The painful, tragic events which have befallen Beirut and now Tripoli, threatening to tear the very fabric of this country apart, compel our universities to sound the alarm. Danger is everywhere, driving our students into exile and their families to despair, pushing our professors to leave, our societies to the brink, and our institutions to close.
For weeks now, one of our own, a prominent and highly distinguished institution, has been subject to online abuse and a malicious and systematic campaign of disinformation, alleging it is abandoning our country, a country that it has always upheld and defended.
Yesterday, another university campus was stormed, as if everything and anything has now become permissible.
Today, as ever, our universities will continue to fulfill their national educational mission, steadfast and deeply rooted in this country. They will serve all the Lebanese without exception, leaving no student behind, by relying on a network of hundreds of thousands, alumni and graduates. They will continue to advocate for Lebanon, its culture, creativity and progress.
It is time to state that enough is enough. Stop the interference with the universities of Lebanon. The Lebanese people are hungry and ailing. They are no longer satisfied by populist one-upmanship under the shadow of a crumbling state. Where is the state today? Doesn’t it hear the cries of pain of its people? Why is the state mobilizing what remains of its power against the universities that have not and shall never cease in their mission to help and support their students by any means? Enough of this fabrication and these assaults on the symbols, the campuses, and the honor of these universities. It is time to stop meddling with the higher education system that has made Lebanon the shining light of the East. We shall never accept that the light of intellect be extinguished. Enough!
Hazmieh, February 5, 2021