Years of Resistance: The Mandate of Emile Lahood, the Former President of Lebanon

Karim Pakradouni


Emile Lahood served in various posts in the military, including commander-in-chief of the army from 1989 to 1998. In 1998 he had the constitution amended to allow the army commander-in-chief to run for office within three years of holding that post, and was subsequently elected as President of Lebanon. Lahood’s popularity, political neutrality and strong ties with Syria and the United States made him well suited for the Lebanese presidency, an office traditionally occupied by a Christian. Lahood actively stifled opposition to the Syrian military presence in Lebanon. He also oversaw Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. At the conclusion of Lahood’s extended term in 2007, the National Assembly could not agree on a successor, and he was replaced by an acting president, Fouad Siniora Years of Resistance is a testimony of Lahood’s mandate during his nine years in office. The material for the book is mostly taken from the weekly meetings that the author, Karim Pakradouni, and Lahood had during his time in office. The reader is placed at the heart of Lebanese politics, as Pakradouni reveals the conflicts, reform attempts, liberation and political assassinations that shaped Lahood’s reign. This book brings to light new details of important documents and events, and describes several key Lebanese and Arab figures in a way that leads to better comprehension of the interminable crisis and wars which took place in Lebanon and in the Middle East. This book is a summary of the Lebanese political situation where hopes are interspersed with fear.