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We have learned a lot from our past

Thank you Dr Ibrahim, I would like to finish my previous letter to Mr Adab:

Dear friend, I would imagine that you were born in the seventies, but that is not your fault, yet let me tell you something you should know:

The difference between freedom and adab is: freedom is when you have all the rights and choices and still respect others, adab is to respect everybody the same way, no matter what sex they are, no matter where they come from, no matter what color they are and no matter what religion they believe in.

I am from a generation that seen it all, I am talking about the generation that were born Late 40's,50's and the early sixties. We grew up in the years of the Libyan Kingdom and the early years of the revolution , I remember growing up in the sixties in the superb of Tripoli, where a lot of Western foreigners used to live, and I remember when we (kids) used play in the streets when all of the sudden we would see the police on their horses, we would run away from them, because we were not allowed to play where the foreigners live. We had no rights then and we have no rights now. Then came the revolution if you can call it that! on the first of September 1969, the day that changed Libya and Libyans. I remember I was only a kid, yet I went out with my friends supporting the revolution, we were very young but we understood what happened, we were happy, we were excited we cheered for our army and sang for them, we were very proud of them, and they were very proud of themselves.

The years went by and the same army we supported and cheered for were out after us (kids) because we did not want to join the army. It was our choice and our right not to join the army, yet we were chased all over Tripoli because we chose not to join the army, and then one day we (kids) went to see a soccer game in Tripoli stadium, and in the middle of the game, suddenly the stadium was surrounded with the same army that we cheered for in September 1969, they came out to get us again.

I remember that day very clear, I told my friends that day, I will never go to a soccer game again in Libya, and I did not go since then. I sit down today remembering my childhood and I felt very sorry for kids growing up in Libya today. My generation grew up in fear in the years of the Kingdom and in the Years of the Revolution, WE grew up fearing the teachers in School, fearing authorities, fearing our parents, fearing our streets, and fearing our religious teachers.

We grew up with fear every where we turn, we lost our innocence so early, we had no love no, support from anybody, we were the punishing bag for everybody, any everybody having a bad day turns his fest to the punishing bag.

We have learned a lot from our past, we will never let anybody to put the fear into our children again, we will never allow anybody to abuse our children like we were abused, and most of all we will go back to our country and teach our kids not to fear anybody. And I will go back and see a soccer game again.

Wa lil hadit bagiah

Khir Elrejal

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