I Salute all those who are in Jail
By: Alia Ibrahim.

Dear Friends,
Before I start my letter, I want to salute all those who are in jail today.
I am writing this letter for every Lebanese, but I am writing more for the Muslim youth.
I have always refused sectarianism, and I never taught that the day will come when I will have to think according to sectarian grounds, but today I find myself compelled.
I am Lebanese, I am also a Sunni from Tripoli.

I am a Muslim who want to revolt, to say NO, to march and to demonstrate and to go to prison if that is necessary.
I say NO to Syrian political, economic and social hegemony over Lebanon.
I say NO to a group of politicians ruling the country and willing to trade Lebanon’s sovereignty, dignity and prosperity with the fake power they think they have.
I say NO to poverty, to ignorance and to relinquishment because I know that it is not in my country that they belong.
But above all I say NO to oppression.

Unfortunately, the army will not knock on my door, its officers will not drag me in the middle of the night to a military caserne, they will not question me, detain me, or take me to court for insulting the president.
Because then, they will not be able to say that the Christians alone are asking for Lebanon’s freedom.
They will not be able to pretend that “Christian opposition have partitions plans.”

Because then, they will not be able with their intelligence apparatuses to bring a bunch of street boys with knives to speak in the name of the Muslims in the country.
As a journalist, I have covered the Patriarch’s visit to the Shouf, I cherished every word he said, I applauded every time he spoke about reconciliation and I sheered when he said that Lebanon is now a mature country and that it deserves to rule over itself.
The Christians have made their step, the Patriarch who now speaks in their name said that we all want to live in this country peacefully.

Now it is our turn, we have to show good faith and we can’t wait any longer for our Zuamaa or leaders to do it, because they will not, they are either too old, too depressed, too scared or too happy with the status quo.
Some of us will say that those who are now in prison are members the LF, and will try to remember what the LF did during the war to justify their indolence, to those I say, in the past, the Lebanese had a different definition for their country, each group loved its own Lebanon, and committed crimes to protect that version of Lebanon.

Our fathers made the mistake and fought each other, Christians and Muslims killed each other, Christians and Muslims
collaborated with Israel, Christians and Muslims collaborated with Syria and still are.
Today, there is one Lebanon. All of us are Lebanese, no one is more Lebanese than the other, we all have rights and we all have duties, and it is our duty to demand freedom for Lebanon, it is our duty to demonstrate and it is our duty to say NO to Syria and to anyone who is playing with our country’s dignity and democracy.

What I have to say is very simple, history is being written today, and as a substantial part of this society we have to contribute.
There is only one way, not to allow those who wish to initiate a sectarian problem in Lebanon from meeting their goal and that is by sticking to each other.

By standing close to each other, no one will be able to come between us.
This is one fight we will have to lead side by side, for our country to survive.