Once, they were symbols of promise. The Beirut blast turned them to monuments of despair

5 August, 2021 | NEWS
Once, they were symbols of promise. The Beirut blast turned them to monuments of despair
BEIRUT — The day Beirut exploded, the silos remained. For 50 years, dozens of white, 157-foot-tall cylinders presided over Beirut’s port and held much of Lebanon’s grain — landmarks in a city that had lost many of them to civil war or pitiless development.

For Lamia Ziade, an illustrator and visual artist, they were the touchstone she would glance at every time she looked out the window of her grandmother’s house on Pasteur Street.

“They were the gate of Beirut. You saw them from the sea, the air, whenever you would go from one side of the city to the other,” said Ziade, 53, who was born and raised in the Lebanese capital and now lives in Paris.

“They were like the pyramids, like the Eiffel Tower of Beirut. Every time I passed them, I would think how lucky we were to have this sentinel, these silos, protecting us.”
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