Lebanese independence day in San Francisco: The speech of WLCU SF President Mr Khalil Kuri
Good evening Fellow Lebanese and Friends of Lebanon,
I want to welcome you all!
We are here to celebrate the 71th Independence Day of Lebanon.
As you know this year, independence comes at at a time when Lebanon is facing so many challenges and going through trying times.
We hope Lebanon will be able to overcome these challenges and come out stronger than ever and will continue to be the country that promotes peace and prosperity.
We are here tonight to pay tribute for the Lebanese Army for it is bearing the challenges of defending the independence of Lebanon. Our armed forces have paid heavy prices, as many soldiers fell in the line of duty and others were taken hostage and are facing execution.
We want to commend our army for their sacrifices and heroic stand defending our homeland’s sovereignty and keeping our country united.
Today more than ever we have to be united so the celebration this year should strengthen our unity and our patriotism and do whatever in our power to safeguard our beloved Lebanon.
Lebanon is facing challenges so our unity is critical at this stage. Our unity is actively fostered through organizations like the World Lebanese Cultural Union as one of the main mission objectives of The WLCU is to connect and strength the ties among the 15 million Lebanese in the Diaspora and to preserve the Lebanese culture and heritage and connect them to their mother Land. As a testament to this, the independence of Lebanon is being celebrated on all continents
through a network of WLCU chapters worldwide.
It is really touching to see third and fourth generation Lebanese emigrants who have never been to Lebanon holding Lebanese flags celebrating Lebanon’s independence to show their affection and love to the land of their ancestors .
As you know Lebanon is a country that is more than 5000 years old and throughout history has faced enormous challenges but was able to overcome them because of the strong determination of its people. This time is no different! We will overcome all difficulties and will prevail as an independent country that promotes peace, freedom and democracy in the region and in the entire world.
Again on the behalf of the WLCU SF chapter board of directors and myself, I want to thank you all for your presence tonight.
I want to take few minutes to welcome and acknowledge few guests who went above and beyond to serve the Lebanese community.
Abouna John Nahal, priest of our Lady of Lebanon;Mr. Elie Antoun, president of the parish council of our Lady of Lebanon Mr . Fouad Tabsharani and Hana Archbold, formers president of the LAA Mrs Hana Archbold: president of the LAU branch in the bay area and a board member of the WLCU.
And we have a special guest form Lebanon Colonel Naji Doumit from the Lebanese Army who is in the US for training.
Last and but certainly not least, I want thank Chef Paul, owner of Tannourin Restaurant. As you know, at the heart of Lebanese culture is good food Mezza, Tabbouli, Kebbey Nayeh, Pleasant atmosphere with Lebanese spirit well as you know Chef Paul have been serving a good taste of Lebanon not only for Lebanese American but the broader bay area community.
Having said that; let the celebration begin!
God bless America and God bless Lebanon