The Story of the Hezbollah

The Hezbollah, the “Party of God” is a militia group and political party that emerged as an opposition faction following Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982, mainly composed by Shiite Muslims, the weakest religious group in the country. After the Shiite Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979 and the Israeli invasion of their country, the Hezbollah was formed with the goal of expelling Israel from Lebanon and establishing an Islamic State there. The group built its reputation by achieving something unprecedented in the Arab world: the ability of driving away Israeli forces. Various militant factions then joined the party, as did the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, led by Yasser Arafat, who was gaining ground in Palestinian refugee camps in southern Lebanon since the 1960s. The 1983 suicide bomb of a US Marine barracks in Beirut, was the event that brought worldwide infamy to the Hezbollah. The further US withdrawal from the country was seen as the party’s first victory, and
indeed, the Hezbollah has emerged as a leading political party in post-civil war Lebanon. Since late 1990s, the tensions have not gotten better. In 2006, the 34-day-war opposing the Hezbollah and Israel killed over 1000 people and led to the displacement of around 1 million people. Although the dream of a Free Lebanon began in 2005, internal peace is still uncertain.

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