Beirut never asks you to come back to it. It entices you to and makes you come back out of your own volition. If Beirut were a person, it would be irresistibly charming, more than anybody you would ever meet. Someone you would keep falling hopelessly in love with, even though you’d always know it would be a tumultuous, love and hate relationship with no future whatsoever. If Beirut were a force of nature, it would be a glorious sunset after a furious storm, though you’d always be left guessing when the next storm will hit, because it always does and stronger than the one before. Continue reading “Ungrateful, Beirut”
Note: This is the fourth in a series of five thematic Lebanon-related posts, based on a conversation between the author and a Lebanese citizen who preferred to remain anonymous. The first three posts (on politics and the parliamentary elections, the economy and the environment) were published last year.
Eye on the East (EOTE): Happy Easter.
Lebanese Citizen (LC): Thanks, I guess.
EOTE: Not much of an Easter person yourself? Continue reading ““Godless in the Land of Gods””
There are few other things that bring me as much happiness and fulfillment than as writing. The happiness it brings is both from how it allows me to express myself in all elegance, freedom and simplicity, as well as from the joy it brings to others readers and the bond that it invariably cements between us, writer and reader. No matter what the topic, no matter when and how and for who, writing is a mission, a cause, a means and an end in and of itself. Make of it what you want, interpret it as you wish, but never underestimate its power. Continue reading “In Just Six Words…”
They said people would take to the streets because parliamentary elections would be cancelled. “We are a democracy,” they said, “people won’t let that happen.” But people did let elections be cancelled, twice.
They said people would not let the garbage crisis go without a fight. “People may not care about democracy and holding politicians accountable,” they said, “but this is about garbage and their health.” But people also gave up, protesters couldn’t keep the demonstrations together, and the garbage crisis continued and a sustainable solution has yet to be found. Continue reading “So They’re Gonna Raise Some Taxes”
There are those whose passing makes them heroes, because some wrongfully believe that in respecting death, there is a duty to bury all that was shameful and negative and remember only what was good and virtuous about them, no matter how deceitful this memory made be. But there are others whose passing cements their status as heroes, not only because we have no choice but to remember and appreciate the genuine heroism they displayed during their lifetime, but because in their passing, we lament how few of them are left, to carry on the fight as they did. Continue reading “Farewell Ghazi Aad”
You may think this is fiction, but it’s not. You may wish this were fiction, but you know better….especially if you have any sense of what the Middle East and Arab World has been, is as we speak and seems adamant on remaining – on the same course of hopelessness and injustice – for years to come. Continue reading ““Gaza: I saw the tunnel, he saw the darkness at the end of it””
You may have noticed that activity on the blog has been slow lately. That doesn’t mean, however, that our “eye” hasn’t been looking, observing, analyzing or despairing at all the hopelessness and bloodshed around us and for once, rather speechless about it all. But speechlessness about the real world has diverted into an ocean of ideas and an outburst of imagination about a fictional world, which owes much to the real world for initial inspiration, but takes off to limitless heights thereafter… Continue reading “A different kind of Eye….on the turbulent East”
Late Lebanese legendary filmmaker Maroun Baghdadi once said, “I come from a world where, strangely enough, the image has difficulty in spreading. It’s a world that has problems with its own image.” He went on to say that in Lebanon and the Arab world, the image can be considered a taboo, complaining that he had been sometimes accused of giving a “bad image” of the region in his movies. “This excites me,” he lashed back, “and encourages me to transmit my message through images even more.” Continue reading “When looking back hurts, really hurts”
This isn’t a rant, it’s just something that has to be said, once and for all.
When Saudi Arabia decided to freeze its $3 billion in military assistance to Lebanon last February, you could criticize its motives for doing so but not the actual act of freezing the assistance. It is their money after all and they decide what to do with it. Continue reading “Better be an April Fools’ joke for a day…”