Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll in a Failing State

Despite a jihadist uprising in the north, a political crisis in the capital, and rumors of war swirling all around, it’s business as usual in Beirut’s packed nightclubs. The good-looking people in this good-time town have long partied to a familiar soundtrack of popping champagne corks, clacking high-heels, and the generic beat of computer-generated dance […]

BEIRUT DIARIST: Oriental Sexpotism

When People magazine asked me to interview Haifa Wehbe, a Lebanese pop singer, for its 2006 “100 Most Beautiful” issue, the assignment seemed like a welcome break from the usual high-risk, low-paying jobs I receive as a freelance journalist in the Middle East. After all, how difficult could it be to throw a few softballs […]