Tuesday, January 9, 2024

So the airport screens have been pointlessly hacked

A long, long time ago, I actually worked at the airport. I was in top management if you want to know. We used to get Al Liwaa newspaper daily. One day there was a caricature about the president of the republic. The next day there was about the head of Hezbollah Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah. So one secretary said "el rayyes fhemna bass el sayyed kamen!" (the president, we get it, but also the sayyed!). This is to tell you that well, political affiliations in Lebanon run deeper than the affiliation to the representatives of the land.

I am saying this because yesterday, the screens of the airport have been hacked with an anti-Hezbollah message. "In the name of God and the population, the Rafic Hariri airport is not the Hezbollah airport and that of Iran. Hassan Nasrallah you shall not find an ally if you get Lebanon into a war for which you shall handle the responsibilities and consequences. Hezbollah we shall not fight on behalf of anyone, you have already taken out our port and now you will do the same for the airport because you are bringing guns in. Let the airport be free from the grasp of the small nation".

All right, it did not take long before this became a meme. Also there is an image of the flights being written with a sharpie on a movable paper board. The authenticity of that image has not been verified however.

So, where does this leave us? Nowhere, quite honestly. I said it before, in Lebanon there is no political advertising (here). This means that people's political positions are too entrenched and run deep. Those who already dislike Hezbollah will find this hacking useful, those who do will find it irrelevant. And let us be honest, what the hacking will change on the ground is utterly nothing. It will not sway people, will not change their mind, will not make any geostrategic impact.

So why did it happen? No idea. Same with with those billboards on the street that say Lebanon does not want war (here). Someone paid for those, who? Again, no idea. Maybe the same people who did the hacking. Someone should tell them this is pointless.