Friday, November 25, 2011

Myriam Achkar. No Lebanese should stay silent about her crime

If you haven't heard about this very ugly crime that happened last Monday, Myriam Ashkar, a 28 year old female who lives in Sahel Alma, got murdered on Monday noon, on her way from praying at the town's church which is situated a bit inside the forest on a track that many Scouts and Girl guides know as "Darb el Sama", a shortcut in the mountains that leads to Harissa.

She was killed by the church's care taker (natour).

There are two reports depicting the family's response to Myriam's horrible death. This is the first one by LBC which shows the family's grief and suffering greatly, a family who suddenly lost their daughter while she went to pray during daylight. It's quite endearing to see her family ask for justice instead of capital punishment. I must agree with Mustapha from (and his readers), that LBC made a mistake of turning this into a sectarian battle while they shouldn't have.

This is not just Christians' battle against crimes and lack of security in this country. It is every Lebanese's duty to demand the government to see through the life sentence that this criminal will/should have, and that is despite his nationality. 

This murderer shall remain in prison to reflect on his horrible crime until he dies. 

Our government has been asleep lately with so many crimes happening. We do thank them for catching the criminals at one point and "sometimes". Yet for example, on November 22, which is our Independence day, how come we had so many Lebanese army forces spread around Beirut for that day and the 3-4 days before it, and yet we don't see them all over the year? We as citizens demand a safe country, recruit more forces if you must. But do something and stop using our security forces as bodyguards for politicians, and using those Dodge chargers to cruise around Beirut and eat falafel.

Finally, this is a much more decent video on TeleLumiere, showing how much faith there is in Myriam Ashkar's family. All I can say to this family is we can see purity in your hearts, and please know you got the support of many Lebanese. May God give you strength to go through this tough period.

p.s. I must though explain why there is strong emphasis on the fact that the murderer is Syrian. We all know the history of Syrian workers in Lebanon (you know, those who sell kaak?). Just think of it, who in his right mind would dare kill a girl in her own town, and in that horrible way and think they can get away with it? Just think about it...

And that is why, we will not stay silent about this crime. As big as your wasta can be, if you're a murderer, your place is JAIL.


  1. well said. this is such a horrific tragedy. it's heartbreaking to imagine what the family must be feeling. too bad the news can't resist to display raw emotion. hopefully most people will be able to avoid making it sectarian and yet acknowledge the faith of this young girl and honor her memory.

  2. Lil, we really should't stay silent! It is really an UNACCEPTABLE crime! And thanks for writing this blog!

  3. Don't thank me for this post, I had tears in my eyes all the time while watching her family say they want justice... this family deserves justice. And we should all do as much as we can to make sure they get it.

  4. Allah yer7meh and may she RIP in heaven.

  5. I was thinking the same thing about the safety of the SDL and GDL! They have their Christmas camps coming up. I hope they stay safe.

  6. Totally agree... Plus people should start doing a bit of research before hiring the first person they meet for very low prices. Better pay a bit more and hire someone reliable and trust worthy...

  7. Indeed- May her soul rest in peace!
    but we have a long road to go! Do you feel safe around security officers in Lebanon? They harass you as well!

  8. yes and let's become a country filled with policeman and soldiers around each corner. that would be so cool!

  9. this is a crime of death punishable by death or life sentence in accordance with the local law.

    all crimes are tragedies, and after each tragedy we as a society must reflect on what can be done to better ourselves for the future and lessen the risk of crimes repeating themselves, we shouldnt turn everything into a witch hunt.

    so turning this crime into a sectarian, chauvinistic or political issue is just blood milking.

    those who commit rape and theft crimes and cover their tracks with murder do it without thinking neither about wasta nor religion nor nationality, especially homicidal rape crimes.

    alluding to anything else apart from the crime itself is blood milking.

    the natour didnt need a wasta from anyone to act like a barbaric savage criminal moron, nor do rapists usually factor geopolitical and religious issues when they rape and kill someone like animals to hide their crime.

    the guy is an animal and its his crime and his responsibility, our responsibility as a society is to protect and be fair and not start wishful witch hunts. you want to think about something then think about this not about 'wasta or 'nationality', these sad crimes have been happening since the dawn of time we must lessen them from happening not milk them.

    enough blood milking, i cant say this enough

    may Myriam rest in peace her story is sad enough as it is already.

  10. while this is a horrible crime, and that myriam surely received a most unfair reward for being a pious and loving young woman, i see it very malicious to blame such a crime on a 'sleeping government'. crimes happen and let's be thankful that the ISF and the army caught those who committed it. how many high profile murders (read: political) happened between 2005 and 2008 without a single person caught and tried? so please, try not to hide behind every recent crime and use it as an implicit opportunity to target your people-elected government. if you dont like your government, vote it out by 2013 but dont blame it because YOU got it there in the first place. this girl didnt deserve such a death, no it's not the gvt's fault, no it's not syria's fault, it's just a low-life animal who killed her and for that he deserves no less than to be locked in a cell with the girl's family so they could show him some justice.

  11. I respect your opinions, and gladly we at least all agree that we want him to be tried and justice be made.

    I wish Anonymous would actually state their names though.

  12. Only in Lebanon can people manage to blame a freak rape and murder by a crazed individual on a "sleeping government". The murderer was caught, only a few days later, but somehow the authorities were negligent.

    Don't get me wrong, hundreds of crimes go unsolved each year in Lebanon. Now this can be blamed on a "sleeping government" (but also due to the patchwork nature of our last 3 governments, probably the concerned individuals who took the relevant decisions).

    Also, the sensationalist media coverage (bloggers providing a much more objective view) of the murder is sickening. Yes, Myriam, a devout Christian girl from a well-respected family suffered an horrific fate. Instantly, the coverage became xenophobic and racist. Blame it all on the foreigners, or even the Assad regime. All the Lebanese are saints, right? No Lebanese man ever raped or committed a murder (civil war was fought by foreigners).

    Some people now want to publicly lynch him and recreate the Ketermaya incident (exactly what Jesus preached). Instantly, people have been calling for him to be executed (a barbaric sentence in itself). What happened to a fair trial? What happened to seeing whether he is mentally fit to stand trial?

    Rather than rising above this despicable act committed by an individual, somehow, Lebanon has managed to swoop to a new low. Rather than highlighting the constant harassment and objectification women face in Lebanon (even by some sleazy ISF officers), we managed to incite hatreds towards the thousands of syrian migrant workers who are fundamental to our economy (and only come here to feed their families back home). Honestly, 3ayb.

  13. Hayde I agree with, and that is why (in the new post) I specified our relation to syrians, vs syrian intelligence (background of murderer). Yes the government catches criminals, but our fear is that they will send him to be tried in Syria (w allah a3lam shou bi sir honik) and him not getting justice, which opens the door for more people with his bg to do things and escape fair trial. I am against death penalty, even her family called for fair justice to be held, and nshalla kheir.

    I agree that the media always feeds on the drama... propaganda at its best, but this is not a Lebanese tv trademark, most of them do this, and thankfully fi 3alam mawjoude to actually write on their blogs a more objective POV.

    I personally blame this on the government, but I will elaborate more in a future post, just so I don't jam this one with more things than the case itself already carries

  14. And yes I agree that the media is feeding hatred and racism and sectarianism and we are against that. But I personally don't know how many issues one can deal with in the same point. The battle now is to keep him locked and sentenced for life. Next week, we will deal with the media itself, we keep this battle for next week just so we don't lose focus on what is more urgent, urgent vs important.

  15. This post smack of bigotry,of split-second anger...Publishing is a red line after we write a piece. That is why I dissect a link that I receive from someone else before "I share". I feel frustration when people quickly "share" links and refuse to ponder on it...Split-second anger reveals the true nature of a person, but publishing this split-second feeling carries huge consequences...

  16. Bigotry? This is what you understood? Maybe if you read the other (newer) post, you would understand my point better. Other than that, I don't have much more to add. Thanks for your comment.

  17. I don't even know what to say about this. I'm absolutely appalled that such a crime could occur..and after she is coming home from prayer nonetheless?!? I don't know the delicate political or religious implications here..but I am so humbled by the fact that her family has expressed that they don't want him to receive capital punishment.