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Politicians in Lebanon get physical, fighting on live TV

As the world marvels at two politicians in Lebanon getting into a fight, here are some clips to remind you that a sucker punch knows no bounds, even among officials.

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November 16, 2011 4:18 by



This is TV gold. The clip you see above is the kind of minute-by-minute play we secretly wish political channels like America’s 24-hour C-span would be like. (It sure would garner a lot more viewership this way.)

In this 59-second clip that the Guardian has conveniently subtitled for some of us non-Arabic speakers, Former Lebanon MP Mustafa Alloush (part of the anti-Syrian movement headed by Lebanon’s Former Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri) and Fayez Shukor (head of the Lebanon branch of the ruling Baath party in Syria), get into a heated argument that escalates into physical combat that starts with throwing glasses of water and ended in one of them using a chair for battle.

This aggressive style of politicking is apparently not uncommon in Lebanon, though most are confined to verbal combat. Lebanese Political Blog, Qifa Nabki, lists its top five favourite political rumbles. Its top pick is Alloush vs Shukor. (see clip above).

But most on the list are just verbal fights. The one that seems to come close to fisticuffs is a heated debate between Ibrahim Kan’aan and Mosbah al-Ahdab (video is from 2006). The sound quality is very poor on this one so skip to about half of the video to get to the juicy part, if you don’t want to slog through it.

But of course we at Kipp now, these clips have merely fueled your curiosity. Which other politicians are taking the term ‘long arm of the law’ a little too literally, you ask? Here’s a series of clips from around the world just for you:

Czech Republic
MD Miroslav Macek (former vice-chairman of the strongest right wing party in Czech Republic) slapped MD David Rath (former minister of healthcare and member of the strongest left wing party in the Czech Republic) right before he started his speech during a congress of dentists. Macek was ordered to pay $5,500 for the affront.

You have to know that earlier that year (2006), during an interview, Rath had accused Macek of marrying his wife for money. Soon after, Macek responded through the media saying he would “handle it just like men do”. From this video, looks like he made good on the promise. (video with English subtitles)

Pakistan
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf Sindh President Naeem ul Haq throws a glass at Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah’s adviser Jamil Soomro, after a debate on who’s not doing their job right. (the hotspot at 1:00)

Kenya
A session in Parliament in Kenya goes awry as politicians get into what the voiceover aptly describes as a “furious filibuster”.

Taiwan
A ruling party lawmaker throws a shoe at the speaker of Taiwan’s Legislature amid other colleagues engaged in protracted pushing and shoving, as the final day of the winter legislative session dissolved into disarray.

There’s quite a bit online if you’ve got the time. But before you go on procrastina-erm-we mean researching, here’s a compilation of politicians getting into fights around the world:

Got similar clips to share? send them over: ed[email protected]



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