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View Diary: I am so tempted to violate copyright (177 comments)

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  •  Thank you for steering us to it! (3+ / 0-)
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    teacherken, MsSpentyouth, javelina

    As you began to recount the histories of various groups I couldn't help but think of the land of my ancestors.  My grandparents came to this country a hundred years ago from Lebanon.  They embraced this country from the start and never even returned for a visit.  By the time we got to my generation, we were all half-breeds but they never stopped telling us the stories about the "Paris of the Middle East,"  Beirut.  

    My grandparents were Maronite Christians but when they came here they were Catholics.  They told us that Lebanon had struck a religious balance by providing a sort of power-sharing arrangement between Christians and Muslims.  At that point in time, Lebanon was not an active enemy of Israel.  The descendants of the Phoenicians were interested in trade, not war.  The country was officially neutral and its army was more ceremonial than functional.  

    Then everything changed.  I am not as clear on the history as I ought to be but now Lebanon is a haven for extremists, is coveted by Syria, and is periodically shelled or invaded by Israel.  I'm not sure there are many innocent parties here, either.  When things get this ethnically and religiously complicated it's nearly impossible to assign blame.  People who just want to live their lives die because others want power.  

    This turned into a rant when I merely meant to give another example.  Thanks for giving the forum in which to share.

    -7.62, -7.28 "We told the truth. We obeyed the law. We kept the peace." - Walter Mondale

    by luckylizard on Thu Jul 24, 2008 at 07:24:58 AM PDT

    •  alas, poor Lebanon (3+ / 0-)
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      javelina, dancewater, luckylizard

      the destabilization came in part because King Hussein kicked Fatah and the PLO out of Jordan, and they went to Lebanon, which helped destabilized that country.  It is also true that Syria tended to look upon Lebanon as Iraq looked upon Kuwait.  And then things got increasingly more complicated . . .

      "I prayed that the less evil side might win."  That line, from a notable Orthodox monk who spent WWII in a hermitage on Mount Athos, has haunted me ever since I first read it perhaps two decades ago.  All war is evil.  Even if necessary, it is evil, and has evil consequences.  The best that we can hope is that the evil we cause is less than the evil which we seek to prevent.

      do we still have a Republic and a Constitution if our elected officials will not stand up for them on our behalf?

      by teacherken on Thu Jul 24, 2008 at 07:30:18 AM PDT

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      •  Thanks! (2+ / 0-)
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        MsSpentyouth, javelina

        I have never been to Lebanon.  By the time I was old enough there was no way I would have risked it.  I do like the pictures in my mind, painted by my grandparents before all the madness.

        -7.62, -7.28 "We told the truth. We obeyed the law. We kept the peace." - Walter Mondale

        by luckylizard on Thu Jul 24, 2008 at 08:06:37 AM PDT

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