What Were the Major Disagreements Between the Christian and Muslim Lebanese in 1975 That Triggered the Lebanese Civil War?
The conflict, which lasted 15years, cost 150,000 lives, injured 300,000, andled to the emigration of almost a million people, brought the Lebanese state to near collapse.With similar conflicts now spreading through-out the Middle East, Lebanon’s tragic history canprovide useful lessons on civil wars – and in par-ticular on how to end them.
(Gordon, 1980). The Lebanese Civil War was a historically significant event because it led to a revival of Islam centred on Jihad. The growing influence of the West in the Middle East caused moderate Arab Muslims to turn to religious extremism, which is evident in the acts of terrorism taking place in the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and North America. Would the war have taken place had the United Nations never introduced the state of Israel into the region? It is rather unlikely, as the Palestinians would have remained in their homeland and many speculate that there would not be a radical Muslim movement except at the fringes of society, much in the same way that hard line Christian sects are on the fringes of European society (Rabinovich, 1985). However, it is usually quite difficult to predict what would happen on an alternate timeline because who would have known that the assassination of two aristocrats in Austria-Hungary would have led to one of the worst wars of all time?
Taken from the first level of analysis we must firstaddress the input of man. Lebanon was created as a composite state, which broughttogether over 17 different sects. The largest religious groupings were the Maronites followed by the Sunni’s and Shia’s and so on. French designs at protecting the Maronites resulted in the creation of a Christian hegemony, which held a smallmajority. While this is not merely enough to allow for the outbreak of such a violentconflict there is other mitigating factors.
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