Talk:Yasser Arafat/Archive 1

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Yassers birthdate?

The Palestinian ministry of information site currently claims that he was born in Jerusalem. The Nobel foundation claims Cairo (as do most Western journalists and historians that I found this morning on the web). A google search on [Yasser Arafat "born in Gaza"] finds some valid looking hits. The biography of revolutionaries is never simple. --MichaelTinkler

Oh, and...his birthdate is equally messy. August 24 or August 4? Now that one I don't know a good reason for - I can see ideological advantages to birthplace-shifting, and year-of-birth is sometimes tricky (to make the leader seem like more of a child prodigy), but this is an irritant. --MichaelTinkler

To MichaelTinkler

Arabs, Muslims, do not celebrate birthdays. When they come to the US ,they pick a date, any date for their drivers licenses. user:H.J.

Thanks. The difference of 20 days might be explained that way. However, Arafat was born in territory controlled by the British, and into a thoroughly westernised family. One is surprised they didn't note the occasion, especially if he were born in Cairo.
That remark about Muslims picking Random dates for their drivers licenses is Rubbish. Most Muslims born into Muslim Nations will know their Date on the Muslim Calender. it is the Converting of this date to the CE Calender that causes the Confusion and difficulty, and could be the cause of Arafats Birth Date Discrepancies.
MT , I read several sites that say he was born in Jerusalem (4 or 24 Aug 1929) .He fled to Cairo in 1948, when Palestine was taken over. He graduated from Cairo Univ.


Yep, I think we can be sure he graduated from Cairo University, but the fact that he claims Jerusalem is not entirely persuasive. The general opinion of western journalists seems to be Cairo. The Palestine Authority Ministry of Information says Jerusalem. The website of the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs ( says Cairo in its biographical listing. Since his family certainly lived in Cairo most of his life, and he explicitly was sent to live in Jerusalem with an uncle at the age of 4, I think the journalists and Passia are likely to be more accurate than his claim to have been born in Jerusalem. --MichaelTinkler

Arafats Traits

I am trying to edit this page , removing some totally biased commentary on Arafata's "traits" and someone is putting the old version u again.. Well - silly war... Rami neudorfer Israel

What makes Yasser Arafat a notable person is his skill as a military tactician of asymmetric warfare, and a political master of propaganda. I fleshed out these attributes, and also used his "taming" of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, and the adoption by secular nationalists of the suicide bomber tactic, as examples of his tactical flexibility. Also the "grudge match" issue with Ariel Sharon deserves to be noted, as it comes up again and again. There is actually no sign that these two cannot make peace, as they have both done it before with opponents that they hate - however that is only an opinion.

I'm pretty sure the statements and accusations and support relationships here stand as factual and beyond reproach, some of them of course were on live TV. I think this article should be able to note some of the long-standing current conflicts about a personality if it matters to many other current events, although in general we want to avoid reportage in articles (more the role of indymedia), here it fits well together to demonstrate Arafat's political skills.

There should be much more here on the intifada and his role in starting it and stopping it. Hard to know how much of this is Arafat and how much is just the way things are done in media war today...

Did This Happen

"Arafat, trapped in his Ramallah compound by Israeli forces, with a cell phone and failing battery, was swarmed by peace activists who walked right past surprised guards at the Israeli checkpoint." Did this happen? I don't remember it. I know reporters have not gotten through and have been forcibly turned back. What day did it occur and what group if any were the activists from? Not necessary for the Arafat page but maybe for that group's page. --rmhermen

Yes, it happened. They were mostly Europeans. It was on the news a couple of weeks ago or something. I believe the IDF arrested most of them when they left, and has since then increased security around Arafat's compound to ensure no one else gets in. -- SJK

Some points I find a little peculiar:

Some points I find a little peculiar:

which coincides well with the declared Israeli policy of not permitting assassination of Arab political leade

First the paragraph says that Arafat has survived several assasination attempts to kill him, then it says that Israel never kills Arab politicial leaders (!?!), then that maybe the Arabs tried to kill him? Hm....

his support by the Palestinian mob (unquiet inside which would lead to a wider regional instability).

Palestinian mob?

Anwar Sadat, President of Egypt from 1970 until his assassination in 1981 and who had been assassinated in part for making peace with Israel.


Rabin was later assassinated by an Israeli Jewish extremist, apparently the result of a mishandled police operation.

This is strange, Egyptian leaders get killed because they make peace with Israel. Israeli leaders get killed because of mishandled police operations.

but their activities were tolerated by Arafat, who appears to have used their violence as a means of applying pressure on Israel.

On the other hand hasn't Israel used the Islamic organisations violence as a means of applying pressure on Arafat? How can they both benefit from this? Source, or something needed.

However, as of 2002, the Israeli government and many neutral commentators were convinced that the Fatah faction's Al Aqsa Brigades? had simply adopted the methods of the fundamentalist groups, and were under Arafat's direct command

"the methods of the fundamentalist groups" points to terrorism and has any evidence (from a reliable source) surfaced yet? Who are the neutral commentators that say Arafat is a terrorist? Don't worry, I'll correct it later I just wanted your opinions. :-) --BL

Arafat Duplicity?

Hereafter, Arafat directed his efforts increasingly toward political persuasion rather than military confrontation and violence.

The fact that Arafat disassociated himself from these acts does not mean he ended them. Vide the Savoy Hotel attack and Entebbe Hijacking in 1976, as well as various "minor" attacks around Europe in the late 1970s, most of which were carried out by people associated with him

In 1982 Arafat became the target of criticism from Syria and Syrian-supported factions within the PLO. The criticisms

escalated after the Israeli invasion of Lebanon (mentioned above) forced Arafat to abandon his Beirut headquarters and set up anew in Tunisia. In 1987 he shifted to Baghdad, Iraq. With support from some Arab leaders Arafat was subsequently able to reassert his leadership, and the split in the PLO's ranks healed.

Was it not the Israeli invasion that made him leave Lebanon? Moreover, Arafat's HQ remained in Tunisia.

Significantly during this time, the PLO also declared recognition of United Nations resolutions 242 and 338, thereby acknowledging Israel's right to exist.

Are you sure about that? 242 and 338 don't mention Palestine. The supposed "State of Palestine" was based on Resolution 181

More recently, however, Arafat has called for the PLO to confine its military operation inside the Occupied Territories and indicated that he would accept Barak's terms if offered today. Nevertheless, according to the consensus, Arafat's authority in Palestine has declined significantly in the years since the Intifada.

With all the due respect, Arafat's statement is irrelevant. The Fatah is still killing people, while Arafat has publicly committed himself to no such thing.

and that any attempt to do so could simply result in his being assassinated.

Assassination is a very remote possibility. Arafat has very extensive security arrangements - which allowed him to survive in very hostile environments like West Beirut. But of course, he does risk the loss of power. --Uri

Removed Text

I moved this text from the article (it was published anonymously by a user who is messing with other pages, therefore I have reason to doubt its veracity):

"When he was five years old, in 1934, his mother died. Because his father did not have the time and knowledge to take care of him, he was sent to Jerusalem to live with his maternal uncle. While living with his uncle in Jerusalem, Palestine was under the rule of the British, which the Palestinians opposed. This resulted in many conflicts including raids and forays. One of Arafat?s earliest childhood memories is of British soldiers breaking into his uncle's house after midnight, beating members of the family, and smashing furniture. After four years, he returned to his home in Cairo where his oldest sister took care of him and his siblings." -- Notheruser 17:54 18 May 2003 (UTC)


I deleted and a relative of Hajj Amin al-Husayni, the grand mufti of Jerusalem (d. 1974) because I don't think it is true. It can go back if someone provides a solid reference. -- zero 10:24, 26 Aug 2003 (UTC)

Is the Encyclopedia Britannica solid enough? --Roger 10:17, 17 Sep 2003 (UTC)
No, because it just repeats the same vague statement that his mother "was related" to al-Husayni without saying where this information comes from or what "related" means. She was a member of the same very large branch of the Husseini clan and that would be enough for some people to say she was "related" but it wouldn't necessarily make her closer related than hundreds of others. One reason I'm suspicious about this is that I saw an Arab site that attacked Arafat for "inventing" this relationship. It might be in the same category as many other doubtful claims about Arafat. In any case, if there was a relationship but it was distant, why mention it except as a silly attempt to discredit by association? --zero 01:54, 18 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Chairman / President?

I suppose the Palestinian people could care less what their enemies call their Rais, their undisputed leader and representative. I remember a manifestation in Paris in 91 where tens of thousands, Arabs whether Palestinian or not and French chanted at him "Monsier Arafat, President, Bienvenu!" Today they´d be hundreds of thousands, if Arafat could just go there.

Uriber, I don't get your point about "Chairman" versus "President". What difference does it make? Even if there is a difference, what does it matter what the US and Israel use? Would you mention it in the Sharon article if the PA "didn't recognise" the title of "Prime Minister"? Anyway, you are wrong about "international documents". The example you gave is "trilateral" not "international". If you go to and search for "President Arafat" you will find over 150 UN documents which use that phrase. -- zero 10:28, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)

If it makes no difference - maybe we should stick with "chairman" - which everybody seems to agree upon (even the Palestinians, in the document I linked, for example). Actually it does make a difference - "President" is a title usually reserved (in political context) for heads of states - and at least some parties (such as Israel) find it important to emphesize that the PA is not a state - and therefore whoever is heading it can not carry a "head of state" title.

I apologize for my "trilateral" vs. "international" mistake - however I don't think this is very significant. What I meant to say was "not unilateral" - e.g. official documents to which Israel or the US are a side.

There is a big difference between the significance of the PA's position on Israel and that of Israel on the PA. Israel is an independent state. The PA, on the other hand, is an administrative authority which came into existence as a result of an agreement between Israel and the PLO. These agreement are the only legal basis for the PA's existance - and therefore the sides to these agreements do have a stand on the structure of the PA.

Also, see the discussion under Talk:Mahmoud Abbas.

uriber 10:42, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)

There is nothing in the word "President" about states. Even local societies for collecting stamps have presidents.
Which is why I said "in political context". I think it's not a coincidence that State Governors in the US (for example) are not called "President" - although, you might think they are more entitled to use that title than the president of your local stamp-collection club. uriber 11:37, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
Anyway, looking up more detail I see it as an issue of translation. Arafat's official position is "ra?is" which means something like "head" and not the same Arabic word that would be used for the president of an independent state. So the issue of "president" versus "chairman" is a dispute of how "ra'is" should be translated into other languages, not a dispute over what his real title is. I'll try to make that clear in the article, though the initial usage should be the PA one. (Now I agree the issue is worth mentioning.) --zero 11:05, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
I think you missed the mark a bit by labeling the whole thing as a "translation dispute". For example, Hosni Mubarak's title is also "ra'is" (in Arabic) - but Israel routinely refers to him as President of Egypt. So Israel (and the US) do not just have reservations about Arabic-to-English translation of the term "ra'is" - they specifically prefer the term "chairman" for the head of the PA.
To repeat what I said on Talk:Mahmoud Abbas: In his letter to Yitzhak Rabin, dated May 4, 1994 (which led to the establishment of the Palestinian Authority), Arafat wrote (article 4):
When Chairman Arafat enters the Gaza Strip and the Jericho Area, he will use the title 'Chairman (Ra'ees in Arabic) of the Palestinian Authority' or 'Chairman of the PLO', and will not use the title 'President of Palestine.'
So this was considered a key issue - not a matter of linguistic preference. -- uriber 11:37, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
But 'President of Palestine' is an entirely different issue. The article is only referring to his position in the Palestinian Authority. Your quote just confirms what I wrote about his official position. --zero 11:50, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
You chose to look at the PA/PLO/Palestine issue and ignore the Chairman/President part. If the only issue had been "President of what" then why didn't Arafat write "President of the Palestinian Authority" in his letter (as this is the title he clearly prefers)? And why the strange reference to the term in Arabic? The words in this letter were very carefully selected, and were a result of Israel's insistence that the term "President" would not be used. Arafat agreed to this in his letter - but then backed out of this agreement shortly afterwards (as he has done on other issues). uriber 12:07, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
I think the article as it stands is accurate and NPOV. There are lots of other issues like Arafat's honesty, but I frankly in a context where people are dying by the hundreds I can't get excited about Arafat calling himself "His Royal Highness" or anything else. --zero 12:21, 6 Sep 2003 (UTC)
Some useful information about Arafat's various positions is here: . I don't know that Haaretz article links are permanent so I didn't add it to the page. --zero 08:27, 7 Sep 2003 (UTC)

May a native American living in France try to dedramatize this issue by pointing out that in several languages (including French) the word "President" ("Président" in French) actually has the meaning which in English would be associated with the word "Chairman"? The Chairman of the Board of Directors of a French corporation (société anonyme) is thus referred to as "Président du Conseil d'Administration", while what English-speakers would think of as the "President" of a company (i.e., the person who runs the company on a day-to-day basis) is referred to as "Directeur Général" (roughly, "Managing Director" in English). While I realize that there is an obvious political tinge associated with the use of the term "President" as opposed to "Chairman" in the English language in this particular context ("President" implying the head of a nation-state, "Chairman" perhaps implying "only" the head of an organization), in other languages this is a far less relevant distinction. Even politically, in many countries (Germany is a perfect example and indeed so is Israel), the "President" is in fact a symbolic position while actual power is wielded by a person bearing a different title (Chancellor, Prime Minister, etc).

Arafat Robs riches?

I rewrote the part about Arafat's finances to avoid the impression that he has been stealing PA money for his personal enrichment. There is nothing in the Forbes story (link in the new text) to suggest this; rather it suggests that Arafat tries to the control the use of PA money personally instead of allowing it to be disbursed in the proper manner. Since Arafat is the only person in the Forbes list who does not live a luxurious lifestyle, it is obvious that he does not really belong there. --zero

Arafat's wife is known for her luxurious lifestyle, especially when outside of the Palestinian Territories. I believe the new text does misrepresent the Forbes article and muddles it together (even more) with the the IMF statement. While it is true that the IMF says he has been diverting PA money to an account he controls, Forbes lists him as one of the "Wealthiest Kings, Queens, and Despots". That means his personal wealth, not his country's or what spending he controls. I'm reverting this change since you have paraphrased it to distort the original meaning of these sources. However, I will clarify the difference between the Forbes and IMF material -- I think the result will be clearer. Daniel Quinlan 22:42, Oct 2, 2003 (UTC)
The mere fact of Forbes giving him a label means nothing. I gave a link to the long article about Arafat in Forbes that indicates precisely what information they have. It does not support their label so we should not use it. To me it looks like a simple stunt (commercially motivated or politically motivated) for Forbes to list him along with people like the Sultan of Brunei whose circumstances are not even remotely similar. The article also needs a citation for the IMF claim. --zero 22:50, 2 Oct 2003 (UTC)
Already done (the IMF claim citations). I also added a direct link to the Forbes information about Arafat. Daniel Quinlan 23:07, Oct 2, 2003 (UTC)

If Arafat was really as rich as stated, he is really to be considered a martyr, somoebody worth hundred of millions living the way he has to in Palestine, has a mission, is a hero.

Israeli honesty?

Should we really be listing claims made by Israeli generals? We're not exactly talking journalists or international organizations. Daniel Quinlan 06:56, Oct 3, 2003 (UTC)


And who says that journalists and international organizations are any more honest than generals? Ever hear of yellow journalism? Ever here of the "Oil Crisis? --Numerousfalx 04:59, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC)

NPOV banner

Unless the NPOV banner is explained and justified with specific issues, it should be removed. Daniel Quinlan 00:23, Oct 27, 2003 (UTC)

One item for NPOV banner, I expect there are others. (copied from user talk:OneVoice).

Morwen Hi. I reverted the addition of 'an Egyptian' because (a) it seems to be more complicated than that; and (b) it is already explained much not further down the page. On wikipedia we have a Neutral Point of View policy that means we explain both sides of a dispute rather than taking sides. Morwen 21:17, Dec 18, 2003 (UTC)

Morwen Thank you very much for you note. Clearly I need to create an account and start using it (User:OneVoice). I read the NPOV page that you noted above. What are we to do with facts? My family has lived in the United States for several generations, yet neither I nor my family will ever be native Americans...we simply are not the indigenous inhabitants of this geographic region (unless we marry into an American Indian family).

Yasser Arafat is/was an Egyptian, born, and raised, educated there. He has lived most of his life outside of any geographic region that could be possibly be called Palestine. He calls himself a Palestinian. That designation is indisputabley applicable to those born and raised there. When does it become applicable to an immigrant. I don't know. This illustrates a core issue in the conflict. Large numbers of individuals on both sides moved into a single geographic area over a period of about 100 years. One population lost a war and now tries to claim precedence of inhabitation. The facts indicate otherwise. How do we maintain the facts without jepordizine the NPOV.

I am seeking guidance and reasoned dicussion here.

What you do is keep political debate out of the article altogether. The article says very clearly where Arafat was probably born, who his parents were, and where he lived. That ought to be enough. Writing "an Egyptian" is an intentional attempt to insert a political point of view. --Zero 02:36, 21 Dec 2003 (UTC)
Yassir Arafat is an Egyptian falsely posing as a Palestinian to stay in power. Even Arab biographers admit this. For you to remove this crucial statement is censorship to promote your own agenda. For you to accuse the above writer of pushing his political views, for merely mentioning Arafat's true nationality, is outrageously dishonest and hypocritical. This fact must be restored. RK 20:23, Jun 22, 2004 (UTC)
Most Palestinians were not born in 'Palestine'. Common sense here. Arafat may well have been born in Egypt, but has spent most of his life fighting for the right to self determination for Paletinians, using terrorism as a political tool in the process. Where he was born is really only of the most minor of consequences, especially given the way the area was divided up prior to world war 2.


I removed the following sentence from the article:

It is said that he has studied organizations such as the Haganah, Irgun and the Stern Gang.

"It is said" is a bit general. Anybody care to provide a reference? -- uriber 17:24, 28 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Every leader of an underground military group would study the pre-state Jewish groups, for the simple reason that the latter are among of the few in modern history that actually achieved their objectives. This is not terribly interesting and not specific to Arafat, so I'd leave the sentence out of the article even if there is a reference. --Zero 01:03, 29 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Christian Arafat?

I like to point out that some one should add that Arafat is in fact a christian and comes from christian backgounnd.k --8Phoenix 3:44pm 30 Apr 2004

I really do not think he is.

His wife is christian.

Abbas hints at Arafat support for death threats against Abbas

What kind of incitement?

Words and more than words—the demonstration against me before the Palestinian Legislative Council. This was the peak. Two days later I resigned. It was the fourth of September, and after that I asked for a closed session. I exposed all the secrets and then I sent my resignation to Chairman Arafat.

Some might say that a national leader must be able to withstand criticism and incitement.

That's true. But when they try to kill—I felt that someone was going to kill.

To kill you?

Yeah. Or to cause bloodshed within Fatah itself.

How many of these things were instigated by Chairman Arafat?

I wouldn't want to mention anyone by name. But I'll give you something to understand: I don't have any relationship with the chairman from the resignation to this day. (emphasis added for Zeros)

When you're in Ramallah, you don't meet with him?

I live in Ramallah and he's 100 meters away. I don't go to him, I don't meet with him, I don't have any relations with him.

In what circumstances would you be willing to return to this position?

No circumstances whatsoever. I will not go back.

Zero writes: It is possible that Abbas meant to hint that Arafat was behind death threats but that does not follow logically from the exact words of the interview. For example there is an alternative "to cause bloodshed within Fatah itself" that he could be linking Arafat to. It is all rather vague and the last thing we need in the article is one interpretation out of possibly many. --Zero 19:03, 16 Jun 2004 (UTC)

That's is absolute nonsense, and you know it. This isn't the interpretation of on person; this is how nearly everyone in the field understands the statement. Your claims to the contrary represent only the views of yourself, and a tiny number of pro-Arafat extremists. Yassir Arafat is well known for trying to murder Abbas, and here Abbas is extremely clear about this. As you well know, if Abbas was any clearer he might be murdered. For you to demand that he be more explicit is tantamount to putting out a death sentence on Abbas's head. For shame, Zero, your dishonesty has reached new lows. I am going to have to restore these facts to this article once it is unprotected. RK 20:23, Jun 22, 2004 (UTC)
What a lot of hot air, RK. --Zero 22:03, 22 Jun 2004 (UTC)

The following are quoted directly from the article:

That by you is how you Why did you resign?

For three reasons. Sharon didn't give me anything. Secondly, I was attacked by my colleagues, and thirdly, Bush was reluctant to help.

What kind of attacks by colleagues? There was incitement.

What kind of incitement? Words and more than words—the demonstration against me before the Palestinian Legislative Council. This was the peak. Two days later I resigned. It was the fourth of September, and after that I asked for a closed session. I exposed all the secrets and then I sent my resignation to Chairman Arafat.

Some might say that a national leader must be able to withstand criticism and incitement. That's true. But when they try to kill—I felt that someone was going to kill.

To kill you? Yeah. Or to cause bloodshed within Fatah itself.

How many of these things were instigated by Chairman Arafat? I wouldn't want to mention anyone by name. But I'll give you something to understand: I don't have any relationship with the chairman from the resignation to this day.

When you're in Ramallah, you don't meet with him? I live in Ramallah and he's 100 meters away. I don't go to him, I don't meet with him, I don't have any relations with him.

In what circumstances would you be willing to return to this position? No circumstances whatsoever. I will not go back.

, most of whom agree that this was a confirmation that Arafat wanted Abbas dead? (or at least, that this is what Abbas believes.) Your personal remarks do not count as historical research nor as a rebuttal. RK 23:36, Jun 22, 2004 (UTC)

To Be Added to External Links

Kupperwasser Amos Gilad's successor as head of research in Military Intelligence.


Ok, Jayjg, I can live with those changes you made, it is OK.

I read the whole article again, and noted a few minor, and some major issues. I will post them here first, and we can try to reach a consensus on them then make changes, how does that sound?

Not know, I am a bit too busy, but soon.

Let me know, thanks.Joseph 04:34, Aug 12, 2004 (UTC)

Sounds good to me. Jayjg 04:48, 12 Aug 2004 (UTC)


you people are all having a go at each other. whats the point you will all end up getting angrier. \put your anger into something a little bit constructive why dont you

you are all very angry and not using this anger for any good. you should use this anger for something constructive.

Um, have a nice day? Jayjg 03:59, 15 Aug 2004 (UTC)


That article has a lot of bias.

Firstly, the Lebanese Christian Community is not one unit. The Civil war was not a simplistic Christian Vs. Muslim thing. There were Christians on either side. The implication given is that Israel were coing to the aid of defenceless christians, that is nonsense. The Arabic is selectively translated to use the word 'Terror'.

There is a lot more. This is a terrible piece.

The impression I have is the Lebanese war was still mostly Christians vs. Muslims, regardless of whether a small number of Christians fought on the Muslim side. Do you have evidence to the contrary? Jayjg 02:42, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)
OK, Firstly, Israel Invaded. It was not merely an operation. They invaded, Placed their man as president and did not get out till the late 1990's. The main Israeli support did come from the Phalange, but they were always a small (But Brutal) group of militants. Christianity is always a major Minority in Lebanon, and there were significant Pro and Anti Lebanese National Movement Christians, but this completely simplifies the war into something it is not. There were Muslims on both sides. There Were Shia, mainly, on one side and Sunni on the other, while the Druze opted for another way (Somewhat communist). Amal Vs Hizbullah?
I've changed the word "operation" to "military incursion". Israel placed their man as President of Lebanon? Do you have any sort of breakdown of which Muslims and Christians were fighting on one side versus on another? A link would be helpful. Jayjg 16:16, 10 Sep 2004 (UTC)
I have not been happy at all with very many articles dealing with Arab and/or Palestinian history. I do believe some are trying to correct the NPOV, but you are right there is still a lot of bias and serious factual errors. Joseph 15:53, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

Timeline Lebanese Civil War

Timeline please. When did the Lebanonese civil war start? When did the Israeli invasion start?

To whom ever, the Lebanese Civil War is generally acknowledged to have occured between the years 1974 (late) until 1990.
This is the: The Encyclopaedia of the Orients definition.
War of certain areas of Lebanon lasting for 16 years and 7 months, beginning on April 13, 1975 and ending on October 13, 1990, but with pauses.
The war was fought along both religious as well as political borders, where especially the Maronite Christians, Shi'i Muslims, the Druze, PLO, the Israeli as well as the Syrian army were the main contenders. In the beginning there were 3 main fronts:
1. Lebanese National Movement (LNM) led by Kamal Jumblat, a prominent Druze.
2. Lebanese Front led by Camille Chamoun. This fraction was dominated by Maronite Christians. Rather soon the front got aid from Muslim Syria.
3. Lebanese Forces, led by Bashir Gemayel, like Chamoun also a Maronite Christian, yet his group allied with the PLO.
While the war was a bloody one with as many as 150,000 dead and even more injured. The economical losses were no less startling, estimated to have between US$8 and 12 billion.
1975 April 13: The Phalange militia attacks Palestinians in East Beirut. This was the spark setting off fighting all over the country, which would in its first stage last for over a year.
1976 January: Intense fighting all over the country destroys the most important state institutions and public buildings.
— April: The alliance of LNM and PLO has managed to take control of nearly 70% of Lebanon.
— June: Syrian troops invade Lebanon and soon becomes the strongest party in the country, controlling many of the most important strategic positions.
— September: Following a Libya brokered cease-fire, Elias Sarkis wins in a Syria controlled presidential election.
— November: A truce takes hold across the country, except in the south where PLO faces a Christian militia supported by Israel.
1978 March 14: Israeli troops invade southern Lebanon, aiming at creating a buffer zone 10 km deep into Lebanese territory. But Israel found the land easy to occupy, and soon controlled the southern 10% of the country.
— May: International pressure makes Israeli withdraw from occupied territory, and ends up with a buffer zone of between 4 and 12 km all along Lebanon's southern border.
1979 May: Fighting between the Phalange and the National Liberal Party (of Chamoun) start.
1980 July: The Phalange suppresses the National Liberal Party.
1981 April: A cease-fire in southern Lebanon, brokered by the USA between Israel, Syria and PLO.
1982 January: Israel resumes its arms shipments to the Maronite Christians.
— June 6: Israel invades Lebanon from its southern border, and its forces start advancing north. Within few days, they had captured important southern cities of Tyre and Sayda, and entered Beirut.
— September 14: President-elect Bashir Gemayel is killed in an explosion directed at the headquarters of the Phalange party.
— September 15: Israeli troops move into Beirut.
— September 16: The Phalangists gets help from Israeli troops to close off the Sabra and Shatila districts of Beirut, and then start a massacre of the Palestinian inhabitants of the area. In 3 days, about 2,000 children, men and women are killed.
— September 20: A Western Multi-National Force is started to be deployed in Beirut, consisting of US, British, French and Italian troops.
— September 21: Amin Gemayel is elected president by the parliament.
— September 29: The Israeli troops leave Beirut.
1983 May 17: Israel signs the Lebanese-Israeli Peace Treaty.
— September 3: Israeli troops withdraws from the Shouf region, and the Phalange militia and the Lebanese army moves in, resulting in a war between them and the PLO-Druze alliance. The Lebanese army soon got aid from USA and France.
— September 25: A cease-fire is brokered between the fighting parties.
— October 23: Terrorist attacks on US and French military headquarters, killing 241 US and 59 French troops.
— November: A reconciliation conference is held in Geneva, Switzerland.
1984 February 3: The Lebanese army and the Lebanese Forces attacks Shi'i suburbs of West Beirut. This resulted in fighting between the army and the Lebanese Forces and the Amal-Druze alliance.
— February 7: The USA withdraws its forces from Beirut. Soon after the other Western countries did the same.
1984 March 5: Lebanon cancels the Lebanese-Isreali peace treaty of May 1983.
— March: A second reconciliation conference si held, this time Lausanne, Switzerland. A reconciliation government is formed.
1985 June 6: Israel completes the withdrawal of the agreed number of troops from south Lebanon, leaving only 1,000. Instead Israel starts supporting a Christian militia in the area.
— December: Commanders from Amal, the Druze and the Lebanese Forces signs an agreement to solve the crisis, basing it much upon support from Syria. The agreement becomes, however, ineffective, due to tensions in the Lebanese Forces.
1987 February: Fighting between Amal and Druze militia in West Beirut. Syria sends in troops to cool down the situation.
1988 April: Fighting between Amal and Hizbullah in southern Lebanon, lasting for nearly 2 months.
— September 22: Michel Aoun forms a military government, following that the parliament fails to elect a new president.
1989 February: The Lebanese army attacks the Lebanese Forces in the Christian parts of Beirut.
— May: Aoun declares a liberation war against Syria.
— August: 14 Lebanese groups form a front against Aoun.
— October: Discussions in At Ta'if, Saudi Arabia between most of the surviving Lebanese parliamentarians (58 attending, 4 not, the last elections had been held in 1972). They emerged on the National Reconciliation Charter dividing the parliament seats equally between Christians and Muslims (the Muslims represented more than 60% of the population, but this agreement was still an improvement from 1943 which gave majority to the Christians with 6 to 5), leaving the presidency in the hands of the Christians (but reducing his powers), and allowing the continued presence of Syrian troops. The charter was agreed upon by most delegates, save 4 Muslim. Michel Aoun on Christian side, rejected it, but the Maronite front accepted it.
— November 5: Rene Muawad is elected president by the parliament.
— November 22: Muawad is assassinated.
— November 24: Elias Hrawi is elected president.
1990 January: Heavy fighting between Aoun's troops and the Lebanese Forces, which declared allegiance to Hrawi. Aoun is able to take control of 35% of the Christian part of Beirut.
— April: Implementation of the National Reconciliation Charter starts.
— October: Following an air and ground campaign, Lebanese and Syrian troops are able defeat Aoun and his soldiers. This marks the end of the 16 years of civil war.

1991 May 9: In accordance with the National Reconciliation Charter of 1989, the parliament gives equal representation in the parliament to Muslims and Christians.
— May 22: Hrawi and Hafez al-Assad of Syria signs a treaty of cooperation between the 2 countries. This gave Syrian to a great extent control over Lebanon's foreign affairs, defence and economy, a sitution that persists until now (2002).
I am still looking for information directly from their own government Websites, but so far have found nothing...
I hope that helps. Joseph 15:53, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)
Please don't attribute comments to me which I haven't made. I did not ask that question. Jayjg 16:38, 22 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, I thought you did and I messed up moving the comment. Joseph 16:43, Sep 22, 2004 (UTC)

Recent changes to the article

Irishpunktom, I've gone through the large number changes you suggested to the article; while some seemed reasonable, others seemed highly POV, or directly contradicted the various sources provided. If you wish to make any other changes perhaps you could bring them here first for discussion. Jayjg 01:31, 6 Oct 2004 (UTC)

OK, well
Firstly, i am adding to the quotes as per prior to your recent revert. At the moment they are all in one direction, and his speech at the UN is a particular good speech.
Fine. Jayjg 19:39, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)

ok, then, besides that;

  • I think it is proper to highlight that it was the King, an not a group of ministers, or any other group of people for that matter, who took the decision to Crush the PLO in Jordan. I really don't see a problem with that either.. it's hardly a POV.
  • How do you know who was involved in making the decision? Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • The fact is that most Jordanians supported the PLO, and still do, in relation to Black September should be noted. The Kings move to "annhialate" them was incredibly unpopular.
  • What evidence do you have for this "fact"? Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • The primary aim of the PLO was to create an independent Palestinian state. The destruction or removal of "the zionist entity" was an effect of that, but not a primary aim.
  • The PLO was founded in 1964, and its charter included the destruction of Israel in the pre-1967 borders. Article 1 says "Palestine is an Arab homeland bound by strong national ties to the rest of the Arab Countries and which together form the large Arab homeland." and Article 2 says "Palestine with its boundaries at the time of the British Mandate is a regional indivisible unit." etc. Arguments that it is not about the destruction of Israel are specious at best. Jayjg
  • Bringing up Barak.. Arafat said at the time, and continues to say it, He would have signed the deal if he had Border control. That was an offer made to Barak which was refused.
  • Arafat says all sorts of things, many of them untrue. Is there any other evidence for this? Everyone else who as at the meeting says he failed to make a counter-offer, including at least one of his fellow government members. Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • who is alleged to have used their violence as a means of applying pressure on Israel - utter crap. I don't see whats wrong with using the phrase by some of his detracters beside that.
  • Sorry, why is that "utter crap"? Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • The Al Aqsa martyrs brigade have stated time and time again that they strike within israel because of Israeli strikes within the ocupied Territories. Inventing silly stories of a death race competition of sorts is stupid.
    The "death race" story, whatever that was, is not there now. Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • cutting off much of Arafat's cash flow - Is a clear an ridiculous POV. Neither the Eu, the IMF, Salam Fayyad, yassir Arafat, or anyone else of importance has said such. It is stupid. Remove it.
  • The IMF said Arafat stole almost $1 billion of the aid given the Palestinians; other estimates are higher. Cleaning up Palestinian finances will indeed cut off much of Arafat's cash flow; I'm not sure which part here is not factual. Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  • find whatever strength you have to terrorize your enemy- Is interesting, because it is a Qur'anic Quote. Most people tend to translate it as Strike Fear.., but terrorise and strike fear mean essentially the same thing, however, I think it should be noted in the Quotes that arafat was quoting the Qur'an. --Is Mise le Méas, Irishpunktom 16:55, Oct 12, 2004 (UTC)
  • You changed the actual quote from what was listed in the article. A quote has to be an actual quote, you can't re-word it to suit you. Jayjg 19:38, 12 Oct 2004 (UTC)

"It is alleged"

When the phrase, "It is alleged" is used, the source should be provided. Otherwise, the phrase appears to be used as a convenient way to insert the writer's point of view. If the writer can cite the source of the allegation, the reader will be better able to judge its potential bias. Alberuni 18:57, 7 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Palestinian terrorist poll

Above all others THIS man belongs in the Category:Palestinian terrorists for his role throughout these two centuries in personally ordering attacks against Israeli civilians and children. Why do sympathizers insist on keeping him out of this category. I call a vote to end Wed Nov 3. at 9:30PM PST:

  1. Include in Category:Palestinian terrorists
  1. Jewbacca 04:35, Oct 28, 2004 (UTC)
  2. MathKnight 07:55, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)
  1. Do not include in Category:Palestinian terrorists
A poll to decide whether to insert POV elements is invalid and will be ignored. Markalexander100 08:36, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Afraid of democratic decisions and the truth. Go ahead and remove the terrorist category from Osama bin Laden first before peddling your autocratic air of superiority. This is a site where decisions are made by consensus, not by what you think should or should not be ignored Jewbacca 08:50, Oct 28, 2004 (UTC)
It's hard to be neutral about calling someone a terrorist, that kind of a label usually develops as a result of global opinion (hence the pseudo-democracy). My vote is 'no'. qartis 04:40, 29 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Terrorist is a POV label

Is Arafat a terrorist, as many Israelis and Zionists claim? The charge of terrorism reflects a point of view. It is not a fact. It is defined by the user. Is Arafat a Nobel Peace Prize laureate? Yes, that is a fact, not a point of view. I think the charge of terrorism should be included in the article with a description of who is making the charge and the basis for the accusation, for what specific crime(s). I think a strong case can be made for Arafat but it's still just a point of view. And if Arafat is labelled a terrorist then so too should Ariel Sharon, Menachem Begin, Yitzhak Shamir and countless other militants who killed civilians in the course of their careers. It is also a point of view and they should be described the same way. NPOV. George W. Bush is also responsible for using violence to effect political changes, the definition of a terrorist, and Bush's orders have killed tens of thousands of civilians, probably many more than a lifetime of Arafat and Sharon combined. But the label is still just a Point Of View. Bush's advantage is an army of lawyers to excuse and justify his "collateral damage", "self defense", etc. The most successful "terrorists" need good lawyers and media consultants. It helps them mold the public's point of view. --Alberuni 04:58, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)

  • Then you may be interested in going to Osama bin Laden article and removing the terrorist category there. Jewbacca 05:06, Oct 28, 2004 (UTC)
    • The term has already been removed long ago there ... and for the same reason: "terrorist" is POW, "leader of a militant organization involved in attacks against civilians" states just the facts. Marcika 18:42, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Illness of late October 2004

Arafat collapsed after vomiting during a meeting, and he lost consciousness for ten minutes. He remains in serious condition. Although confined to his Ramallah compound, he is free to leave for medical treatment but has refused to go because Israelis have not agreed to let him return.[1]

Arafat's top adviser, Nabil Abu Rdeneh, said doctors examining the 75-year-old Palestinian leader Thursday were still deciding whether he needs to be hospitalized. Arafat has been confined by Israel to his compound in the West Bank city of Ramallah since 2002. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, in a telephone conversation with his Palestinian counterpart, Ahmed Qureia, agreed to allow Arafat to be flown abroad for treatment if necessary. However, Israeli security officials said the Palestinians have only requested, for now, to take Arafat to a local hospital. (AP: [2])

Added the CurrentEvents template msg to the Recent Events section, to flag the rapidly-changing situation surrounding Arafat's health. -- Penta 19:15, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)
More news: CNN is reporting that Yasser Arafat is going to be moved to Paris for treatment. -- Penta 19:21, 28 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) is not an adequate explanation of his present symptoms, although some of the tougher medications used in this conditions may cause nausea & vomiting. None would explain loss of conciousness! JFW | T@lk 10:34, 29 Oct 2004 (UTC)

The claim that Arafat lost consciousness is disputed. I heard Nabil Shaath deny that it happened.--Alberuni 23:51, 30 Oct 2004 (UTC)
The most likely diagnosis given his long history of ill health is probably one of the leukemias, nonetheless, ITP was the diagnosis offered by his physician (for public consumption, anyway). I agree with JFW that it's not an adequate diagnosis. - Nunh-huh 01:54, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC) - P.S. FOX news announced "a Palestinian diplomat" (unnamed) had said Arafat's doctor (unnamed) had ruled out leukemia, but no details. It would be nice if the doctors would say something instead of having it filtered through diplomats/newsmen, but I always think that when newsmen don't know enough to ask the pertinent questions. - Nunh-huh 02:57, 31 Oct 2004 (UTC)