I read a January 8, 2011 Washington Post article which talked about the upcoming vote for independence in Sudan. The reporter interviewed Alfred Lado, who gave his age as around 60. Lado is the university librarian in Juba. During the civil war some years ago, he and the rest of the staff (just a small number of people) kept the library open in the middle of a war zone for federal workers and anyone else–including the military. When asked by the reporter why he would want to do that, Lado just said that people needed information, and they wanted to learn about their country.
Another great article demonstrating the importance of libraries!