Laure Ghorayeb has some powerful drawings on her blog, Witnessing (Again). On her 8 August posting, she quotes Nayla Mouawad, Interior Minister, as saying that 75% of the Lebanese are unemployed or kept away from work because of the war.
Here’s the translation for Marc’s 7 August 2006 blog posting at impression. It’s entitled “wisdom”:
I saw a great man talk on TV. For once, a politician, a journalist, speaks in my name, in the name of the entire Lebanese people, without reference to each religious or social denomination.
In this very difficult moment in our country’s History, Ghassan Tuéni gives me life, this man who has seen his children disappear one after another under no less than tragic circumstances, and shows victory over the horrible violence which rages around us like a nightmare with no hope of waking.
The wisdom, vision, political intelligence, humor and humanity which emanates from this man marked by the weight of years is the antidote to the death which has prevailed over Lebanon for the last four weeks. Without a doubt it’s a paradox to see an old man carrying the hope of a people, but the political future of Lebanon can be found perhaps in the wisdom of its past.
Neither Shiite, Sunni, Christian, nor Druze, just a lay citizen facing the adversity of Israel, Syria and others…of their wars against my land. And just because Tuéni quotes Christ does not mean he acts out of a primitive confessional reflex or in order to proselytize; he does so simply out of pure humanity, in order to explain the sharing of suffering with others, those who have less luck in one moment of their life, that tragic moment which is life’s statistical injustice. One can fight injustice peacefully, above all, peacefully.
Ghassan Tuéni is currently serving in his son’s position in parliament. At 80 years old, he has had to fill his son’s political and journalist shoes after Géban Tuéni was killed by a car bomb in December, 2005. For Ghassan, he repeats in his old age what he did as a younger man; he sits in parliament and he leads a prestigious Lebanese newspaper, an-Nahar. Ghassan’s four-year old daughter died of cancer, and so did his wife; his son Makram died in a car accident, and his remaining child, Gébran, was assassinated. See Anthony Shadid’s Washington Post foreign service article (“‘Gebran didn’t die’, he lives on through his father“), housed at Ya Libnan, for more information.