A war that does not mean its name.Opinion of Bahjat Rizk- Around 13 April

A war that does not mean its name.


This April 13 as every year for thirty- seven years , Lebanon commemorates the beginning of his civil and regional war , a war that still does not say its name.While the initiatives of civil society laudable increase, including the largest , the Offer joy – chaired by dynamic and dedicated Melhem Khalaf , who at heart every year to celebrate symbolically a ritual of peace and brotherhood . However, the war in Lebanon has been and remains a clash of religious and political cultures as Lebanon, as pointed out repeatedly and rightly Patriarch Rai is the countries ‘ cultural , religious and political pluralism. ” We can not mention the dialogue of cultures without considering parallel culture shock , since they are two sides of the same coin.

However from the outset to remove any ambiguity , culture is not limited to religion , nor religion can not be reduced to culture. Religion is one of the four pillars of anthropological collective identity structure ( Herodotus ), but it also has a metaphysical dimension that goes beyond culture. Moreover, a certain level of transcendence, all religions are found in different versions around the same divine message , the purpose of life is the same for all humans.

While the Lebanese have a common cultural heritage , which is not restricted to their religious heritage , they also share the same language and the same or less ( uses and customs) more cross-community morals. The difficulty of a multicultural identity is to be a conciliator between divergent and convergent aspects aspects , so that the diversity (community) does not threaten unit (national) .


It would of course utopian , even absurd to think that the Lebanese conflict of rare violence , which has claimed more than 200,000 lives and so much damage , would only be the result of political manipulation and guilt of others. Lebanon has lived and continues to live on its soil shock ( and dialogue ) cultures , with intra- divisional and cross-community alliances sometimes transnational . What is taking place in neighboring Arab countries and even in the West, highlights this ambivalence. Regional non-Arab actors (Turkey, Iran , Israel) reinforce this tension and participate in the balance of power. We can not exclude the fact that with globalization of culture shock , but through dialogue we can try to negotiate and develop. Relations between men and nations are built daily and settled over time.There is a space to share, and this is done either by ownership, the negation of the other and disposal, either by recognizing the emotional and cultural integrity and compromise constantly renewed. While the demographic ratio affects the geographical report, but a private cultural and political diversity can not evolve and locks within itself. All successful identification process is accomplished in the negotiation of identity parameters. It is a question both ethical and especially rational .Lebanon had a civil war , and resistance against the Palestinian armed takeover , which began April 13, 1975 . The withdrawal of Palestinian forces ended September 3, 1982 . The country has also seen a resistance against the Israeli occupation, which ended with the liberation of South May 25, 2000 , as well as resistance against the Syrian dictatorship , which ended April 26, 2005 . Whether armed force against Palestinian , the Israeli army or the Syrian army , whenever violence is exerted on some Lebanese , sometimes downstream, the tacit consent if not complicity killed or declared another part of the Lebanese. What are the cultural values ​​that all Lebanese defend in common , which belong to all of them and differentiate them from their immediate and distant environment?Should be linked April 13, 1975 to September 3, 1982 ( Palestinian withdrawal) , 25 May 2000 ( Israeli withdrawal ) , 26 April 2005 ( Syrian withdrawal ) for that country begins to define itself, to finally be able to rebuild .

By Bahjat Rizk | 13/04/2012

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