Lebanon: poverty has tripled between 2012 and 2022 (World Bank) while economic reforms are considered insufficient (IMF)

Lebanon is an ill-fated yet highly resilient tiny Mediterranean country.

The people of this country are heroes, according to Bambi, because they refuse to see themselves as victims, even if they like to kvetch by nature.

Instead, they are highly resourceful and creative. They keep re-inventing themselves.

Even if their bank savings have been stolen, along with their dreams, they keep moving forward and cope to the best of their capacity.

Even if they do not have a government, they literally become the latter, as needed. A striking example is what happened post-Beirut explosion when generous people, and especially youth, came from all over the regions to join forces in helping the traumatized Beirutis clean their houses, shops, and streets.

Even if they sadly find themselves (once again) at the mercy of unwanted wars, they keep dreaming of stability, beautiful summers, and of better days for them and their children.

Bearing all the above in mind, it is with sadness that Bambi read today that “poverty has tripled in Lebanon from a decade ago“, according to the World Bank (https://shorturl.at/6cczc).

A figure taken from the World Bank report (2024; (https://shorturl.at/6cczc).

Lebanon’s financial crash and economic crisis (since October 2019) is the “worst globally since the mid-nineteenth centuryhttps://shorturl.at/9bUyV. Indeed, the country has been facing hyperinflation, with a devalued currency (up to 95%!). One must recall that banks have prevented most depositors from having access to their own savings. There are severe power outages (7 hours per day on average), water outages at times, and a limited access to healthcare, medication, and education for many citizens. Indeed, over 80% of the population is now living below the poverty line (https://shorturl.at/DfZfV). The collapsing currency, called Lebanese lira, is replaced with the American dollar. As reported by Reuters (https://shorturl.at/DfZfV), the Lebanese “government estimates losses in the financial system total more than $70 billion, the majority of which were accrued at the central bank“.

In addition to the tragic living conditions described above, the innocent people of Lebanon are once again caught in the middle of absurd “military adventures”.

Last but not least, according to Mr. Ernesto Ramirez Rigo (head of the International Monetary Fund or IMF), “Lebanon’s economic reforms are insufficient to help lift the country out of its economic crisis” (https://shorturl.at/DfZfV). As per Mr. Rigo, “Lebanon’s ongoing refugee crisis, fighting with Israel at its Southern border and the spillover from the war in Gaza are exacerbating an already dire economic situation” (https://shorturl.at/DfZfV).

The above being shared with you, Bambi is now speechless. She wishes she had a magical stick to invent the creation of political leaders who will put Lebanon’s national interests above their personal interests or ideological and/or religious fantasies. The people of Lebanon deserve better than this. Indeed, they deserve to live in safety, dignity, respect, unity, peace, love, and especially prosperity!

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