A general view from Fnaydeq, Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. (The Daily Star/Fathi Masri)
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A woman hangs three pairs of olive-green combat trousers on a clothes line, publicizing that hers is one among an estimated 3,000 homes in the northern Akkari town of Fnaydeq to boast an Army member.In this area, it is considered prestigious to be a member of the Army, more so as unemployment is all too common here. The aftermath of the Arsal clashes has shed light on two distinct viewpoints within the broader network of Sunnis in north Lebanon, both of which are united in their condemnation of perceived government dithering over the 22 policemen and soldiers still being held captive by militants, but for vastly different reasons.On one side, there is the majority of northern Sunnis who remain devoted to the Army but are growing ever more frustrated over the government's apparent complacency toward the hostages. Local government and religious figures from Fnaydeq argued that the reputation of the Army itself would be at stake if the government did not take an effective stance toward the hostages.The terror suspect was detained in June, along with another Fnaydeq local, Mahmoud Khaled.Towns like Fnaydeq gave both moral and practical support to the Syrian uprising, by making sympathetic pronouncements and by sending their own young men to fight.
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