Posted by: sean | November 23, 2006

The protest

The protest downtown seemed more like a public fair or a carnival than an angry mob. People came from all over Beirut, and presumably all over Lebanon, to show their support to the March 14 coalition and the slain Pierre Gemayel.

Slogans ranged from “Syria, Iran, Israel Out of Lebanon” to “the Sunni are with you” to , literally, “Fuck your sister, Syria.” I saw flags of almost every sort: Lebanese, Phalange, Armenian, Future movement, various other Christian parties, and even an American flag or two.

At 1 PM, Gemayel’s funeral was broadcast over the loudspeakers. The sounds of ecclesiastical mourning seemed somehow out of place in the midst of people waving their flags with a smile while vendors sold bottled water and ka’ak (100% Lebanese according to the cardboard sign).

Overall, I’d say that it went fairly well and, most importantly, non-violently.

I’ll post some pictures later today…

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Responses

  1. Great. Thanks for the input. Much of the western news media has portrayed that protest as signifying a “showdown in Lebanon”, but it seems you are suggesting something else.

    -KM


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