Liberation and Resistance Day in Lebanon
Liberation and Resistance Day, also known as "Yawm al-Tahrir wa al-Muqawama" in Arabic, is an important national holiday in Lebanon. It commemorates the day when Israel withdrew its forces from southern Lebanon in 2000, ending its 22-year occupation of the region.
Liberation and Resistance Day is observed annually on May 25th. The date remains fixed as it marks the specific day Israel completed its withdrawal from Lebanese territory in 2000.
The celebration of Liberation and Resistance Day in Lebanon began in the year 2000, following the Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon on May 25th. The occupation began in 1978 when Israel invaded Lebanon in response to attacks by Palestinian militants operating from within the country. In 1982, Israel launched a full-scale invasion of Lebanon, leading to a prolonged and bloody conflict that lasted until 2000. The Israeli withdrawal was largely due to the efforts of the Lebanese resistance movement, led by the Shiite militant group Hezbollah, which played a crucial role in forcing Israel to end its occupation.
National customs for Liberation and Resistance Day in Lebanon
On Liberation and Resistance Day, Lebanon commemorates the sacrifices made by its citizens and the resistance movement during the Israeli occupation. The day is marked by various events and activities across the country. In the capital city of Beirut, as well as other major cities, official ceremonies and speeches are held by political figures and representatives of the resistance movement. The Lebanese flag is displayed prominently, and many people wear clothing or accessories featuring the national colors of red, white, and green.
Schools and public institutions are closed on this day, allowing families to come together and participate in the celebrations. In some cases, people visit the graves of loved ones who died during the occupation, paying their respects and honoring their memories.
Local customs for Liberation and Resistance Day in Lebanon
In southern Lebanon, where the Israeli occupation was most heavily felt, Liberation and Resistance Day holds special significance. In towns and villages throughout the region, locals organize parades, cultural events, and exhibitions showcasing the history and culture of the area. Traditional Lebanese music and dance performances are also common, as well as reenactments of key events from the resistance movement.
In areas with a strong Hezbollah presence, the group's yellow flag is often displayed alongside the Lebanese flag, and images of Hezbollah's leader, Hassan Nasrallah, may be seen. It is important to note, however, that not all Lebanese citizens view Hezbollah in a positive light, and the group's involvement in the day's celebrations can be a source of controversy.
Liberation and Resistance Day is a significant event in Lebanon's history, marking the end of a painful and destructive period of occupation. The day serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made by the Lebanese people and the resistance movement in their struggle for freedom and sovereignty. While the holiday is marked by a range of customs and activities at both the national and local levels, it is ultimately a time for the people of Lebanon to come together and celebrate their hard-won independence.