A moment of silence for our lost humanity.
So after seeing Tel Aviv I have decided that the people and culture are so similar to Beirut it makes me crazy, with one exception, the people here all walk a little bit taller, a little bit more confrontational, because once they swung the most sophisticated weapons from their shoulders when they are 19. They have the same fears as the Arabs I know on the other side, they like drinking Arak and listening to techno music smoking cigarettes as if their lungs will never give out.
I feel guilty for enjoying Tel Aviv, its a beautiful city, there is free wifi, food culture.But it feels like you are in a its a small world the ride — ( disneyland) everything is too nice, everyone stares, people when they assume im jewish ( apparently I also look like an Israeli) they then try and convince me to stay in Israel, There are also no Arab there, and the streets inthe heat of the day smell like cat piss, the sea is so clean, and the beaches are free and its strange to me that Im swimming in the same sea only miles north in Lebanon.
Speaking of how they see Lebanon, I keep having a very strange conversation over and over again. of Isalies who have been to lebanon in war and saying the land is so beautiful you would think its Heaven, and the experience they had there is like Hell. I dont know why but it haunts me, I keep thinking I wish the Liberal people of both countries could meet with eachother, but I know deep down in my heart the Lebanese are too scarred by their experience with Israel that there are too many MOOSKILEH (problem) and memories that die hard to really make any progress.
Anyways, computer is about to die, going to Jerusalem today, Hamas is firing rockets on their OWN capital full of Arabs and the holiest of religious sites, with rockets that have NO navigation, there is no humanity, and I feel numb to it all.
- Something I heard while watching a video of Israeli airstrikes on innocent civilians. (via x-cessive-bastard)
So for some time now, I have been thinking about starting a blog of some sort to document the things I have seen and experienced while traveling the Middle East time and time again. I think writing these things down this time is extremely important because; frankly, I am drowning in a sea and I dont know how to deal with it.
So I left Beirut only a few days ago, this was my third time there, I am in love with that city, country and its people. I love the Lebanese party as hard as you can today because you dont know if there will be a bomb tomorrow. I struggle with the fact that people are so calm, they empty the streets when there is one bomb and the next day they will up all the pubs and night clubs all over again. Forgetting, coping, moving on. ( I swear if any country needs shrinks its lebanon, there a ton of skeletons in that closet).
This time that I was in lebanon, I had the chance to go to the south, the stronghold of Hezbollah the previously occupied land of Israel, the last untouched nature that exists in that tiny country. The flags change from the red white and green flags of lebanon to the yellow and green and black flags of Hezbollah and Aman as you drive down the highway, forests to the left of you Mediterranean ocean to the right. I started to notice that the quality of the highway had improved significantly, and then I was truly shocked when I started seeing the emblem of Iran and words in Farsi written above every other overpass we drove under. Once getting to Tyre ( Soor) you realize that people are actually very happy, friendlier, poorer, more religious, I stopped at a stand to buy some arabic ice cream and enjoyed it while walking down the christian quarter, smelling of freshly cut wood, since this is gods land and jesus’s occupation it is a beloved and honorable trade here in Soor. The one thing I dont get is why on earth the Shia districts are so dirty, I mean yes they are poor but just because a district is poor it doesn’t mean it has to be dirty. This is something one never sees in Iran. ( this is something Lebanese assume about Shia because thats how they act in Lebanon)
Speaking about Iran, I am automatically assumed to be with Hezbollah. This at times has been very helpful, at other times a point of contention. I remember sitting on Uruguay street watching the Iran-Argentina world cup and cheering for Iran to has a Lebanese girl start cheering for Argentina even more, because she assumed I was with Hezbollah, and she obviously was not ( it all ended well with bets and Yegger but regardless, they dont get that Iranians arnt all hyper religious, that we dont support our government that we like beer football and electronica music). They also dont get it but in a beneficial way to me when I went to leave the airport, which is controlled by Hezbollah, with a visa which is expired. Arrest maybe a fine maybe some harsh words would be due if I were leaving on any other passport, but instead I got a God Bless you from one officer and a number slipped in to my passport from another officer as he winked at me and ushered me on. I dont know how to feel about this treatment, I am sad that my Iranian friends wont come here because as an Iranian when you go to Lebanon and get the visa on your passport it is next to impossible to be granted a visa to any western nation because it is assumed that one is with Hezbollah. It makes me sad because Beirut and Tehran are so relatable, Shiraz and the Bekka are so relatable the people are both warm and both have the wrong impression of one another. Fuck borders.
anyways, I will continue on this memory jotting exercise soon, as my fingers are starting to cramp.