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Why I Stay

Spotlight on Israel and Lebanon. Letters from Rayya.

By Uncategorized

All I ever wanted was to pick apart the day put
the pieces back together my way. – Aesop Rock


This I feel each morning when I wake up about the events that took place the previous day in Lebanon. Yesterday morning I was at the port of Beirut. There I saw the thousands upon thousands of people fleeing the land. They were Canadian, Australian and American nationals. I do not want to join them. You ask why. Here is your answer:

I was born here. On November 2, 1980 in a small hospital, walking distance form our house now, Khalidi Hospital. This past birthday of mine, the first one I ever celebrated in my home land, I went there. I photographed the place where my eyes first saw life, where my ears first heard sounds, where with new my nose I first smelled a scent and where my body first felt alive. Yesterday I was walking on the same street now know as Sidani St. I was with my boyfriend George and as we walked I turned and said to him,
this is where I was born. He smiled and said, HERE!?

I’m proud of where I was born, Beirut. I am not proud of American. Not proud of America’s hubris pride over the other regions of the world that it wishes to see crushed, nor am I proud of the government’s persistent measures to attempt to attain power in the Middle East. 6 billion dollars a day and all the weapons of mass destruction Israel could ever want — to wipe out a nation. The bombs being dropped on us are made by Boeing, and other multimillion dollar companies in the US.

This is my Middle East not Bush’s! This is my mother’s Middle East not Cheney’s! This is my father’s Middle East not Condoleezza Rice’s! I hope he has the ability to tell her that when she arrives in the near future. I do not support post colonial imperialism, not for another second and I will not flee from the forces that be that want me to do exactly that only to affirm their exercise of freedom sure! Let’s talk about the Mexicans in the US or the how about the Chinese, maybe the Japanese during WWII. So free indeed.

I think it would suffice to look at South Central LA, New Orleans (how can we forget Katrina), Anacostia,Washignton DC or the slums of Chicago’s South Side. Where’s the freedom? When I last checked freedom meant one with equal opportunities as well where are those equal educations, and equal cares of health, evenly paved roads? They do not exist in the country that is now conquering terror and fighting a war on terrorism to bring democracy to the Middle East.

I think this is a good time to remind you that Palestine and Lebanon are the only 2 countries in the history of the Arab world that have ever held democratic elections on a regular and consistent basis. Check your history books or Wikepedia for that matter.

This is my propaganda if that’s what you wan to call it, but it also true.

I never thought I would ever claim to be such a proud national. This is what the word watan means. But I guess under pressure and under shelling one changes their mind.

INSHALLAH! As we, over here, love to say it means God willing. What God? Is there still a God? A friend of mine’s mother, he is actually in Haifa now, though I have not head form him in over 5 days and I am now starting to worry, once told me, stopped believing in God after years and years of generations of people she saw suffer in Palestine. She truly believed that it could not be that there is a greater power above, around, somewhere not taking care of these people and allowing them to suffer in such a way for
such a period of time indefinitely?

sorry for the rant,


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