How did the 1975 Lebanese Civil War start? What were the main causes? What were the main conflicting ideologies?

Essay by BaroudehCollege, UndergraduateA+, March 2006

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Lebanon's eastern borders meet with Syria, an Arabic country theoretically considered a strategic ally against the Zionist state located south of Lebanon: Israel. The Israeli-Arab conflict began in 1948 with the conquest of the land of Palestine by the Zionist movement. Almost thirty years later, Lebanon was struck by a long series of "earthquakes" that rendered the country a fragmented entity held together by a thin matrix. In precisely 1975, the tensions that had been building up as a result of the Zionist destabilization of the region ignited on Lebanese soil when 30 unarmed Palestinians on board a bus got slaughtered in the Ain El Remaneh region, buy supporters of the Phalange party.

The Lebanese civil war is the result of a conflict between one mentality that refuses to share Lebanon, willing to partition it if sharing was forced upon it, and another that claims its own right to defend the Palestinian cause in its own country.

The catalyst is foreign meddling.

In the early 1970's the Palestinian Liberation Organization began to use their historical struggle for freedom against Israel as an excuse to interfere lightly in Lebanon's internal affairs. In fact during the first half decade tensions grew between the PLO and the Phalange party a right wing Christian party that refused to share the country with the Palestinian, thus sacrificing Lebanon's sovereignty and unity. A few years later, the increasing Palestinian intervention became a threat to Lebanon's stability through their ever growing military expansion. The opposition of the PLO by the Phalange party reached its pre-war peek with the event that actually triggered the conflict: the Ain El Remaneh Event.

Facing the Phalange party, the Lebanese Progressive Socialist party and its mainly Moslem supporters were the basic building blocs of the Druze - Muslim left wing coalition that...