Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘movable feast

Third article on Lebanon’s mass upheaval since October 17

Note: If you care to read the second article

https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2019/10/20/the-mass-upheaval-in-lebanon-starting-in-october-17-is-growing-stronger-and-widespread/

From 1971 to the onset of the civil war, Beirut experienced a mass upheaval that turned out to become a continuous movable feast/fair.  The upheaval demanded reforms in the political system that would drop this sectarian/comprador political and economic structure. You may read the link at the end of the article.

The militia/mafia “leaders”, in control of the political system since 1992, were trying hard Not to have a budget within the legal period and then Lebanon forgo the concept of budget from 2005 to 2018.

The current mass upheaval is in its 12th day. During the first 2 days, the protesters wanted to foment the people against the President Aoun and Saad Hariri PM, as totally impotent in governing and perform any change.

Their fake news and lies backfired. Even their hooligans felt shame facing this united massive uprising.

This surprised mass upheaval forced these militia leaders (Nabih Berry, Walid Jumblaat and Samir Jeaja) to backtrack and vote on the budget and all the reforms in the last government meeting.

Hariri was the first to deliver a speech and promised 72 hours before taking a decision for his resignation. Hezbollah secretary general was second in talking to the movement and declared that the resignation of the government is out of the question for practical reasons and to avoid a long lasting void.

Then the President delivered his speech and it was Not basically different from the PM, since Not a single reform action was executed in the last 9 days.

I warned that it was Not advisable for the President to deliver a speech without offering the protesters a tangible reform: Confidence that the President can deliver is worth a thousand speech.

Hassan Naser Allah’s second speech was alarming: he stated that this movement has been guided by foreign powers in order to drive Lebanon into chaos and ordered his followers to desist from joining the upheaval. He warned that if the government proved a resistance to deliver on its promises, then Hezbollah will act vigorously to prevent any chaos.

The army and the internal security forces met and reached an agreement to open blocked highways. The militia “leaders” such as Samir Ja3ja3 and Walid Jumblatt were given 48 hours to call home their armed hooligans and desist in acting as militia by blocking side roads and demanding citizens to show their identity cards…

The main difference between this mass upheaval and that of 1971 is that the newer generations refused to listen to the older “revolutionaries” and could Not produce quality political awareness.

In the 1971 uprising there were cultural events that bolstered the quality of the civil Lebanon, theaters, great movies, discussions… Should we hope for a qualitative change in how the protesters are spending their time?

I have no problems with a few protesters sitting on sofas and surrounded with the facilities of a cozy home. I am disturbed that they are Not discussing to enhance their political awareness: each one of them is isolated with his expensive iPhone. Thus, what basically changed?

Actually, you have people instructing the protesters methods of how to confront the army.

Nothing of quality comes in a hurry: it needs reflective periods and the ability to select the relevant facts in the constant streaming of the mass of facts. And be able to pinpoint the fake news on the base of good general knowledge

All the government institutions have been staffed with personnel that owe its survival to the mafia/militia “leaders” for 3 decades. You can constitute any government you want, the result is “who will execute the decisions”?

A technocrat, if Not strongly politically backed, cannot pressure the civil servant to obey his decision, especially those in the upper echelons.

The question is: How can any change occur if One Third of the population survive as civil servants and are used to sizable “backsheesh” and shady deals?

Pragmatically, only a Big Fish in a stagnant pond can clean it from the smaller fishes.

Thus, the movement must strike a deal with the government to dismiss the main higher level civil servants whom were demonstrated to be as rotten as the main mafia/militia “leaders” and who fully cooperated in this endemic “fassaad” or highway robbery of the budgets since 1991.

This mass upheaval can force this government to move forcefully against most of the civil servants that are in cohort with the monopolies of consumer goods, energy, financial transaction, services, communication…

So far, the movement has been intent on blocking roads and streets, in fact emulating the tactics of the civil war militia without being aware of their behavior. Blocking roads is tantamount of cutting communication among the citizens and making it difficult for the daily economic trade cycle.

This movement keep chanting “Down with this government”, “Down with this rotten regime”… but no viable pragmatic alternatives are materializing.

If the western States, Israel, Saudi Kingdom and Qatar are intent on weakening the social base of Hezbollah by persisting on a long upheaval without any communication with the current government, then I submit that Lebanon will experience a long protracted period of miseries.

The Lebanese will have to invent an alternative financial and economic structure to circumvent the lack of cash flow and investment. We will be going through very difficult time that will last years, until we manage to re-create another economical and financial system that permit us to survive as a State.

Representatives of this movement “7iraak” must meet with the President, the PM, Nabih Berry (chairman of Parliament for a quarter of century)and Riad Salami (Central Bank chief since 1992). They should meet with them on individual settings and on condition that these meetings be Live and transparent. Let see who of them dare meet the people Live.

Note 2: This link for a special article of most of my comments that I posted on FB pertaining to this mass upheaval. https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2019/10/25/special-articles-of-comments-pertaining-to-lebanon-mass-upheaval/

Note 3: My article on the long upheaval from 1971 till the onset of the civil war: this movable feast. https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2019/09/05/movable-fairs-in-beirut-1971-74/

Woodstock turned out to be the free musical event of the century and gathered a million of youth and young parents with their kids for three days:  It was organized in a nation of plenty and economic growth.  The US was training astronauts to land on the moon and the war in Vietnam was harvesting 200 US soldiers every day.  The youth in France, and particularly in Paris, took to the streets and occupied schools, universities, manufactures for a whole week.  France was in a State of plenty; and “Law and Order” was firmly established.  It is that transparency of the power system in both countries was lacking.

Youth and the newer generations were worried of carrying on their life as their parents did:  It seemed pretty boring and pointless to working for just acquiring consumers goods.  Youth needed an alternative for their future and a way out of what to do of these internal conditions of plenty and security.  In both events, youth motto was: “Love is everything.  We need to be free to love and be loved.  Yes for peace and no for war”  In a sense, to youth, morality and law and order were no longer necessary.  They want to be liberated of  the shackles of the moral “value set” that society was chaining them in; that’s how they perceived the political and social situation then, and their feeling was on target:  Change and reforms were not being felt as technology was.

Men, lawyers and investors, organized Woodstock; but it was the women who ran the show and kept the peace; marijuana and a few other drugs helped. It was not supposed to rain in that summer event but it poured; people enjoyed sliding in the muddy inclines.  Many soldiers returning from the front in bad mental and physical conditions joined the party:  They were in states of shock and diminished as individuals. The mood at war was different from the mood of fraternity, compassion, respect for the other during the musical event:  They experienced extremes in mood swings.

People who purchased tickets, before the event turned free, could gather in front of the large stage.  Most attending visitors parked on the hills surrounding the show:  They saw little ants singing and bouncing on the stage but they had their own music in the caravans and vans and tents. They had their own supply of drugs and favorite music.  They could feel at peace alone even among million.  Masses were no longer of any threat; they could deal with their own internal demons in a gathering of like-minded association.

I lack statistics on the casualties during Woodstock such as injuries, sicknesses…but it is amazing that the event went on for three days in relative peace and very few official policing.  Most of the youth had no plans of action for their future; they had not the slightest idea where the next location will be or how their life will unfold.  Many converged to San Francisco, particularly to Ashbury Heights.  The young women had a better grasp of how their individual social stand could transform and empower family and community.  Transparency of the democratic system and reforms were very much in the mind of the newer generation but the detailed programs and future activities were not planned.  It was the real step forward in mankind history instead of the so-called “giant step” of Armstrong on the moon.

In the revolt of May 68, women were the most vocal and most active in the organization and demonstrations:  They were revolting for serious freedom to womanhood in the customs and traditions of society.  Laws were to be more specific on gender equality in duties, rights, and responsibilities and opportunities in the work place and be effectively applied.

At that age of seemingly confused plan of actions, many claimed that joining for music sake and this impulse of being there in the gathering of crowds was a show of unity of youth spirit around the world.  Youth refuses to missing a togetherness event.  It is this power of gathering that worried the power-to-be:  The various interpretations of the meaning of these demonstrations were beside the point.

It was a big party with deep lucidity:  banners read “Run, comrade, run.  The old world is chasing after you.”  Youth was taking a reprieve by running joyously, a week of total freedom, running as fast as he could, knowing that the old world will invariably catch up with him.   Karl Marx said:  “When history repeats its cycles, the next time around is a farce.”  Spring of 68 was a sympathetic and spontaneous farce; it was an innovating and creative revolt with no arms.

It was a spring of movable fair, an all free-invited party.  It was a movable feast for sharing ideas and desires for justice, peace, liberty, and pleasure. There were plenty of generosity and compassion:  Youth was feeling bored of the old world system of unjust order, capitalism, petrified ideologies and dogmas.  It was a humongous fair where affluent lifestyle in the western States of plenty hide the miseries of the lowest classes living in shantytowns; it was in a period for the third world struggling to emerge from the slavery stage of colonialism.  Spring fairs in the western world spread to most nations where the partying lasted and lasted.

The virus of the movable feast reached countries with old systems destroyed by the colonial powers:  The newer power systems were unstable and mostly haphazard to come chasing after mass movable fairs.  Spring of 68 crossed to Lebanon and lasted 5 years and emerged on a civil war that lasted 13 years and produced 300 thousand casualties (10% of the population!)

You don’ t need to have a unified purpose to getting together; just youth assembling.  Large assembling of wolves is good enough a show of force to giving the best impulse to political parties for figuring out the major problems in the political structure ideology.   The awareness of the problems, after the show of “peaceful force”, can make a difference even if the demonstration was not united behind a clear banner of intent for specific reforms.  Invariably, a few reforms are imposed.  Getting on the streets beats sitting in isolation, eating our hearts out in bitterness and confusion.

The next phase of modernity began after this successful big party.  Moral values were reviewed and adapted to new realities because ancient fears changed qualitatively:  Laws of pure obedience were submitted to a new reflecting generation.  Ethics of giving more weight to values than laws was supposed to be the normal extension to morality. The foundations were erected for the remaining of this most violent century.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

April 2020
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