LEBANON: Westward Ho

Many a traveler has remarked the resemblance between Southern California and Lebanon—the same sunny skies (and unusual rains), golden beaches, orange groves, snowcapped mountains, religious cults, and taste for gossip with an overripe flavor.

Even California has produced no more overripe character than Dahish the Amazer, a dynamic hypnotist who set himself up in Lebanon as a second Christ, built up an ardent circle of cultists. At the top of his vogue, in 1944, the souks (bazaars) of Beirut peddled many a rumor of orgies in his modern villa in the Mazraa section...

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