3o years ago, on this day, April 13th 1975, the war ignited in Lebanon.I have thought about this post a lot this week. I really wanted to write about it to inform people about the damage the 15 year civil war had caused and how Lebanon has spent 15 years struggling to rebuild itself and to maintain peace.
I don't want to talk about politics in this post.
I went to live in Lebanon in 1997 to get a university education there. I spent 5 years learning about my country and loving every part of it. I used to visit Lebanon regularly ever since I was a child but living there is nothing like visiting it. Even though, most of the political parties couldn't agree or accept each other....some wouldn't even respect each other...life went on peacefully, meaning it was a peaceful place to live in for a regular individual and tourists were flocking in bigger numbers each year. My history with Lebanon is really brief yetI really got affected today when I was watching a documentary on Future TV about the war. I have watched films about it before and yet I still get affected. Today more than ever as a result of all the events within the past 59 days.
I remember October 13th, 1990 very clearly. This was the day the war ended. It seemed so hard to believe, even for a 10 year old who didn't live there throughout the war and didn't see any real war images. I remember not being able to absorb the idea. How can the war end? War has always existed in Lebanon...at least it had existed since I was born. I remember going out on that date and still saw checkpoints and sandbags and thought to myself... if the war is over why are these still around? I didn't know how long it would take for the country to get back on its feet.
I visited downtown Beirut for the first time in 1991. I can't even begin to desribe the images in my mind of the destruction. I remember visiting the Martyrs Statue and my dad trying to explain to me what the statue represents.. It was really rusty and full of bullet holes. I remember mom and dad trying to figure out what some of the buildings were before the war. It seemed like they had a hard time figuring things out.
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