72 years of independence
— Gus (@GusDsjx) November 22, 2015
لبنان لبنان لبنان … الله يحميكم .. و تكون وحدتنا العربية قوية pic.twitter.com/BRQFS2QvZA
— | ۅٱلـې آلديـٲڕ | (@fredh_ff) November 23, 2015
Twitter has been ignited in celebration of Lebanon. #LebanonIndependenceDay marks the day Lebanon became an independent country. For five centuries Lebanon was part of the Ottoman Empire. Once the First World War brought this entity to an end, it passed into European colonial control. France was given a mandate to rule the areas known as Syria and Lebanon, and created Greater Lebanon, a precursor to the modern state. It was not until 1943, that the foundations for an independent state were laid.
United in diversity?
— LAU – AKSOB (@LAUBusSch) November 22, 2015
At the heart of Lebanon’s constitutional foundations, was the need to represent the diversity of the population. In 1943, it was decided that the office of president was to be held by a Maronite Christian. The prime minister and the Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies were to be Sunni and Shia Muslims respectively. The National Pact of 1943 enshrined the rules which still govern the composition of Lebanon’s political structures today. Lebanon’s political administration has, since its inception, remained a delicate balancing act. As demographics have changed, so have the political dynamics. In 1989, the Taif Agreement was brokered to end the civil war, and to represent the demographic shift to a Muslim majority country. Despite a civil war, a double occupation by Israel, and Hezbollah’s persistent role in the country, Lebanon has remained intact – so far.
— Lorena Rodriguez (@LoreVonRo) November 23, 2015
Lebanon has been on the front line of terrorism. On the 12th of November, suicide bombers caused the deaths of 40, in Lebanon’s worst terrorist attack to date. On the anniversary of Lebanon’s foundation, the very fabric of the nation threatens to be torn to shreds. Dissastisfaction in the government has manifested itself amid the cautious celebrations.
— Al Bawaba News (@AlBawabaEnglish) November 23, 2015
Lebanon has gone through many struggles. The rise of terrorism, and increasing popular discontent may threaten its very existence. In the spring of 2005, popular protests were triggered by the assassination of former prime minister Rafiki Hariri. Known as the Cedar Revolution, the group advocated for the removal of Syrian troops who had been present since 1975, and running free elections without Syrian interference. The protests succeeded, and Syrian troops left the country. The recent protests in Lebanon have been concerned with government ineffectiveness and corruption, symbolised largely by the #YouStink campaigns against uncollected refuge in Beirut. After being occupied by Syrian troops for decades, Lebanon once again finds itself engulfed with Syrian politics. A full quarter of Lebanon’s population is now composed of Syrian refugee. In 2015, Lebanon finds itself as diverse, embattled, and complex as it has ever been. But as the flags are waved on year 72 of a liberated Lebanon, the ideals, and indeed the state itself, seem set to last a great many more.
— Zozo ❤ (@zozo_lovefcb) November 22, 2015