Ringrazio Oliviero Cassini per questo commento.
Do not destroy the Message.
Lebanon is far more than a country, it’s a Message. It is an illuminated Message containing in elegant Arabic boldface the word “musàlaha”, that spirit of reconciliation which invites different cultures, confessions and ethnic groups to live and thrive together: in the Lebanese kaleidoscope there are 17 of them, all tied together by the Message. From the dawn of times, when Gilgamesh the Sumer left Mesopotamia and climbed the Cedars Mountain in search of immortality, every conqueror of Lubnan el-Karim – Egyptians, Babylonians, Persians, Macedonians, Romans, Crusaders, Ottomans, French – has discovered the Message and was conquered by it.
5000 years of invasions did not destroy Lebanon; in fact they have strengthened its extraordinary hospitality not only towards Genoese or Venetian merchants, but also to Armenian, Jews, Kurds… hundred of thousands of them. If justice were to be done for that Land, it would be appropriate to donate a Statue of Liberty (“Give me your tired, your poor…”) to the port of Beirut and raise it on the ruins of the lighthouse.
The time to reciprocate has come. Listen to Khalil Gibrane, great amongst Lebanese poets: “My people died of hunger, and he who did not perish from starvation was butchered with the sword; they perished from hunger in a land rich with milk and honey”.
As Italians we have a duty to rescue those people, custodians of the Message. We did it throughout the centuries, founding in Rome the first Maronite home, hosting Prince Fakreddine while fleeing from the Ottomans, dispatching a peacekeeping contingent during the civil war, being the first to reach South Lebanon on that glorious May 2000, starting operating there a specific aid program.
Now time has come for each martyrized Lebanese town to be “adopted” by an Italian Municipality, for each overcrowded hospital to be “adopted” by an Italian hospital, for each torndown school to be “adopted” by an Italian school.
Under the current strain with the Islamic world, nothing is more important than protecting the Land of the Message, since it is the only one in a position to unveil the Orient to the Occident and the Occident to the Orient. To shatter the Message would be tantamount to put our own future at stake.