, it’s shattered and there’s no coming back from it.

In this past week alone, a 24 year old named Roy Hamouche was killed in cold blood because some guy was angry. Another person was also attacked by a police officer because of road rage.

In this past week, a physician coerced the judicial system into helping him commence the cover up in a possible malpractice lawsuit, and we can’t but sit by and watch.

I’m leaving a country as a 27 year old citizen who was never allowed to vote, and whose voice has to always be self-censored as to not face the wrath of the multiple sensibilities we have to consider in saying what’s on our mind.

I’m leaving this country as a doctor who has to fight a mammoth of a system entirely geared at making me feel like I’m always a bug up the echelons of my career, no matter how much I try to thrive.

I’m leaving a country whose beaches are dirty, whose sea is toxic, whose forests are being dismantled, whose elderly are being turned down at hospital doors, whose mothers and their children are being evicted from houses and forced to live in construction sites even in the heart of Beirut, whose garbage can’t be sorted or addressed, and whose people – most of them at least – are still ready to offer their necks to the same politicians who have turned this country into what it is today, as they drool over any video or international article that says their country is a nice vacation site, and whose children are forced to beg in the streets to make ends meet.

A nice holiday destination doesn’t make a good index of life.

I’d love to say there’s no home like a home here. But the truth is that is far from the truth. There’s a reason why Lebanon has expats who visit every once in a while and return to countries they’ve chosen to turn into their homes.

It’s because in the republic of wasta, you can only make it as far as your strongest connection. It’s because in the republic of waste, you breathe cancer.

It’s because their children can die for angering the wrong person on the street, because this country ranks among the highest in corruption, the weakest in passport strength, and is on the lower side when it comes to international indices of life.

Remember this when you support sensational bank ads or articles or lists of why this country is the best ever. Remember that falling to delusions of grandeur will never advance this country, and that being content with what we have will never give us what we need.

Never forget where you’re from, but always remember why you left. I love it here. Correction: I loved it here. But today, I pack my life in 3 suitcases, and leave all of it behind because here is not where my future lies.

In Lebanon, You Can Get Away With Murder, But Naming A Doctor Is Rare & Difficult

 

It’s beautiful, isn’t it, to be so influential and connected that you can get the judiciary branch in Lebanon to limit everyone’s freedom of speech in order to make sure whatever’s left of one’s reputation remains unscathed.

If you’ve ever thought that one might be able to go through living an abundant life in this country without being a wasta-full creature, you’ve thought wrong: a good wasta can literally subdue the constitutional rights of every single Lebanese citizen if it’s strong enough. And this has happened when a judge in the Metn area issued a ruling whereby mentioning a certain doctor’s name or the case in which they’re involved can render you broke.

Welcome to the country where you can get fined over $30,000 for mentioning a name or a case because that person involved is mighty enough to bend any law to their will. It’s an understatement to call this country we live in the Republic of shame.

In our daily saga of civil rights violations, not only are our bodies prone to become victims of murder, but so can our minds and our intelligence by systems that haven’t yet adapted to the fact that, in 2017, the truth will be out no matter what they do or who they try to suppress.

Shame on the judge who decided that a person’s ego is more important than a victim. Shame on the system that allows such creatures to prosper, perpetuate and stomp over everyone and everything in their wake, as they keep on rising in power and breaking everyone who’s threatening them.

Perhaps our legal system doesn’t know that such measures are a little too late. We all know what took place. We all know the cover ups that were attempted and that are still being attempted. When will our judges and this broken system we’re in learn that we are not the stupid helpless creatures they make us out to be, and that our intelligence will surpass their attempts at suppressing our voices?

You can try and rationalize such a judiciary decision as trying to prevent media from coming up with conspiracy theories or whatever. The fact remains that if it hadn’t been for that media, no one would have known about the case in question in the first place, and the doctor in question would’ve gotten off the hook.

In lawless lands, it is that media that keeps everyone in check. Forcing them to be silent will only lead to further degradation of our rights, as any semblance of laws are thrown out of the window of the highest and most equipped bidder.

People with non-medical backgrounds may not understand the details surrounding this particular topic, but it’s still their right to be informed. It is not the right of any doctor to issue a gag order against anyone who bad-mouthes him. This is not North Korea, and that plastic surgeon is not Kim Jong Un.

Do they really think that censoring us plays in that plastic surgeon’s favor? That it shows them in a better light? That it factors into their innocence? The only thing it does is show everyone how guilty they are.

In this banana republic, the murderers of Yves Nawfal and Georges El Rif have not yet had their trials take place, and yet this doctor has managed to secure an order that shuts everyone up about who they are and what they’ve done.

In this land they call a country, Annalise Keating would be out of a job because the system does her job for her. But being able to name a plastic surgeon is an extremely rare and difficult event.

Roy Hamouche’s Murder Is Horrific, But Calling For The Death Penalty Isn’t The Answer

 

The barbaric murder, at the hands of Mohammad Ahmar and this two friends, of Roy Hamouch, a 24 year old architect, has quickly trumped all other discussions taking place in the country as the entire nation reels from the state of lawlessness we’ve reached. The sad reality is that Roy’s murder isn’t the lone event we all want it to be. It’s become part of a pattern we have in this country, with lack of gun regulations and unbreakable wastas.

With some people being always above the law, and helping those that propagate their agenda be above the law with them, can we truly hope for justice to be served in any of these murders that are becoming more frequently?

As I said in my blog post on the issue yesterday:

In this land they call a country, rule of law does not exist. Some people here can do whatever they want – even kill – and still get away with it through the help of the many Lebanese that are always above the law, on whom there’s no accountability, who never face consequences for their actions.

How many times is the exact same scenario supposed to be repeated before we realize that the way they’re forcing us to live in this jungle is not acceptable anymore, that our lives are not at the mercy of airheads who are bolstered by the power of their wasta and the barrel of their gun.

As such, the more people talked about the horrific killing of Roy Hamouch, the more I’ve seen people demand for the death penalty to be reinstated in Lebanon. So I asked the following question, with a poll, on Twitter and – so far – I’m surprised to find that over 60% of people approve of the death penalty in Lebanon:

The main justification I got for people voting “yes” was that in this lawless nation, the only way to make sure Roy’s killers receive the punishment they deserve is through capital punishment. Some are even calling for reinstitution of public executions. But is calling for a death penalty when emotions are high and reason put on the back-burner the answer to such scenarios?

I’d be lying if I said that question hasn’t conflicted me. You see, my family was touched more than 18 years ago in a murder in the vein of Roy’s, which was all over the news for 3 days, and had everyone talking and coming up with all different kinds of conclusions.

While on a hunting excursion in my hometown, my uncle and his friend encountered an acquaintance of theirs who got out of his house and opened fire on them both. What followed was a night-long stand off with the Lebanese army, the Red Cross unable to collect the bodies of my uncle and his friend, and – ultimately – a call from then president Emile Lahoud to kill the man because capturing him had proved to be immensely difficult due to his Civil War training with a Northern Lebanese political party.

I’d like to think that if my uncle’s murderer hadn’t been killed back then, I wouldn’t want him to receive the death penalty today. Partly because I think death is the “easy” way out for people like him, and partly because I firmly believe that death penalty is a political ploy that serves no purpose and wouldn’t have brought my family closure.

To say the death penalty is a fair and unbiased punishment is delusional. For context, the last time an execution happened in Lebanon was in 1997, and even then the three men who received the death penalty were divided according to sectarian lines: one of them was Maronite, another was Sunni, and the third was Shiite. This is to say that even in such matters of punishment, our sectarian system interferes to make sure that sects don’t feel particularly targeted. Does that translate in a fair punishment when those who receive death are chosen based on how they pray?

The fact of the matter is, unpopular an opinion as it is, the murderers of Roy Hamouch are also victims of the Lebanese condition, as we all are: a country ruled by warlords who propagate this tribalism through allowing people like those who killed Roy to do what they do, and be protected in the process. They keep them poor, uneducated and helpless, with the only hope of a “decent” future for them being them under the wings of some patron as they do his bidding.

The simplest example to that is that Mohammad Hassan Ahmar, the murderer of Roy, being from a poor village in the Baalbak caza named Iaat. He has been in and out of the Roumieh prison before, and has a few more warrants against him. Our system has failed Mohammad. He is a victim of his own conditions, not that that justifies what he did in any way.

We can’t hope for a developed and civil country when we’re advocating for horrific punishments for equally horrific crimes. It’s hypocritical of us to complain about Lebanon not being “civilized” enough when we’re calling for “uncivilized” punishments.

The death penalty has been proven not to deter from horrific crimes, but is actually a tool used by governments to oppress. You can be certain that any Lebanese who receives it is one who doesn’t have a strong enough wasta to protect him from being hanged or shot or receive a lethal injection. Can you imagine the son or daughter of a politician who does as horrific a crime as the murder of Roy Hamouche receiving it?

Calling for death sentences means that we think the people in question are non-redeemable human beings who are not worth being given a chance at trying to better themselves – even if that occurs in a life sentence without parole. This is why reforming our prison system is paramount to enable people, like Mohammad, who have been incarcerated before to actually have a shot at rectifying their lives when they’re released, and not fall back on the only thing they know: being criminals.

Nothing can give back Roy’s family the precious person they lost. The death of my uncle’s killer wasn’t the healing closure that you’d expect in mending the gaping wound that his horrific death left in our family. We need to be more humane humans for us to maybe start healing.

Until then, rest in peace Roy Hamouche. May your parents find solace in you becoming a part of every Lebanese household, and touching the hearts of everyone in this country.

Justice for Roy: When Lebanon Is A Full Blown Jungle, Not A Country

Welcome to the jungle, where you can die because some brainless goon, empowered by his wasta and the guns he has around his waist and in the trunk of his can, will shoot you for upsetting him or for talking down to him. Today Roy Hamouche was that jungle’s latest victim.

Picture this. Roy, an architect, had just finished celebrating his 24th birthday with his friends when he got into an altercation with 3 guys in a windows-tinted BMW. When the immediate altercation ended, those 3 criminals chased Roy and his friends around Beirut until they surrounded their car and forced Roy out.

One of them held out his gun, pointed it to Roy’s head and shot him dead. They tried to shoot Roy’s friend, Johnny Nassar, who managed to narrowly escape them and get wounded in the process.

Today, Lebanon adds yet another victim to the growing list of innocent civilians who are being killed by the horrible state of lawlessness that our politicians have permitted to infest, prosper and permeate in all facets of our society.

It hasn’t been a month yet since Sara Sleiman was the victim of a stray bullet because a known criminal, and a henchman of a very influential Lebanese political party, couldn’t take being stuck because of a car-accident outside a pub in Zahleh.

It hasn’t even been two years since Georges El Rif was chased down by one of the bodyguards of one of Lebanon’s most important banks, and knifed in broad daylight in the middle of Achrafieh. The politician who hired that bodyguard is currently working on acquiring a bank in the United States.

And it’s been slightly more than two years since Yves Nawfal was shot dead by Charbel Khalil, after a similar altercation in Faraya, right after Yves’ 26th birthday. Khalil was also protected by one of Keserwan’s prominent politicians, and was arrested after the immense outrage following Yves’ death forced that politician to relinquish his attempts at protecting the criminal.

The common denominator to all of these murders and horrific acts is one: we live in a country where the people who killed Georges El Rif, Yves Nawfal, Sara Sleiman, Roy Hamouche and many others can do so freely because they are protected by the same establishment whose job is to make sure that Georges, Yves, Sara and Roy can go home safely or celebrate their birthdays and be certain that party won’t be their last or even cut off someone on the road and not find themselves in coffins, their names in a hashtag being circulated across the country.

What’s certain is this: those criminals that chased down Roy, forced him out of his car and shot him in the head are empowered by their wasta that allows them to parade around in an illegal car, filled with firing power, to kill whoever pisses them off in whatever processing power their tiny brain can muster.

Roy Hamouche is not a victim because he got into a fight with the wrong people. He is a victim because our country allows those people to exist, and because if we don’t turn every single horrific murder like Roy’s into a matter of national emergency those very same criminals will soon be forgotten, as whichever politician protecting them goes back to doing what he does best, and they become free to kill and terrorize other people again.

In this land they call a country, rule of law does not exist. Some people here can do whatever they want – even kill – and still get away with it through the help of the many Lebanese that are always above the law, on whom there’s no accountability, who never face consequences for their actions.

How many times is the exact same scenario supposed to be repeated before we realize that the way they’re forcing us to live in this jungle is not acceptable anymore, that our lives are not at the mercy of airheads who are bolstered by the power of their wasta and the barrel of their gun. Many in Lebanon keep weapons and knives in their cars. They roam our streets, threaten our security and our lives, aware that their threats will never be faced with any repercussions. But let our security forces be happy they apprehended someone with a funny license plate, because that’s definitely keeping us safer.

Until then, may Roy Hamouche rest in peace. Yet another person with so much future ahead of him taken way too soon by this lawless land. I hope his family finds solace in having the criminals that took his life be apprehended and dealt the worst of punishments, but NOT the death penalty.

From Halaweh Tarts To Achta & Honey Eclairs: The New Fusion Ramadan Sweets You Can Find In Tripoli

Over the weekend, I ventured out to Akkar’s Ammou3a area for the first time ever with two friends tagging along. After a super long and arduous drive – those roads are horrendous – it only felt fitting to make a pit stop in Tripoli for a much needed food break. Naturally, Hallab is where we went.

Off-topic, but Ammou3a is a very beautiful area to visit and to do some hiking. The drive via the Fnaydeq road is much easier than driving up their through Akkar El 3ati2a, and discovering Akkar is an eye opening experience that every Lebanese should do.

Ammou3a views. #ammouaa #ammou3a #akkar #lebanon #livelovelebanon #nature #landscape #northlebanon.

A post shared by eliefares (@eliefares) on

Anyway, we got those menus and were informed that, exclusively for Ramadan – at least for now – they’re introducing new fusion sweets that they’d recommend we try. The three of us figured that would be more interesting than going for simple ice cream or knefeh, so off to that fridge we went and got an assortment of items, the most expensive of which is $3.

To say we were blown away is an understatement. I don’t even normally blog about food or anything remotely related to it, unless it is to turn it into a “to be or not to be” story of course, but this felt like it needed the exposure.

The amount of creativity in those new Ramadan fusion sweets is amazing, and most of them are based on Ashta, which is a Hallab specialty. As a person who absolutely loves halaweh and will miss it very much when I move to the U.S., the sight of that Halaweh tart was enough for me to foresake all reminders of diet and binge.

To say that tart was heavenly would be an understatement. As my friend put it, the most accurate description is: this is blasphemy.

We also tried the Ashta & honey eclair, and I have to say it was as good as the halaweh tart. The mix between what you’d expect to be a Western delicacy and what is very decidedly oriental works very well. I have to say, it was even better than the normal uneventful eclairs we’re all used to having at the many patisseries around the country.

The selection isn’t only summarized with those two items. There’s also an Apple and ashta tart, a tart with mhallbiyeh, as well as raha. A new maamoul with chocolate ashta, a tart with amareddine and a bunch of other items.

My friend tried the apple and ashta tart and texted – I quote: “The apple ones are orgasmic even after two days in my mom’s tupperware.”

Those items are only available at Tripoli’s Hallab, and trust me they’re worth the drive. In another highlight for the massive creativity, especially when it comes to the culinary field, that exists in Tripoli, there’s nothing I’d love more than to highlight this triumph for everyone’s taste buds that exists up North.

Another reason to make the drive is the possibility to win a suhour at Hallab. All you need to do is to take a picture of one of their ashta items – that Apple tart or eclair come to mind – and Instagram it with the hashtags #RamadanKashta and #HallabAddicts while tagging their Instagram account (@arhallab1881).

 

P.S.: This is not a sponsored post, nor was I given any freebies to write it. 

In The Lebanese Jungle, (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab Can Practice “Medicine” … While Laws Look Away

When I graduated from medical school about two years ago, the most important part of the Hyppocratic Oath that we took was to “do no harm.” It’s our moral and legal obligation as doctors to do the most that we can to improve our patients’ health, while making sure that our work does not prove to be at the detriment of their health and, even worse, constitute us taking advantage of them to increase our bottom line.

Farah Kassab was a 32 year old Iraqi-Jordanian mother of two, previously healthy contrary to the rumors trying to defend the surgeon who killed her, who presented to (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab’s clinic, by virtue of the ads he has inundated the country and its airline carrier with, to do a procedure that would help her lose weight. It wouldn’t have been considered an expensive plastic surgery: an injection to her stomach area that would regulate the amount of food she could eat.

Instead, Saab worked at convincing Farah Kassab that she needed to do liposuctions to her entire body in order to reach the figure she wanted, along with an eyebrow lift and a rhinoplasty. Saab took advantage of a woman who sought the care of a physician hoping he had her best interest at heart, and managed to convince her to sign on to a drastic procedure that would cost her north of $50,000 and involve more than 4-5 hours of operational work.

Later on, (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab started operating on Farah. 19 injections later, the 32 year old suffered a rare complication that usually occurs when patients suffer fractures in some of their long bones, but has been shown to exist in liposuctions, especially when they’re as massive volume as hers: a fat embolism.

Essentially, fat tissue that gathers together travels through the patient’s vessels and targets multiple organs, the most dangerous of which is the lungs which could lead to death especially when the patient in question is not in an equipped hospital to deal with such things.

Of course, (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab’s hospital was not equipped to deal with any of the complications that arise of his surgeries. His hospital did not have the facilities needed to monitor patients post operation to manage any arising complications. Farah was transferred back to her room. Soon enough, she became a frigid body whose mother had to frantically shout for the medical crew to come give her attention. Farah had passed away.

Instead of taking the blame, (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab proceeded to do what he does best: bend the system that he’s been bending for years to his advantage. He contacted his friend who works at Notre Dame du Liban hospital and they agreed to transfer Farah to that hospital and make it look like she died there, while issuing official death certificates with that information.

His friend agreed, but their plan did not go as planned when Farah’s family found out what happened with her forcing the other hospital to admit they received the patient already dead, according to Arabic news site Ammon News.

(El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab has since fled to Cyprus, and his hospital has been closed down.

If there’s anything for you to wish in life, especially if you live in Lebanon, it’s for a wasta that’s as strong as consistent as the one (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab has enjoyed over the years.

Facing recurrent suspensions from the Lebanese Order of Physicians because of him breaking their law that forbids physicians from advertising for themselves (Al jamal Nader wa Saab), he should have not been legally allowed to practice medicine in the country, especially on such a high level. And yet, he did.

In fact, he faced suspensions from the Lebanese Order of Physicians for the past five years, including one for 6 months, as well as a one month legal ban from pursuing what he calls “medicine.” He was still brought back to the frontline, in the full sight of the Lebanese government, without anyone addressing it, and not even with a higher level of vigilance from concerned authorities.

(El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab has been banned by more than one Arab country already from practicing his brand of medicine there, including the U.A.E, K.S.A and Kuwait. The reason for those bans are not perfectly clear, but even then he was still allowed to practice medicine in Lebanon with full liberty.

Farah Kassab isn’t the first victim of (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab, albeit she’s the first one to have died because of his negligence. The patients we’ve seen who have presented to clinics for other reasons with massively botched operations at his hands are recurrent, and have always found deaf ears in any governmental function they pursued. Refer to the insurmountable wasta that allows him to do so. He has already harmed a Jordanian woman before as he operated on one in his hotel room in Amman. He was still allowed to practice here afterwards.

For a hospital doing such high level surgeries, the Lebanese government, especially through the Ministry of Health, should have made sure that the minimum required facilities to monitor patients post-op and to manage any arising complications that occur is there. How could they allow operations with general anesthesia to occur without high level of pre and post op monitoring?

With (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab’s hospital, high profile as it is, they did not. In fact, his center getting the hospital label occurred through a governmental decree without passing through the necessary regulatory bodies, as per LBC, and without it being part of the Lebanese syndicate of hospitals which would have oversight over regulation.

Of course, his hospital is not the only lacking one in the country, but his hospital is not one that exists in the middle of nowhere and whose shortage in facilities is because our government doesn’t have the capacity to provide them. A physician such as him was allowed to operate a plastic surgery hospital without the minimum requirements to operate it in in the first place in full sight of the law.

How can a hospital based on surgical procedures not have any post-op monitoring? How is this severe lack of oversight even allowed? Or is our government only capable of banning movies? With no decent hospital, no legal basis to work here, (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab still did surgeries. Why?

How many more of these horrible stories are we supposed to hear, of physicians who give all of us a bad name because they are allowed to practice by a government who doesn’t bother to check and doesn’t listen to the many victims they’ve left in their path over the years?

Today, this 32 year old mother of a four year old girl and a one year old boy exists no more not only because of (El Jamal) Nader (Wa) Saab, but because the Lebanese government in this jungle they call a country has allowed such a creature to not only exist, but to thrive.