[Ed. – I don’t foresee a very reliable forensic effort here, given the Hezbollah stranglehold on the Lebanese government. There was enough information publicly available to identify the presence of the old ammonium nitrate shipment, so Hezbollah has had to acknowledge that. But there’s a lot of marble-mouth jabber obscuring any focused meaning in the official discussion right now. The U.S. is clearly letting Beirut take the lead (as we should) and not weighing in with analytical opinion, so there won’t be a lot of useful commentary to react to any time soon. If ever.]
Lebanon’s president said on Friday its investigation into the biggest blast in Beirut’s history would examine whether it was caused by a bomb or other external interference, as residents sought to rebuild shattered homes and lives.
Rescuers sifted rubble in a race to find anyone still alive after Tuesday’s port explosion that killed 154 people, injured 5,000, destroyed a swathe of the Mediterranean city and sent seismic shockwaves around the region.
“The cause has not been determined yet. There is a possibility of external interference through a rocket or bomb or other act,” President Michel Aoun told local media.
Aoun, who had previously said explosive material was stored unsafely for years at the port, said the investigation would also weigh if the blast was due to negligence or an accident. Twenty people had been detained so far, he added.