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Lebanon's Sunnis and the Civil War
Lebanon's Sunnis and the Civil War
Published by Watser?
Tablet Muslim intra-communal fighting

Muslim intra-communal fighting

March saw the PSP and Amal routing al-Murabitun after some nasty street battles. The PSP and Amal were both armed by Syria. Al-Murabitun/MIN, which had been disarmed by the Lebanese army, was no match for either of them separately, let alone the two of them combined. The reason for the attack was probably the anti-Syrian position that al-Murabitun had taken from the Syrian invasion of 1976. The PSP and Amal also supported the anti-Arafat rebels inside Fatah and al-Murabitun was pro-Arafat. Amal had a few other reasons too. Al-Murabitun was supported by Libya which Amal still blamed for the disappearance of Musa al-Sadr.99 The MIN was also a competitor in recruiting Shi’ites. In April of 1985, Amal and the PSP attacked al-Murabitun again, which was accompanied by excesses against the Sunni civilian population, leading to tensions between Shi’ites and Sunnis.100

By April of 1984, the Syrian victory was complete. The treaty with Israel had been cancelled and a new pro-Syrian government was formed with Rashid Karami as prime-minster. However, when Pierre Gemayel died in Augustus 1984, it created a split between the Kataeb Party under Amin Gemayel and the Lebanese Forces under Samir Geagea. Geagea disagreed with the pro-Syrian direction the Kataeb had taken after April of 1984. In March of 1985, Geagea attacked Sidon which was controlled by a pro-Syrian coalition headed by Mustapha Saad. Saad counterattacked together with the PSP and Amal, defeating the LF and driving away the Christian population east and north of Sidon. After this defeat, Geagea was replaced by Elie Hobeika.101 Geagea and Hobeika were responsible for the murder of Tony Frangieh and his family. Hobeika was widely seen as the commander responsible for the massacres of Sabra and Shatila.

In May of 1985, Amal attacked the Palestinian camps in the southern suburbs of Beirut. Amal was a very strong opponent of the presence of armed Palestinians in Lebanon because the Shi’ites had always suffered hard from Israeli reprisals. Some guerrillas had returned to Beirut however. Syria was also strongly opposed to the armed Palestinian presence that was beyond its control. The attack had the adverse effect however of reconciling the different factions in al-Fatah that had clashed heavily in 1983. Moreover, Amal was not supported by the PSP this time, which went even let Palestinians fire at Amal from Druze positions.

The bloody fighting which flared up again in November of 1985 and April of 1986 (Amal’s siege of the camps lasted until 1988 and the fighting and starvation killed more people inside the camps than the LF had in Sabra and Shatila) also made more Palestinian fighters return to Lebanon to defend the camps.102 In 1985 heavy fighting broke out a couple of times between Amal and the PSP, which allowed Palestinians who had returned to join its ranks.103 Meanwhile, in east Beirut there were clashes between the Kataeb and the LF (see above).

In December of 1985, an agreement was reached in Damascus between Amal, the PSP and the Lebanese Forces. The only result however was that Elie Hobeika, who had signed the agreement on behalf of the LF, was ousted in a bloody coup by Samir Geagea, which was supported by Amine Gemayel. Hobeika withdrew to Zahle from where he would try to invade east Beirut several times supported by Syria.


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curses (08-02-2008), Sophia (01-22-2011), Stormlight (08-01-2008)
By Watser? on 12-27-2010, 01:10 AM
News Re: Lebanon's Sunnis and the Civil War

Here's a story from the Lebanese press about one former member of Tawhid who was murdered Saturday in the Palestinian camp Ain al Hilweh, near Sidon.
Located on the outskirts of the coastal city of Sidon, Ain al-Hilweh, like most other Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon, does not fall under the control of the Lebanese government but under that of local Palestinian armed factions.

The camp saw normal activity Sunday morning, one day after the body of Ghandi Sahmarani, a member in the disbanded Jund al-Sham Islamist group was found.

Security sources said that Sahmarani, who is a Lebanese citizen wanted by Lebanese authorities, was found hand cuffed, leg cuffed and struck by a sharp device on the head. Sahmarani who hasn’t shown up for a long time, used to live in the Taamir neighborhood, which lies to the north of the camp, and which is considered a stronghold for Salafi Islamists. The area falls under the influence of Osbat al-Ansar, an Islamist group.

The fugitive was a member of Al-Tawhid al-Islami movement in the 1980’s, during which he participated in the fierce battles that broke out between the movement and the Syrian Army in Tripoli. He left Tripoli in 1987 and moved to Sidon where he joined a number of fundamentalist movements including Osbat al-Ansar and Jund al-Sham. After the disbandment of Jund al-Sham, Sahmarani joined Fatah al-Islam.

Sahmarani reportedly sheltered a number of Islamists who fled the northern Dinnieh district after taking part in the clashes that erupted between their comrades and the Lebanese Army in the district in 2000.

As a member of Jund al-Sham, the group fought the Lebanese Army several times. Armed clashes broke out between the two around Ain al-Hilweh in 2007, when the army was fighting Fatah al-Islam in the northern Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr al-Bared.
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By Watser? on 10-28-2014, 02:10 PM
Default Re: Lebanon's Sunnis and the Civil War

"The army has taken over Bab al-Tebbaneh," said the spokesman, adding that troops had captured 162 fighters since Friday.

The army urged other fighters still at large to turn themselves in.

The soldiers carried out house-to-house searches and made several weapons seizures.

A 72-year-old woman said she had never before been forced out of Bab al-Tebbaneh, "not even during the civil war. But this time, I had to flee my house, along with my five grandchildren. I am in charge of them, because their father is in jail", said Umm Mohammed Jaaburi. "The violence was unprecedented," she said.
Lebanon army back in control of Tripoli
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By Watser? on 10-30-2014, 03:36 PM
Default Re: Lebanon's Sunnis and the Civil War

No two people would disagree about the outcome of the most recent round of clashes in Tripoli. The army was able to defeat the gunmen. The outcome is unambiguous, at least in terms of appearances. The Lebanese army succeeded in driving the gunmen underground and removed all signs of their former existence. It set up checkpoints and carried out raids in areas that were forbidden to it in the past even if it cost the lives of 12 officers and soldiers, while there were no heavy casualties among the gunmen.
Jihadi groups in north Lebanon admit to defeat in battle against the army | Al Akhbar English
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