The 60+ Michel Hayek Predictions That Came True In 2020

Here Are The 60+ Michel Hayek Predictions That Came True In 2020
Twitter/@michel_hayek | Dalati & Nohra/Reuters

2020, a year regarded by many in Lebanon and around the world as one of their worst, is closing in on its end.

It is customary that people take the last few days of the year to look back at the events and the moments they experienced, good and bad, as they prepare to welcome the new year.

At the same time, for many Lebanese, the last days also involve the anticipation of the annual predictions that Michel Hayek brings out for the upcoming year.

Until that happens, here is a look at the Michel Hayek predictions that came true in 2020.

#1 A Lebanese face in the UAE makes headlines

January 2nd: Prominent Lebanese journalist Najwa Qassem passes away in her home in Dubai.

#2 The highest levels of ebullition in the airports of Iraq

January 3rd: Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani is assassinated in Iraq, shortly after arriving at Baghdad Airport.

#3 Qassem Soleimani expands the circle of fear around, from, and for himself

January 3rd: Soleimani’s assassination.

#4 Unprecedented overcrowding in the streets of Iran

January 7th: Massive participation in Qassem Soleimani’s funeral in Iran.

#5 The earth’s crust shakes in Turkey

January 24th: A destructive 6.7-Mw earthquake rocks Turkey.

#6 A woman moving men away from rulership in Lebanon and taking over…

January 21st: The regional-record-breaking appointment of 6 women as ministers in Lebanon’s 20-minister cabinet.

#7 A famous basketball player causes a crisis

January 26th: American basketball legend Kobe Bryant passes away in a helicopter crash.

#8 The spread of a virus reminds us of the time of swine flu, mad cow disease, and others

March 11th: The World Health Organization officially declares coronavirus (COVID-19) a pandemic.

#9 Advanced steps in ‘The Deal of the Era’ despite the wave of rejection

January 28th: U.S. President Donald Trump announces the Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, sparking protests and criticism.

#10 The Chinese economy… Shaking

March: China’s economy suffers from the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

#11 Armenian figures leave a fingerprint in the upcoming level

January 29th: Leo Nicolian, a Lebanese-French journalist of Armenian origin, confronts French President Emmanuel Macron about his position regarding the Lebanese revolution.

#12 MP Ziad Assouad’s volcano erupts

February 4th: Lebanese MP Ziad Assouad’s supporters clash with protesters outside a restaurant in Beirut.

#13 ‘C-section’ gov’t struggles to gain confidence

February 10th: Hassan Diab’s cabinet wins confidence vote in a highly controversial Parliament session.

#14 The ‘most prominent loop’ in the presidential settlement is lost

February 14th: Future Movement President Saad Hariri announces the end of the political settlement with President Michel Aoun.

#15 An unexpected event at Bayt Al-Wasat

February 14th: The first time the anniversary of former PM Rafik Hariri’s assassination is held in Bayt Al-Wasat.

#16 Controversy, disagreement surrounds the national anthem

February 19th: An altered version of the Lebanese national anthem, dedicated to President Michel Aoun, draws backlash.

#17 The fire of strife hits ‘the household’ and the Future Movement

May 7th: Bahaa Hariri, Saad Hariri’s brother, bashes his brother and Lebanon’s ruling class in a statement.

#18 School gates shut in the midst of the school year, and the cause is not a strike

February 28th: Lebanon closes schools as a precautionary measure against coronavirus (COVID-19).

#19 The world of banks… In danger

March 5th: Financial Prosecutor Judge Ali Ibrahim freezes the assets of 21 banks in Lebanon.

#20 ‘A year of madness’

The pandemic has caused panic in supermarkets, schools, and other public places, throughout the year.

#21 An adventure in the case of Amer Fakhoury

March 17th: Amer Fakhoury is released from prison.

#22 An unprecedented uprising in Roumieh Prison

March 16th: COVID-19 causes inmates to protest in Roumieh Prison.

#23 An emergency keeps the Canadian PM away from his office for a while

March 13th: Canadian PM Justin Trudeau’s wife tests positive for COVID-19, forcing him to isolate himself.

#24 What hovers over the U.S. Embassy in Awkar

March 19th: A U.S. helicopter takes off from the U.S. Embassy in Awkar, lifting Amer Fakhoury out of Lebanon.

#25 The British PM pays the price for one of his positions

March 27th: British PM Boris Johnson tests positive for COVID-19, after having adopted “herd immunity” as a strategy against the pandemic.

#26 A painful shock in Matn

March: COVID-19 spreads rapidly in Matn, Mount Lebanon.

#27 Pope Francis in an exciting move

December 20th: Opposing the resistance of many Catholics against anti-coronavirus vaccinations as “morally unacceptable,” Pope Francis announced that he will be getting vaccinated with the Pfizer Vaccine and urged the world Catholics to accept vaccinations.

#28 An embassy, an ambassador, and a calamity

April 2nd: The Philippine Ambassador to Lebanon dies due to COVID-19 complications

#29 Yes, there is emigration, but it is ‘temporary’

April: Lebanese expatriates choose to return to Lebanon in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak.

#30 A state of panic and fear in the Italian street

March: Italy becomes the new epicenter of the pandemic.

#31 A painful surprise shakes New York City

March: New York City becomes an epicenter of the pandemic as infection cases soar.

#32 A scene of loyalty around Leila Al-Solh

April 6th: Leila Al-Solh, the vice president of Alwaleed bin Talal Humanitarian Foundation, helps direct the foundation’s repatriation initiative for Lebanese abroad.

#33 Riad Salameh: One day he governs, the next he’s condemned

April 29th: Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh defends his record after coming under fire for his handling of Lebanon’s crisis.

#34 Ramadan this year is nothing like any other

April – May: The pandemic and COVID-19-induced lockdowns affect Ramadan and its rituals this year.

#35 The revolution’s enemies mangle the face of Tripoli

April 27th: Nighttime riots and clashes leave 1 dead and dozens of protesters and Lebanese Army soldiers injured.

#36 A series of events takes us back to the struggle between whites and blacks

May 25th: 46-year-old George Floyd‘s death sparks nation-wide protests against racism and police brutality in the U.S.

#37 A sour atmosphere at the U.S. Embassy

June 26th: Lebanese Judge Mohammad Mazeh issues a controversial media ban against U.S. Ambassador Dorothy Shea.

#38 One of Patriarch Rahi’s sermons blows up the ground

July: Patriarch Bechara Boutros Al-Rahi calls for Lebanon’s neutrality from the region’s conflicts during several sermons, sparking a debate on the Lebanese political stage.

#39 Anger on AUB’s campus

July 17th: AUBMC discharges hundreds of employees without prior notice, sparking anger and protests.

#40 ‘Engagement and emotion’ in the Supreme Islamic Shia Council

July 17th: Vice-President of the Supreme Islamic Shiite Council Sheikh Ali Al-Khatib, along with other Shiite clerics, reject Patriarch Al-Rahi’s call for neutrality.

#41 ‘The mother of battles’ at Beirut Port

August 4th: A horrific ammonium nitrate explosion in Beirut Port rips through the Lebanese capital.

#42 A public figure crosses the seas to help rescue Lebanon

August 6th: French President Emmanuel Macron promises to help the Lebanese people during his post-explosion visit to Beirut.

#43 STL: A deviation in the accusations against Hezbollah as a party

August 18th: The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) finds no evidence indicating that Hezbollah’s leadership was involved in the assassination of former PM Rafik Hariri in 2005.

#44 A show-stealing appearance by one of Bashar Assad’s children

July 29th: U.S. sanctions target Bashar Assad‘s 18-year-old son, Hafez.

#45 Chef Antoine’s charisma level increases

July 12th: Chef Antoine’s meat-free recipes, inspired by the economic crisis, get him featured on The New York Times.

#46 Ali Hasan Khalil awaited by a fierce confrontation and a new title

Sep. 8th: Lebanese politician Ali Hasan Khalil is targeted by U.S. sanctions.

#47 Some dogs in Lebanon expand their mission…

Jul. 21st: Internal Security Forces announce plan to use dogs for detecting COVID-19 at Beirut Airport.

#48 Mirna Chalouhi Center and major developments

Sep. 14th: Tensions rise near Mirna Chalouhi Center between FPM & Lebanese Forces Party and develop into warning gunshots.

#49 Arab-Israeli normalization, ‘to the furthest limits’

In 2020, the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco made history when they agreed to normalize ties with Israel.

#50 Saudi National Day will not resemble any other holiday

Sep. 23rd: The COVID-19 pandemic forces exceptional preventive measures to be taken during the celebration of Saudi National Day 2020.

#51 Kuwait’s sun sets on sad news

Sep. 29th: Kuwait announces the death of its Emir Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah.

#52 A delicate health emergency forces the U.S. President to adjust his programs

Oct. 2nd: U.S. President Donald Trump tests positive for COVID-19 and goes into isolation.

#53 A switch in the sleeping prince’s routine state

Oct. 20th: “Sleeping Prince” Al-Waleed bin Khalid al-Saud, who has been in a coma for 15 years, moves his hand in response to his aunt conversing by his bedside.

#54 Uncertainty around the name of Saeb Erekat

Nov. 10th: The secretary-general of the Palestinian Liberation Organization is pronounced dead after unconfirmed reports and speculations about his condition, following his contraction of COVID-19.

#55 Abbas Ibrahim’s star leaves… To its wider orbit

Oct. 16: Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim receives the James Foley Award for his efforts in helping release hostages around the world.

#56 A touristic arera in southern France loses its peace for several days

Oct. 29th: Three people die in a terrorist knife attack at a church in Nice, southern France.

#57 Singer Mohammad Assaf and his song ‘Alli El-Kofia’ face challenges

Oct. 16th: Israel bans Palestinian singer Mohammad Assaf from entering Jerusalem, and his song, Alli El-Kofia, is removed from Arab Idol’s YouTube channel.

#58 In the U.S. presidential battle, Trump simultaneously loses and wins…

November: U.S. President Donald Trump claims victory and repeatedly attempts to get states where his rival, Joe Biden, has the lead to recount their votes as he works to secure his re-election.

#59 Tough accountability awaits Erdogan’s son-in-law

Nov. 8th: Berat Albayrak, the son-in-law of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, resigns as Finance Minister after a massive corruption scandal.

#60 An Aounist figure dares to stab the Aounist era

Nov. 8th: His targeting by U.S. sanctions led the leader of the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM), Gebran Bassil, to the uncovering of whom he referred to as “a traitor” within the ranks of the party.

Dec. 18th: FPM Diplomatic Relations Officer Michel De Chadarevian resigned from his position in protest against all the party’s policies, mentioning that there are “contradictions” within the FPM formation.

#61 Armenia’s magic causes traffic on the Beirut-Yerevan road

Sep. 27th: Fighting erupts between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, prompting many members of the Lebanese-Armenian community to offer a helping hand to their motherland.

#62 Walid Al-Muallem on a big mission that is ‘probably his last’

Nov. 16th: Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Al-Muallem passes away.

#63 A Lebanese prison opens its doors for an exploitative purpose

Nov. 21st: A large group of prisoners break out of Baabda Prison in Mount Lebanon.

#64 The battles of Melhem Khalaf continue…

Nov. 25th: A video goes viral on social media, showing the head of the Beirut Bar Association, Melhem Khalaf, shouting at ISF officers after the controversial arrest of a lawyer.

#65 A massive security breach shakes Iran

Nov. 27th: Iran’s top nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, is assassinated, prompting a promise of retaliation by Iran.

Dec. 10th: Lebanon’s caretaker PM Hassan Diab is charged over the Beirut Port explosion, along with former ministers.

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