Jump to content

March 14 Alliance

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
March 14 Alliance
تحالف ١٤ آذار
LeaderSaad Hariri
Walid Jumblatt
Samir Geagea
General SecretaryFares Souaid
Founded14 March 2005 (14 March 2005)
Dissolved14 March 2016 (14 March 2016)
IdeologyLebanese nationalism
Political positionBig tent
Colors    Red, white
Party flag

The March 14 Alliance (Arabic: تحالف 14 آذار, romanizedtaḥāluf 14 ādhār), named after the date of the Cedar Revolution, was a coalition of political parties and independents in Lebanon formed in 2005 that were united by their anti-Syrian[1][2][3] stance and by their opposition to the March 8 Alliance. It was led by Saad Hariri, Walid Jumblatt and Samir Geagea, as well as other prominent figures.


The alliance was formed during public demonstrations which took place one month after the assassination of Lebanon's former Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri. This was known as the Cedar Revolution. Two protests against Syria's 29-year occupation of Lebanon were staged because it was believed that Syria had supported the murder. The Alliance was given its name in honor of the day that Syrian forces left Lebanon, which is perceived as the major achievement of the Cedar Revolution.

The March 14 Alliance was made up of a range of sectarian and secular organizations that ordinarily have divergent political agendas. To pursue their shared interest in seeing Syrian forces leave Lebanon, the parties banded together.

Free Patriotic Movement's withdrawal[edit]

The Free Patriotic Movement of General Michel Aoun left the informal grouping before the 2005 general election, before March 14 was an established alliance, due to major disagreements and when its leader Michel Aoun signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Hezbollah.[4] After the 2005 elections, The Free Patriotic Movement was the sole political opposition, but one year later joined the pro-Syrian government March 8 Alliance in November 2006.

2006 Lebanon War[edit]

On 12 July 2006, the 2006 Lebanon War between Israel and Hezbollah started. During the war, the March 14 coalition took a stance against Hezbollah accusing the armed party of causing the war on Lebanon. However, Hezbollah claimed that Israel preplanned such a war, supposed to be waged on September during the annual rally Hezbollah holds on the International Qods (Jerusalem) Day.

The March 14 coalition, amidst the war, urged Hezbollah to hand over their weapons, accusing the party of causing the war on Lebanon.

During the first few days of the war, former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Beirut and held a meeting with the March 14 coalition and declared afterwards that a new Middle East will be born after this war, saying: "It's time for a new Middle East." Rice and Fouad Siniora met during her visit to Lebanon.[5][6]

2008 clashes[edit]

In May 2008, the tensions between the pro-government and opposition parties escalated when the Cabinet announced a series of security decisions. Tensions began with revelations on Friday May 2 made by Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblatt, a key politician in the ruling March 14 alliance. He announced that a remote-controlled camera had been set up in a container park overlooking Beirut international airport's runway 17, which was frequently being used by March 14 politicians.[7][8] In March 14 circles, fear was that the monitoring could be used for a possible attack on its leaders, as Lebanon had faced a series of political assassinations in recent times.[9] Although Jumblatt did not accuse the party directly, he made clear that he thought March 8's Hezbollah was behind the monitoring system's installment.[7] Hezbollah dismissed the accusations, calling the allegation a product of Jumblatt's imagination and saying that those who leveled them were scaremongering and simply parroting a US campaign against it and other groups which are resisting Israel.[8][9] In addition to the monitoring system, Jumblatt stated that Hezbollah had laid down a fiber optic telecommunication network connecting its powerbase in Dahiya in South Beirut with cities and towns in South and East Lebanon in predominantly Shiite areas.[8]

In its response to these allegations, the Lebanese Cabinet announced that it regarded the telecommunication network and the monitoring system as a breach of law, undermining the state's sovereignty and the security of its citizens.[7][10] Therefore, it declared that the matter would be referred not only to the Lebanese judicial system, but also to the Arab League and the United Nations.[7][10]

Coincidentally, a day after the Cabinet's decision, on Wednesday May 7, the Lebanese General Workers Union had planned a general strike to demand higher wages and decry high consumer prices.[11] The strike turned violent as the opposition threw their weight behind the strike, paralyzing large parts of Lebanon's capital Beirut.[11][12] Clashes later erupted throughout the country in the following weeks

2009 parliamentary elections[edit]

On 8 June 2009, March 14 won the majority in the Lebanese parliament with 71 out of 128 seats.[13]

14 out of 26 electoral districts were won by March 14:[14]

  • Akkar (7/7)
  • Minniyeh-Danniyeh (3/3)
  • Tripoli (8/8)
  • Koura (3/3)
  • Bcharreh (2/2)
  • Batroun (2/2)
  • Beirut 1 (5/5)
  • Beirut 2 (2/4)
  • Beirut 3 (10/10)
  • Aley (4/5) Jumblatt left an empty seat for Talal Arslan
  • Chouf (8/8)
  • Saida (2/2)
  • Zahle (7/7)
  • West Bekaa-Rashaya (6/6)

Progressive Socialist Party's withdrawal[edit]

In August 2009, the Progressive Socialist Party left the alliance, claiming political neutrality after the 2008 Lebanon conflict, though they still supported lists of March 14 members, mostly the Lebanese Forces.[15]

Downfall of the March 14 alliance[edit]

On 12 January 2011, March 8, with the help of Jumblatt, collapsed the government, which caused March 14 prime minister Saad Hariri to step down and be replaced by a March 8 prime minister, Najib Mikati. On 17 June 2011, Michel Aoun proudly said that he sent Saad Hariri a «one way ticket».[16]

2016 presidential elections[edit]

The March 14 alliance supported the election of March 8-affiliated Michel Aoun, but only if mainly the Lebanese Forces got 7/20 of the governmental seats. Since the election and the formation of a new government headed by Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Michel Aoun and Samir Geagea signed the "Maarab agreement", and it was considered a historical peace between two rival and old political factions. Michel Aoun ended up not giving the requested seats to the Lebanese Forces. Sides that were against the election of Michel Aoun as president in the 2016 elections consisted of traditional parties such as the Kataeb party and the National Liberal Party. Since then, the political scene has been witnessing the emergence of new non-sectarian political groups such as Lihaqqi and Citizens in a State (MMFIDAWLA), as well as revolution-affiliated Taqaddom, in addition to many civil society groups who were loosely allied during the last parliamentary elections. Although they share a common goal to replace what they consider a failed political model that was introduced following the end of the civil war, leading to the 2019 protests, they are not unified in order to assimilate and conquer the prevailing government. The then-elected government was viewed as having failed its duties as a government and the Prime Minister, Saad Hariri, attempted to resign while he was in Saudi Arabia in 2017, but it was ruled unconstitutional. Later on, during the October protests he resigned as Prime Minister.

Death of the March 14 Alliance[edit]

In 2016, the March 14 Alliance experienced an end to its activities, without an official announcement detailing the reasons for its closure.[17] In the 2018 elections, Future Movement decided to make an electoral alliance with the Free Patriotic Movement in North III, Beirut I and Bekaa I which caused a split between long time March 14 allies Future Movement and the Lebanese Forces. In October 2018, Saad Hariri promised to allocate the Ministry of Justice to the LF (Lebanese Forces)[18] however, he ultimately appointed the FPM (Free Patriotic Movement) to that ministerial position instead. In October 2020, Samir Geagea refused to name Hariri to form the government.[19]

After the 2022 elections, the March 14 Alliance was replaced by the Lebanese Opposition[20] which was formed by the Lebanese Forces, Progressive Socialist Party, Kataeb, Renewal Bloc and sovereign independent MPs like Mark Daou and Waddah Sadek.[21]


14march.org was the official March 14 alliance website. It went online on 9 March 2006[22] and was shut down by the Future Movement on 16 January 2019.[23]


The principal political claims of the March 14 Alliance were:

Ex-Member parties[edit]

Party Ideology Demographic base Party seats
Represented parties
Lebanese Forces Lebanese nationalism, Conservatism Maronite Christians
19 / 128
Future Movement Conservative liberalism Sunni Muslims
8 / 128
Kataeb Party Lebanese nationalism, Christian democracy Maronite Christians
4 / 128
Independence Movement Lebanese nationalism Nonsectarian (official)
Maronite Christians (majority)
2 / 128
Islamic Group Islamic democracy, Pan-Islamism Sunni Muslims
1 / 128
National Liberal Party National liberalism Nonsectarian (official)
Christians (majority)
1 / 128
Unrepresented parties
National Bloc Social liberalism, Lebanese nationalism
Liberal conservatism
Nonsectarian (official)
Maronite Christians (majority)
0 / 128
Democratic Left Movement Social democracy Nonsectarian (official)
0 / 128
Democratic Renewal Social liberalism Nonsectarian (official)
0 / 128
Hunchakian Party Social democracy, Democratic socialism,

Armenian interests

0 / 128
Armenian Democratic Liberal Party Classical liberalism, Armenian interests Armenians
0 / 128
Lebanese Option Party Moderate Shia Islamism, Liberalism and

Economic liberalism

Shia Muslims
0 / 128
Free Shia Movement Islamic democracy Shia Muslims
0 / 128
Syriac Union Party Syriac interests Syriac Christians
0 / 128
Shuraya Party Assyrian self-determination Assyrians (Christians)
0 / 128

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "March 14 Alliance" (PDF). Reut Institute. 12 December 2006.
  2. ^ Jacob, C. (21 March 2019). "As U.S. Secretary Of State Pompeo Prepares To Visit Lebanon, Hizbullah Is In Complete Control Of Lebanese Government – And The March 14 Camp, Saudi Arabia, And U.S. Have Cooperated With It And Come To Terms With The Situation". Middle East Media Research Institute.
  3. ^ Moubayed, Sami (6 May 2018). "After 9 years, Lebanon goes to the polls". Gulf News.
  4. ^ "Hezbollah reiterates commitment to Mar Mikhael agreement on its 12th anniversary". LBCI Lebanon. Retrieved 2022-09-03.
  5. ^ Department Of State. The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs. "Photo: Secretary Rice With Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora". 2001-2009.state.gov. Retrieved 2022-09-03.
  6. ^ "Rice Meets With Siniora In Beirut". RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. Retrieved 2022-09-03.
  7. ^ a b c d Arsan, Andrew (2018). Lebanon : a country in fragments. London: C. Hurst & Co. pp. 91–92. ISBN 978-1-78738-365-4. OCLC 1127917942.
  8. ^ a b c "Le chef du PSP révèle l'existence d'un réseau de télécommunications du Hezbollah reliant le Sud au Hermel Joumblatt met en garde contre une opération sécuritaire d'envergure visant la piste 17 de l'aéroport de Beyrouth". L'Orient-Le Jour (in French). 2008-05-03. Retrieved 2020-03-14.
  9. ^ a b Jim Muir (2008-05-03). "Hezbollah in airport spying row". BBC News. Archived from the original on 6 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-10.
  10. ^ a b Blanford, Nicholas (2008-05-09). "Hezbollah phone network spat sparks Beirut street war". Christian Science Monitor. ISSN 0882-7729. Retrieved 2020-05-10.
  11. ^ a b Arsan, Andrew (2018). Lebanon: a country in fragments. London: C. Hurst & Co. pp. 93–94. ISBN 978-1-78738-365-4. OCLC 1127917942.
  12. ^ "LEBANON: High prices, low wages feed violent political stand-off". IRIN. 8 May 2008. Archived from the original on 5 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-17.
  13. ^ "قوى "14 آذار" تفوز في الانتخابات النيابية".
  14. ^ "نتائج الانتخابات لكل دائرة انتخابية بشكل إجمالي".
  15. ^ EditorHA (2022-08-16). "فتور لا قطيعة بين الاشتراكي والقوات". صوت بيروت إنترناشونال (in Arabic). Retrieved 2022-09-03.
  16. ^ "عون: قطعنا one way ticket للحريري ولن يعود".
  17. ^ "تحالف 14 آذار اللبناني... نهاية بلا نعي رسمي".
  18. ^ "الحريري: جعجع حليفي الحقيقي".
  19. ^ "Geagea: Lebanese Forces Will Not Name Hariri".
  20. ^ "Alliance: Lebanon needs "Change" and "Opposition" to work together".
  21. ^ "Opposition officially endorses Azour for presidency".
  22. ^ "14 March :: OFFICIAL".
  23. ^ "إغلاق موقعي "تيار المستقبل" و"14 آذار"..."

External links[edit]