“Liban : Messages Pour Un Pays”

Since all of us here in Lebanon are in revolutionary mode these days (67 days no less & counting), I’d like to tell you a small story:

In 2014, and in the run up to the 40th anniversary of the start of Lebanon’s civil war, local and independent publishing house NoirBlancEtCaetera thought of commemorating this painful chapter in our history with a book. The premise was all about hope and not giving up on Lebanon, to be individually expressed by a varied group of Lebanese authors, writing a message to Lebanon and a declaration that despite all the ups and downs, all the challenges and lost opportunities, there was still hope for Lebanon. The project was delayed but revived earlier this year, and writers were informed during the summer that the book was set to be officially launched in mid-October. Our beautiful October 17 Lebanese Revolution delayed the official launching, but it still happened in the midst of our revolution, despite the odds. And in all honesty, I do not think there could have been any better time to publish and launch it anyway. Continue reading ““Liban : Messages Pour Un Pays””

Farewell Ghazi Aad

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”

April 13: The War isn’t Over

Whether you believe it should be called the Lebanese War or the Lebanese Civil War. Whether you believe it was fundamentally a confessional conflict or a proxy war fought on Lebanese soil. Whether you were in East Beirut or West Beirut. Whether you refused to leave during the country’s darkest hours or regret not having immigrated sooner than you did. Whether you believe the country has learned its lessons the hard way and will never let it happen again or believe war is just around the corner, waiting for the right spark to tear the country apart once and for all…there is one fact that remains:

Continue reading “April 13: The War isn’t Over”

Eye on the East Wishes you a Happy New Year (this is not a Year in Review)

No year is ever complete without the cliché of the clichés’ “year in review.” Here at Eye on the East, however, we don’t like clichés and there will be no year in review. We are a blog that doesn’t focus on what I like to call “bulk posting” (posting just to boost numbers and those cliché year in review charts) or so-called quantity, but rather hope to be targeting quality instead. Continue reading “Eye on the East Wishes you a Happy New Year (this is not a Year in Review)”

From Beirut to Santiago: memories, democracy and about never going back

Note: This is a translated and abridged version of Eye on the East’s post about Chile in Spanish. The original version can be found here.

21 years have passed since I left Chile, but the wave of memories that hits me at the sight or sound of anything that relates to it is still hard to resist. Maybe it’s the nostalgia of simpler days or the longing for a mischievous adolescence. The fact of the matter is that my appreciation for a land often described as being ‘at the end of the world’ has only grown with time. Continue reading “From Beirut to Santiago: memories, democracy and about never going back”

“Your Time is Now”

“I’m here to get your blessings,” I began, delicately raising my voice to grab the attention of the man lying on the hospital bed in front of me. “How many kilos would you like?” he asked in a rather serious tone, which lasted as long as it took a smile to appear through the sparkling of his eyes. “As much as you can give me,” I replied, hardly able to contain my smile in return. Continue reading ““Your Time is Now””

40 Years Later…

Today is the day we remember our war (1975-1990), the one we swore not to forget so that it would never happen again (تنذكر وما تنعاد). But just like everything else in Lebanon, the more things change the more they stay the same. Whatever we said about the war, the lessons learned and chances of it happening again, still stand today, as they stood yesterday and will stand for the decade to come. I read through what I wrote last year – April 13: How can we not forget?  – (which you are welcome to read today too) and I would not change a single word of it now. Continue reading “40 Years Later…”

Eye on the East wishes you a Happy New Year

Having welcomed 2015 from the agitated waters of the Mediterranean Sea, especially when looked upon from Beirut, Eye on the East wishes a Happy New Year to you and all your loved ones. May 2015 be all that you wish for and more. And may it be a much better year for those who truly deserve it, those who battle sickness, misery and indignity, who have lost loved ones or are waiting for them to come back, wherever they may be, for those who flee death and violence and for the children who suffer, for childhood should be about anything by suffering.

Continue reading “Eye on the East wishes you a Happy New Year”