“You have visited specific areas of the Bekaa valley, met a powerful drug lord, his tribe, and got exposed to weapons and mountains of hash. You have met police representatives who found themselves helpless because some families are more powerful than the government. It’s the sad truth, but you know what? Tell us something we don’t know!”
It is reasonable to ask the following question: How did they manage to meet a powerful drug lord that cannot be caught by the authorities?
#2 Tripoli: Accused of being extremists
“You have portrayed scenes of war and destruction, and obviously extremism: armed militants on the streets, fighters walking publicly, guns, army, tanks, bullet holes, and damaged buildings […] brainwashed kids… Chicken on the streets man! Are you kidding?”
“Out of more than 1.6 million refugees, of course, you’re gonna have a percentage of prostitutes, you’re gonna have a percentage of beggars, you have workers, you have students, you have everything. […] There’s a bit of everything in any civilization in the world, Ben.”
#4 Gay, trans and illegal in Lebanon
“You know Ben, we’ve come to an era where being gay is being more and more accepted. So some people accept it, and others don’t. This is life and it’s a fact. It’s an international topic, it happens everywhere, so I don’t see why you want to come to Lebanon and cover this.”
Was BBC Pop Up’s team aware that Lebanon is misrepresented? YES!
Lebanon through the eyes of the Lebanese people
Ghayd Chammas, the man behind El 3ama’s page, concluded his video by telling what Lebanon and Lebanese people really are:
“Let me tell you who we are. Our parents lived 25 years of hell and civil war. The impact of that war made us resilient, strong, and powerful. Each one of us is pursuing a dream. We don’t go for normal, we are ambitious.”
“We’re 4.5 million in Lebanon and a worldwide presence of over 15 million. We’ve always been ready to stand tall and face any situation. That’s why we earned respect, that’s why we’re successful, each person in his own way.”
“[…] Talk about the awesome festivals and exhibitions, the small businesses and entrepreneurs who are already doing wonders in every corner of the world.”