Danny Haddad wrote on mtv:
Yesterday, we gasped repeatedly as we watched the opening ceremony of Expo 2020 Dubai. And we all walked the path of comparing the image of the lights Dubai and the image of the dark Beirut. We all bemoan a country whose streets are empty these days, and dark, and the political class in it is unjust.
Dubai is magical, and its experience is unique. It is an industry of dreams and wills. Little words and more action. It has a long list of the “largest” category: the largest “mall”, the largest “aquarium”, the largest garden, and the tallest tower… It is the city of work, nightlife and shopping. A city without disputes and rivalries. Its ruler does not be gracious, even if he makes a promise and fulfills it, and if he decides, he will carry it out.
If you visit Dubai as a tourist, you will move between the city of butterflies, the city of flowers, waterfall shows and dolphin shows. In Lebanon, we are distracted by the presentations of politicians, and how many of them jump between situations and some of us applaud, while they laugh, like monkeys also.
Since the mid-seventies, and especially since the nineties, we have been in decline and collapse in values, morals, the behavior of politicians and the style of governance, before we collapsed in money and the economy. We were like Paris in the eyes of the Arabs, and our cities became like Kabul, Tehran, or Hanoi, which one day we were given the choice between being like her or like Hong Kong, so we chose the first and ended up with something worse. The people of Dubai are now using the Internet in their dealings with the state and its administration, while we do not have papers to issue a registration release.
In Dubai, towers rise, and we have a dark trench. And they have a huge airport teeming with visitors, and we have an airport that looks like “the lane of Edo-Elo”, and let’s not talk about the airport, its signs, slogans, and pictures uploaded to the right and left.
In Dubai, there is a law that governs, often harshly, and in Lebanon it is a “mogul of yours” and sectarian protections, and corruption is accumulating and extending from top to bottom. A worn-out state, its institutions are eroding, its people are in despair, and some of them are in power over the other citizen. Another says that the sect is in danger, so the stupid crowd rages, and a third says that the sect is being targeted, then visits his sheikh or patriarch to complete the show.
The “Dubai Expo” was worthy of Beirut, and the Lebanese participated in organizing and creating surprise. Lebanese with competence and a touch of creativity have left this country, while politicians in it continue to debate about government, appointments and elections, and this is the son of my sect, and this is the right of my sect…
There is an exhibition where 192 countries meet to exchange experiences, initiatives and goods. We have politicians who exchange accusations and betrayals.
There is an exhibition that has been postponed from year to year, and here we are waiting, next year, for an election show that has no dolphins, as in Dubai. O our fear of many happy…