Adonis Diaries

Rainbow over the Levant (fiction, continue)

Posted on: October 19, 2008


Gergis had been in Italy for six months when he was ambushed on a trip to Florence and killed with his secretary and coach driver.  Investigations did not reveal the perpetrators but Noura received an anonymous letter two weeks too late warning her to use all her skills of persuasion to get Gergis to stay put in his villa and refrain from any travels until further information.  Noura established a foundation in Gergis’ name for a students’ exchange between Rome and the Levant with all expenses paid for a year.  The Italian students were to have learned Arabic for two years in her language institution in Rome and the Levantine students would already have been familiar with Latin. 

Mustafa stayed 2 years in Tunisia and traveled to Algeria and Morocco drumming up support and raising an army to harass the Sultan of Egypt in due time. The Mameluk Sultan got word of Mustafa activities and sent under cover agents to North Africa to take note of Mustafa’s every movement, and he increased his diplomatic missions to the City-State Emirs wooing them for greater cooperation or threatening them if necessary to desist in facilitating Mustafa’s mission.  A Levantine double agent who served in Cairo for two years was uncovered in Beirut for transmitting intelligence information on Mustafa’s activities.

            The Sultan of Egypt opened secret negotiations with the President of the Levant planning to win on both scoreboards; he would weaken both the Turks and the Levant in a protracted war while averting Mustafa’s threat in Tunisia. The terms of the negotiations were that Egypt would refrain from any maritime support to the Turks, would reopen trade routes to the Levant on condition that Mustafa be recalled and more importantly that the President and his whole family pay the Mameluk Sultan an official visit to Cairo to finalize the protocol of agreements.

In the mean time, the Republic of the Levant underwent a sorry period of dictatorship.  The spirit of the new militants was uncompromising; the new generation was not educated enough on the historical struggle of the elder leaders who sacrificed the best years of their lives in order to establish a united and equitable society against all odds.  The perennial philosophy of just ends should circumvent ruthless means was accepted as a normal and justified attitude among the youth, especially in time of danger when unity of the mind in a nation and under the vision of an all encompassing leader was of paramount necessity. 

The President was already in his sixties and lacked the energy of the youth’s self confidence to inspire respect for authority so that he felt unable for a while to counter this wave of extremism and preferred to wait for this new zeal to spend itself out and the trend of intolerance to wane before redirecting the energy of the new generation.

The opportunistic instinct for holding on to power inspired the President to redirect the energy of the zealots toward targeted representatives who challenged his earthly authority and were puzzled about the increase of public stone statutes for the Leader, or warned the Nation that the political system was in fact heading to an inherited Monarchy or the deification of the Leader.  Arrests on charges of conniving with the enemy or betraying the Constitution of the Republic were common currency.

The detainees were harassed into retracting from their political positions under duress if necessary and confessing their wrong doings in public trials. Those political opposition leaders who persisted in their opinions were secretly eliminated or died in accidents. Two years of violence and mock trials against the so-called internal enemies of the revolution mowed down many innocents under flimsy charges and set the stage for fear and injustice that had been under control for decades. 

Intelligence reports stated that the Sultan of Egypt was unable to forgive the President for deserting his duties as a servant for the Sultan during Timorlank invasion of Syria and would not rest until vengeance was excised on him, his family and close associates. Since the Mameluk of Egypt was in no position to gamble on a military campaign that could not be backed by the approval of the Syrian population then he looked toward a far distance foe for quashing his thirst for vengeance. More details were forthcoming that the Mameluk Sultan was secretly conniving with a Great Emir in Turkey from the Othman tribe in a deal to relinquish part of North Syria in return for the Turkish Emir to launch a military campaign deep in Mount Lebanon.

In fact, a new nation was being established in central Turkey led by the powerful tribe of Othman, a branch from the tribe that had generated the dynasty of the Seljuk in the 11th century.  This Turkish nation was expanding slowly but steadily throughout Western Turkey and would eventually conquer Constantinople in the end of the 15th century. This infamous deal with the Mameluk of Egypt was to open the gate, a century later, to directing the Ottoman expansion South toward Syria and would ultimately enter Cairo in 1517 and end the Mameluks’ Empire in the Near East with two decisive military battles.

It was the advancing foreign armies in the North that provided the leverage for the President of the Levant to put a brake on that reckless state of affairs and regain the spirit of unity against the invaders as a priority for the Republic.

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October 2008

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