Cause of death of large numbers of elephants found in Botswana and Zimbabwe


September 22, 2020 at 3:52 pm

This cyanobacterium was one of those on the list of probable reasons behind elephant deaths in Botswana, the African country with the largest herds on the continent and worldwide.

How the Novo Jornal reported about two weeks ago, the prolonged drought that the south of the continent goes through has dried up ponds and ponds, forcing animals to drink water that, normally, and instinctively, they refuse because they have accumulated memory of the harmful effects that cause the presence of these bacteria that give off a characteristic odor and are potentially deadly to several species of wildlife.

This discovery resulted from the efforts made by dozens of researchers who sought over the past few months to find the reason for these unusual deaths of hundreds of elephants, having now reached this conclusion through laboratory tests carried out in South Africa and Europe

According to the local press, those responsible for the wildlife department of the Gaborone Government admitted their satisfaction that they finally understood the reason for these deaths, but according to one of those responsible for the Botswana Department of Wildlife and National Parks, Cyril Taolo, now we need to find out why other animals are not being affected.

And it was also known that the deaths reduced to a great extent when the wells and ponds in the most affected region dried up.

Since the beginning of this year, more than 350 elephants have been found dead in Botswana, in the Okavango Delta, with no one yet having explanations for this death and the phenomenon is spreading to Zimbabwe, where dozens of bodies have already been found. of this species also without known causes.

The phenomenon of elephants killed in Botswana, in a number never seen without knowing the reason, began to be noticed last May and after, in 2019, the Gaborone Government created legislation to allow the killing of pachyderms, claiming the need the return of hunting tourism and also because the herds are growing unsustainably due to the long years of protection that this species is subject to due to the risk of extinction on the African continent and because they are beginning to invade plantations in the region due to severe drought.

Among the elephants killed, both in Botswana and Zimbabwe, are juveniles, adults, females and males, without apparent distinction, and this situation has caught scientists off guard.

The phenomenon became even more intriguing because many of the individuals who perished, before falling dead, walked for some time in disconnected circles, eventually fainting and letting their heads fall forward.

Scientists who have analyzed and studied this phenomenon describe the situation as an unparalleled “natural disaster”.

On recent reconnaissance flights, large herds of hundreds of elephants have given way to just a few, scattered, almost always older individuals, which means that thousands have fled the region, so far without knowing very well where, but neighboring countries are a possibility, which includes, in addition to Zimbabwe, Angola, Zambia, Namibia and even South Africa.

Shortly after the first abnormal bodies were discovered, the theories that gained the most credibility were an epidemic of a virus called EMC, with the scientific name of encephalomyocarditis, or a neurotoxin from an algae that grows in pools of water with certain climatic conditions, mostly as a result of climate change that force animals to travel long distances to find water, sometimes consuming contaminated water in despair because of severe thirst.


Michael Lonsdale, eclectic artist and lover of God

On the occasion of the artist’s disappearance on September 21, we are offering a replay of one of our programs during its visit to our studios in 2016. A heart-to-heart interview where the actor returned to his artistic vocation and his deep faith.

Interview conducted by Sister Catherine Aubin

Michael Lonsdale was a regular in Rome. A few years ago, he had come to read extracts from the Psalms in the church of Saint-Louis-des-Français, in front of an audience moved by the breath of his voice. He had also met Pope Francis as honorary president of the “Diakonia of beauty “, a Church service intended to place artists at the service of the beauty of God. Bringing together musicians, poets or singers, painters, architects or filmmakers, sculptors, actors or dancers, the Diaconie de la beauté has developed in several cities in France.

«Dostoyevsky said that beauty will save the world, but I don’t quite agree, it’s love. Because beauty is a quality of God, while love is God ” said Michael Lonsdale to qualify this diakonia of beauty.

In February 2016, at almost 85 years old, the actor of British origin had passed in our studios, agreeing to speak at length about his life, of his soft and luminous voice. Icon of cinema and theater, Michael Lonsdale was also an unknown painter, always in search of freedom in creation, with this intimate link between art and faith which formed the common thread of his itinerary.

At the microphone of Sister Catherine Aubin, he spoke of his journey of faith, since his childhood between the French, English and Moroccan cultures, returning in particular to his thirst for the absolute and his request for baptism, at the age of 22 years.

Interview with Michael Lonsdale-Part 1

During this interview, Michael Lonsdale also returned to the great spiritual figures who marked his life. The importance of Saint Francis of Assisi first, “the power to be poor, totally“, Praising in passing the figure of Pope Francis”which goes towards the poor and the little ones, towards the essential».

By telling us about his vocation for theater and cinema, the actor also reminded us of the great spiritual roles which marked his life as an actor as well as his life as a man, such as the Orthodox monk Saint Seraphim of Sarov and of course Brother Luke, the Trappist monk and doctor of the monastery of Tibhirine, today blessed.

Interview with Michael Lonsdale-Part 2


Dancing feet of 7.5 meters high on the Binnenrotte: ‘Everyone is dead except us’

Two enormous aluminum feet, each 7.5 meters high, will be placed on the renovated Rotterdam Binnenrotte on Wednesday morning. The slightly turned feet, resting on the toes, are the newest work of art in the city center. Just like the feet themselves, the title of the work is also striking: Everyone is dead except us.

One foot will be at the central library, the other at the field next to the Markthal. The title, Everyone is dead except us, must be a statement from the city: a call to everyone to make something of it together.

The Rotterdam artist Ben Zegers made the sculpture after the feet of another sculpture: Fourteen-year-old Dancer by Edgar Degas from the collection of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen.

Wednesday morning, the feet are placed on a concrete foundation with screw threads, so that the feet are level with the ground. That has to be exactly in the right direction, so that the position of the feet is correct.

Story continues below our reporter’s tweet

The plan for the artwork dates back to 1993. The Rotte-Dam committee then submitted a citizens’ initiative to make the dam in the Rotte more recognizable as a place where Rotterdam originated. A budget only became available in 2007 and Ben Zegers’ work was selected in 2015. The feet were transported early Wednesday morning from the foundry in Cuijk to the center of Rotterdam.

Anne-Marie Klaassen of the municipality of Rotterdam is happy that the feet are finally in place. “Where we stand was once the first beginning of Rotterdam as we know it today.” Klaassen says that the feet have already been taken into account in the design of the renewed Binnenrotte.

Story continues below our reporter’s tweet


Artist Ben Zegers is proud, but also tense. “It is an important moment, it has to be right first time.” The maker found the inspiration in Boijmans van Beuningen, a clay sculpture by Edgar Degas of a dancing girl. “One of my favorite images. I thought: how am I going to put those feet down? Then I looked again at the feet of that dancer. I took that as a starting point.”

It is literally about origin, about standing, gravity, the origin of Rotterdam, with the locks below. The feet are so far apart that it is not an ordinary position but a jump, that is the link with origin. The primordial leap.

Everyone is dead

The artist himself does not find the title gloomy at all. “But it is not a joke either. It is the most down-to-earth observation that we can all make. There is nothing to add! We take over, in generations. And that’s what this is about. of the times, people who are no longer there, history, that is all linked. “

The fact that the inhabitants of Rotterdam will in all probability come up with a different name is no problem for the artist. “I hope so, because the Rotterdammer always comes up with a great title for every sculpture in public space or building. I’m looking forward to it!”


Making Paula Verhoeven urge, ART Tetiba asks to resign for this reason, Mrs. Kiano is upset about going to Baim Wong: Oh, drama! – All Pages

GridPop.ID – No wind no rain, Household Aisten (ART) Paula Verhoeven tetiba minta resign.

Suddenly, wife Baim Wong this immediately irritated and grumpy to hear the reason.

Mother Kiano Tiger Wong did not remain silent complaining to her husband about drama ART which he experienced.

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This can be seen from Baim Paula’s Youtube vlog entitled ‘Paula is angry !! ART resigned, told to ask permission from Paula ‘.

Before complaining to Baim Wong, Paula Verhoeven grumbled to herself while cooking and was exasperated.

Paula Verhoeven admitted, initially this household member asked permission to go home because his mother was sick.

But the pain is not due to an illness.

“I’m dizzy, you know, bosque, it’s already an ART drama in the morning,” said Paula Verhoeven, quoted by from Youtube Baim Paula, Sunday (6/9/2020).

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“He hasn’t worked for a month. But after permission he said his mother was sick. Asked what kind of pain he was, he said he was sick,” added Baim Wong’s wife.

Hearing the ART’s excuse, Paula Verhoeven also offered to buy credit.

However, this was even rejected by the ART.

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Suddenly Paula Verhoeven was annoyed, especially now that she is still in the atmosphere of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“They are aware or not, that the corona is insane. Again high,” said Paula Verhoeven.

“I feel dizzy, every month I take care of ART,” he added.

Furthermore, Paula Verhoeven also said that working to take care of her house was not too hard.

Then, Paula Verhoeven said that her treatment and Baim Wong’s treatment for her household members were very good.

“The feeling is not very heavy working here. There are 2 people, continue security. Still have a nap, can still sleep early, eat abundantly. What are we trying to do?” said Baim Wong’s wife.

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“Many want to register, don’t you think? But it’s your turn to choose, you don’t know yourself,” he added.

Apparently, Paula Verhoeven’s scolding was heard by Baim Wong. Therefore, he also asked his wife.

“Why are you so angry?” asked Baim Wong.

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“Hehe, while cooking and grumbling in the morning,” added Paula Verhoeven.

Then, Paula Verhoeven also recounted the behavior of the ART snag.

“I haven’t given permission, he’s already going to be picked up by his brother,” continued Paula Verhoeven.

“Yes, just ignore me, he said. Yes, it can’t be, it hasn’t been permitted, so there are many considerations too,” he said.

“Oh, drama,” said Paula Verhoeven irritably.

Hearing Paula Verhoeven’s annoyed remarks, Baim Wong then asked her household member about the treatment of snag sitri.

“Are you mean?” asked Baim Wong.

“What? Rarely speaking. No, they have already shared their duties,” replied Paula Verhoeven curtly.

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Again, Paula Verhoeven also revealed her treatment to the ART.

“I said it’s really hard to work here? Food is abundant, food is never different. You can still sleep during work and sleep.

Actually, our cooperation is simple, the important thing is clean. Then he wants to sleep or what is up to him, what do we need ?, “said Paula Verhoeven, still nosy.

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“All wrong, I also think about the coronas,” he added.

Then, Baim Wong also agreed with Paula Verhoeven’s opinion, who was worried about corona.

“Yes, the corona is really bad. For example, if he wants to get out of here, he can’t come back again,” said Baim Wong.

Not satisfied, Paula Verhoeven called her other household member to hear the story about the household member who wanted to resign.

“Siti, try here, why does he want to resign? With you, what did he complain about?” asked Paula Verhoeven to another household member.

“He said he was tired when he was shooting,” said Siti, one of the household members.

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“Well, it’s not a new shoot, hehe,” said Paula Verhoeven.

“Then, what else?” asked Paula Verhoeven.

“Then when cooking, please do it first ma’am. I want to go up and clean up, yes he said. When I go downstairs, what has not been done,”

“His face to me innocent you know, fine. I also rarely talk to him, “

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“What else do you complain about? Is it really hard work?” asked Paula Verhoeven again.

“He said that sometimes when there is no work to be bored,” replied Siti.

“To Siti he said, if there is work tired, if there is no work boring,” he added.

Hearing the confession, Baim Wong’s wife burst out laughing and then got annoyed again.

“That means then he doesn’t do much work,” said Paula Verhoeven.

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ART asks to resign using this reason, Paula Verhoeven is annoyed to go to Baim Wong: What are we not doing?

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Rossi, de Pisis and Guidi, the silent revolution of art is discovered on Montello

Gino Rossi it will be the fulcrum. But there will be other extraordinary performers such as Filippo de Pisis (photo), Virgilio Guidi, Guglielmo Ciardi and Arturo Martini. Authentic giants in the Venetian art scene between the late nineteenth century and the first forty years of the twentieth century, protagonists of the exhibition The silent revolution of art in Veneto, which will open on 12 September and will remain in the cinemas of Villa Ancilotto. An exhibition that represents the first stage of a broad path promoted by the Municipality of Crocetta and organized by the association ArtDolomites of Belluno, and that in three years will tell how much the Venetian painting engraved in the evolution of Italian art of the short century. Just Gino Rossi, an unfortunate genius who lived for a few years in the village teaching for a short period at the local school of arts and crafts and then finished his days at the psychiatric center of Sant’Artemio, represented the spark from which the exhibition project.

“It was a duty to start with him, the municipal administration wanted to pay homage to him and we built the whole itinerary of the exhibition around Rossi, he explained Antonella Alban, who together with Giovanni Granzotto curated the exhibition was a long and tiring job. All the works come from private collections, which the owners have granted us without difficulty ». During the presentation evening, held at Villa Pontello, the curators illustrated the characteristics of what has been defined as the silent revolution. From the precursor Guglielmo Ciardi, who began the work of modernizing art by turning his gaze towards the outside: an authentic change of mentality and perspective. From the internal areas to the Venice lagoon there was a lot of expansion outside, up to the Dolomites.

«In this way we freed ourselves from the shackles of the Academy, a stronghold of the artistic and pictorial tradition, while maintaining firmly the Venetian roots, Granzotto underlined an opening to the world that he has engraved in the history of painting and sculpture». The Parisian experiences of Gino Rossi and Arturo Martini, who drank from the source of Impressionism, arrive in this picture. On their return, Rossi and the other Buranese inaugurate a new painting season on the island that will be an inexhaustible source of inspiration, then, once their time is over, it is up to De Pisis and his syncopated trait, and then to Guidi, who urges us to “look reality with eyes wide open ». The exhibition itinerary studied at Villa Ancilotto will see a central nucleus of paintings from the 1910s and 1920s, with artists linked to the experience of the Burano School, starting with Rossi and continuing with Umberto Moggioli and Pio Semeghini. Further on, a dense series of works performed in the 1920s and 1930s by Filippo de Pisis and Virgilio Guidi, and a selection of works by the other great genius Arturo Martini. The paintings by Cagnaccio di San Pietro, Guido Cadorin, Teodoro Wolf-Ferrari, Nino Springolo and others complete the art between the two wars. Finally, space for some late nineteenth-century works by leading exponents of Venetian painting, from Guglielmo Ciardi to Luigi Nono to Giacomo Favretto and others.
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Coronavirus Treatments, art, science and politics

A few days ago I was surprised that the medical colonel Berni, having been infected, claimed to have applied intravenously a treatment of his invention that cured him in a few hours, and he resisted giving the formula of such treatment, claiming that in medicine sick and not diseases, and therefore each patient requires a different treatment.

This position is what justifies saying that medicine is an art, not subject to any rule, but rather to the intuition and experience of the doctor, what we see written in the drug leaflets, where the recommended doses are indicated. of medications, with the addition of the phrase “except for better medical criteria.” Many have the experience of having consulted several doctors for the same clinical picture, receiving different treatments, and even the patient, very convinced of his own diagnosis, will go through several doctors until he finds one that agrees with his, including mothers convinced that their child It should be treated with antibiotics and fever reducers for any cold.

But since ancient times there have been efforts to turn medicine into a science, ´for which for more than a century at the beginning of the career the student receives a large amount of knowledge in the most solid sciences, chemistry, physics, biology, the so-called basic cycle, while in the second part of the degree, the so-called clinical cycle, diseases and their treatments are taught. In such a way that a tuberculosis patient, called Juan, Pedro or Santiago, will receive the same treatment, that is, the disease will be treated and not the patient, what is currently called Evidence-Based Medicine, EBM, and which is presented as diagnostic and therapeutic standards and guidelines, which even allow paramedics to take charge of a large number of consultations, and even robotize much of the doctor’s work.

As there is no scientific knowledge about the treatment of coronavirus everything that could have more or less to do is rehearsed, and depending on who is using them, they all seem to work, which in large part could be deriving from subjectivities and chance. The so-called placebo effect, the belief of the patient and the doctor in the efficacy of this or that medicine that skews the reading of the evolution, and if a medicine worked in one or two cases the doctor will tend to believe that it is effective in all. The double-blind randomized clinical trial controls both deviations. The patients are divided into two groups at random, one of the groups receives the drug under test, and the other something similar but inactive. Neither the patients nor the staff who administer them know who receives which product, and a sufficient number of cases reduces the chances of chance. Then the results obtained in both groups are compared.

The only drug that has successfully passed this type of study is dexamethasone, but not convalescent plasma, which has antibodies, and which should have an effect, as it did at the time in the stubble disease in Argentina and to date even more recent on Ebola, but there are no published studies on it yet, partly because its use has become popular and few patients agree to enter a randomized trial. Antitoxins produced in animals are used to treat the risk of tetanus and snake venom, and antibodies to coronavirus are being produced in horses and llamas, to be used in replacement of convalescent plasma if there are no cured patients willing to donate or sell it.

It has been so surprising that the FDA, the powerful Yankee drug control body, has endorsed the convalescent plasma, without randomized double-blind endorsement studies and it is said that this is due to pressure from the president, who must face his re-election with unfavorable figures, and has the urgency to overcome them, with good news, which reduces the credibility that the FDA may have when endorsing vaccines for coronavirus, especially those of Yankee companies, because one thing is to endorse a trout drug that is will give a few thousand sick people, and another a trout vaccine to be administered to millions of healthy.

A mixture of art, science and politics medicine depends on the credibility of the population in its practitioners, and if it distrusts them, it is logical that it is created in more or less dangerous alternatives, which are even endorsed by presidents seeking votes.

A famous phrase of medicine is that politics is only medicine on a large scale, and therefore it could be deduced that medicine is only policy on a small scale, and although only one doctor became president in Argentina, in the past the doctors of the The peoples were the natural political leaders, if they knew how to properly dose that cocktail of art and science with proselytism. Now I believe that people distrust both doctors and politicians, and that is why alternative medicines of all kinds flourish in which each teacher also has their little book.


An interview with the new State Opera Director Bogdan Roscic – scene

There are still three weeks until the Vienna State Opera reopens on September 7th. Director Bogdan Roscic talks about his “dream” of restarting.

The State Opera was closed for almost six months due to the corona and is now facing the biggest new beginning since 1945. The new director Bogdan Roscic in an interview about:

… Troubleshooting

“That has certainly become more important. In addition to ‘normal’ problems, it is now also about how to bring guest artists from Russia or America to Austria.”

… security for the artists

“We have almost exaggerated and passed strict security requirements. Everyone in the house is divided into groups, from colleagues who are in contact with the audience to those who cannot keep their distance, like the soloists. And everyone pulls With.”

… the new public dress rehearsals

“In 2020 a large opera house has to find new ways to enter into dialogue with the young. We want to seduce them to the opera!”

… the “standing room new”

“The standing room is a social, cultural-political facility where you can experience the best artists in the world for three to four euros. So that this is not lost because of the current regulations, we have found a solution in which we temporarily remove the standing room and leave the price the same. “

… the way to restart

“Most of all, I’m looking forward to the fact that this machine can finally start again, that we can offer a great work every evening. We have now seen how little that is taken for granted dream of being able to fly to a different opera planet every evening. “

… the future

“What it is about is that from September on you can offer theater in the highest quality and with the greatest possible security. Anything else would be reading coffee.”

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“Diamond” stolen from statue of Diomedes Díaz in Valledupar

Crime in Valledupar does not give up. Unknown subjects stole from the statue of Diomedes Díaz in the Los Juglares roundabout in La Provincia park in Valledupar, the Murano tooth that resembled the diamond tooth used by ‘El Cacique de la Junta’.

The sculptor John Peñaloza visited the place with the Secretary of Culture of Valledupar, Carlos Liñán, getting a tremendous surprise: there was no tooth in the statue of Diomedes Díaz, a situation for which they asked the police authorities to carry out the investigation of the case to find those responsible.

In this regard, the sculptor Peñaloza said that “I am surprised by this action since that tooth was almost impossible to pull out because it was held by a guaya; but they took it away. How sad”.

For his part, Liñán indicated that “from the Office of Culture we make an invitation and call to citizens to protect the works of art that embellish our parks, which makes our city a cultural attraction. We are committed to the maintenance of our parks and the maintenance of the works, so that Valledupar can continue to attract attention worldwide, and thus we continue to be a cultural powerhouse ”.

The official also specified that repairs will be made to the statue of Iván Villazón, which was damaged in recent days by misfits, despite the fact that there is a CAI of the Police near the sector.

From the Twitter account of the office of Culture of Valledupar and the mayor’s office, a call was made to the community to protect the parks and arts of the city.

From @AlcaldiaVpar we invite all citizens to protect the works of art that embellish our parks and make Valledupar an attractive city for cultural tourism. @CarlosLinan ”.


“Cosi fan tutte” – maximum success with maximum minimalism

“Cosi fan tutte” – maximum success with maximum minimalism

Shorten without leaving anything out. The corona-related guidelines presented conductor Joana Mallwitz and Christof Loy with this challenge while working on this year’s new production of Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte” at the Salzburg Festival. The result is maximum success with maximum minimalism. Ö1 broadcasts a recording on August 15th at 7:30 p.m.

There is probably no more radical way of reducing a scenic staging to the essentials than director Christof Loy and his set designer Johannes Leiacker have done: A white wall with two white doors behind a whitewashed stage without any props forms the passe-partout for this extraordinary evening. The white non-room offers an almost clinical ambience for the famous experimental set-up that Mozart and his librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte designed with the “Cosi”: the loyalty test of two lovers to their lover. The only color that comes into play here is for a short time the disguises of the two lovers.

A new crowd favorite

The fact that this radical reduction to the protagonists works is due to an astonishingly charming quartet, which in this case is fully matched by the buffalo couple of a cheeky and not lion stage acting Lea Desandre as Despina and Johannes Martin Kränzle as the mischievous and diabolical Don Alfonso.

Above all, you don’t have to be a prophet to predict that Salzburg has laughed at a new festival favorite with the current young Berlin star Elsa Dreisig. At less than 30 years of age, the Franco-Dane has a crystal-clear and yet lyrically rounded soprano, which practically makes her an archetypal Fiordiligi. Andre Schuen, who has now matured with excellent vocals, forms the dream couple with her as Guglielmo.

Three quarters of an hour

The requirement for director Loy and the young Salzburg debutante Joana Mallwitz as conductor to work out an editing version of “Cosi” shortened by around three quarters of an hour. For two days and nights the team discussed the cuts over the phone. Director Loy literally put the result of these night shifts on the table during a terrace talk at the Salzburg Festival. A score that has been divided by many brackets. Jumps, as Mallwitz calls them, of which the two made many, but small ones and some of which can already be found in Mozart’s notes. Primarily recitatives were cut – and that works surprisingly well. At the end one wonders where the three quarters of an hour went that one “wins” with this version.

Certain recitative lengths are simply adapted to modern viewing habits. How a film in 1960 still resolved the individual movement elements of a sequence into individual cuts – such as the arrival of a car, the opening of the door, the foot stepping on the pavement and so on – the audience nowadays is used to much faster cutting sequences, knows supposed gaps to fill in the narrative logically. And this is all the more true for repertoire classics of opera literature, the history of which is already known.

The development of this line version is not the only achievement of the Nuremberg General Music Director Joana Mallwitz. It is astonishing to watch her conduct the Vienna Philharmonic through the evening at the podium.

The great variety of musical interpretation sometimes literally arises from her little finger, sometimes from her entire body. She guides the renowned orchestra over the lyrical, finely spun lines with nothing more than an elegant bend in her wrist, through which the left hand guides the device like an anaconda gliding gracefully through the water. Then again she seems to be pushing the orchestra with all the energy of the upper body. Over long distances, however, she leads the musicians with a beaming, upright posture, striking precisely, symmetrically circled through an extraordinary evening.

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Beirut’s architectural heritage in danger after the double explosion

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The double explosion that hit Beirut on Tuesday damaged museums and, according to the Lebanese Minister of Culture, “hundreds” of buildings classified as national heritage, sometimes several centuries old. Repairs could cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

It is not only the future of Beirut that has darkened with the double explosion Tuesday. The murderous and devastating drama did not spare what was left of the glorious past of the Lebanese capital, striking museums and historic buildings with traditional architecture.

Famous for their triple-arched windows, typical of Beirut, hundreds of architectural gems dating from the Ottoman Empire or the French Mandate (1920-1943) were already suffering the ravages of time.

After being weakened during the civil war (1975-1990), these treasures saw Tuesday’s explosion – equivalent to a magnitude 3.3 earthquake – deal them the final blow.

>> To read also: “Explosions in Beirut: ‘My city is destroyed but I am proud to be Lebanese'”

Some of the oldest buildings are in fact near the port, where several tons of ammonium nitrate, stored for six years in a warehouse, exploded.

In an 18th century palacee century, the explosion destroyed antiquities older than Lebanon, which this year marks the centenary of its creation.

In the patrician residence decorated with marble colonnades, doors were torn off and wooden panels from the Ottoman era enhanced with Arabic calligraphy were damaged. Broken stained glass windows, more than 200 years old, were swept into a corner.

“It’s like a rape”, confides Tania Ingea, the heiress of this house, formerly known under the name of “Palace of the Residence”.

Built by one of Beirut’s great fortunes, the Sursock family, the palace survived the 2006 civil war and destructive war between Hezbollah and Israel.

Blown stained glass windows and damaged works

With the explosion, “there is now a break between the present and the past,” laments Tania Ingea. “It is an interruption in the transmission of the memory of a place, of a family, of a part of the history of the city.”

Located nearby, the Sursock museum, a center of cultural life which houses an impressive collection of modern and contemporary art, was not spared either. Just a few months ago, it hosted a unique Picasso exhibition.

Jute bags filled with debris are piled up in the courtyard, at the foot of the monumental staircase of honor where the newlyweds came to take pictures of themselves, in front of the chiseled facade of immaculate white and colored stained glass windows. These famous stained-glass windows have been shattered and the windows are nothing more than gaping holes.

>> To read also: “In pictures: the new face of Beirut, devastated capital”

The palace built in 1912, a showcase of Venetian and Ottoman architecture, became a museum almost 50 years later, as its owner Nicholas Sursock, avid collector wanted.

Between 20 and 30 works were damaged, mainly by shards of glass, according to a spokesperson.

Among them is a centerpiece of the collection: a portrait of Nicholas Sursock painted by the Franco-Dutch Kees Van Dongen. The explosion caused the painting to fall, slashing the canvas.

The museum reopened in 2015 after eight years of renovation. Jacques Aboukhaled, the architect who led the work, ensures that the structure is intact, even if the rest has been blown away.

“I did not expect so much damage (…). I am very attached to this building. It is like our house”, adds the sixty-year-old. According to him, the repairs could take more than a year and cost “millions” of dollars.

The national museum spared

A miracle, however. The National Museum, which houses a vast collection of Greek, Roman and Phoenician statues and antiquities, has escaped the worst. Only the exterior facade is damaged, according to Culture Minister Abbas Mortada.

Located on the old demarcation line during the Civil War, the neo-Hellenistic-style building found itself trapped in the fighting.

The main pieces of the museum had been saved from looting thanks to the insight of the former curator, Maurice Chéhab, who had cast them in concrete.

Today, “hundreds” of buildings classified as national heritage are damaged, assures the minister. “It’s going to take a lot of work.”

A team carries out a census of the damage but the repairs will cost “hundreds of millions” of dollars, estimates Abbas Mortada, hoping for outside help, in particular from Paris.

“We need to carry out renovations as quickly as possible,” he says. “If winter comes and it’s not over, the danger will be great.”

With AFP