Lebanon: Film Warns Next Generation

The Lebanese Civil War of 1975-1990 claimed an estimated 250,000 lives. Now, many fear another war on the horizon.

With violence spilling over from Syria, there are fears of an escalation in conflict, pitting Lebanon's various religious and ethnic factions against each other once more.

"The youth in Lebanon, are as much sectarian as their parents," one Lebanese woman told Layalina Productions.

"When you live in a country that is on the verge of having a civil war at any time, you always live in a type of fear or a type of tension,” explained another interviewee.

“You do not think of but you live it, subconsciously, without knowing, you live it."

However, film company Layalina Productions has come up with an interesting way of warning the next generation about the cost of war. The organisation is making a documentary titled Confessions from the War, to fill an education void in the next generation's understanding of Lebanon's civil war, but what's unusual is the interactive way they plan on promoting the film.

“We want to do a pro-social campaign,” Executive Producer Leon Shahabian told Peace News.

“So before the film airs on television, we are going to have four photo booths throughout the capital, Beirut.”

Within these booths, viewers can see a 45 second trailer of the film, as well as 2 other clips, with various 'confessions' from the war. These could range from a widow wanting closure, to a soldier explaining what they did during the war.

"I saw a taxi service, stopping in the middle of the street, he unloaded people going to work. I didn’t know, could I shot or could I not?” one ex-combatant described of his experience.

“Our group had signed a ceasefire but had failed to inform us,” he said.

“It shows, I think, how easy it is to kill innocents.”

Leon said that the next step in the interactive promotion is key to opening up a dialogue about the civil war.

“Then, after watching these three clips, you'll have the option of recording experiences," he said.

“We are going to go once a week to each of these four locations and collect all the videos…and put them up on YouTube….and make sure that there is a discussion about the war, the last war in Lebanon, so it remains the last war.”

Footage of Confessions from the War courtesy of Layalina Productions.