By Kamal Salibi
At the present time Lebanon is among the world's so much divided international locations - if it continues to be a rustic in any respect. yet ironically the faction-ridden Lebanese, either Christians and Muslims, have by no means proven a keener cognizance of universal identification. How can this be? The Lebanese historian Kamal S. Salibi examines, within the mild of contemporary scholarship, the historic myths on which his country's warring groups have established their conflicting visions of the Lebanese state. The Lebanese have regularly lacked a typical imaginative and prescient in their earlier. From the start Muslims and Christians have disagreed essentially over their country's old legitimacy: Christians commonly have affirmed it, Muslims have tended to stress Lebanon's position in a broader Arab heritage. either teams have used nationalist rules in a harmful online game, which at a deeper point comprises archaic loyalties and tribal rivalries. yet Lebanon can't have the funds for those conflicting visions whether it is to increase and keep a feeling of political group. during his vigorous exposition, Salibi bargains a tremendous reinterpretation of Lebanese historical past and offers insights into the dynamic of Lebanon's contemporary clash. He additionally offers an account of ways the photographs of groups which underlie smooth nationalism are created
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Additional resources for A House of Many Mansions: History of Lebanon Reconsidered
More than that France could only give advice, because one day they would be on their own: the advice was given, and even pressed. Maronite leaders who accepted it, and began to show prudence in speech and action, were given all the necessary backing to reach office. Those who did not accept the advice received no support; and when they happened to be in office, they were left in political isolation, and their wiser opponents were helped to bring them down. Originally, the Maronites had wanted Lebanon, politically, for themselves.
As Christians, they were under no obligation to make any apology for 42 A HOUSE OF MANY MANSIONS their community particularism, and felt no guilt about making contacts or developing regular relations with foreign Christian powers regardless of the status of such powers as friends or enemies of the Islamic state. This gave the Maronites a distinct advantage over dissident Muslim Arab communities who behaved similarly - most notably their Druze neighbours, with whom they came to be politically associated in Mount Lebanon during the forrnative years of the Ottoman period.
Naturally, it was impossible for Britain after the war to honour simultaneously all these conflicting commitments fully. The need to reach a settlement with France over the area was most pressing, and this was taken care of by the San Remo agreement. During the last months of the war, as the British drove the Ottoman forces out of Syria, with the forces of Sharif Husayn's Arab Revolt protecting their right flank, the Sharifs third and most popular son, Faysal, was allowed to enter Damascus and establish an Arab government on behalf of his father in that ancient Arab capital.