French Colonial Legacy

French Muslim soldiers tombs desecrated a headline showed up this moring.

The desecration near the town of Arras appeared timed with the start of Eid al-Adha, the most important holiday in the Muslim calendar.

Not too long ago I saw this film – see the trailer below.

Under its original title of “Indigènes” or “Natives,” the film, Algeria’s entry in this year’s foreign language Oscar race, was perhaps the major surprise at Cannes. It won the best actor award for its four key cast members and ignited a debate about whether France had done right by these soldiers. The result, just two months ago, was a change in government policy bringing foreign combatant pensions into line with what French veterans are paid.(Via)

Susan Azar Porterfield (See a photo of her you can purchase online)

Rockford College professor puts feelings about Beirut into poems

Basma’s Baby
Basma offers coffee in a demitasse,
“Why you don’t come more?” she scolds
her hands clayish as the dough she rounds
into small, flat breads.
Cradled in her kitchen, her son
is a swaddled loaf, real
as grain, real as wine on lips parted
in remembrance of body and blood,
the pulpy flesh, the nail, the bone,
the mother crouched and trembling
to soothe the innocent child.
Basma’s baby
in the oven-warm room wears pinned
to his robes a blue doll’s eye that stares past
my arm out the door to Baghdad streets,
through streets of Tehran and Beijing,
unblinking across Japan and the ocean,
over chldren in a schoolyard in L.A., mothers
at their stoves in Des Moines, unblinking
the gaze of the small, blue eye,
steady all the way to D.C.

Susan Azar Porterfield

Related links
Hate in France, Camus – Solitaire and Solidaire

Love and War (Lebanon Civil War – Circle of Deceit starring Bruno Ganz, Hanna Schygulla Director: Volker Schlöndorff )

Rawi Hage (Beirut/Canadian author/photographer)