Photo: Vice via Vice.com
Hezbollah has opened a theme park to “encourage resistance terrorism.”Wait, hold on a sec, what I meant was, “tourism.”
The Vice Guide’s Ryan Duffy produced a video about this new happiest place on earth, where tourists and kids can “hold on to a machine gun,” look at various static displays of tanks, grenades, weapons, and even watch a video the organisation geared toward “celebrating our victories.”
In Lebanon, many Shi’ite Muslims, especially in the south, celebrate what they call “victory day,” marked on the anniversary of Israel’s withdrawal from occupation of southern Lebanon in 2006’s “33-Day War.” Outgunned and outmatched, members of the “Lebanese Resistance” and Lebanese civilians lost their lives at almost 10 times the rate of the Israelis.
Hezbollah built the multimillion dollar multimedia theme park on the grounds of old strongholds, and clearly aimed it toward political indoctrination of a culture. They are preparing for the next war, something locals view as inevitable.
Outside is a round sunken arena featuring wrecked Israeli tanks and artillery, their gun barrels buried uselessly in concrete walls. A Merkava tank cannon has been artfully knotted. “This circle is like a tornado,” said Abu Abdullah, another guide. “The storm hit the Israeli army and let it down to the abyss, the lowest point of hell, cemetery of the Zionist army.”
Large Hebrew letters spell out “The Abyss” and “The Swamp” in stone at the centre of the circle, taunts meant to be seen and photographed by Israeli spy planes, drones and satellites.
The guided tour ends in the nearby town of Mleeta in “Liberation Square,” a garden decorated with large pieces of modern weaponry, and a “martyrs” memorial.
Planners expect to add hotels, swimming pools, and other amenities near the park; though the surrounding populace largely expects Israel will destroy it in “the next war.”
Regardless of the morbid, heavy nature of the “theme park,” guides encourage tourists and kids to frequent the gift shop.
It’s sure to satisfy all your desires for Hezbollah swag.
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