I keep thinking about Chris Hedges’ book. I read it last year, as part of a course on Conflict resolution at the Lebanese American University. One o the best books I’ve ever read.
I look at the reports around Beirut the last couple of days. I see journalists placing bets on how and when Hezbollah is going to close the road to the airport. I see reports on sources saying Hezbollah is going to storm Beirut. I see fear, but also excitement, fascination. I also see need in some people. I it doesn’t happen Lebanon will never be able to move on. War is a healing process for some Lebanese tired of the tension. But here’s the truth: it’s not a healing process, it leaves more wounds. Once you are there it terrifies you.
And Hedges’ book keeps coming back to me.
“War makes the world understandable, a black and white tableau of them and us. It suspends thought, especially selfcritical thought. All bow before the supreme effort. We are one. Most of us willingly accept war as long as we can fold it into a belief system that paints the ensuing suffering as necessary for a higher good, for human beings seek not only happiness but also meaning. And tragically war is sometimes the most powerful way in human society to achieve meaning.”