Since it is a Lebanese national holiday today, I am sure that many of you overslept this morning because of partying too hard last night or simply because of staying up too late. But no matter how much fun we may have had last night, we cannot forget the significance of this day. Today is a reminder of how much our country suffered and has been suffering for decades. Despite all that, Lebanon still rises.
We rise above destruction time and time again. We rise above conspiracy, and it has made us smarter. We rise above envy, and it has made us understand the value of what we have. Our country remains beautiful after all the hits it has taken. Our mountains still have snow, our coastline still spreads from the north to the south, our trees are still green; our nightlife, malls, hotels and restaurants are still booming. Tourists still flood the country because we still have Tyre, we still have the Bekaa, we still have Beirut, we still have Beiteddine, we still have Faraya, we still have the Cedars, we still have Byblos, we still have Qannoubine, and we still have a treasure in every corner of our 10,452 km2 survivor.
We have all learnt the meaning of loss, anger, hatred, desperation, fear; and we have all channeled these emotions in making ourselves a stronger, smarter people.
We have smiled and danced through war, we have intimately kissed a loved one during a blackout, we have drunk wine on rooftops while listening to fighter jet engines; we have learnt to see the glimmer of light in every dark situation.
This is what has made us strong, smart, and successful. This is what has prepared the great Lebanese entrepreneurs that are scattered across the globe. This is what keeps us coming back to Lebanon even after we’ve left.
No matter how much we say we hate Lebanon, its people, its politicians, its problems; deep down we all love it because we know it’s ours. No matter who’s tried to take it away from us, we’ll keep fighting for it because that’s how we are programmed. No matter what, we will always stand in respect for the national anthem. And no matter what the odds are, we know that one day it will be the Lebanon we dream of.
Today, www.google.com.lb celebrates Lebanon’s independence and boasts our flag on its logo. No matter where you are in the world, take pride in your red, white, and green flag because of how much it represents.