Lebanon[leb′ə nän′, -nən]
- country in SW Asia, at the E end of the Mediterranean: formerly a French mandate, it became independent after elections (1944): 4,036 sq mi (10,453 sq km); pop. 2,760,000; cap. Beirut
- mountain range extending nearly the entire length of Lebanon: highest peak, 10,131 ft (3,088 m)also Lebanon Mountains
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Lebanon - Cultural Definition
- Lebanon was established in 1920 from remnants of the Ottoman Empire. Its mixed Christian and Muslim population generally lived peacefully under a weak central government until the 1970s. Israel invaded in 1978 to challenge the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) influence in Lebanon and to stop PLO raids on Israel. During the 1980s Lebanon became the scene of intense fighting between PLO, Syrian, and Israeli forces, as well as indigenous Christian and Muslim factions. Terrorist bombings and the taking of foreign nationals (including American citizens) as hostages became common events. By 1992, Syria had emerged as the dominant influence in Lebanon. Democratic elections were held in the mid-1990s.