February/March 2014 Issue
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The Lebanese Heritage
From British Columbia to the world...

February/March 2014 - Volume 2014, No.2


Expatriates and Social-Humanitarian Ties with Lebanon
By Dr Wissam Salamé (Belgium)

To write an article on oneself or on one’s Dr Salame photo activities is somewhat delicate since one has no self-criticism. I would like to thank the electronic Magazine "Lebanese Heritage" of WLCU British Colombia, who asked me to write this editorial for the month of February. As a former delegate of WLCU’s humanitarian and social affairs during the mandate of my friend Nick Kahwaji and knowing him well, his achievements and enthusiasm, his tireless energy and activities geared toward Lebanon, I agreed to write a few lines telling a true story. But ultimately why tell others about a duty or task that you must do? Mom, I finished my homework! Wow! But what reward are you looking for when you work for yourself? Is Lebanon yourself or ourselves? That is another question… Is it necessary to divulge these humanitarian or social actions? No, according to the gospel. Yes, to inspire others. We all left the motherland for one reason or another; certainly for a good reason.

Our country is one of the few countries in the world that doesn’t know how to keep its ideas and knowledge. How wrenching! Severing is difficult. Does it give us a good reason to return every summer and show others how successful we are? Or to feel better ourselves? You have surely experienced the war, like me, and were afraid! But this war is returning and you can try to unearth the reasons why because you are intelligent and cunning and you have a high school diploma plus x amount of university and your business is prospering. It's perfect but still complicated, and then even after you have understood it, what to do about it? Have you once asked yourself the question: what should I do myself at some point? In 2006, our homeland was invaded again, ravaged and crushed, old friends became enemies and vice versa. The feeling of fear comes back and you feel snatched from your roots again and worse still you have the firm conviction that all is lost once and for all... What can I do at my level of thoughtful citizen? To visit, listen to, console, guide, remove any demons from the minds of children, is useful but is it enough? The needs are immense. Your revenge is to create a small non-profit association to help your local community and your village or your region with your family and friends, but you realize that it is very difficult and complicated because the needs are immense; and what are the priorities? It’s difficult to choose. You look around you: your adoptive country is full of people like you; they are all of good will but they are also alone.

This communion of ideas leads to the formation of large non-profit and non-political organizations with a real mix of origins, with one goal: help my village, my region, my country. Some seek to preserve the memory of our civilization and our history, a misguided few look to prosper their reputation and their business by relying on the group, but the majority of many others, want to inject their ideas into new projects. The priority is not pay the village children’s vacation, fill their fridge, or pay the school dues! That action is but fleeting and will quickly dissipate. Reflection on the collective needs expressed by school officials, Red Cross, orphanages, prisons, etc., give you the ideal model. Over 10 years or so you've accomplished many projects together, but I can only talk about mine. To provide access to knowledge and communication, to allow students and teachers to work with greater efficiency, to end the isolation of the people from the South ... yes but how? Computerize the village school and provide access to the information superhighway.

The budget is accessible, each individual puts in his and the association can handle it, so after 2 years the project is realized. To equip the neighboring village’s school with a physics laboratory: what replaces knowledge and learning? Probably nothing. To increase the performance of secondary students by installing a real laboratory so that they can experiment on site. Our children, our future! I will update that...

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Story of the Month

Hassan Kamel Al-Sabbah, a genius mind, from Lebanon. His early death was a great loss for the world of invention

Hassan Kamel Al-Sabbah was a technological leader whose inventions in electricity had a great impact on the development of 20th century technology. In August 1921, Sabbah travelled to the U.S. to study at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for one year. In 1922, he enrolled at the University of Illinois, where he earned a master's degree in engineering sciences in 1923. He was hired by the engineering laboratory of the General Electric Company (GE) at Schenectady, N.Y. in 1923. It was not long before his research efforts resulted in a number of patents. However, Sabah had signed a contract with GE whereby all his inventions became the property of the company, and so he received a reward of one dollar for each of his patented inventions. Between 1927 and 1935, he invented 52 different applications. Hassan Kamel Assabbah (August 16, 1895 - March 31, 1935) was born in Nabatieh, Lebanon. He was an electrical and electronics research engineer, mathematician and inventor par excellence. He studied at the American University of Beirut. He taught mathematics at Imperial College of Damascus, Syria, and at the American University of Beirut. He is seen as being the father of the solar cell. He died in an automobile accident at Lewis near Elizabeth Town, N.Y. In 1921, he travelled to the United States and for a short time studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology before joining the University of Illinois in 1923. He entered the vacuum tube section of the Engineering Laboratory of the General Electric Company at Schenectady N.Y., in 1923, where he was engaged in mathematical and experimental research, principally on rectifiers and inverters, receiving over 70 United States and foreign patents covering his work. He was engaged in work on television and motors as well, and originated circuits for use with rectifiers.


Quote of the Month

“You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”
― Abraham Lincoln

Little Gazette!

  • In Memoriam . Mr Leon Garabet,(the father of Anise Garabet) has passed away peacefully at his house in LA.
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Here, There and Yonder

  • Already three years of the online publication: “the Lebanese Heritage” and we would like to hear your opinion: How are we doing?
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  • Ms. Tania Sammons(Georgia,USA) receives the 2014 Kahlil Gibran International Award
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  • 6000 Years of Peaceful Contributions to Mankind CHARLES CORM
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  • Lebanese in Titanic: Twelve young men from Hardin drowned But their crème de la crème was Daher Abi Chedid from Ebrine.(Elie Fares)
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  • The Lebanese abroad the Titanic:Many are unidentifiable as Lebanese (Australian Lebanese Heritage Society)
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Interviews & Profiles

  • Moise and Vera Khayrallah funded the Khayrallah Program for Lebanese American at NCSU in order to research and highlight the positive role the Lebanese immigrants have played in NC.
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  • Charles Corm (1894-1963) is considered to be the most influential and awarded modern Lebanese writers (along with Kahlil Gibran) due to his advocacy of Lebanese identity and nationalism.
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Culture & Multiculturalism

  • LEBANESE "INTANGIBLE HERITAGE" and NATIONAL IDENTITY : is constantly recreated it according to the environment , the interaction with nature and history, and provides a sense of identity and continuity (By Bahjat Rizk)
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  • Already here. WRITING LEBANESE into QUEENSLAND HISTORY : early Lebanese immigrants were settlers rather than sojourners, and despite the serious obstacles they faced they were determined to stay and make Queensland their new home.( By Ann Monsour)
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  • Press release from Glen Kalem on behalf of the Kahlil Gibran International Forum and News
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  • "6,000 years ago, as the neighboring civilizations built houses out of clay bricks and mud blocks, the people in Byblos used stones, excavated from quarry hard rock" by late Charles Corm.
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  • Phoenician man of Carthage returns to land of ancestors through AUB museum exhibit
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Economy in Lebanon

  • Female foreign workers face appalling situation in Lebanon,(civil society organizations and the government are working to address this problem!)
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  • Joseph Torbey : that banks were the only thing in Lebanon that would not be subject to a collapse.The Banks are most vital sector in Lebanon.
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  • "A very thriving financial sector and a diaspora contributing to the rise of deposits". The Financial sector shields Lebanon, By Dana Halawi
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Lebanese Emigration

  • The Lebanese Community in the Ivory Coast: a Non-native Network at the Heart of Power? DIDIER BIGO
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  • Mr Kemal Hamadeh was the classic Lebanese expatriate entrepreneur, one of that hardy breed that can sniff out an opportunity where no one else would put their nose and turn a half-chance into a success story."
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  • Hassan Kamel Al-Sabbah,a genius mind,from Lebanon.His early death was a great loss for the world of invention
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Roots and Wings

  • Learn more about Dr Wissam Salame the famous Lebanese Belgian doctor and one of the active charity promoter in Lebanon.
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  • Learn more about Ms Françoise Hbeyka, the Expert & Writer of the Lebanese Folk Traditions
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  • A young Lebanese researcher at war against cancer at the University of Indiana,USA.
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  • A group of young Lebanese created an " Internet health portal": eTobb, a medical portal for the public.
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Various Publications

  • Discover one of the richest Lebanese Newsletter which is published in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Chinese
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WLCU Archives

  • By-laws and regulations of WLCU North American Regional Council (USA and Canada) signed by Late Regional President Dr Alfred Saad and became effective starting from 3rd September 1996.
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  • Questions and reservations on its role and expenditures Ministry of Emigrants working ... without any emigration policy (By Hala Homsi)- WLCU Archives
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    Read in French »
    Read in Arabic »
  • Projecting a Lebanese Cultural movie in the UN Headquarter in NY under the auspices of the DPI.(March 2011)
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United Nations(UN) News

  • The NGO/DPI Executive Committee and all the NGOs associated with the Department of Information, the NGO Reporter is delighted to warmly welcome Hawa Diallo and looks forward to a long and collaborative relationship.
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  • Upcoming events from NGO Relations, DPI United Nations: Dear Colleagues, Please find attached the updated briefing calendar for the spring season.
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  • Letter from Mr. Maher Nasser, Director of the Outreach Division of the Department of Public Information.
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