How the Lebanese Reacted to the Death of Alaa Abou Fakher

As the fourth week of the 17 October Revolution comes to an end, Lebanon has yet again awoken to the news of a man shot dead in front of his son, wife, and sister on the streets of Khaldeh on Tuesday, November 12.

Alaa Abou Fakher would be the third man to die as he fought for the rights of a nation. His death has sparked a lot of outbursts from Lebanese people, mainly the ones protesting; from grief and desperation to anger and fear.

In each area across Lebanon, people have expressed mourning in different ways. Some people reacted by building cement blocks in Nahr El-Kalb to closing the roads. Other removed these blocks as it does not serve the peacefulness of the revolution.

From murals all over walls to memorials and moments of silence, an ebony black cloud overshadowed the atmosphere of Lebanon.

Riad El-Solh and Martyr Square chose silence over chants and revolution music on the first night before the funeral of Alaa Abou Fakhr. The streets were soundless, with just the voice of the candles people have lit and the hunting graffiti arts of Alaa Abou Fakher.

Protestors even started a huge fire in front of the barriers that separate them from the road to Parliament.

However, the sounds of fear broke the silence, and people were more unsure of the revolution’s ramification than ever before. Some of my coworkers chose to wear black yesterday, with grief tracing their faces and tears being fought back.

An artist of the revolution, who has been roaming off the streets of Beirut and the highway leading to Presidential Palace, sketched some of the expressions people on the streets have said.

“I didn’t sleep at all. His wife, his children. I didn’t sleep,” a distraught man said as he held tight to his safety stick and smoked his cigarette impatiently. Another man reflected the uncertainty of the whole nation; the big fat question that many are trying to shrug off: Is this the beginning of a war?

Disclaimer: It is not the beginning of a war. It’s the Revolution.

The artist also drew a man raising his hands in disbelief, leaning on what seems like a wall and blurting out his pain: “I mean it was in front of his kids. They had blood on their hands. It happened in front of their eyes. I couldn’t sleep at all.”

But even though bleak clouds have dominated our skies for the past two days, the weather has forecasted rain for this weekend, and then a whole week of sun. As we take off the robes of mourning, we carry on the legacy of our martyrs, and pave our way through the stairway to justice, for the Lebanese Revolution has succeeded so far like none other have in the history of nations; with the least casualties.

People have expressed support in many ways. The961 is stepping in to raise funds to help Alaa’s wife during this traumatic time that befell on her and the kids.

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