to His Holiness
Pope John Paul the Second
Holiness Pope John Paul the second
From: The Residents of South Lebanons anguished Frontier zone ... (March 24/2000)
Your Holiness, we the anguished, persecuted, and abandoned residents of South Lebanons- Frontier Zone would like to share with you some of the following concerns, difficulties, fears and dilemmas our area is encountering these days.
1-We the South Lebanon residents are a role model in common living between different religious denominations. We have lived harmoniously with each other for more then four hundred years. Your Holiness, you are the representative of Jesus Christ on earth, you carry his message of peace, equality and justice, you are the only person left on earth that is capable of making our muffled oppressed voice be heard again.
2- When your Holiness visited occupied Lebanon, we were deprived the honor of welcoming you among the hundreds of thousands of our fellow Lebanese citizens. We could not welcome you in person then because of our affiliation to South Lebanon, the abandoned and persecuted Lebanese region. We even abstained from sending you a letter to spare you the anger of the Lebanese-Syrian appointed officials.
Today, we take the opportunity of your current visit to the Holy Land to send this message after we were not allowed to meet with you face to face as if we were those afflicted with leprosy 2000 years ago. But like the Canaan children who are contented with the bread crusts thrown to them from banquets. We raise our concerns to your Holiness, praying that you take them in consideration and make the miracle happen Your Holiness our people need a miracle to save them from persecution, abandonment, fear and on going anguish.
3- We would like to remind your Holiness that the Lebanese authorities and the whole world abandoned us in 1976 to face on our own the invading Palestinian armed factions. The whole Arab world was supporting them to use our land in waging guerrilla-armed attacks against Israel. The Lebanese Army was divided because of Arab money and religious calls from Muslims Arab leaders. Who in the world can forget Muhamar Al-Khazafi of Libya who called on the Lebanese Christians in general and the Maronites in particular to convert to Islam if they wish to survive in the Middle East? The Lebanese authorities that abandoned us in 1976 left in the region few poorly armed soldiers to protect us. We the civilians had to face the huge numbers of well-armed and trained Palestinian factions that were financed and supported by the majority of the Arab countries.
Our people in South Lebanons - Frontier Zone were successful in defending themselves, and their land. They were even forced to assume the States responsibilities on the border with Israel, after the Beirut regime deserted its obligations and duties completely. As a result of their patriotism, sacrifices faith and heroism they were able to stay in their homes and avoided the displacement dangers.
In the past (up till 1990), the Lebanese authorities has recognized our peoples resistance in the Frontier Zone and even legitimized their military organizations. Our people and soldiers carried their responsibilities effectively and still do through faith, sacrifices and devotion.
4- The Beirut regime has allegedly regained its control over the country since 1990, but in reality the whole regime is a Syrian puppet. Syria occupies 90% of Lebanon and controls fully its regime and officials. Because of the Syrian hegemony the Beirut regime have treated us since 1990 in South Lebanons -Frontier Zone as traitors and criminals. Hundreds of biased sentences including death penalties have been issued by the Lebanese Syrian controlled military judiciary against our citizens leaders and soldiers. The Lebanese Syrian puppet regime, its politicians, clerks and officials are currently threatening to massacre us once Israeli troops withdraw from South Lebanon.
5- Israel up until now has been able to provide us with some kind of protection, but what will our fate be once its troops withdraw? Your Holiness, the threats are targeting and hunting us from every where in Lebanon, and apparently there isnt a solution yet in the horizon for our dilemma. The Beirut regime and the terrorists are escalating their devastating scheme against us. They even prevented our Maronite church from participating in the burial ceremony of one of our prominent leaders. The Beirut puppet regime is treating us as second class citizens and infringing on all our rights.
6- Your Holiness we are hopeful that your pilgrimage tour to our holy land, will bring peace and security to our people in South Lebanons-Frontier Zone, and to the whole Middle East countries. We who are witnesses for Jesus Christ holy message, the inhabitants of the land that he blessed and loved, ask you by the name of all the Saints to carry our cause and lobby for it in the International arenas. We are asking for your help so we can avoid displacement and massive massacres. We want to live in peace, practice our Christianity without persecution and remain in our homes and land, we want to be active participants in the coming Middle East peace, not sacrifices on its alter.
We ask your holiness to provide our region with international protection in case a peace accord could not be reached between Israel and Lebanon before the Israeli withdrawal from South Lebanon.
Your Holiness you are our only hope, you are the only light left in the deadly darkness surrounding us from all sides. We will be praying for the success of your peace endeavors. We are hopeful these endeavors will also embrace our people and Holy Land.
The Residents of South Lebanons Frontier Zone