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Hizbullah's Documents

Hizbullah's Documents: From the 1985 Open Letter to the 2009 Manifesto

Joseph Alagha
Copyright Date: 2011
Pages: 224
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt6wp68p
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  • Book Info
    Hizbullah's Documents
    Book Description:

    Despite the controversial reputation of Hizbullah in the West, and the significant role this powerful Islamist organization plays in Lebanese politics, there are few reliable, published English translations of the party's primary documents. With this extensive work, Joseph Alagha seeks to remedy this problem and rectify the distortions and misrepresentations that have resulted from inaccurate translations.

    Through privileged access to the party, Alagha was able to compile and meticulously translate a host of original primary documents, from the party's 1985 Open Letter; through its eight clandestine conclaves from 1989 to 2009; to all of its election programs from 1992 to 2010, as well as all of the agreements, understandings, and pacts the party has ratified over the years; ending with the 2009 Political Manifesto. This firsthand portrait of Hizbullah's metamorphosis, especially in the past decade, is complete with thorough footnotes, commentary, background information, chronology, and a detailed introductory chapter that maps the party's transformation by analytically comparing the Open Letter with the 2009 Manifesto. This volume will be an invaluable companion for both scholars and policy makers.

    eISBN: 978-90-485-1337-6
    Subjects: Political Science, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-6)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 7-8)
  3. A Note on Transliteration
    (pp. 9-10)
  4. Prologue
    (pp. 11-12)
    Joseph Alagha

    There are hardly any reliable publications in English, or for that matter in any other language, which include Hizbullah’s primary documents, starting with the Party’s 1985 Open Letter; passing through all of its legislative and municipal election programs from 1992 to 2010; including all the Agreements, Understandings, and Pacts the Party ratified over the years; and ending with its 2009 Political Manifesto. The dearth of these documents and the distortions that resulted from inaccurate translations prompted the author to embark on the task of rectifying the misrepresentations that resulted from these recondite translations, especially when these might negatively impact academics...

  5. Abstract
    (pp. 13-14)
  6. Introduction
    (pp. 15-38)

    This introduction surveys Hizbullah’s overhaul in its identity over a period of a quarter of a century from the time of the propagation of its first Manifesto, the “Open Letter”¹ in 1985, passing through all of its eight clandestine conclaves, to the publication of its second watershed Manifesto in 2009. In order to map these changes, the author begins by analyzing the Open letter.

    Hizbullah’s political declarations;al-‘Ahd², its weekly newspaper; the discourse of its leaders and cadres; and most notably the Open Letter specify the constituents of the Party’s political ideology: oppressors and oppressed; Islamic state; relations with Christians;...

  7. 1 Primary Documents
    (pp. 39-62)

    The cover page of the Manifesto opens with the following Qur’anic quote:

    “Whoever takes Allah, His Apostle and those who believe as their friends, [must know] that Allah’s party [Hizbullah] is indeed the triumphant”. (5:56)

    * To the torch that has increased in light and brightness, so that it lit the path to a free dignified life for the oppressed in Lebanon, and burned with its pure glittering blood [jihad and martyrdom] the power of the “Zionist Entity” [Israel] and its myth.

    * To the leader who confided in and trusted his people and led them in jihad [Shaykh Raghib...

  8. 2 Election Programs
    (pp. 63-104)

    In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate

    “Those who, if we establish them firmly in the land, will perform the prayer, give the alms, command the good and prohibit evil. To Allah belongs the outcome of all affairs” (22:41).²

    From the stance of our legal (shar’i) responsibility towards our oppressed people in Lebanon, that gives due concern to the populace’s grand destining causes and its neglected daily demands; in light of a deep-conscientious reading to the nature of the degrading situation in Lebanon, and the changes in the international arena and their domestic impact, and the need to...

  9. 3 Agreements, Understandings, Pacts
    (pp. 105-114)

    National dialogue is the only avenue to find solutions to Lebanon’s crises on stable and firm bases that are a reflection of a unifying consensual will. The following conditions must be obtained to ensure its success:

    A The participation of parties that have a political, popular and national standing with a round table as the venue.

    B Transparency, openness, and placing the interests of the nation above any other interest, through the reliance on self-driven will and free and committed Lebanese decision-making.

    C Include all national issues that require general consensus.

    Consensual democracy remains the fundamental basis for governance in...

  10. 4 The New Manifesto (30 November 2009)
    (pp. 115-150)

    This manifesto is a disclosure of Hizbullah’s political views. It brings to light our stance and perceptions, our ambitions, hopes, and concerns. First and foremost, it is a representation of what we have experienced firsthand in the realm of pioneering endeavors and primacy of sacrifice.

    Amidst this exceptional political phase of proliferating change, it is no longer possible to weigh transformations without taking note of the special stance that our Resistance has come to occupy, or that ensemble of accomplishments that our course has realized. It is therefore important to perceive change in a comparative context between two key opposing...

  11. Chronology of Events (1975-2010)
    (pp. 151-184)
  12. List of Abbreviations
    (pp. 185-186)
  13. Glossary
    (pp. 187-192)
  14. Notes
    (pp. 193-210)
  15. Index
    (pp. 211-222)
  16. Back Matter
    (pp. 223-223)