Israeli Troops Leave Southern Lebanon (Great Events: 1900-2001)
Article abstract: After eighteen years of occupying southern Lebanon, Israel finally withdrew its troops, assured by the United Nations and the government of Lebanon that their own forces would prevent future terrorist incursions across Israel’s northern border.
Lebanon and Israel
Lebanon is an Arab nation located in southwest Asia on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea. One of the world’s smallest sovereign states, with an area of 4,015 square miles, it is surrounded on the north and east by Syria and on the south by Israel. In 1970, a civil war in nearby Jordan saw the Jordanian army, led by King Hussein, decisively defeat the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) of Yasir Arafat, forcing the relocation of PLO headquarters to Beirut. The Palestinian portion of Lebanon’s population rapidly rose to approximately 10 percent, with these displaced Arabs feeling betrayed by other Arab nations.
As more displaced Palestinians settled in southern Lebanon, the area soon became the major base for PLO guerrilla operations against Israel. When Israel retaliated by raiding PLO bases across its northern border, Lebanon’s Christian-dominated government attempted to restrict PLO activities within its jurisdiction. Palestinian military forces, which had previously refrained from taking sides in internal Lebanese conflicts, began giving support to antigovernment Muslims, and a bloody civil war broke out in...
(The entire section is 924 words.)
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