Lebanon multiculturalism Muslim-Christian Relations



Multiculturalism with monoculture Islam is always a one way street.

Lebanese bishop

After experiencing Islam upfront and in their face for centuries, and yet, still ignorant of the futility of co-existence with Islam, what chance does Europe, or the rest of the West have in finally figuring it out before it’s too late?


Folks, today, Lebanon, once deemed a de facto Christian state with 54% of the population, is now firmly in the hands of a Muslim (Sunni and Shiite) majority. Christians now comprise only 41.5% of the population, but most noticeably, making up 80% of the world’s population of Lebanese living abroad.

The following is an excerpt from an article at the History News Network website, concerning the massacre at the Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps, I was forwarded it from a colleague who was researching material to counter bias reporting in the wake of the  passing of former Israeli PM, Ariel Sharon.

I came across a portion of text which shows the futility of the West’s embrace of ‘multiculturalism’ with Islam. In the 1920’s, the Marionite leadership went against the advice of the French (who insisted at the time, that they form a smaller Marionite/Christian state in order to protect themselves against the growing Muslim demographic) and strove to forge a Christian-Muslim ‘multi-ethnic’ state.

What ensued, is marked by periods of similar attempts of co-existence, which produced mass emigration of Christian Lebanese in response to Muslim aggression from massacres and civil war. Lebanese Christian emigration also mirrors that of Bethlehem and Nazareth, which were formerly Christian majority enclaves from time immemorial, and are now majority Muslim towns.

NOTE: The author is explaining why it was always problematic to believe that the Christian led Lebanese Forces orchestrated the massacre at Sabra and Shatilla refugee camps, even in spite of the murder of Bashir Gemayel, the Christian Lebanese president. He believes that Hafez al-Assad engineered the massacre instead.

Incidentally, throughout their troubled twentieth-century history, Lebanon’s Maronites always opted for reconciliation, power-sharing, and a “multi-ethnic,” rather than a purely Maronite or a Maronite-dominated state.  To wit, when the French warned the Maronites about the “demographic time bomb” that Grand Liban of 1920 would become in twenty years’ time and advised them to construct a smaller “Christian homeland” instead, the Maronites opted for a “larger Lebanon” as a model of multi-ethnic (Christian-Muslim) coexistence.

When another such opportunity for a smaller, culturally homogenous, Christian Lebanon offered itself in 1926, the Maronites still opted for “coexistence” with Lebanon’s Muslims.  They did so time and again in 1936, in 1958, in 1976, and most importantly, at the height of their political and military power, in 1982.  What’s more, Bashir Gemayel’s assassination dashed the hopes and snuffed the exuberance of a wide cross-section of Lebanese society—Muslims and Christians alike—and in the aftermath of his death the LF were scrambling to deal with the trauma, the disarray, the mass popular despondency, and the political vacuum that his sudden disappearance had left.

It is, therefore, more than dubious that in a moment of national trauma such as this, the LF leadership would be plotting and executing a massacre that not only would have tarnished their image among the Muslims they’d been courting, but one that would have impugned their very legitimacy in the wider Arab world—which Bashir had been visiting for years prior, promoting his presidential platform and his national salvation and reconciliation project, and hawking his intent on hammering out an eventual “end-of-conflict” agreement with Israel. HNN


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