warsofLEBANON1968 | 2000
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The aim of the site is to present a comprehensive
account of the Lebanese Wars, covering the period from 1968 till 2000.
The choice to start in 1968 came for what the Israeli Raid represented
or rather, what it brought to the attention of everyone and that it was
the start of a phase of unease preceding the explosion of the war. In
1968 also, came the first armed Palestinian armed organizations to Lebanon.
The complexity of the war requires a thourough exploration of the several
dimensions of the war. As it became much more then a civil war, it is
crucial to put the events in an internal as well as a regional context.
The Israeli raid over Beirut International Airport brought to the surface
major questions and revealed several conflicts and important crucial issues.
This is a very uneasy period: the tension is rising between all the parties
and the governing body, the Palestinian presence has become a problem
threatening the internal security of Lebanon, the external pressures to
deal with the Palestinian presence, to regulate it and allow it with 2
major agreements signed which were supposed to limit the guerilla activity…
The stability was hanging by a thread and the situation was waiting for
any little spark to ignite a chain reaction.
The spark came in 1975 when a group of guerillas killed 4 phalangists
in an attempt to assassinate Pierre Gemayel, head of the Phalange party.
The phalangists retaliated by attacking a bus carrying Palestinians moving
from one camp to another, and killed 26 of the passenegers. This was the
beginning of what seemed to be a never ending series of events, wars,
and various conflicts. The war had many dimensions and is not considered,
as some have claimed, to be a 'civil war' as many non Lebanese nationals
were very heavily involved, indeed armies of neighbouring countries took
part in much of the fighting. The opposing sides were not fighting each
other simply because of their religion but as a result of major differences
of opinion on matters such as who should run the country and how the country
should be run and how the country is defined. It was a war about ideology,
identity, nationality, insanity, and stupidity. The dimensions of the
war comprised of a Lebanese-Palestinian war, a Lebanese-Lebanese, a Palestinian-Syrian,
a Palestinian-Israeli, a Lebanese-Syrian, a Syrian-Israeli, and a Lebanese-Israeli
war. Add to that the several foreign forces that came into play through
The ADF that comprised troops from several Arab countries, or the Multinational
Forces which comprised European and American troops.
The war ended leaving a divided country drowned in a huge mess on all
levels, and on top of all, a foreign army serving as a “peace keeper”,
and a government serving as a puppet to a foreign, stronger one. A reconstruction
plan of Down Town Beirut got on the way, as well as a disarmament of the
militias, with exception of Hizbullah regarded as the defender of the
South against the Zionist aggressions, and by 2000, the Israeli Army pulled
out from the South of Lebanon, with the exception of the Chiba’a
Farms supposedly Lebanese… After the South was “free”
from the Zionist occupation, the question of the Syrian army was on everybody’s
heads and lips. The question was and still is raised on several occasions,
multiple demonstrations against Syria took place, mainly students leading
them, high profile politicians had their say about the subject and the
Maronite Bishops made a declaration against the presence regarded by many
Although the details of the events are presented in a non-judgmental way throughout the site, the section “Battlefield Lebanon” is dedicated as a platform for analysis of the war and its multiple facets, for raising question about past, present and future.
This site is constantly growing and being revised in order to make it as comprehensive as possible.
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