The years following the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri in 2005 featured many unusual political spectacles that would become all too familiar to Americans in the aftermath of the 2016 US presidential elections. Accusations of fake news, WikiLeaks, and social media disinformation campaigns were widespread on the Lebanese scene between 2005-2011.
What to make of the parallels between these two contexts? This talk revisits the 2005-2011 period
in Lebanese politics in light of the revelations of the past few years.
Elias Muhanna is Assistant Professor of Comparative Literature and Faculty Fellow in Middle East Studies at Brown University. He is a frequent contributor to The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Nation and other publications.