Whenever I think about Lebanon I think about night life and the beach, sunny memories from long summers. But there are other things too that comes to my mind – the underlying fear of something to happen, because that something regularly does happen, and the intolerance that so easily pops up, young people that many years after the civil war still despise anyone from another group. The wounds from the civil war just doesn’t get a chance to heal when the violence button seems stuck on repeat. Today’s bombings of Iran’s embassy in Beirut is a depressing but recurrent event.
The destiny of being Lebanese if I can have my say is having a country to be proud of – beautiful and dynamic, a place people from more boring countries loves to visit. Who wouldn’t want their home country being the given summer destination instead of wanting to go anywhere else every year?
But the cost of being Lebanese is also often bitter – I dare to say this after all the “where are you from” questions with dreamy eyes I have received from various people at any occassion. For a country with all it’s potential, a vibrant job market and internationally prestigious universities, the young people still just wanna leave. And who can blame them, when your Sunday brunch in the center of Beirut suddenly can be shattered by explosions tearing people’s bodies into pieces?
The bombings and occassional violence in Lebanon has different reasons, from internal Islamic groups targeting the crazy night clubs to people who wanted to get rid of that inconvenient politician. But the very worst reason for being bombed in your own country must be when it has absolutely nothing to do with you. When your country happens to be a playground for dirty international affairs just because it has always been and because your own government can’t or won’t control the violence within their own borders.
“We condemn this cowardly terrorist act which is aimed at inciting tensions in Lebanon and using the country as an arena to send political messages”, Prime Minister Najib Mikati said today.
I hope next time the government will back up their wise words with some actions. Giving the Lebanese people the right to being able to stay in their own country that should be no one elses but theirs.
Photo credit: http://www.dailystar.com.lb
Forgiveness and compassion are very important.
Jenny, very nice article. It was sad to read, I can imagine growing up in Lebanon only because of the stories shared by a friend who grew up there.
As I read your article, his stories came to mind. I was awestruck by an enviably bond; a bond of support and respect for family, friends and community, something not valued in the US but a tradition noted in people from eastern cultures.
Reblogged this on Failure to Listen.