Ras Baalbek has been strangely calm in recent months. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
Your feedback is important to us!
We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.
Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.
Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)
About 150 square kilometers of Ras Baalbek's countryside, much of it agricultural land, has been off limits to residents since the summer of 2014 .According to an Army source stationed in Ras Baalbek, in the past four months the Army has exchanged fire with militant groups only a handful of times, after intercepting suspicious movements.Much before the offensive, ISIS in Qalamoun had devolved from a force of a thousand to a few hundred.Hezbollah attacks in Khirbet Hamam in the outskirts of Arsal, meanwhile, had successfully targeted ISIS leadership in Qalamoun in June, including commanders Abu Aisha al-Libi and Abu Akrama al-Zouhouri. The elusive nature of ISIS in Qalamoun has confounded the families of the nine Lebanese servicemen still being held by them.These measures were belittled by Arja, the mayor, who scoffed that if a regiment of 3,000 strong soldiers could not ward off ISIS, there was little a patrol of a few hundred men could do.The 2,000 residents of the village rely on the Army for the most part for security.
FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE