The states of the Arab East have always experienced challenging political and social issues mainly inherited from their creation by Great Powers after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Indeed, the Western organizational model of the time, i.e. nation-state, poorly fitted the regional realities. The concept had no historical antecedent in the political culture of Islam and neglected the sectarian component of the area. Lebanon was no exception. Since its independence in 1943, the country's growing instability ultimately led to the breakout of the civil war in 1975, which only really ended with the Taif Agreement fourteen years later. 1975 underlined a major shift in the perception of Lebanon abroad . Once thought as a liberal and tolerant state, dealing relatively efficiently with a deeply multi-confessional society, it became the symbol of political instability and radicalism.
[...] fact, the enlargement to regions mainly inhabited by both Sunni and Shiite communities was likely to undermine any attempt of political coherence. Indeed, the territory then defined gathered eighteenth recognized sects. The National Pact of 1943, by which Lebanon became independent, established a confessional democracy as the political system of the country. The system then created was certainly peculiar; however it acknowledged the division into several religious communities and did not deny the Ottoman legacy. Indeed, religion remained considered as the main locus of communal identity. [...]
[...] “Regional Conflicts, Regional Solutions: The Case of Lebanon” in Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. Vol.518 (1991): 82-94. Dekmejian, Richard Hair. “Consociational Democracy in Crisis, The Case of Lebanon” in Comparative Politics. Vol.10, no.2 (1978): 251-265. El-Khazen, Farid. The Breakdown of the State in Lebanon, 1967-1976. Cambridge: Harvard University Press Evron, Yair. War and Intervention in Lebanon. Baltimore: The John Hopkins University Press Fisk, Robert, Pity the Nation: Lebanon at War. London: A.deutch Kelidar, Abbas. “States Without Foundations: The Political Evolution of State and Society in the Arab East” in Journal of Contemporary History. [...]
[...] Consociational Democracy in Crisis, The Case of Lebanon in “Comparative Politics”. Vol.10, no.2 (1978): 251-265. Ibid. Mary Janes Deeb. Regional Conflicts, Regional Solutions: The Case of Lebanon in “Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science”. Vol.518 (1991): 82-94. Charles Winslow. Lebanon, War and Politics in a Fragmented Society. (London: Routledge, 1996) Helena Cobban, “Lebanon's Chinese Puzzle” in Foreign Policy, no.53 (1983): 34-48 Ibid. Farid El-Khazen. The Breakdown of the State in Lebanon, 1967-1976. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2000) Ibid. [...]
[...] (London: A.deutch, 1990) Mary Janes Deeb. Regional Conflicts, Regional Solutions: The Case of Lebanon in “Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science”. Vol.518 (1991): 82-94. Called that way because of their opposition to the 1974-75 disengagement accords, especially Sadat's decision to sign a separate peace with Israel. Mary Janes Deeb. Regional Conflicts, Regional Solutions: The Case of Lebanon in “Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science”. Vol.518 (1991): 82-94. Yair Evron. War and Intervention in Lebanon. [...]
[...] But, if the breakout of the civil war in 1975 epitomized the final stage of a worsening domestic situation, of the fragmentation of the country in several entities unable to cooperate, the regional environment dissolved any hope of stability. The domestic fragility paved the way to a deep penetration of regional issues, which promoted in return the evoked instability. The Arab- Israeli dispute proved to be the main source of the fragmentation among the Lebanese elite, especially after the 1967 war and the beginning of the peace settlement process in the 1970s. [...]
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