Lebanon does comedy

It’s nice to know that given all of its problems, Lebanon has a sense of humor.

Its Office of the Boycott of Israel announced that Lebanon is boycotting Justice League because the star, Gal Gadot, is Israeli.

Yes, the boycott of Wonder Woman by Lebanon and a few other Arab countries was so successful. Wonder Woman has blown the roof off of box office records. Gal Gadot probably polls up there with Pope Francis, Prince Harry, and Chunky Monkey. (By the way, Ben and Jerry’s is very popular in Israel, and a visit to its factory store is a great way of topping off a day visiting the Ashkelon area.)

Lebanon is basically a wholly owned subsidiary of Iran, with Hezbollah holding the director’s seat. It is the center for a likely clash of epic proportions between the Shiite and Sunni worlds, with Saudi Arabia and Iran showing about as much regard for its people’s welfare as a bunch of cats at a mice buffet.

It probably has had more assassinations than all of the Bond, Godfather, and Bourne movies combined. Its economy grew by about 1.8% in 2016. Its per capita income was $13,860. Its citizens have won no Nobel Prizes. (One British citizen who was of half Lebanese Christian descent and one American who was of Lebanese Christian descent have won, per Wikipedia.)

Across the border, seemingly every day there is an announcement of another major international company establishing an R and D center in Israel and/or buying up an Israeli start-up. Seemingly every day there is an announcement of a breakthrough on the way to a miracle cure for one disease or another.

Chinese investors are scouring the country looking for investments and, as a bonus, creating a new destination for Chinese tourists. Hollywood is buying up Israeli script ideas faster than Carrie Mathison can escape a well-planted IED (For the uninitiated, see the Homeland TV show). Israeli’s economy grew 4% in 2016, more than twice that of Lebanon. Its per capita income was $37,400, three times that of Lebanon. Israel has had 12 Nobel Prize winners.

One can only hope that Lebanon keeps that Office of the Boycott of Israel humming along, fully staffed. It’s obviously doing a terrific job. It must keep a dozen Lebanese fully employed. And it is providing some pretty good laughs for those of us south of the border.

About the Author
Alan Edelstein was a lawyer and lobbyist in California for 30 years. He currently lives in Jerusalem and Sacramento, California and consults on governmental affairs, communications, politics, and business development. He blogs at www.edelsteinrandomthoughts.com. Inquiries regarding speaking engagements: ae@edelsteinstrategies.com