עיריית תל אביב
Tel Aviv's City Hall on Wednesday
Photo: AFP
The damage from the blast in Beirut

'We don't want you': Lebanese slam Israeli gesture in wake of Beirut blast

Tel Aviv Municipality's decision to light up the City Hall building with Lebanon flag in solidarity causes uproar on social media, with many Lebanese users accusing Israel of bombing the country in the past; some, however, praise Israel's 'humanity'

Daniel Salami |
Published: 08.06.20 , 16:05
Lebanese social media users slammed Israel's gesture of solidarity in the wake of the devastating blast in the capital of Beirut two days ago, accusing Israelis of hypocrisy.
  • Follow Ynetnews on Facebook and Twitter

  • A massive warehouse explosion on Tuesday sent a devastating blast wave across Beirut, killing at least 135 and wounding at least 5,000. The death toll was expected to rise from the blast, which officials blamed on a huge stockpile of highly explosive material stored for years in unsafe conditions at the port.
    לבנון ביירות פיצוץ אסון נמל לבנון ביירות פיצוץ אסון נמל
    The damage from the blast in Beirut
    (Photo: Getty Images)
    As a gesture of solidarity with the Lebanese people, Lebanon's flag was projected onto Tel Aviv's City Hall Wednesday evening despite the two countries being technically at war with each other. "Tonight we will illuminate the city hall with the Lebanese flag," Tel Aviv's Mayor Ron Huldai said on Twitter.
    The gesture, however, wasn't received well by many Lebanese citizens, who took to social media to bash Israel, uploading pictures of Israeli bombings from the 2006 Second Lebanon War and condemning the gesture using the hashtag, which translates roughly as "we don't want you".
    עיריית תל אביב עיריית תל אביב
    Tel Aviv's City Hall Wednesday
    (Photo: AFP)
    Among those who were less enthused about the gesture were supporters of the Iran-backed terror group Hezbollah.
    Ali Shaib, a reporter for Al-Manar, the organization's news outlet in southern Lebanon, posted a picture of Beirut in ruins following the Second Lebanon War between Israel and Hezbollah forces.
    "The peak of insolence and hypocrisy," he wrote. "The Zionist enemy is turning our cities and villages into ruins and committing massacres against women and children, and now is riding the wave of humanitarian solidarity!"
    נזקים לאחר הפיצוץ בביירותנזקים לאחר הפיצוץ בביירות
    The aftermath of the explosion
    (Photo: AFP)
    "The Israeli enemy is the same enemy responsible for the massacre in the village of Cana," wrote another user, using the "don't want you" hashtag.
    Another person tweeted an edited photo of Tel Aviv's City Hall, in which instead of the Lebanese flag images of Lebanese children who were allegedly killed in Israeli bombings were projected. "Illuminate the building with the massacres you committed," she wrote, "let the whole world know."
    Some users even took the opportunity to blame Israel for the explosion. "It was wrong intelligence that led to the bombing of what they [Israelis] thought was a Hezbollah weapon depot!" wrote one user." Now they feel guilty and lovey-dovey!"
    Abusive comments were also written on the Foreign Ministry's Twitter account, where the original image of the City Hall was uploaded on Wednesday night.
    Particularly aggressive responses came from activists who support what the Arab public calls the "axis of resistance", which combines regimes and organizations most hostile toward Israel.
    "The skies of Tel Aviv, now illuminated by the Lebanese flag, will be illuminated by missiles from Lebanon," one user wrote.
    Not everyone were quick to dismiss the Israeli tribute to the victims of the tragedy.
    לבנון ביירות פיצוץ אסון נמל לבנון ביירות פיצוץ אסון נמל
    The site of the explosion in Beirut
    (Photo: Getty Images)
    "How big you are, Israel" wrote one user. "Thank you for your humanity, despite the controversy," wrote another.
    "Humanity is far from hatred and resentment, and this is Israel: when there is destruction, it has done everything in its power to help our people in Lebanon. Israel bears the symbol of humanity," wrote one user in Iraq.
    תגובות ערבים ל הארת בניין עיריית תל אביב ב דגל לבנון כתבה של דניאל סלאמהתגובות ערבים ל הארת בניין עיריית תל אביב ב דגל לבנון כתבה של דניאל סלאמה
    The article in Elnashra
    ( Capture: Ynet)
    The Lebanese newspaper Elnashra also reported the gesture under a headline that may spark hope for a future resolution.
    "Tel Aviv Municipality lit up its building with the colors of the Lebanese flag as a sign of solidarity following the explosion in the port," the newspaper wrote, addding that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel is willing to assist Lebanon in the wake of the disaster.

    Talkbacks for this article 0