Day 4; Hidden Brutality #طلعت_ريحتكم #YouStink
It is now our routine to go down to Riad Al Solh everyday. It has become a forum. People come down (now with chairs and arguileh, an ice-cream truck is now part of the scene) sit, chant, chat, talk about life, revolution, the things they love about Lebanon and the things they want to fix. It’s the public space we only dreamed of.
I went down at 9, the numbers were dwindled, but people of all walks of life were there, it felt like multiple protests were happening at the same time. A super creative one with a drum and witty songs
A crazy one lightening the barbed wire on fire with trash they collected from across the street. Of which not a single one was over 16, actually they were under 140cm in height, no chest hair (90% where topless), no facial hair, they are so un-hit by puberty, they might as well be girls! Yet thinking this was a great idea. Many tried to stop them, but it was trickier than it seems. Actually if they ISF were to arrest them, it would have looked like a meme 😛
And a heavy debate-group huddled somewhere in between.
To me, it looked like life; the “intellectuals”, the “mad people” and the “life-of-the-party”, with quite a diverse audience just enjoying the outdoors and being present.
Yet, the media game has changed dramatically. Less coverage, since there’s no blood, more threats and more accountability accumulating to their tab. The @LebISF was even tweeting their “victories” of restrained behavior and rehearsed propaganda; ofcourse they didn’t tweet / mention the 15 (19) violent bloody and barbaric arrests:
The protests have taken an unexpected twist for the war-lords. Regardless of the violence upon the protestors. People are happy to go down every day, ready to be showered, gassed and beaten. Come to think of it they made us this way.
We have been immune to the humiliation of no electricity, water, infrastructure, no tax returns, medical support, jobs, security, laws, access to beaches, public spaces, improvements in schooling, support for agriculture, etc etc etc etc etc etc etc. for soooo long, that some water and gas sounds like a breeze! If anything, they have prepped us really well for the battle!
Known names of arrested so far:
Ziad Younes, Ayman Mroue, Sami Moussa, Mohamad Al Mousalli
A little political background on today. In 24 hours the government erected a wall to separate protestors from the Serail and took down the wall. It also assigned garbage collection to companies in all districts, to later (did they not revise the proposals?!?!?!) retract that decision, quote “they are too expensive”. The government re assigned Sukleen (who had stopped working as Beirut was assigned to Lavajet (and retracted), and Sukleen workers were doing a sit in wondering what their future would be!) to pick up Beirut’s trash and proposed Akar as an appropriate dump sight, in return for, 100,000$ to develop Akar over 3 years … aka the normal stuff the government should do, because that’s why we fucking pay taxes!
Ofcourse the people are still flabbergasted by the level moronity in the government and it’s surprising ability to be on a bad-decision-streak for a full week! (can we get a Guinness record here somewhere).
This night is long from over, as protestors are standing infront of Beirut and Al7illo police stations trying to provide the arrested with lawyers and medical aid.