Zuheir Kseibati
Al-Hayat (Opinion)
August 2, 2012 - 12:00am

The Palestinians no longer have the privilege of “monopolizing” tents as part of the history of their setbacks and the features of their identity. The people of the region now have a new landmark that is unifying them perhaps more than the Arab League ever did: the tents of the displaced and the refugees. These tents have now expanded to Lebanon and to Jordan once again as well as Turkey, which has gained its “experience” by hosting of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Kurds when Saddam Hussein was subjecting them to the “justice of the Baath.”

Gaddafi did not deprive the Palestinians from the blessing of the tent when he shoved them into the desert to shorten their road to Jerusalem! The Iraqis retaliated to Arafat’s siding by Saddam in Kuwait by displacing the Palestinians outside Baghdad and into the tents. The Egyptians evaded the nightmare since the tents of the “square” were only erected to support the revolution… As for the Lebanese, they experienced the displacement to the tents on several instances following the Israeli barbaric “discipline” wars.

As for the Syrians, they have the lion’s share as they are deployed in the tents of Lebanon, Ramtha, and Kilis … The smell of destruction and killings is pursuing them along with the complaints of some brothers who are supporting them with words. Their miserable abode might extend and the major massacre is stronger than the East, the West, and the Arabs. Everyone is incapacitated in the face of the crisis faced by “the capital of Arabism” that is now experiencing a limitless destruction and killings leading to the expansion of the camps and the tents.

In the past, cavemen rebels who aspired for daylight sought those tents some ten thousand years BC. The difference is that the Syrians who now aspire for the daylight were forced to the exile of the tents; and as the destruction is expanding, the hope for a short stay beyond the borders is shrinking.

Turkey does not wish for another Lebanon in Syria. It fears Lebanonization. Europe is warning against another Yugoslavia that no international power seems to be able to prevent. The killings are proceeding. Through the Russian guarantees, Washington was reassured with respect to the fate of the chemical weapons. Who knows? This arsenal might actually constitute a guarantee for a long destructive war.

The tent will be the witness. The wounded regime is relying on the MIG aircrafts; the observers are not feared; the courage of the warriors is weakened by the dismantlement of the opposition. If part of this opposition is “opportunistic” then isn’t it only right for the regime to bet on its dismantlement?

And because the tents cannot be erected in countries with stable freedoms and prosperous people, there was a need to target these countries’ unity both through the hand of the ruler and that of the external powers. The latter powers keep on alluding to their fear for the fate of the minorities to the extent that these minorities are encouraged to leave their countries and to take refuge in…the modern camps.

The tents are witnesses to the countries’ decline. The rulers treat these tents as they please: if they are upset, they accuse the tents of hosting “traitors” and the punishment for “treason” is to annihilate the nation!

The images of the Syrian crisis are reminiscent of the Lebanese nightmare during the war years that ended some two decades ago while the country’s unity remained on hold. The “paradise” of the minorities is making no efforts to reassure “its people.” In Iraq as well, unity depends on the ambitions and the concerns. Meanwhile, Sudan is being divided into entities while Al-Bachir is hitting with the sword of the Shariaa.

Thus, the Arabs share the same fate: additional tents, massacres and nations that await a regional Yalta Conference; thugs who are not exclusively formed of convicts; and countries that explode as soon as they leave the caves of deception.

But isn’t the world conspiring against us? The whole “universe” is being unfair as it looks past the decades during which the tent bore the barbarism of Israel and that of the ruler. As for the tent dwellers, they are so greedy to the extent that they show an ingratitude despite all the “blessings” of the “superior” republics with their undying parties and their leaders who were born to sponsor the entire defeat. Humanity has been defeated among the Arabs. Thus, children are being killed and cities are being dubbed “traitor cities” with the aim of annihilating every civilian sign. It all starts with slogans that despise the mind and ends with tents that have no identity.

Somalization, Lebanonization, Iraqization, Sudanization: the tent people tents live on.


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