A Scream from Lebanon

Lara Khatchikian and her sisters in happier times

This morning I received this email from my friend Lara Khatchikian, who works as an English translator at the UN in Beirut. I was relieved to receive the email and know that she’s still alive, but I fear for her and her family. Lara and her beautiful sisters are of Armenian descent and born in Lebanon; their family fled to Beirut from the massacre of Armenians by the Turks during World War I.


Dear All,
Please forward this letter (written by Sarine, my sister) to everyone you
know who can make a difference by sending it to specific institutions, media,
and even your friends… We need our voice to be heard out loud!

Hope you are all well,
Lara and sisters

Hear Our Cry! Enough Is Enough!

I am a citizen of Lebanon living in this biblical land. Currently being one
of those who is living and witnessing the ongoing horror in my beautiful
country, I am enraged, angered, sad, distressed and confused as to what to

I am sick and tired of people taking advantage of my country, carrying out
their own wars on my land, cleaning up their dirty laundry at the cost of
my fellow citizens. I am not a supporter of any political party; I am with
the land of “Milk and Honey” as the Bible states. My rage is against
Israel, Hezbollah, Bush’s USA, Iran, Syria and the previous Lebanese

How dare they, under selfish pretexts, which I do not even wish to discern,
exploit our country to settle their horrendous accounts. Hezbollah claims
to be defending its land. I used to admire that group during the years when
Israel had occupied the South, being the only ones to defend the land.
After the occupation, they should have joined the Lebanese Army if they
really intended to defend this land. They have no right to compel the
people of Lebanon to pay the price for their selfish moves!

Bush (yes, Bush, not even Mr. Bush!) has declared himself as nothing short
of the next Messiah who has taken under his ‘wings’ the duty of bringing
justice to the world, stopping terror from the globe!!! What a noble and
kindred spirit! Shame on him! What right does he have to violate the
privacies of other countries? Before meddling internationally, one should
clean up the national disorder. What about the homeless in the USA? What
about the educational standards in a number of public schools? What about
the crime rates in the states? What about substance abuse rates? What about
tempered rights of children? What about the youth landing home in coffins
from Iraq?

Israel! Shame on you for using “God’s Chosen People” as a slogan for every
inhumane action in the world! God’s chosen people should be setting
examples for the rest of the world, not violating every single humanitarian
decree! What will you tell God about the innocent children whose lifeless
bodies are hanging out from their parents’ cars as they are fleeing your
bombs? What will you tell the children whose parents are lying dead in
front of them with their intestines bulging out of their bodies in front of
their tiny innocent eyes? What will you tell students when they find their
schools completely destroyed and leveled to the ground? How can you justify
bombing ambulances and humanitarian workers when they are selflessly and
nobly trying to fulfill their missions of evacuating people and caring for
the wounded? How can you hit homes and not allow people to remove their
dead from under the rubble? THEIR DEAD! You took their lives, at least
leave their dead bodies to their families!

Syria and Iran! It pains my heart to see those two beautiful countries who
have throughout the history of mankind been pioneers in almost every aspect
of existence (long before the Western world had even woken up) now taking a
back seat in the vehicle of modernizing the world. There exist noble people
in those countries who have now been classified as terrorists because of
the dark leadership ruling them. If that is the way they want their
countries governed, they have every right to do so! But keep Lebanon out of

We are not savages, we are not beasts! We are a civilized nation. We do not
accept to have others recklessly run our country. It is time that we have a
strong governing body that prioritizes the needs of its nation above

What we are facing today is Hurricane Katrina and the last Tsunami combined
and then multiplied! Yes modern world, that is what we have! There are
around half a million refugees all around Lebanon having taken shelter in
schools, and yes, even on so-called safe “streets” sleeping on sidewalks.
Do we really understand what that means? 500,000 people sleeping on the icy
ground, with no blankets, no mattresses, nothing to eat but a bite of bread
once a day! Do we really know what it means to have 200 people use 4
toilets and not have a single drop of water to flush it? Do we? Let’s just
face the bare facts for a moment. We read and hear the media say “war” and
“refugees”. Now, picture one of our local schools with your entire family
in it, with your newborn baby crying for milk, with your young son shaking
from fear not grasping why he is sitting on the floor while his father or
mother is bleeding to death in front of him and the ambulance is not
coming! What would you do? Wouldn’t you spit at the face of this unjust

Enough is enough! The Lebanese are a proud and noble nation, who after 30
years of destructive war caught up with the rest of the world and proved to
everybody that they can be the best in any professional domain.

Let us be, let us help the world with our potentials, allow us to our basic
human rights so we can live and be able to welcome you on our biblical land
and share with you the “Milk and Honey” that God has bestowed upon us.

Sarine Khatchikian
School Principal

You may sign a petition HERE