Why the WLCU is needed?
By: Pierre Raffoul
(Free translation by: Elias Bejjani)

During the Liberation war in 1989, a comprehensive and friendly informal meeting took place in Beirut. The meeting was attended by Lebanese citizens from all walks of life: politicians, clergymen, journalists, businessmen, poets, physicians, lawyers etc.. The participants assessed the public’s enormous support for both PM General Aoun’s patriotic national policies and for the on going “Liberation War” against Syrian occupation. They agreed on numerous proposals aiming to lobby for Lebanon’s cause within the international circles. The participants decided that they should meet with Foreign Ambassadors in Lebanon on a regular basis in a bid to update them on Lebanon’s unfolding events and to keep them continuously informed about all situations related to Lebanese hardships and ordeals. It was also decided that Lebanese Diaspora’s role in the world and ties with Lebanon be strengthened and unified.

During that meeting, many participants took turns in addressing certain issues and suggested various solutions. Although all topics discussed were authentic and appropriate, I was fascinated by a speech delivered by the renowned journalist Bshara Maroun. He said, “After the bloody events in Lebanon in 1958, many meetings were held between numerous, prominent Lebanese leaders to discuss the country’s needs internally and externally. Among these leaders were President Camille Chammoun, President Sami Al-Soleh, Sheik Pierre Joumayel, Prince Majied Arselan, Mr. Kazem Al-Khalil. The primary intention of these meetings was to create a Lebanese Lobby in Diaspora capable in defending the independence and sovereignty of Lebanon in the instance that it is exposed to the danger of foreign invasion, occupation or external hegemony in which the democratic central authority would be rendered ineffective”.

Mr. Maroun continued to say, “It was agreed among the participants to create a strong and prominent ‘Lebanese Diaspora Front’, capable of carrying Lebanon’s torch in the international circles. They envisioned the Front’s role to be a worldwide-fortified barrier able to stand in the face of all powers that might try to harm Lebanon or to infringe on its independence, sovereignty and freedom. The World Lebanese Cultural Union (WLCU) was the outcome of these fruitful patriotic meetings. The WLCU mandate gave it the freedom to act within this well identified framework. It was enforced with the needed immunity in order that it would not be influenced negatively or derailed from its patriotic objectives by any future changes in Lebanon that might cripple its democratic authority”. Mr. Maroun ended his speech by asking, “Why don’t we ask this organization today to assume its patriotic role and come to Lebanon’s rescue?”

The well-known, patriotic, honest and courageous ambassador Edmond Khayat, who participated in the meeting, took the initiative and started contacting numerous Lebanese Diaspora communities. His exhaustive and enthusiastic efforts were extremely productive. Many of the Lebanese Diaspora delegates followed the plan and got in touch with the world’s influential countries and organizations. At the same time, numerous protests in the form of peaceful civilized demonstrations took place in many countries in support of the Lebanese cause.

In 1990, Syria solidified its occupation of Lebanon and ousted its legitimate government. Since then, Damascus and its Lebanese puppet officials have been focusing on the WLCU, trying hard to infiltrate its leadership, contain its activities and influence their agendas. Unfortunately, they have succeeded in causing a great deal of damage to the WLCU. Most of its chapters are now dismantled margenalized and controlled by the Beirut Syrian installed regime. Very few chapters are still committed to the organization’s mandate.

What is our role as patriotic Lebanese in Diaspora?
Do we have to allow Syria and its Lebanese traitors to control the WLCU and make it a subservient institution like those in Lebanon? If we take an indifferent attitude and let Lebanon’s enemies destroy the WLCU, we would be committing the crime of treason.

It is the patriotic obligation and sacred duty for each and every Lebanese in Diaspora to strongly protect the independence and sole “Lebanese” foundation of the WLCU. It is every Lebanese in Diaspora’s profound duty to fight fiercely to ensure the WLCU’s patriotic role and to force the abortion of all vicious attempts to turn this union into a dead and lifeless body.

Few WLCU Chapters are still carrying the torch and defending courageously Lebanon’s independence, freedom, democracy and sovereignty. It is our duty to see that the patriotic Lebanese Diaspora members running these chapter are getting all the needed support, encouragement, recognition and appreciation.
We must stand proud like the Holy Cedars of our great Lebanon and fight earnestly for our sacred cause.
Lebanon and its people, by God’s will, shall be victorious and the WLCU will maintain its historic patriotic role.

Long Live Free Lebanon
Long Live a Free independent WLCU.