History UsefulNotes / Lebanon

24th May '16 10:40:01 PM Dimas28
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Lebanon ('''Arabic:''' لبنان‎ Libnān or Lubnān), officially known as the Lebanese Republic ('''Arabic:''' الجمهورية اللبنانية‎ Al-Jumhūrīyah Al-Libnānīyah) is one of the world's only two multiconfessional countries, with 17 official religions made up of various sects of the three monotheist faiths. However, it's unclear how many people follow what religion in the country; a full census has not been conducted since 1932. This is because the Lebanese Constitution divvies up power along religious lines, and the Christians--who were a slim majority in 1932--were outpaced by the Muslims in the decades that followed.

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Lebanon ('''Arabic:''' لبنان‎ Libnān or Lubnān), officially known as the Lebanese Republic ('''Arabic:''' الجمهورية اللبنانية‎ Al-Jumhūrīyah Al-Libnānīyah) is one of the world's only two multiconfessional countries, with 17 official religions made up of various sects of the three monotheist faiths. However, it's unclear how many people follow what religion in the country; a full census has not been conducted since 1932. This is because the Lebanese Constitution divvies up power along religious lines, and boy did it is very sectarian. Particularly, the Christians--who were a slim majority three highest posts in 1932--were outpaced by the country are reserved for each members of the religious: a Maronite Catholic President, a Sunni Muslim Prime Minister, and a Shia Muslim Speaker of Parliament. ''No exceptions''.

One of the few nations in which the people who live outside the country far outweighs those who live inside it. The total population of Lebanon is (as of 2006) slightly more than 4 million. The diaspora? ''[[HolyShitQuotient 14 million]]''. And this is all made very, very, recently, so you can bet that the country's population would be much higher had the wars not happened.

Was originally a Christian country, and the only one in the Arab world. Because of all the commotion in the late 20th century, a great deal of the Christians, who are historically wealthier than their Muslim neighbors, emigrated and settled in various countries, particularly Brazil, creating the aforementioned humongous diaspora. Many have done very ''well'' for themselves indeed (for instance, Carlos Slim, a Mexican telecom magnate who trades places with Bill Gates for the title "richest man in the world", is of Lebanese descent). This has some benefits--whenever bad things go on in Lebanon, the diaspora sends back aid and often invests in rebuilding schemes[[note]]Though if the violence hasn't died down yet, nobody bothers patching things up, so wait for a few years after each one apparently ends...[[/note]]. That's not to say that the Christians disappear altogether, though; estimates count that 40% the population still identify as Christians, and they mostly settle on the Mount Lebanon/Anti Lebanon highlands, together with the Druze[[note]]A religious community descended from Shia Islam[[/note]] while
the Muslims in live on the decades that followed.
coast.

!! History



Thanks to the bloody civil war, the Lebanese left their home country in larger numbers than might be expected from a country Lebanon's size. Christians in particular packed up and went, being generally a bit richer than the Muslims (particularly the Shia). There are now three to five times as many Lebanese living outside Lebanon as within it, and many have done ''very'' well for themselves indeed (for instance, Carlos Slim, a Mexican telecom magnate who trades places with BillGates for the title "richest man in the world", is of Lebanese descent). This has some benefits--whenever bad things go on in Lebanon, the Diaspora sends back aid and often invests in rebuilding schemes. Even when the violence gets nasty, you often can't tell a few years after it dies down. Of course, if it hasn't died down yet, nobody bothers patching things up...



''ComicBook/MalaakAngelOfPeace'' is the one Lebanese comic series to date, set in a warring Lebanon that criss-crosses with a mythological one.

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* ''Literature/TheEpicOfGilgamesh'': Gilgamesh went to the cedar forests of Lebanon to get to...[[ArtisticLicenseGeography the Persian Gulf]]. Though do take note that the tale is mostly exploits of fun and glory; it's not like UsefulNotes/{{Homer}} or UsefulNotes/{{Virgil}} got perfectly correct with their writings anyway.
* Features quite a bit in Myth/ClassicalMythology, courtesy of the Phoenicians. Europa, who inspired the name for the continent of Europe, was a Phoenician princess who [[ImmortalityImmorality got abducted by Zeus in bull form]]. One of the Twelve Olympians, Dionysus, also had a (mortal) Phoenician grandfather.
* Mentioned a ''lot'' in ''Literature/TheBible'', because of the aforementioned cedar trees and a certain reason *cough* CreatorProvincialism *cough* in part of the Bible writers, who mostly came from Israel. According to [[https://www.openbible.info/topics/lebanon this website]], it's mentioned 73 times, and that's not including the indirect references.
*
''ComicBook/MalaakAngelOfPeace'' is the one Lebanese comic series to date, set in a warring Lebanon that criss-crosses with a mythological one.
24th May '16 2:23:45 AM The_Glorious_SOB
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A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980s to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children. All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.

to:

A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980s to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer volunteers with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children. All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.
24th May '16 2:22:17 AM The_Glorious_SOB
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However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). In retaliation for the PLO bombing the crap out of them from Lebanon, Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians on Lebanese soil, driving the subject came much closer to home and pushing things to get much nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Pro-PLO militias controlled the south of the country; Anti-PLO controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: the PLO and its allied militias controlled West Beirut, their enemies controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Syria and Israel decided to invade?

to:

However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). In retaliation for the PLO bombing the crap out of them from Lebanon, Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians on Lebanese soil, driving the subject came much closer to home and pushing things to get much nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Pro-PLO militias controlled the south of the country; Anti-PLO controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: the PLO and its allied militias controlled West Beirut, their enemies controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Syria and Israel decided to invade?
20th Feb '16 12:28:28 PM Satakieli
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A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980s to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and [[TearJerker a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children.]] All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.

to:

A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980s to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and [[TearJerker a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children.]] children. All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.
6th Oct '15 1:33:38 PM StFan
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MalaakAngelOfPeace is the one Lebanese comic series to date, set in a warring Lebanon that criss-crosses with a mythological one.

to:

MalaakAngelOfPeace ''ComicBook/MalaakAngelOfPeace'' is the one Lebanese comic series to date, set in a warring Lebanon that criss-crosses with a mythological one.
28th Dec '14 3:55:55 AM FurryKef
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The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000s saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.

to:

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000s saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators [[LesCollaborateurs sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.
24th Nov '14 8:18:35 AM LongLiveHumour
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Lebanon was under a French Mandate from the end of WorldWarOne until 1943, leaving a deep impression in language and culture - for the Lebanese mostly, but also for the French. If you ever see French people greet each other with kisses on the cheeks, that's a Lebanese tradition. On the other hand, even today, Lebanese dialects of Arabic contain strong traces of French, and French is officially a national language. Lebanese cooking is famous throughout the Middle East and beyond: hummus, falafel, tabbouleh, and pastries unrivaled in taste (although an Egyptian would dispute that for the falafel and some of the pastries and Greeks would make a similar point about the baklava; Food is SeriousBusiness). An Egyptian restaurant opening abroad might call itself 'Lebanese' to get more customers.

Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. A major reason for this is that its independence is not really accepted by Damascus, who holds that Lebanon is more or less a(n autonomous at best) part of Syria proper. This even goes as far as to show in the maps produced, showing the border between the two countries as being internal, like you would get between American states. Being a fairly small and weak country that had sizable ties with Israel and the West, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble. Particularly since the camps soon became instruments of PLO power, serving and political *and military* strongholds that they would later use to pressure and eventually intervene in Internal Lebanese politics.

Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting mostly Christian pro-Westerners against mostly-Muslim pro-Syrians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the U.S. [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."

to:

Lebanon was under a French Mandate from the end of WorldWarOne UsefulNotes/WorldWarOne until 1943, leaving a deep impression in language and culture - for the Lebanese mostly, but also for the French. If you ever see French people greet each other with kisses on the cheeks, that's a Lebanese tradition. On the other hand, even today, Lebanese dialects of Arabic contain strong traces of French, and French is officially a national language. Lebanese cooking is famous throughout the Middle East and beyond: hummus, falafel, tabbouleh, and pastries unrivaled in taste (although an Egyptian would dispute that for the falafel and some of the pastries and Greeks would make a similar point about the baklava; Food is SeriousBusiness). An Egyptian restaurant opening abroad might call itself 'Lebanese' to get more customers.

Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. A major reason for this is that its independence is not really accepted by Damascus, who holds that Lebanon is more or less a(n autonomous at best) part of Syria proper. This even goes as far as to show in the maps produced, showing the border between the two countries as being internal, like you would get between American states. Being a fairly small and weak country that had sizable ties with Israel and the West, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, UsefulNotes/ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble. Particularly since the camps soon became instruments of PLO power, serving and political *and military* strongholds that they would later use to pressure and eventually intervene in Internal Lebanese politics.

Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting mostly Christian pro-Westerners against mostly-Muslim pro-Syrians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict [[UsefulNotes/ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, UsefulNotes/DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the U.S. [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."
27th Jul '14 12:45:20 PM Breakerchase
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Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. A major reason for this is that its' independence is not really accepted by Damascus, who holds that Lebanon is more or less a(n autonomous at best) part of Syria proper. This even goes as far as to show in the maps produced, showing the border between the two countries as being internal, like you would get between American states. Being a fairly small and weak country that had sizable ties with Israel and the West, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble. Particularly since the camps soon became instruments of PLO power, serving and political *and military* strongholds that they would later use to pressure and eventually intervene in Internal Lebanese politics.

to:

Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. A major reason for this is that its' its independence is not really accepted by Damascus, who holds that Lebanon is more or less a(n autonomous at best) part of Syria proper. This even goes as far as to show in the maps produced, showing the border between the two countries as being internal, like you would get between American states. Being a fairly small and weak country that had sizable ties with Israel and the West, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble. Particularly since the camps soon became instruments of PLO power, serving and political *and military* strongholds that they would later use to pressure and eventually intervene in Internal Lebanese politics.



However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). In retaliation for the PLO bombing the crap out of them from Lebanon, Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians on Lebanese soil, driving the subject came much closer to home and pushing things to get much nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Pro-PLO militias controlled the south of the country; Anti-PLO controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: the PLO and its' allied militias controlled West Beirut, their enemies controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Syria and Israel decided to invade?

to:

However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). In retaliation for the PLO bombing the crap out of them from Lebanon, Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians on Lebanese soil, driving the subject came much closer to home and pushing things to get much nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Pro-PLO militias controlled the south of the country; Anti-PLO controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: the PLO and its' its allied militias controlled West Beirut, their enemies controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Syria and Israel decided to invade?



The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000s saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its' control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.

You think it's over yet? Nope. While Syria moved back to the other side of the border, it was determined to keep its' influence in-country. It had backed the Shia militia/political party Hezbullah in the 1980s, and continued to do so after the civil war was over. Hezbullah decided that now that its Syrian protectors were gone, it would focus its attention on making Israel miserable (ItMakesSenseInContext, which I haven't the time to give you). As a result, in July-August 2006 after Hezbullah kidnapped 2 Israeli soldiers and returned to rocketing Israel from Lebanon. In turn, Israel returned bombing the crap out of Lebanon in an attempt to destroy Hezbollah, but did not go beyond that because of internal politics and the hope that it would work enough. All of this contributed to Beirut getting torn up *again* just after the Lebanese had finished rebuilding it. It was never quite as intense as the civil war (a veritable bloodbath), but it was enough to give people nightmares until it more or less died down in 2009, though the country still remained divided. Hezbollah remains largely dominant in the country to the point where it threatens the independent Lebanese government, with supporting and opposing militias and paramilitaries all taking chunks of the country and threatening balkanization.

TheArabSpring sucked Lebanon into its' vortex just a few years later; as you might expect for a country that has faced considerable occupation from a larger, authoritarian neighbor. Like before, Lebanon would again face major shock waves because of events and decisions in Syria. This time, however, the event in question was not the expansion of Syrian power but the explosion of the Syrian Civil War against the Assad government. As a result, both Pro and Anti Syrian/Baathist/Assad factions have gone across the border in large numbers to fight in what is almost a larger proxy war, even as internally the country suffers from a sort of smaller "proxy cold war", with both sides maneuvering for advantage.

to:

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000s saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its' its control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.

You think it's over yet? Nope. While Syria moved back to the other side of the border, it was determined to keep its' its influence in-country. It had backed the Shia militia/political party Hezbullah in the 1980s, and continued to do so after the civil war was over. Hezbullah decided that now that its Syrian protectors were gone, it would focus its attention on making Israel miserable (ItMakesSenseInContext, which I haven't the time to give you). As a result, in July-August 2006 after Hezbullah kidnapped 2 Israeli soldiers and returned to rocketing Israel from Lebanon. In turn, Israel returned bombing the crap out of Lebanon in an attempt to destroy Hezbollah, but did not go beyond that because of internal politics and the hope that it would work enough. All of this contributed to Beirut getting torn up *again* just after the Lebanese had finished rebuilding it. It was never quite as intense as the civil war (a veritable bloodbath), but it was enough to give people nightmares until it more or less died down in 2009, though the country still remained divided. Hezbollah remains largely dominant in the country to the point where it threatens the independent Lebanese government, with supporting and opposing militias and paramilitaries all taking chunks of the country and threatening balkanization.

TheArabSpring sucked Lebanon into its' its vortex just a few years later; as you might expect for a country that has faced considerable occupation from a larger, authoritarian neighbor. Like before, Lebanon would again face major shock waves because of events and decisions in Syria. This time, however, the event in question was not the expansion of Syrian power but the explosion of the Syrian Civil War against the Assad government. As a result, both Pro and Anti Syrian/Baathist/Assad factions have gone across the border in large numbers to fight in what is almost a larger proxy war, even as internally the country suffers from a sort of smaller "proxy cold war", with both sides maneuvering for advantage.
27th Jul '14 12:44:35 PM Breakerchase
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Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting mostly Christian pro-Westerners against mostly-Muslim pro-Syrians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the US [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."

to:

Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting mostly Christian pro-Westerners against mostly-Muslim pro-Syrians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the US U.S. [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."



A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980's to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and [[TearJerker a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children.]] All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000's saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its' control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.

to:

A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country in the early 1980's 1980s to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and [[TearJerker a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children.]] All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000's 2000s saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian elephant in the room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its' control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, which turned out to be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.
19th Jun '14 4:28:57 AM Turtler
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Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. Being a fairly small and weak country, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble.

Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting Muslims against Christians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the US [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."

However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). As Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians, the subject came much closer to home, and things got nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Palestinian and other Muslim militias controlled the south of the country; Christians controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: Muslim militias controlled West Beirut, Christian militias controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Israel decided to invade in the early 80s?

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000's saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, Syrian troops continued to occupy the country until 2005, until protests resulting from the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri led to their withdrawal.

You think it's over yet? Nope. Syria had backed the Shia militia/political party Hezbullah in the 1980s, and continued to do so after the civil war was over. Hezbullah decided that now that its Syrian protectors were gone, it would focus its attention on making Israel miserable (ItMakesSenseInContext, which I haven't the time to give you). As a result, in July-August 2006 after Hezbullah kidnapped 2 Israeli soldiers to make an indirect prisoners exchange because Israel was holding about 180 dead Lebanese men since the 1982 invasion of Lebanon and 40 alive Lebanese men in their prison, Israel started bombing the crap out of Lebanon, but was not able to invade the country this time thanks to Hezbullah for protecting the Lebanese border from Israel. None of this was very fair, as the Israelis managed to destroy part of Beirut ''yet again'' (they'd done it as part of their intervention in the civil war) just after the Lebanese had rebuilt it. As getting the crap bombed out of you tends to do, part of the Lebanese people were not at all pleased by this war because of the Americans . It was never quite as intense as the civil war (a veritable bloodbath), but it was enough to give people nightmares until it more or less died down in 2009. And after the 2006 war Hezbullah rebuild Beirut (to say nothing of the other cities) ''again''. It seems like the beautiful cedar tree on the flag is becoming more and more an item of nostalgia.

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Lebanon's history since independence in TheForties has been checkered at best. A major reason for this is that its' independence is not really accepted by Damascus, who holds that Lebanon is more or less a(n autonomous at best) part of Syria proper. This even goes as far as to show in the maps produced, showing the border between the two countries as being internal, like you would get between American states. Being a fairly small and weak country, country that had sizable ties with Israel and the West, it didn't contribute very much to the ArabIsraeliConflict, even in the initial invasion of Israel in 1948. However, lots of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, whose government refused to allow the Palestinians to integrate. They've been living in festering camps in the countryside ever since (albeit "camps" with a whole lot of pretty permanent-looking structures), a major problem that would come back to haunt the country in its times of trouble.

trouble. Particularly since the camps soon became instruments of PLO power, serving and political *and military* strongholds that they would later use to pressure and eventually intervene in Internal Lebanese politics.

Outside the camps, however, things seemed to run smoothly. A political crisis in 1958 (pitting Muslims mostly Christian pro-Westerners against Christians mostly-Muslim pro-Syrians for reasons related to [[ArabIsraeliConflict the Suez War]] two years earlier) that threatened to turn into a civil war was defused when DwightEisenhower, on the request of the Lebanese president, sent the US [[YanksWithTanks Army]] and [[SemperFi Marines]] to keep anything from happening. For a time, Lebanon was reasonably stable and prosperous; UsefulNotes/{{Beirut}} continued to live up to its reputation as the "Paris of the Middle East."

However, by 1975, the Palestinians had organized themselves into the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), which more or less became a "state within a state" in Lebanon. The Palestinians used southern Lebanon as a base for attacks on Israel, which screwed up everything most massively. Various groups within Lebanon took different positions on the issue (Christians generally frowning on it, Sunnis generally supportive, Shias generally too poor to be noticed). As In retaliation for the PLO bombing the crap out of them from Lebanon, Israel started bombing the crap out of the Palestinians, Palestinians on Lebanese soil, driving the subject came much closer to home, home and pushing things got to get much nastier. By April of 1975, it had turned into an all-out civil war. Palestinian and other Muslim Pro-PLO militias controlled the south of the country; Christians Anti-PLO controlled the center and west; and to top it off, the north and east were invaded by UsefulNotes/{{Syria}}. Beirut itself was divided in two: Muslim the PLO and its' allied militias controlled West Beirut, Christian militias their enemies controlled East Beirut, and various people whose religious background did not match the militias' generally fled to the other side before they were shot. Oh, and did we mention that Syria and Israel decided to invade invade?

A force of American, British, French, and Italian peacekeepers were deployed to the country
in the early 80s?

1980's to try and bring a stop to the civil war or at least to restrain the warring sides. However, they soon got sucked into the frenzied fighting and soon became a target of Syrian and Iranian intelligence, as well as their Islamist paramilitary proxies. As a result, one enterprising group picked two volunteer with the know how to drive, loaded trucks up with high explosives, and on October 23rd of 1983 [[SuicideAttack sent it careening into the Peacekeeping compounds.]] By far the more infamous and deadly attack was that on the USMC barracks, which killed 241 American servicemen and a Lebanese civilian and was basically the TropeCodifier for modern suicide bombing; less well known is that there was another attack on the French Para barracks not far, which killed an additional 58 Frenchmen and [[TearJerker a Lebanese janitor's wife and four children.]] All in all, the death total wracked up to 299 peacekeepers, 305 total including civilians, and the two perpetrators. The event was one of the most devastating attacks any of the countries had suffered, and led to the decision to remove the Peacekeepers and leave Lebanon to the paramilitaries.

The war continued until 1990, when an uneasy peace deal was reached in The Nineties that ended the civil war. The early 2000's saw Israel leaving the southern part of the country without any conditions. During these years, much of the country was rebuilt (although bullet holes remained an expected part of any building). However, the Syrian troops continued to occupy elephant in the country until 2005, until protests resulting from room stayed on for years in an effort to thoroughly subordinate Lebanon to its' control, though generally preferring to act through [[TheQuisling quislings]], [[LesColalborators sympathetic locals]], and [[TheCoronerDothProtestTooMuch well-timed and deniable "accidents"]] than directly. One of these was the assassination of the former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri led Hariri, which turned out to their be a massive miscalculation as it spurred major protests that forced Syria to withdrawal.

You think it's over yet? Nope. While Syria moved back to the other side of the border, it was determined to keep its' influence in-country. It had backed the Shia militia/political party Hezbullah in the 1980s, and continued to do so after the civil war was over. Hezbullah decided that now that its Syrian protectors were gone, it would focus its attention on making Israel miserable (ItMakesSenseInContext, which I haven't the time to give you). As a result, in July-August 2006 after Hezbullah kidnapped 2 Israeli soldiers and returned to make an indirect prisoners exchange because rocketing Israel was holding about 180 dead Lebanese men since the 1982 invasion of Lebanon and 40 alive Lebanese men in their prison, from Lebanon. In turn, Israel started returned bombing the crap out of Lebanon, but was not able to invade the country this time thanks to Hezbullah for protecting the Lebanese border from Israel. None of this was very fair, as the Israelis managed Lebanon in an attempt to destroy part Hezbollah, but did not go beyond that because of internal politics and the hope that it would work enough. All of this contributed to Beirut ''yet again'' (they'd done it as part of their intervention in the civil war) getting torn up *again* just after the Lebanese had rebuilt finished rebuilding it. As getting the crap bombed out of you tends to do, part of the Lebanese people were not at all pleased by this war because of the Americans . It was never quite as intense as the civil war (a veritable bloodbath), but it was enough to give people nightmares until it more or less died down in 2009. And after 2009, though the 2006 war Hezbullah rebuild Beirut (to say nothing country still remained divided. Hezbollah remains largely dominant in the country to the point where it threatens the independent Lebanese government, with supporting and opposing militias and paramilitaries all taking chunks of the other cities) ''again''. It seems like country and threatening balkanization.

TheArabSpring sucked Lebanon into its' vortex just a few years later; as you might expect for a country that has faced considerable occupation from a larger, authoritarian neighbor. Like before, Lebanon would again face major shock waves because of events and decisions in Syria. This time, however,
the event in question was not the expansion of Syrian power but the explosion of the Syrian Civil War against the Assad government. As a result, both Pro and Anti Syrian/Baathist/Assad factions have gone across the border in large numbers to fight in what is almost a larger proxy war, even as internally the country suffers from a sort of smaller "proxy cold war", with both sides maneuvering for advantage.

The
beautiful cedar tree on the flag is becoming more was adopted as both the symbol of the government and more an item of nostalgia.
the anti-Syrian factions, and it looks like until that conflict is resolved it will remain tormented.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=UsefulNotes.Lebanon