Erasing The Past And The Middle Class

Around midnight, I was awakened by a loud boom, quickly followed by a second, then a third. Light flashed outside my hotel room. Half dazed, I thought for a moment that the city was under attack: After all, this was Beirut. But when I went out onto the balcony, the sky was filled with fireworks. The people in the streets below weren't screaming, but cheering. I found myself startled that this city, which had known civil war for 16 years, could enjoy such an ear-splitting spectacle.

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