The Lebanon War of 1982, also known as the 1982 Lebanon Invasion, was a major military conflict in Lebanon. It was primarily conducted by Israel, but it also involved various Lebanese and Palestinian groups, as well as Syrian forces. Here are the key aspects of the Lebanon War in 1982:
- Palestinian Presence: The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), led by Yasser Arafat, had a significant presence in Lebanon, particularly in the southern part of the country.
- Palestinian Attacks: Palestinian militants based in Lebanon conducted cross-border attacks into northern Israel, which had been a source of conflict and tension.
- Israeli Security Concerns: Israel perceived the Palestinian presence in Lebanon as a security threat and sought to eliminate this threat.
Course of the War:
- Israeli Invasion: On June 6, 1982, Israel launched a large-scale invasion of Lebanon, with the primary objective of pushing the PLO out of southern Lebanon. The invasion was code-named “Operation Peace for Galilee.”
- Multifaceted Conflict: The war was a complex and multifaceted conflict, involving various actors. Israel faced resistance from Palestinian groups, Lebanese militias, and Syrian forces.
- Siege of Beirut: The Israeli military laid siege to the Lebanese capital, Beirut, where the PLO was headquartered. The siege lasted for several weeks and resulted in significant civilian casualties.
- U.S. Involvement: The United States, under President Ronald Reagan, played a diplomatic role and facilitated negotiations that led to the evacuation of PLO forces from Beirut to various Arab countries.
- Israeli Occupation: Israel maintained a military presence in southern Lebanon following the expulsion of the PLO. This occupation led to ongoing conflict and resistance from Lebanese militias, notably Hezbollah.
- Humanitarian Crisis: The war resulted in significant civilian casualties and infrastructure damage in Lebanon, particularly in Beirut.
- International Criticism: The conflict generated international criticism, particularly regarding the siege of Beirut and civilian casualties.
- Lebanese Civil War: The war had complex and far-reaching effects on Lebanon’s ongoing civil conflict.
- Hezbollah Emergence: The war contributed to the emergence of Hezbollah, a Shia militant group that would play a significant role in Lebanese politics and conflicts.
The 1982 Lebanon War was a complex and contentious conflict with long-lasting repercussions. It significantly influenced the dynamics of Lebanon’s internal politics and the broader regional context, particularly the Israeli-Arab conflict and the Israel-Lebanon relationship.