Press release New England Americans For Lebanon
Boston, Massachusetts, March 20, 2003

A Message to the Lebanese People: What Can You Do to Help?

In speeches delivered on his recent trip to Canada and the US, Prime Minister General Aoun urged the Lebanese community: “Do not ask what is going to happen. Ask what can we do to help.”

For decades now, and especially for the last twelve years, our people have been subjected to a propaganda campaign aimed at convincing them that they are incapable of ruling themselves and deciding their own destiny. Sadly, that campaign seems to be working. Many Lebanese have become so jaded in their political outlook and hope for a better future that no matter how positive developments are around them, they refuse to believe in the possibility of positive change.

General Aoun’s call for the Lebanese to take charge of their own destiny has been the bedrock of his and the Free Patriotic Movement’s struggle and policy, both inside and outside Lebanon. Now after a long and often lonely struggle, that policy is bearing fruit as evidenced by recent positive shifts in US policy on Lebanon. The opponents of a free Lebanon who for decades convinced the US public and the media of their point of view are now in retreat. In contrast, the ideas and words of individuals and groups, working alone or together, inside and outside Lebanon, are now part of the official and media language and thinking. This is proof to the skeptics that sustained action coupled with faith in the justice of one’s cause is what works in the end.

  1. The Syria Accountability Act – A monumental achievement that put Syria on the agenda of US foreign policy. The bill will soon be re-introduced in Congress.
  2. An ever-increasing understanding of the plight of Lebanon, and vocal demands for a sovereign Lebanon free of terrorism and dictatorship.
  3. The most significant shift in US language about Syria in Lebanon came from Secretary of State Powell calling the Syrian presence in Lebanon an occupation

These and other accomplishments are the result of efforts by people who not only never doubted the justice of their cause, but they did not sit idly by waiting for what is going to happen to them. Instead, they rolled up their sleeves, sacrificed time, family and money, and decided to do something no matter the outcome. The time of doing nothing is long gone. For 30 years, we paid very dearly with the blood of our people to let anyone other than ourselves decide our future. No matter how long it takes, no matter how much we have accomplished so far, and no matter what the results will be we should never give up. Our work is just beginning and we need all of our community to stand together and help so we can liberate our country from the occupation and begin the true re-building of a democratic Lebanon for all its people.

So, will you ask, “What can I do to help?”

Long Live Free Lebanon