Lebanese Town Flooded by Refugees Hopes for Return to Normal
“What if we took 50 guys and showed up at a Syrian store?” said a second, threatening a confrontation. “Then they’d have to close down.”
“We have a lot of plans in the works,” the mayor interjected. “It just takes time.” He was stalling, hoping to head off violence.
“They do have a point,” he said later, “but people in pain sometimes exaggerate. The Syrians are human beings, too. They want to live. They have kids. But I can’t defend the Syrians in front of them.”
The Syrians and the Arsalis can agree on this: It is time to go. Many Syrians have little work. They are tired of living in tents, even if they are furnished with brocade cushions, rugs and TVs.
“If we heard it was safe,” said Abu Fares, the defector, “even if we had to sleep under a tree, we’d go back.”
As the American reporters who had listened to his story rose to leave, Abu Fares looked at the small gift they had offered with a smile.