Saturday, February 14, 2009
Valentine: sects have a ball
The big demonstration organized by the March 14 coalition to mark the assassination of Rafiq Hariri took place today in Martyr square, in central Beirut. I saw tens of cars and buses on the Corniche near Rawsheh this morning, whith flag waving youth hanging out of the windows. The predominant flags were the Future Movement's (Hariri's Party, Sunni Muslim) and the Progressive Socialist Party (PSP, Druze, Jumblat). There was a car with flags of the PSP and the Lebanese Forces (Maronite Christians, Geagea) something that would have been unthinkable a couple of decades ago when they were massacring each others in the Mountains. The PSP buses were all congregated near the Druze Religious Center (Dar al Ta'ifah) in Verdun Street. Later, I saw from my in-laws' balcony in Hamra a group of youth walking towards a Future Movement center shouting loudly slogans like: "There is no God but God, Sheikh Saad (Hariri) is loved by God" and "To Dahiyeh, To Dahiyeh" (Beirut's predominantly Shi`a Southern suburb).