Published: April 16th 2011
April 16th 2011
It’s been awhile since I’ve shared my thoughts about Syria in this blog. One reason was a reluctance to get into the politics of what has been happening here, for obvious reasons. Another reason was that I wanted to be clear about how I felt and what I thought. For someone new to the country who is trying to figure things out, the last month has been a roller coaster. There were many opinions, lots of misinformation, some big disappointments, and days when I didn’t know who to believe or even what I wanted to believe.
Today, like many Syrians, I want to believe in Syria. I want to believe this country and its current and future leaders have the ability to avoid the mess that many of the countries in the ME and Africa find themselves, yet still achieve the same goals – freedom, dignity, and maybe, someday…real democracy. Syrian-style, of course.
The President brought in a new cabinet on Thursday and just finished giving them their orders, delivered live on TV. Before doing so he LISTENED to the concerns of some of the groups who have been demonstrating. In his speech, he acknowledged their concerns. He made specific commitments around the state of emergency being lifted and the right to protest being a fact of life in the new Syria.
Why is this believable? Because yesterday there were even more protests in more places than ever before, but no one was killed. It seems that Syrians are learning how to do this thing called freedom of speech and freedom of association without killing each other.
I can’t explain to you how difficult, yet fascinating, it has been to watch and listen to people talk about how they are feeling over the past few weeks. I truly began to understand the words “the cost of freedom”. If it was my country, my home, my family and my future, I’m not sure if I would have been willing to pay the price. Hamdillah (thank god) the cost of freedom may not be as high as we had feared.
When you are enjoying a glass of good red wine under a full moon, watching the swallows dart between the between the tall cedars in your quiet backyard, you can believe in miracles. If you don’t, life isn’t worth living.
P.S. Back to the mundane....damn it, the cats are back. There goes the peace and quiet. Maybe the new government will bring in a law that gets rid of all these nasty feral cats! Humanely, of course!!!