students proceeded towards the gate and decided to open it by force.
The security forces were supported by fire engines and the fire brigade
directed the water hoses on the students.
A large number of students had carried stones in their pockets and they
began to stone the security forces. The security forces were quiet for
a little while, contenting themselves with the water that was directed
against the students. However, the Fire Department had brought only two
trucks of water and they were soon exhausted. The students continued to
throw stones and the security forces threw the stones back at them.
This lasted for a little while and then the shooting began
were bullet marks on the iron fence, on the northwest corner of Post Hall,
on the west of the Pharmacy Building which produced ricochets. There are
bullet marks in trees in front of the Social Sciences Building and on
the walls of the Social Sciences Building from knee height to high on
the building, proving that live bullets were fired at body height as well
as in the air over the heads of the students.
From the time the shooting began the security forces were very severe
and rather brutal. There are reports that they even dragged a student
from an ambulance and hit him. Some of the doctors and technicians, even
though wearing white coats, risked their lives in order to remove some
Upon investigation at the AUB Hospital we found that 26 injured students
reached the Hospital.
It has been stated that the shooting from the security forces did not
come from the police but from the gendarmerie, and they claim that the
first shot came from a building inside the University and from adjacent
buildings outside the campus.
1955: We want to learn
It is the universitys function to train us, its students and future
spokesmen of our countries, to face the problems of everyday life. How
can we do that when we are only here to attend lectures and take notes?
How can we be the future liberators of our respective countries if we
are not taught how to practice the basic important factors that lead to
freedom from oppression?
Students should have the right to voice their own opinions in matters
that concern them.
We, the student body, are not puppets
.We think. That is why we are
here. We have our own life to shape. That is what we have come to learn
how to do. We have our own voice to express. That is what we hope to do.
1967: Students Protest U.N. Partition of Palestine
Over seven hundred students gathered in front of West Hall last Wednesday
at 10 oclock and marched silently to the Assembly Hall in a gesture
of condemnation of the U.N.s partition of Palestine on November
27, 1947. The march, organized by the Arab Student League, culminated
with speeches by Distinguished Professor Constantine Zurayk, Professor
Yusuf Ibish and student, Suhail Hamam. Among those present were Dean Louis
Cajoleas, Dean Robert Najemy, Dr. Eli Salem, Nabil Dajani and other members
of the administration and faculty.
Dr. Zurayk spoke about the recent setback experienced by the Arab countries
and emphasized the fact that such events can either destroy nations or
motivate them to a fresh and more positive start.
called for the continuation of the opposition to the
situation of Palestine emphasizing the need for an unwavering determination
to win the struggle at hand.
Prof. Yusuf Ibish completed the series of speechs [sic] by stressing the
fact that it is not enough to have weapons, machinery and other such tools
to overcome the opponents. He stated that education and individual qualities
are just as important if not more so. A development of positive enthusiasm
and personal advancement as a form of preparation for future confrontations
is therefore an essential prerequisite for success.
1970 Guerrilla U -Newsweek Magazine
According to a reporter, Politics at AUB today is tied directly
to the Palestinian guerrilla movement
The aggressive young men and
women who spring from AUB appear torn between admiration for their American-Style
education and distrust of the country that offers it. Of course
we reject American foreign policy and the capitalist mentality of most
Americans, an AUB student who doubles as a guerrilla group leader
said recently. But we have also learned to respect a culture that
gives rebels even the right to think and say what they want. If there
should be a Palestinian state run by us, it would be anti-imperialist,
anti-Washington and anti-bourgeois. But I dont believe it would
be truly anti-American.
1971: The 28 day sit-in:
Excerpts: Day to Day Rundown of Developments:
Monday, May 10
The three-man Student Affairs Committee (composed of Committee Chairman
Elie Salem, Provost Samir Thabet and Dean of Students Robert Najemy) reveals
to 15 student representatives
that the Administration has decided
to raise tuition fees by 10 per cent starting with the academic years
subsequent to 1971-72.
Tuesday, May 11
The Student Council holds its weekly meeting in West Hall and takes a
unanimous decision late in the evening to issue a statement Wednesday,
May 12, calling for an open strike starting Thursday, May 13, to protest
the unilateral and surprise decision of the Administration.
Wednesday, May 12
The Student Council issues a statement protesting the 10 percent increase
tuition fees to be effective next semester
The Student Council statement
goes on to call for an open strike starting Thursday, May 13 until the
President of this University comes out with a clear cut statement in which
1. Declares the cancellation of the 10 percent increase in tuition fees.
2. Announces his readiness to negotiate with the Student Council the possibility
of reasonable decreases in the current tuition fees.
3. Declares his acceptance of the Student Council demands to investigate
the books of the University at the Comptrollers Office to see whether
there are reasonable grounds for decrease in current tuition fees.
Thursday, May 13
AUB students start the open strike by abstaining from classes. Busloads
of Squad 16 policemen remain parked off campus for the whole day. Tight
security measures stall University entrances filter students, faculty
and members of the Administration and non-academic staff only into campus.
Others are prevented from coming in
Friday, May 14
Scores of students congregate outside West Hall at 10 a.m. on this second
day of strike and march on to College Hall where they stage a two-hour
The sit-in at College Hall, where most of the Administration
offices are found, is seen as an escalation of the open strike, the students
close the doors of College Hall thus making it impossible for members
of the administration to enter or to leave the building
[Speaking on behalf of the Student Council, Bassam] Diab goes on to say
in the name of the Student Council:
the intended increases
would have adverse effects on economic and social conditions in Lebanon
they would increase obstacles for the lower and middle income groups
to join the university and would accelerate the rise in cost of living
Saturday, May 15
The strike enters its third day running without incident. The Voice
of the Students broadcasts from West Hall statements calling for
reversal of the Administration decision.
Academic Program Is Suspended
Following No Vote to Proposals and Occupation of Jessup, Fisk
Halls, Including Office of the Dean; Maher Masri: Its Just
What We Expected!
President Samuel B. Kirkwood suspended last night the AUB academic program
for the year 1970-71. His move, according to Student Council President
Maher Masri, was just what the students expected.
It came a few hours after the students had embarked on their creeping
occupation by midnight of Jessup and Fisk Halls, including the office
of the Dean of Arts and Sciences
In Jessup Hall, said Masri, the office of the dean has
become the office of the students.
As of Wednesday morning all of the medical students from the first, second,
third and fourth years will go on strike.
October 11, 1971: Proving our mettle
Letter to Studentsfrom the Student Council
The Administration has been able to describe the strike and its underlying
motivations as political in nature. Some administrators claimed
the strike was part of the tug-of-war on campus between the Right and
the Left. Others associated it with the movement to liberate Palestine.
Some administrators referred to it as a Zionist-inspired plot to close
down the University. Others passed the word that it was directed against
the AUB workers and tourism in Lebanon
We, the students, were able to prove our mettle throughout the 28-day
strike and as recently as last Saturday, October 9, when we turned the
NSP ( Nutrition Science Program) Farm Trip into a demonstration of solidarity
with our 22 colleagues who have been suspended from the University. In
recent days, we expressed our dismay over the reprisal measures taken
by the Administration to suffocate the voice of the students through the
display of posters; the organization of fund drives and sessions of the
Speakers Corner; the endorsement of an appeal for reintegration
of the suspended students by over 1,200 of their colleagues; the rendition
of strike songs such as We Ahall [sic] Overcome
and O Freedom at the Hangout Party and the Farm Trip; and
the financing of LOOKOUT
Student participation in the Universitys educational and administrative
affairs should become part of the students education. Needless to
say that student participation should be built on the premise of freedom
April 1, 1974: The strike reinterpreted
We are not struggling for ourselves only, but for the type of institution
we will be leaving to future generations in a society such as the ones
we belong to.