2020 Aug 08 - Beirut Explosion

There's an old joke about how do you blow up an Italian? Answer: Rigatoni. Anyway, this week it was Lebanon that saw a huge explosion after a blast ripped through the heart of Beirut, I've probably not seen such a massive bomb on tv since the Joey, the Friends spinoff. Perhaps Baywatch Nights would have been a better reference, that was set down by the docks after all.

Nonetheless, it turns out that the cause of the explosion was 2700 tones of ammonium nitrate, being illegally stored and and awaiting sale to either a fireworks company or potentially an agricultural supplier. Indeed it's likely one of the few explosions in that part of the world that wasn't anything to do with terrorism. There's that old expression that in the West the expression "you're the bomb" is a compliment whereas in the middle east it's a job offer.

But here we are though and there's not much to say or joke about this week. Hundreds killed hundreds thousands injured. I saw an article making a comparison to Chernobyl and how that event in the Soviet Union - like the Beirut explosion - was inevitable and simply the culmination of the endemic corruption and negligence built into the system. Certainly Lebanon has had a rough economic time of it of late, and that was before Corona hit; if the ammonium nitrate was destined to go into fireworks then I fail to see what they were preparing to celebrate. Was is evident is that the blast has also triggered an explosion of rage with protestors taking to the street, ironically copying something from France, the country's former colonial power. The famously forage loving french were probably confused and presumed that a cheese factory had been damaged when they heard that there was de brie everywhere. Cheese puns, I thought that was a gouda one. Here's a good joke to finish, what cheese is made backwards? Edam.
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