BEIRUT: Kataeb MP Sami Gemayel may have overreacted to Brazil’s humiliating World Cup defeat in the semifinals, saying Germany had committed yet another genocide, this time in football.
But the young lawmaker quickly attempted to save face and adopted the old-age diplomatic way of recovery by deleting the comment from his Twitter feed.
Unfortunately, a number of people had already retweeted and responded to what they felt was an offensive comment from the 33-year-old Kataeb official, who spearheaded many student protests against what he believed was Syria’s oppressive tutelage over Lebanon.
“Germans just committed a new genocide, thank God its just Football! Congrats to the German fans...,” Gemayel tweeted, creating a buzz on social media that might have united his supporters and opponents for once, this time against him.
Some Twitter users voiced disappointment while others ridiculed the lawmaker whose comment failed to reveal which team he was rooting for.
“Pierre Gemayel had the idea of Kataeb from the Nazi youth in the 1936 Olympics. @samygemayel is perpetuating the myth,” @beirutntsc tweeted.
“@samygemayel when politicians use the term ‘genocide’ to describe a football game you know the Lebanese moral compass is utterly lost #SMH,” Carole @CaroleHK said.
@Sarah_Zhr: “The emotional detachment of people when a event doesn't directly concern them baffles me. @samygemayel”
@S_Dockery: "um. no? MT @samygemayel Germans just committed a new genocide, thank god its just Football! Congrats to the German fans..."
But Gemayel was not the only Lebanese who made jokes and ridiculed Brazil after Germany demolished the host team 7-1 in the semifinal game late Tuesday.
Comedian Naim Halawi wrote on his Facebook page that the "Free Brigades of Berlin claimed responsibility for the first goal in Brazil's net," drawing on Lebanon's own issues with the shadowy group the Free Sunni Brigades of Baalbek.
"Lebanon's Ansar football club announced it would take each Brazilian player for $600/annually," a message circulating on social media said.
"The Lebanese football team says it is ready to face Brazil anywhere and at any time!” another Facebook meme read.