The short answer is ‘Yes, but it was a coincidence.’ Read on for details.

Why was Israel established?

Israel was established by Zionists in 1948 to serve as a homeland for the Jews where the Jewish peoples could live in safety & security without threat of pogroms (like in Russia), persecution (like in France) or outright genocide (like during World War 2).

So why was Lebanon established?

In the Ottoman Empire there was an Arab district with a Christian majority known as Mount Lebanon. In 1860, Druze fighters invaded Mount Lebanon after a dispute with the local Christians and promptly killed some 10–20,000 Arab Christians.

France intervened as “protector of the Arab Christians” and demanded the Ottomans stop the violence and give the Arab Christians of Mount Lebanon autonomy. The result was the establishment of Lebanon.

Lebanon was to serve as a homeland for the Arab Christians where they could live in safety & security.

Mount Lebanon (shown in Green) was an autonomous homeland for Arab Christians.

Then why is Lebanon only 35% Christian today?

As part of its winnings from World War 1, France got all of Ottoman Syria. It decided to give Lebanon independence however there was one problem: The French considered Mount Lebanon to be too small to serve as a homeland for the Christians.

So the French gave Mount Lebanon control of neighboring districts that had small Muslim populations (to ensure a Christian majority). As a result, Lebanon received a Shia south & a Sunni East. This made Lebanon big enough to be a viable country but also made it 51% Christian instead of the previous 90%+.

The French also established similar homelands for the Alawites & Druze, whom it deemed to be non-Muslims as well.

The new states of the Levant.

As a result, instead of being 100% Christian. Lebanon was 51% Christian in 1932. The situation was made worse as instead of staying in Lebanon, Lebanese Christians preferred to emigrate to the West.

Thus there are some 8 million Lebanese Christians abroad and only 1.5 million Lebanese Christians in Lebanon.

France tried to make up for this by giving Christians more political power than the Muslims.

In conclusion

Lebanon was an Arab Christian version of Israel but this was a coincidence as Lebanon was technically founded in 1860 while Israel was established in 1948.

Answer by Said Bourrich

Was Lebanon intended to be a Christian version of Israel?

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