By Charles Malik
This is the closest I've been. I was 50m from this attack.
We were in a cafe next to Luna Park enjoying the late afternoon next to the sea after an intense day.
Children were playing on the equipment under the setting sun. Mothers were holding their babies. Old men were smoking argile.
Everyone hit the floor, except the group of European tourists who just looked surprised. Waiters dived under the tables. Mother grabbed their crying babies.
Human flesh landed in the children's play area.
We didn't know what happened. All I knew was that a bomb went off in the passageway between the Nejmeh Football Club and the Luna Park, a children's amusement park on the Mediterranean coast.
We knew there had to be casualties.
The Army was IMMEDIATELY on the scene. At least two squads from the nearby Army base immediately secured the area. They came down, and started cordoning off the area. Everyone in the nearby beach areas and sporting clubs were asked to move their vehicles. There was great concern another bomb would go off.
Within minutes, the police were there.
I was on the scene for a number of the bombs in 2005, including Hariri's assassination. It took the Army, at least, half an hour to arrive. This time, the security forces were amazingly professional. I was astounded. They were outstanding.
We soon found out that 14 March Parliamentary Representative Walid Eido, his son, his two bodyguards, and at least two bystanders were killed.
I was horrified that they had planted a bomb next to a children's park. We knew there had to be bystanders killed, but we thought it was just another random bombing.
Adrenaline is still running.
Source: Lebanese Political Journal
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