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Spara som favorit. Skickas inom vardagar. This is the first history of Lebanon from the Ottoman Empire to the modern period. Based on previously inaccessible archives, it is a fascinating account of one of the world's most fabled countries. Starting with the formation of Ottoman Lebanon in the 16th century, Traboulsi covers the growth of Beirut as a capital for trade and culture through the 19th century, it's independence and experiences as a republic, before moving onward to Lebanon's development in the late 20th century and the conflicts that led up to the major wars in the s and s and beyond.

This is a stunning history of Lebanon over five centuries, bringing to life its politics, its people and the crucial role that it has always played in world affairs. : A history of modern lebanon () : Fawwaz Traboulsi : Books

Passar bra ihop. Recensioner i media. But the French military intervention was being played out within a much more ambitious project. In France, political parties were divided over the intervention.

A History of Modern Lebanon

Catholics, who were pressing for an armed intervention in Italy to save the Vatican from the approaching forces of Italian unity, suspected the Syrian campaign of being a subterfuge for not defending the threatened papacy. They resisted a mere return to the status- quo ante. The Ottoman marine imposed an embargo for a number of weeks on the port of Junieh to oblige the rebels to negotiate. The accord stipulated the return of the sheikhs and the restitution of their properties, and obliged the peasants to pay their arrears in rent and taxes.

It held meetings from 5 October to 5 March to supervise the punishment of the accused, reparations and reconstruction and to devise a new social and political status for Mount Lebanon. On 8 December , a legal tribunal was set up in Mukhtara in which people were tried, 25 Druze were sentenced to death and executed; the rest were later reprieved.

In March , he launched an attack on the headquarters of Tanius Shahin in Rayfoun and set fire to it as Shahin fled to Beirut and put himself under the protection of the French consul. Majid Shihab, a candidate for the governorate of Mount Lebanon, was named governor of Kisrawan and charged with collecting taxes from a population that had been bled white. In the final tally, there were only a few dozen victims of the Kisrawan uprising while at least 5, perished in the civil conflicts of Mount Lebanon alone, villages were burnt and , people displaced.

We are told that history does not repeat itself, yet it has a remarkable knack for reactualising past events and scenes. In this sense, the present serves sometimes to elucidate the past. The front lines have been the same, passing through Mutayn, or along the Beirut—Damascus road. Last but not least, from this past emerges a scene that resumes the founding drama of civil violence in modern Lebanon.

A huge wave unfurled and dragged them into the open sea where they were swallowed up by the tide. Politically, the Mutasarrifiya, under a Christian Ottoman administrator, was a compromise between the French-sponsored project for an independent Christian emirate under a Shihab amir or Yusuf Bey Karam and the complete submission of Mount Lebanon to Ottoman authority.

Furthermore, the export of the French Revolutionary model was shelved, replaced by the new colonial model, which encouraged provincial and ethnic autonomy in the development of a world division of labour. However, the salient characteristic of the Mutasarrifiya was that its political autonomy inside the Ottoman Empire became the framework for the development of a double economic dependence. Mount Lebanon was economically tied to Beirut and the European market as it relied increasingly on the Syrian interior for the better part of its requirements in cereals and livestock.

This double dependence would ultimately erode the foundations of political autonomy itself. The war of had ended with a Christian military defeat despite the fact that Christians constituted a majority of the population and the biggest fighting force. Conversely, the Druze military victory could not halt their loss of political and social power, despite British attempts to mitigate the effects of this loss. The balance of power in the Mountain had been turned upside down: the history of the Druze henceforth would be the history of their struggle to survive as a minority. The governor of Mount Lebanon was a non-Arab Ottoman Christian who enjoyed wide-ranging executive powers and reported directly to the Porte.

Elections to the AC were held in two stages. Each village would elect a local sheikh shabab, who was required to receive official confirmation from the Mutasarrif. Then, the sheikh shabab of each constituency proceeded to elect the 12 councillors.

by Mitchell G. Bard

The only armed force on Mutasarrifiya territory was a local police force, the gendarmerie, trained and organised by French officers, whose number was set at 1, but never reached half this figure. Nevertheless, the Mutasarrif — who enjoyed the rank of military ruler with the title of mushir — was granted the right to disarm the population. Taxes collected in Mount Lebanon constituted the basis for the budget, and only the surplus was to be turned over to Istanbul. In the event of a budget deficit, aid was to be provided by the central Ottoman treasury.

The judicial system was vested in courts of first instance and in a court of appeal whose judges were appointed by the Mutasarrif, and elected village shaykhs, who also acted as justices of the peace. On his way back to Damascus, the Algerian prince visited Istanbul, where he obtained from the Sultan the release of Damascene notables accused of instigating the anti-Christian massacres of Retired in his Damascus home, he repeatedly declared his withdrawal from political affairs and spent the rest of his days in pious recollection and Sufi contemplation.

He died on 24 May Matters were more difficult concerning Yusuf Karam. He was encircled and practically defeated near Bikfaya in the Matn , but French mediation secured Ottoman approval to transport the rebellious bey to a European exile aboard a French gunship. After a short stay in France, Karam moved to Algeria, where he was granted land in the Constantine region and was approached to lend his support to the project of settling Lebanese Maronite peasants in Algeria.

He finally settled in Italy, in , where he spent the rest of his days. He died on 7 April The AC soon established itself as the other pole of attraction and representation for the Maronites in the south of Mount Lebanon, as well as those of the north. In addition, the postwar reconstruction and economic take-off contributed to tempering the extreme autonomist demands, which had become deprived of any external backing.

Soon, this dependence on the external market transformed Mount Lebanon into an exporting enclave, dominated by Beirut. In , there were 67 silk-reeling factories, the seven biggest and most modern being French-owned. In , their number had reached , with only five French factories, as foreign investment mainly Lyons-based moved from the productive sector to the control of sericulture through the market.

Some 14, workers were employed in the silk-reeling factories,12, of whom were women, with an overall majority of Maronites 8, Maronite workers compared to 2, Greek Catholics, 2, Greek Orthodox and around 1, Druze. Working conditions were harsh, working hours were long and salaries excessively low.

Sericulture had developed primarily at the expense of cereal culture. The rapid regression of subsistence agriculture and the dominance of cash crops were responsible for this grave commercial deficit. Sericulture, far from halting or even reducing the haemmorhage of human resources, became one of its main causes. Between and , roughly a third of the inhabitants of Mount Lebanon left the country. In the beginning, a good portion of those who migrated returned after having gathered enough money to buy a plot of land. But those who owned the land would not sell.

Even the extention of the Church Waqf expelled yearly thousands of other Lebanese from their country and still does. On the eve of the First World War, a peasant movement in the northern part of the Mountain was still calling for the distribution of waqf lands among landless peasants. First, there was a noticeable transfer of landed property from Druze to Christians.

In —63, three-quarters of those who sold land were Druze and two-thirds of those who bought land were Christians. Third, this asymmetry between the two communities was further aggravated by political dominance as the Christians now held a majority of seven to five votes in the Administrative Council. Functionaries of commoner origins acceded to administrative posts with great difficulty, while the Mutasarrifiya continued to depend for long periods on those ex-lords recycled in the administration and to back the landed owners against peasant demands.

However, the most salient socio-political aspect of life under the Mutasarrifiya was the rise of a new social class and political force linked to the development of sericulture, the penetration of colonial capital and emigration. It was composed of members of mudabbir families, middle-level landed notables, administrators and members of the liberal professions in addition to merchants and those directly related to the silk economy. But it was also being swelled by the influx of returnee migrants.

In terms of ideological expression, this group could be considered nationalist and reformist. The AC was the fortress of that new force. To those should be added the specialist functionaries of the judiciary and the bureaux of the Mutasarrifiya, the francophone intellectuals such as K. This new force, united around the AC, and quite independent of the Maronite Church, was constantly wooed by the reformist and centralising mutasarrifs. Ideas of independence, Lebanonese nationalism and reformism germinated among their ranks.


In fact, it was with great difficulty that the Mutasarrifiya system filtered the great reforms and transformations that the other regions of the Ottoman Empire were witnessing, especially after the declaration of the Ottoman constitution in Even when reforms were proposed, they were either blocked or nipped in the bud by the Maronite Church with the backing of France. French politics after relied more on the Maronite Church than on the mutasarrif, while trying to maintain the social and political status quo.

On the other hand, the reformist and secular mutasarrifs, such as Rustum Pasha —83 , tried to reduce the role of clergy and the influence of private religious schools by backing the new notables of the AC against clerical authority. However, all his reforms were undone by his successor, the conservative Yusuf Bey — But by then Paris and London had begun to envisage the dismemberment of the Ottoman Empire, and their common interest was mainly focused on a comprehensive strategy for the entire region.

A fall in the revenues of the silk sector and a decline in the taxable population, owing to migration, increased the budget deficit and spurred the AC to act. It demanded financial aid from the central government and permission to open the ports on the coast for international trade so as to use customs duties to increase budget revenue. The AC also reiterated its call for widening its electoral base and increasing its fiscal and executive powers. As for the Ottoman administration, the defeats in the Balkans forced the Porte to make concessions to the reformists in order to counter French and British influence, which was becoming more and more menacing in Syria.

The Protocol of December , a modified version of the Statuts organiques of and of , enlarged the electoral base of the AC and gave it a say in the elaboration of the budget and control over its implementation, allocated an additional Maronite seat to Dayr al-Qamar but added another Druze seat for the Shuf to compensate the loss of the Jizzin seat finally allotted to the Maronites and opened the port of Juniyeh to the commerce of Mount Lebanon.

This last concession — the only one that could have assured Mount Lebanon some measure of financial autonomy — was aborted by the joint opposition of the Beirut bourgeoisie and French interests. The reforms, associated with the Mutassarrif Ohannes Pasha, were a step in the right direction, but they arrived too late. In , Bishara al-Khuri expressed the desires of many inhabitants of Mount Lebanon for a local ruler elected by the local population rather than one appointed by the foreign powers.

In November , the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of Germany and annulled the special status granted to Mount Lebanon, which was reincorporated into the Ottoman Empire and governed by a Muslim Ottoman Turk. In the end, the tragedies of World War I gave new meaning to the demands for the expansion of Mount Lebanon and for its autonomy. Paradoxically, Beirut benefited greatly from both trends: as a model of late nineteenth-century Ottoman modernism and a base and bridgehead for European control over Syria.

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As European colonialism radically changed international trade routes in the era of the second industrial revolution, the Beirut— Damascus axis became the main avenue of international trade in the eastern Mediterranean. Raw silk was exported to France, while most manufactured goods arrived from England, invading the markets of Mount Lebanon and the Syrian interior and contributing to the collapse of traditional handicrafts and local production.

In effect, Beirut had already become the economic, judicial, educational and cultural, if not political, capital of Mount Lebanon. Moreover, many consulates, foreign investors and missionaries adopted Beirut as their regional seat or upgraded their representation in the city.

Why Most Lebanese History Books End at 1943

The city became the base for maritime and insurance companies the latter numbered twenty by the end of the nineteenth century. Its usurers lent villagers the nawlun money to buy their travel tickets in return for liens on mortgages and exorbitant rates of interest.