Following is an excerpt from Lebanese TV host May Chidiac’s final program on LBC TV, in which she bids farewell to her audience in a surprise announcement. It seems that Chidiac, who survived an assassination attempt in 2005, decided to leave in protest against the backstage political disputes that surrounded her show. The final show aired on February 3, 2009.
May Chidiac: Dear viewers, we have reached the end of this show. The end might come as a surprise to you and to all my viewers. In conclusion, dear viewers... I’m all choked up, but I have decided to leave. In any case, I’ll keep it simple: I must say goodbye to you. Last week, I underwent my 30th operation. While I was struggling with the pain – and you all know that this pain did not come from nowhere, but is the result of the attempt on my life on September 25, 2005...
It wasn’t easy. I have undergone 30 operations in three years. I have done a lot of thinking. First, I was pleased with myself for living up to the challenge, and returning to work 10 months later, and for being able to show the people who tried to silence me that they cannot defeat me, my principles, or my mind, which remained intact, and I have kept my performance, thank God. This is how God wanted it, as well as the Virgin Mary, Jesus, and St. Charbel. I am convinced that decisions are made by God, not by the hand of treachery. A person dies when his time is up. Whoever plants such huge quantities of explosives will be reckoned with by God, not by us. I hope that the International Criminal Court will get them, and that we don’t end up with another Lockerbie.
To my colleagues at LBC, who have waged an all-out war against me, I say: I am leaving because I decided to, and not because of your battles. After they have lost their battles, I say to them: I have decided to leave. Let me thank [Head of LBC] Pierre Dhaher, for appreciating my efforts, and for appreciating the fact that I was able to draw such a large audience, through my professionalism and my knowledge.
I have faced challenges posed by everybody, including myself. But I say – all choked up – that this is my home. I have decided to leave today because I have my honor to think of. Never mind. Perhaps I cannot continue to hold back my tears, and to maintain objectivity against the things I believe in, when my pain is so great. I am sick and tired of this.
Never mind, bear my tears. This is the last time you will see them. Don’t ask me to be patient. I’d like to thank the team that has helped me since I got back to work. I’d like to thank all the people who helped me. A new team has joined the show recently, and I know they must be in shock now, because nobody knew about my decision.
Ultimately, I have reached the conclusion that I cannot continue to betray my blood that was shed or my principles. I can no longer lower my standards and diminish my honor, just to please someone whose standards are low, and whose name I don’t even know, who, at the last moment, prevented a guest from appearing on the show. I won’t tolerate it when an MP turns off his phone, a minute before he was supposed to show up at the studio. Why? Because I have committed a crime. Do you know what my crime is? That I am a martyr, a living martyr. There may be people with different opinions and beliefs, but the group I consider myself to be a part of... My only crime against it is that I paid with my blood... I can no longer diminish my honor and make sacrifices to please it. Enough deception... I cannot say anything more. These people know who they are. They have deceived the world long enough. In 2005, we helped them come back,1 and we paid a heavy price for it. It’s not true that the people who committed all these crimes are no longer in Lebanon. At the very least, we must let the court have its say. We do not have to defend people who are not worthy of it. Let the court have its say.
In any case, I’m not trying to take advantage of this pulpit to present my positions. I’m just explaining why I’m leaving. Pierre, I want to say that I love you. There is just one thing I wish – that Dr. Samir Geagea straightens things out with Pierre Dhaher.2 I paid a heavy price with my blood. Bye bye.
1 The reference is to Michel Aoun, leader of the Free Patriotic Movement, and his men.
2 Samir Geagea, leader of the Lebanese Forces, and Pierre Dhaher, chairman of the board of directors of LBC, are locked in a bitter legal dispute over the ownership of the TV station.