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Brace yourselves… Because now they fear us.

28/10/2019|Lebnen Sabah

There is one choice we lost for good in this revolution. The choice of going back to life as we know it. Back to the way things were two weeks ago before the drop that broke the camel’s back.
Whether some of us are wearily or wishfully considering it, the possibility no longer exists. It has disappeared from the cards. Forever.
Of course, every politician suddenly waving the Lebanese flag or hiding behind various shades of religious robes, will attempt to persuade us that the option is still on the table. That we can simply celebrate our accomplishments, get off the streets, open the roads and get back to work.
The hesitant among us have begun to lean towards counting our blessings, and avoiding chaos.
The more determined ones want to see this through to the resignation of the current governing class.
But everyone, all sides, seem to believe that the worst case scenario, the cost of losing, is settling for the life we know, with its power cuts, wastas, potholes and landfills. There is some talk of crushed hopes and never finding the momentum to gather again. But that’s it…
And this... This is an oversight that will prove deadly.
We cannot go back. Not because we are now “woke” and won’t accept the scraps we got accustomed to surviving on. Not because we won’t get tired and want to quit. Not because if we quit it will be a blow to our faith in change or that we will never again have the strength to gather and fight. Not because we will have to explain to our kids why we failed to provide a life, a home and dignity.
We cannot go back to life as we knew it because NOW THEY FEAR US.
If we back down, if we so much as blink, never again will they let their guards down. The energy they have promised and sworn to put into reforms will indeed go into major reforms. But not the reforms they have dangled in front of us like gifts from Santa in exchange for being good and going to bed early.
The reforms they will immediately begin rolling out are the kind of reforms that make it impossible for us to ever do this to them again.
So please, if it’s the last thing we do, let us be clear on what the stakes are now. They are not what they were two weeks ago when we first united. What we went in fighting for is only a fraction of what we must fight for today. We no longer stand to lose just our dignity and our rights to earn a living. Today, if we let them win, we stand to lose everything. The masks of civility will fall and our wolves will no longer sit in bed disguised as our grandmothers, let alone our fathers or friendly neighborhood militias.
The same fiends who bled this nation dry in the name of parties, prophets, saints, and foreign threats will stand united as a single front, one big terrified dragon, loose against us all, so that we may never dare to raise our voices or heads again. They will pool their stolen assets, their means and their friends, to draft the only plan they are interested in drafting: How to never let this happen again, how to destroy the last of our freedoms and terrorize us into silence and isolation.
So this is a call to every Lebanese still on the fence or for whom the fence is beginning to look appealing. To anyone getting tired of the streets. For those who are scared that it may all be a pipe dream or afraid to speak up. For anyone getting disheartened and yearning to get back to life with all its warts… Please understand this: Flight is no longer an option, there’s only fight now. The only pipe dream at this point is that we could go back in time. No amount of staying home now will save us from the fallout of this revolution should we allow it to fizzle out before it reaches its goals.
Similarly, for everyone who, until two weeks ago, had less incentive to fight than those who were most affected, please understand the stakes have changed. You now either HAVE to join, or accept the consequences of the failure of everyone else’s revolution… and trust me, those will affect everyone without exception.
So for the love of light, of sound, for the freedom to breathe, to walk, for the smallest and humblest of rights, for something as simple and human as daring to complain in the backseat of a “service” to a friendly ear, do not quit now. Do not quit now if it’s the last thing you do.

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