Ahead of Lebanon's 75th Independence Day, marked on November 22, 'Aql Al-Awit, a columnist for the Al-Nahar daily, wrote a column titled "Lebanon Isn't Independent, But I Will Never Mourn It." In it, he lamented the current situation in the country, stating that it is dying and that it is not independent or sovereign at all, but rather completely occupied, apparently referring to Hizbullah's control of Lebanon. He stressed, however, that he will never give up on his homeland.
The following are excerpts from his column:
"On the eve of Lebanon's 75th Independence Day I acknowledge that it is dying. [It has been dying all along:] during the era of famines, locusts and plagues; in the days of humiliation, war, defeat, forced migration, terror and expulsion; during the [French] mandate and the [Syrian] patronage and occupation; when it buckled under mountains of debt and during the spread of corruption, thieving, usurpation and fraud... when the law and the constitution were violated... when presidential elections were prevented and [also] when [a president] was elected; when the government was formed and when its establishment was prevented; during the period of anarchy and the collapse of politics and of the politicians...
"Lebanon is dying, and today all of this is happening at once, with the participation and consent of all components [of society] and all the regions in Lebanon, as well as its authorities, its heads of state, its leaders, its sects and its great nation.
"On the eve of its 75th Independence Day Lebanon is dying, it is perishing. Its curse is its citizens, its leaders, its sects and its religious denominations. Read the [Christian] Book of Revelation with open eyes... [and you will find that] it is not just a religious text or a literary myth. It is a real and tangible reality that is unfolding on Lebanese soil, and its protagonists are the God of Lebanon, its leaders, its politicians, its sects and its people.
"Lebanon is not independent. Its soil is anyone's for the taking. It is an entity neglected [by its keepers]. Its existence, its people, its law, its sovereignty, its honor and its policy, its legislative, executive and judicial branches, its checks and balances are [all] uncared-for, and so are its life... its skies and seas... and its fate. It has no place for stone or tree... for moon, sun, song, poem, or even a glimmer of hope.
"On the eve of its 75th Independence Day I admit that Lebanon is occupied from end to end... from top to bottom, from the south to the Beqaa Valley, from the north to the Mountain, from east to west, from the Al-Kabir river to Ras Al-Naqoura, every point in it, including the seat of government and sovereignty in its broken capital with its occupied suburbs. How then can Lebanon be independent? How can we celebrate in a dying, occupied state that is not independent?!
"My soul has been crushed, my heart is broken, and my I am a dead body. Nothing will save me and nothing will inspire me. Even truth will not save me, or empty words. How can I celebrate Lebanon's independence?! It is not independent. But I will never, ever mourn it..."
 Al-Nahar (Lebanon), November 20, 2018.