Elite Politics in Postwar Lebanon
Publication Year: 2012
Published by: Syracuse University Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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Since the start of the civil war in 1975, Lebanon has had an enormous impact on the region and the international community. A series of foreign powers have intervened militarily—the United States, France, Britain, Italy, Israel, and Syria. Sometimes they have come as peacekeepers, sometimes as invaders...
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This book took a decade to come to fruition. Originally a dissertation written in French and defended in 2003, it was substantially revised and updated for publication. This work would not have been possible without the help and support of many people—mentors, colleagues, friends, and family. I am indebted to many...
Note on Transliteration
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A simplifi ed form of the International Journal of Middle East Studiesstyle has been used for transliteration from Arabic throughout the text. No diacritical marks have been used with the exception of the hamza (’) and the ayn (‘). Lebanese names have been written in the most common form found in the...
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The recent political history of Lebanon has been defi ned by the legacy of war. In addition to repeated external invasions and the ongoing presence of foreign troops of diverse nationalities, the Lebanese people have endured the scars of a bitterly contested civil war that began in the spring of 1975 and continued unabated...
The Lebanese Political System
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Arend Lijphart, focusing on the period between 1943 and 1975, has described this relatively stable time in Lebanese history as a successful “consociational” democracy.1 Consociationalism refers to a political situation in which a variety of groups, none of which are large enough to constitute a majority, are...
Postwar Elite Interaction
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The period following the Lebanese civil war saw not only a new formula of power sharing, as exemplifi ed in the Ta’if Agreement, but also the emergence of a new political elite composed of Syrian-supported politicians. The Ta’if Agreement was fi rst and foremost an arrangement among elite groups. Although...
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During the prewar period, Lebanese American scholar Michael Suleiman developed the thesis that although political parties existed in Lebanon, these organizations could not be thought of as the functional equivalents of parties in Western democracies.1 Suleiman noted that Lebanese political parties did no...
State Elites and theLegacy of Corruption
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The consociational nature of the Lebanese political system is associated with relatively weak national institutions, overseen by individually strong sectarian elites who are the political representatives of the country’s various religious communities. An understanding of the composition of the political elite can therefore be had by examining the elites who hold the high offices...
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Whereas state elites act directly within the political arena, other groups that exist beyond state institutions can also have an effect on political decisions. They are the second half of what Italian scholar Vilfredo Pareto has called “governing elites,” those people who either directly or indirectly affect decision making...
Emerging Elites and the Absence of Women from Politics
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In this chapter I argue that in the postwar era, there has been little change in the behavior of Lebanese political elites. This stagnation is largely owing to the fact that there was no fundamental regime change after the Ta’if Agreement, but only a modifi cation of the power-sharing structure.1 Despite the rebalancing of power between Muslims and Christians, the central characteristics of the prewar...
Elite Attitudes on Syriaand Sectarianism
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With an understanding of the historical trajectory of the Lebanese system and of the characteristics of established and emerging political elites, we can now turn to an examination of the elite discourse on issues of national and strategic interest. In this chapter, I will describe the parameters of recent national debates in...
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The Lebanese civil war led to a renewal and realignment of the Lebanese political elite. Today, that elite is composed of a group of state actors who emerged during the war and consolidated power after the Ta’if Agreement and a strategic elite composed of unelected individuals who infl uence political debate...
Who’s Who of Lebanese Politics
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Aoun, Michel. (Maronite.) Lebanese general who was appointed at the end of an interim government at the end of Amin Gemayel’s presidential term. He led a military campaign to expel Syria from Lebanon. He attempted to dissolve the parliament in 1989 while the deputies...
Lebanese Political Timeline(1989–2005)
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Glossary of Arabic Terms
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Page Count: 312
Publication Year: 2012