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soc.culture.lebanon FAQ, part 4/5

( Part1 - Part2 - Part3 - Part4 - Part5 )
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Archive-name: lebanon-faq/part4
Last-modified: 1997/4/6
Version: 2.37

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge

30. What are newborn names that could be used for Lebanese children living
abroad that would work in both Lebanon and western societies.

For girls:

  If names sound alike (Homonyms) the first one mentioned will
be the Arabic spelling, then the English (or the English equivalent):

Dana            Danah     The name that got the most votes from the net
Farah           Farrah   
Hana            Hannah    
Leila           Leyla/Layla
Mariam          Myriam
Noura           Nora
Samar           Summer
Sawsan          Susan
Safiyya         Sofia
Sara            Sarah
Yasmin          Jasmin

For boys:

Yusef           Joseph 
Ree'an          Ryan  
Nabil		Bill
Chadi		Chad
Fouad		Fred
Raji		Roger
Ya'oub		Jacob/Jake
Ree'an		Ryan
Ramzi		Ramsey
Samir		Sam
Rabih		Robbie


31. I plan to go home soon and I have heard rumors that the draft
    will be re-instituted, do you have any additional information about it ?
    I was born in 1923 and I am afraid that I would be subject to the draft !

  The latest on the subject and the most recent decision  is that men
born during 1972 and later years will be drafted.  The same was also
confirmed recently in some of the arabic papers published in Canada.  
Originally it was thought that only those of 1975 will be drafted, but
it was later decided to go with 1972...


32. Where can I get a copy of the English translation of
    the Lebanese Constitution ?

  A Translated copy of the Lebanese Constitution is archived on ( as /pub/scl/constitution.
To obtain a copy from ftp enabled sites the following commands should be
ftp  (or ftp
login name:  anonymous
password  :  send id as password
cd pub/scl
get constitution 

also availble from and from


33. Where can I get a copy of the English translation of
    Taef Agreement ?

A Translated copy of the Taef Agreement is also archived on ( as /pub/scl/taef
To obtain a copy follow similar procedure as the one followed in
the previous  question using at the end :
get taef (instead of get constitution)

also availble from and from

34. I need to ship a car/or some merchandise to Lebanon, do you
    know of a shipping company that handles this ?

  There is a Lebanese person that handles shipping cars (among other things)
to Lebanon.
  His name is Hassan Issa, and his home phone is : (316) 636-4612 
You can mention that Hassan Hammoud referred you.  It may be very helpful.
Phoenicia Shipping in Woodridge-Monachie in NJ is another company that
deals with shipping merchandise to Lebanon.
Phoenicia's number is (201) 939-1010 but be warned, they're no longer
owned/operated by a Lebanese.  Charles Audi used to own Phoenicia.
The latest information about him is that he went back to Lebanon 
but is trying to reestablish himself again in the shipping business to
Someone contacted them over the phone.  The guy who spoke is American.
He said they subdivide containers going to Lebanon.  For one cubic meter,
it costs $200 plus a $150 one-time "documentations  fee" (whatever that means).
You pick up your stuff from their office in Beirut.

>From San Francisco, CA, the following price was obtained in September 1993:
Company name: Danzas Corp.
Phone: (415) 871-0845 Ask for Hernando,
the Quote I got was about 260$/m3, plus an assortment of charges for
pick up, handling....

Here is another way to ship things to Lebanon (or anywhere else) Contact:

Abed Medawar
C/O Kerans and Daly
2414 Morris Ave.
Union, NJ 07083

Tel: 908-688-3893
Fax: 908-688-3924

Posted on 8 Jan 1996 to SCL:

Dear friends,

Are you moving back to Lebanon?
Do you have " old & new" stuff you want to ship back?
Don't know what to do when your goods arrive to Lebanon?
Whether it is at Beirut International Airport or Port of Beirut
we will take care of all the procedures to clear Lebanese customs.
We will deliver you goods to you door steps in Lebanon.
Give us a call.

Al-Farouk Est.
(216) 844-1027 (8am-5pm EST)
(216) 289-4833 (After 6pm EST)

35. I suddenly developed an urge for Middle-Eastern cuisine,
    can you help me quench this horrifying thirst ?
  You can try to prepare any of the following recipes:

Moughli, in French

1	Verre de riz en poudre
2¼	Verres de sucre
12 	Verres d'eau
1	Grande cuillerée Carvis
2	Petite cuillerées de Cannelle
2	Grandes cuillerées d'Anis

	Diluer à froid dans l'eau le riz, le sucre, le carvis et la
cannelle. Faire bouillir l'anis avec un peu d'eau. Tamiser et ajouter
l'infusion au melange precedent. Porter le tout à ébulition, remuer à
grand feu pendant une heure.
	Verser dans les tasses et mettre au refrigerateur jusqu'au
moment de servir.

Decoration: au choix garnir avec des pistaches, amandes, etc. pelées
et de la noix de coco.

Ghoraibe', in French

1	petite boite de Crisco
2	verres de sucre fin
3½	verres de farine (plus ou moins)

	Melanger le Crisco et le sucre. Ajouter la farine
petit-à-petit jusqu'à avoir une pate qui ne colle plus au
recipient. Faire des galettes.
	Chauffer le four à 350ºC, et y passer les galettes jusqu'à ce
qu'elle sèchent. Faire attention de ne pas les dorer.

Namoura, in French

4	verres de Semoule
1	verre de sucre
½Kg	Yoghourt
1	grande cuillerée de bicarbonate de soude
1	grande cuillerée de beurre
¾	tasse d'amandes pelées

	Bien melanger tous les ingredients d'un coup. Enduire
légèrement de "tehiné" un plat, et y mettre le melange. Decorer le
dessus avec les amandes et mettre au four chauffé a 250ºC jusqu'à la
surface devienne rousse. Découper en formes géométriques selon
inspiration, tout en gardant dans le plat et arroser avec le sirop à
plusieures reprises. Dès que refroidi, enlever du plat et servir.

3	Verres de sucre
1¾	Verres d'eau
½	citron pressé
1/3	tasse à café d'eau de rose
2/3	tasse à café d'eau de fleur

	Melanger l'eau, le sucre et le citron. Bouillir jusqu'à
consistence désirée. Ajouter l'eau de fleur et de rose et laisser

Eish-Essarraya recipe, in French

1	Paquet de Toast (étalés à l'air libre pendant ±10 minutes)
4	Tasses de lait
4	Grande cuillerées d'amidon (de riz ou maïs)
1	boite de Lait concentré sucré de 300 ml
1	tasse à café d'eau de fleur
1	tasse à café d'eau de rose
1½	tasse de sucre
1½	tasse d'eau

Melanger le lait et l'amidon, puis mettre le tout sur un feux
doux. Remuer constamment jusqu'à ce que le mélange ait la consistence
de la crème à choux. Une fois épais sortir du feu, ajouter le lait
concentré, et bien remuer le tout. Ajouter l'eau de fleur et de rose et
laisser refroidir. Carameliser le sucre, ajouter l'eau, et laisser
refroidir le sirop.

Imbiber les toast dans le sirop, presser les pour enlever l'excés et
étaler le fonds d'un plat rond. Couvrir la croute de crème et finir
par une autre couche de toast imbibés.

garnir tout le dessus avec des pistaches moulu gros, avec au choix de
la creme et cerices confis.

Chawarma :
         2 lbs of thin sliced Sirloin steak
         1 cup of vinegar
         1 teaspoon of cinnamon
         1 teaspoon  sweet pepper 
         1 teaspoon of nutmeg
         1 pinch of cardamon ( hab hal)
         1 tablespoon of mashed garlic
         salt to taste

Marinate the meat ovenight in the spices , garlic and vinegar .  Fry
the meat in a little bit of oil until half cooked , cut it in thin
stripes , and put it in a pyrex . Cover with aluminium paper and put
it in the oven for about 20 mn, uncover it and leave it in the oven
for 10 more minutes and serve .  PS: So far I never found in the US
the fat you're supposed to put with the meat (li'e) so I just do it
without it .   Bon appetit 

Begetarian Kbeb

Just like any other Lebanese receipe, measurements are relative to the
potency and consistency of ingredients. You need to experiment a bit
with this stuff :-)

You start with a pumpkin (size is relative to appetite). Slice up the
pumpkin in large enough silces to fit in a pot, add water and salt and
boil. Once the pumpkin is tender, remove from water and drain real
well (this stuff retains a lot of water) and run through a
blender. The end result should be an orange paste.

Now you're ready to start making the Kbeb. Mix the pumpkin paste with
some Bourghol (do not pre-wet the bourghol). The amount of bourghol is
up to you, some like a lot, some like less, until you're happy with
the consistency of the resulting dough. (while mixing add an
occasional pinch of flour every once in a while).

Now you can make the stuffing. You need the following ingredients:

- Sele' (you can substitute spinach)
- Garlic - Smashed the Lebanese way with a just a touch of olive oil
  and salt.
- Onions - sliced real fine
- Whole garbanzo beans (boiled and peeled, or you can use the canned
  stuff if you're in a hurry).

Start by saute'ing the garlic and onions in a frying pan, until the
onions are brown (it is real easy to burn the onions at this
point). Next add the Sele' or Spinach. Sautee until tender, add a
little lemon juice.

Now comes the hard part, you have to make Kbeb out of the dough
produced earlier and stuff them with the stuffing produced in step
2. From this point on, you can either fry the Kbeb, or boil them in
Laban (you can add some more garlic and dried mint if you do
this). Warning: if you make Kbeb b'laban, make sure that the kbeb
dough is not soft (you can also fry them first before adding them to
the laban). Enjoy.


	1 cup fine bulgur
	1 bunch green onions, chopped
	1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped fine
	1 small bunch mint, chopped
	3 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
	1/4 cup olive oil
	juice of 2 lemons
	1 to 2 ts salt
	fresh ground pepper to taste

Soak bulgur in hot water for 30 minutes or until  no longer crunchy.  Drain
in fine strainer then squeeze excess water out by hand.

Return bulgur to bowl and add the rest of the ingredients.  

Use the lemon juice to taste.  

>From "Cooking  the Lebanese  Way" by Cedar  Hashashe (inexpensive paperback
from AH & AW Reed) slightly adapted by me:


225g (1c) fine cracked wheat		1 large onion
2 - 3 c   parsley			1/2 c olive oil
1 c       fresh mint			juice of 3 lemons
2         not-quite-ripe tomatoes       black pepper
                                        cinnamon (2 heaped tsp)
Soak the wheat 1 hr in cold water.

Finely chopped parsley, mint (I usually am  forced to use  dried mint which
is quite adequate), tomatoes and onion. Put in a large bowl.

Drain wheat and sqeeze out all moisture with hands.

Toss onto salad. Add spice, lemon juice and oil. Mix well.

Season to taste so that salad is distinctly lemon-tasting and highly spiced.


2 cans of cooked Garbanzos
1/2 cup of Tahini (sold at Int'l food stores-mashed sesame seed pulp)
1/2 cup of lemon juice
2 cloves of garlic (crushed)
1/4 cup of olive oil
2 T of chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
1 T of paprika (or ground red pepper-depending on whether you like it hot)
salt (to taste)

It is a good idea to boil the precooked garbanzo beans that come in the
cans for an extra 10 minutes, it helps make the garbanzo easier to mash
thus the final product will have less granularity in it.
Save some (about 15 garbanzo beans) whole to use for plate decorating
once the hummos is done.
mash the rest of the garbanzo beans all by themselves in the food processor
(you can add a bit-less than 1/4 cup- of water to help the processing along)
once they are finely ground, add the crushed garlic, the tahini, and start
adding the lemon juice then mix in the food processor every time
you add a little bit and taste-test (I usually put less than what the recipe
calls for then increase the lemon juice slowly to the mix until I attain the
level of tanginess that I like, so it would be a good idea to keep
adding the lemon juice slowly, until the amount of tanginess you like
is attained). same thing for salt, put a little bit than add as you go along
(or don't add if you don't want it in).
Once you are satisfied with the mix, put it in a plate, decorate with
chopped parsley and whole garbanzos in bunches, then sprinkle the
paprika or red pepper on top, and add the olive oil.
Eat with pita bread.


   Baba Ghanouj

   1 eggplant (about 1.25 lbs.)
   1/4 cup of olive oil
   1   clove of garlic, crushed
   1/2 cup of lemon juice
   1/4 cup of tahini
   2   T of minced parsley

 1. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise and make several incisions in
    the flesh. Sprinkle the exposed meat with salt and let it drain for
    30 minutes.
 2. Coat a baking pan with the olive oil and place the eggplant
    face-down in the pan. Bake it in an oven preheated to 400F for
    about 20 or 30 minutes, until tender.
 3. Remove the eggplant and let it cool. Then scoop out the pulp and
    place it in a food-processor or blender. Discard the skin. 
 4. Place the garlic in the blender with the eggplant and puree. Add
    alternately the lemon juice and the tahini. Finally, blend in the
    parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper if desired. 
 5. Chill before serving. Sprinkle with paprika to add a bit of color,
    if you like. Serve with raw vegetables and toasted pita


       1 lb. dry ful (fava beans)
       1 small onion
       1 bunch of chopped parsley
       2 cloves of garlic, crushed
       1 t. ground coriander
       1/4 t hot red pepper (optional)
       1 t. baking soda
       1/2 t. cumin
       Salt and pepper to taste
       1 T. flour

  Soak ful in cold water for a few days, changing water daily.  When ready,
peel ful and grind with onion in meat grinder.  Add all ingredients,
mixing well.  Grind mixture a second time.  Form into patties and fry.

Variation:  Soak 3/4 cup of dry homus with ful.  Then follow above directions.

  Stuffed Grape Leaves in Oil.

1 lb tender grape leaves
12 oz. rice
12 oz chopped red onions
4 bunches parsley chopped fine
12 oz ripe tomatoes chopped very fine
2 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. spices (mixed cinnamon and sweet + hot pepper)
2 1/5 lb sliced tomatoes
1 pt. boiling water.
2 oz. lemon juice
4 oz. oil
potatoes cut in the thickness of 1 1/2 inch.

  My Lebanese mother-in-law adds garbanzo beans as well, about a cup
or so with the above proportions. Note that these are the "lentin"
variety; there are also grape leaves with meat, for those who eat

  As hinted above, rolling the leaves is the tricky part an the book
doesn't explain how to do it. Could anyone provide any hints on that?

  Nothing substitutes for experience.
When my wife and I make grape leaves, hers are always much tighter
and more consistent than mine. But I'm learning! Here's how we do it:

  Lay the leaf face down in front of you, with the stem end towards
you. (Be sure to remove the stem, by the way). Put a tablespoon
or two of the stuffing in the middle of the leaf. Fold in the
sides, then roll up the leaf starting with the end that is
closest to you. It's very much like rolling a burrito, if that's
any help.

  When cooking, be sure to put a plate on top of the grape leaves,
so that they don't expand too much. Also, we like to crush some
garlic and sprinkle it on top of the grape leaves before cooking.


    Knafi (bil Jibn or Ushta):

  I have recently learned to make Knafi, and if I do say so, I think I have
become very good at it.  I use the shredded stuff, not the breadcrumb crust.

  First prepare the syrup ('ater) from twice as much sugar as water
with some lemon juice and orange-blossom water (mazaher).  Mixing in honey 
makes it taste more familiar to American palates, and putting in a tiny amount 
of Carob molasses (dibs) makes the flavour "heavier" (i.e. more like
something cooked).
The syrup goes in the fridge.

  Next I prepare the clotted cream ('ushta).
The ingredients are:

One liter milk,
1/4 litre heavy cream
and one teaspoonful rosewater (maward)

  Prefereably boiled over a light flame in a wide, shallow tray over
two burners.
After that, it needs to be left at room temperature overnight so that the
thick layer of stuff on the surface can trigger the coagulation of a greater
of the milk/cream mixture. 
Adding the rosewater after most of the boiling is done is a good thing to do.

  You may refrigerate the 'ushta now if you want to do this later.  The cheese
could be Lebanese white cheese (jinbi baidha) if you can get it or mozerella
otherwise.  The shredded dough needs to be well buttered : pouring melted 
butter over it is not enough, you have to leave some butter in solid form and 
rub it in to make sure every strand is coated.  I assume this will not be a 
problem with breadcrumbs.  Also, using clarified butter is a good thing to do 
if you have time.  (If you are still with me, you probably have time ;)
In order to clarify the butter, melt it and throw away the parts
that float or sink (unless, of course, you have some REAL samneh!).

  One layer of knafi in the tray followed by the cheese (cut into any shapes
you wnat: it'll melt anyway), covered with the 'ushta and topped off by another
layer of buttered knafi is the final configuration.
  Bake at 350 for half an hour then raise the temperature to 450 to brown it;
remove when it looks brown enough
(unless you see smoke, which is another indication it is done :>).

Baklava recipes

Syrup Ingredients:

1.5 cups sugar
 .5 cup water
1 tablespoon mazaher (orange blossom water)
squeeze of lemon

Baklava Ingredients:

1 box phillo dough
3 cups chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons mazaher
2 sticks melted unsalted butter

1. Cook syrup first so that, if you mess up the syrup, you can
   make another batch.

   Combine all syrup ingredients and cook over medium heat and
   after it has come to a boil cook for 5 minutes and remove
   from the heat. Do not let it get too thick when it's still cooking
   or it won't be absorbed by the phillo dough.
   Place syrup in the refridgerator.

2. For the walnut mix - mix walnuts, mazaher and honey. Mix honey in
   so that the walnuts stick together but are not dripping. 

3. Using a pastry brush, put a coat of butter on cookie sheet. Carefully
   place 1 sheet of phillo on top of butter.  Brush sheet with butter
   then put another sheet on top of that one. Continue until you've
   used 1/3 of the phillo.

4. Spread the walnut mixture on the phillo, leaving a tiny bit of space
   at the edges. Cover with the rest of the phillo, spreading butter
   between each sheet.

5. Make sure the top of the baklava has butter spread all over it. Then.
   cut the baklava in squares.

6. Place in oven at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes - but watch it closely.

7. When the Baklava is done cooking pour the syrup on top  - a little at
   a time using a spoon or ladle. 

   The thing to remember about the syrup is hot baklava/cold syrup or
   cold baklava/hot syrup. You want the maximum amount of syrup to be


Fillo dough (pastry leaves).
1 1/4 cups butter/margarine
1/4 cup sugar
1-2 tsp cinamon (ground)
4 cups almonds, slivered and chopped.
cloves (NOT ground)

4 cups sugar
3 cups water
1/2 cup honey
1 stick cinamon
5-6 cloves (NOT ground)

Mix sugar, cinamon, sugar, and almonds.

Lay the fillo dough out on a table.  Fillo dough will dry quickly, so
you'll need to work fast, so what spills out of the pan doesn't dry
(although it will anyway), and keep a damp towel on the rest of it (that
you had laid on the table) so it doesn't dry.
 On a medium-sized, buttered pan (you'll need to melt the butter) lay
one of the sheets of dough.  Butter it, and lay another on top of that.
Continue until you have 5-6 sheets of dough on the bottom of the pan.
Then lay another sheet, and do NOT butter it.  On that, put some of the
almond mix, enough to cover it evenly, but not making a thick layer. On
that, lay another sheet of dough, butter it, and then another,
unbuttered.  On that place some almond mix again.  Repeat until all the
mix is gone, or you have only 4-5 sheets of dough left.

Fold in the dough that hangs from the side of the pan.  Some of sthem
will be dry, so just cut them and discard them.  Make sure to butter
all of them (except, of course, if they have almonds on them).Lay down
some more sheets of dough, buttering every one, and cutting off the
edges, that hang from the sides of the pan. here, I've found it easier
if you just lay the dough down, width of dough to length of pan.  That
is to say, the width of the dough is sometimes about teh same size as
the length of the pan, and the length of the dough about twice the widht
of the pan, so lay the short side of the dough down along the length of
the pan, so that some (about half) of it will hang out the end.  Then
butter it, and fold what hangs back in the pan, buttering that.  This
way you get it to look better, and stick better.

When you're done with laying the sheets of dough down, make sure you
butter the first one VERY well, and sprinkle some water on it before you
put it in the oven.  Also, with a sharp, pointy knife, cut the top few
sheets of dough, not getting all the way through, just sort of
"scratching" the top layer and marking the pieces, in rhombus-shaped
pieces.   I find it easier to cut along lengthwise, and then sideways,
from corner to corner, and lines paralel toothat:

|  /  /  /  / |
|_/__/__/__/__|      <--I HOPE you get this "drawing"..and i hope it's useful.
|/  /  /  /  /|

(you get the idea).

Then, at the center of each rhombus, stick a clove, so that it keeps the
sheets of dough together.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour, until
golden-brown, and the edges no longer touch the wall of the pan.


Place sugar and water in a pan and bring tooa boil  Boil for 5 minutes,
then add honey and spices and simmer until all is combined well, 
 10 minutes maybe, enough for the spices to give off flavor.
Retain the syrup hot until the baklava comes out of the oven and cools.
Pour the hot syrup over the cold baklava.  (some do it the other way, I
don't think it matters, as long as one is hot and the other cold, so
that it "boils" into the baklava and it saturates it well, whicle at the
same time keeps the top layer of filo dough crispy).

Note:  I usually put in along with the spices a piece of lemon peel.  A
friend of mine, on the other hand, uses 1-2 tbsp rosewater.  They both
work well, and I sugest one of them. 

Note2:  (on syrup/baklava hot/cold thing):  I think you can save
yourself some time if you just take the baklava out, and then start the
syrup, so that by the time you're done, the baklava will have cooled
down enough.

Note3:  You may use wallnuts or baking pistachios instead of almonds, or
any wallnut/almond or pistachio/almond combo.  I've never tried
pistachio/almond/wallnut all in one, but I don't think it would be good.
Anyway, I usually prefer not to put any wallnuts because they give off
wallnut oil, which I don't think is fitting. (I guess I could roast them
first, so they wouldn't give off the oil, but I'm not a big wallnut fan
as it is.)  Pistachios make it extra-special.   Make sure that, no
matter what you use, they're ground coarsly.


here's my recipe.  i'm doing this off the top of my head, so bear with me. :)

1 pkg philo dough
1 bag (the larger of the 2 kinds of bags, i think 8 oz) walnuts
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
almonds (optional, if i add them, i do 2 parts walnuts to 1 part almonds)
3 sticks butter (not margarine!)
3/4 cups sugar

1/2 water
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups honey
3 or 4 lemon slices
1 cinnamon stick

make syrup:

dissolve sugar in water, bring to boil. add honey, cinn. stick and lemon 
slices, reduce heat and let simmer for about 20 minutes.  strain and leave to 

assemble baklava:

preheat oven to 325-350 (depends on how hot your oven is)

in a food processor, grind nuts, mix with sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.  set 
aside.  melt butter.  in a large pan (i use a roasting pan that is about the
size of a sheet of philo) place 2 layers philo, butter them lightly, then 2 
more sheets, repeating this until you have about 8 or 10 layers.  add 1/3 of 
the nut mixture.  cover with 2 more layers, lightly butter, repeat until you
have about 6 layers, add another third of the nut mixture.  repeat this until
you have used all the nut mixture, then layer the remaining philo and butter on

take a sharp knife and cut diagonal through the top layers of philo (not past
the top nut layer, and about 1 1/2 - 2 inches wide).  turn and do the same on
the opposite diagonal, to form diamond shapes.  bake for 1 hour, or until 
golden.  turn oven off and let baklava sit in oven for 1 more hour.  

remove, pour cooled syrup over hot baklava.  take knife and slice all the way
through the cuts you made previously.  let cool, and enjoy!

p.s. until you get very fast at assembling the baklava, you might want to cover
the sheets with a damp towel while you are putting it together.

Ragout of Green Beans (Loobyieh ou rozz)


2 lbs. 10 oz green beans strung and cut
1 lb meat cut in medium-sized pieces
7 oz. onions chopped
6 cloves of garlic cut
5 oz. butter
2 tbs salt
1/2 tbs pepper
2 pts 2oz boiling water
2 lb tomatoes cut in slices

Clean and string beans and cut them in halves. Melt butter in a pot and fry
onions, garlic and meat. when onions turn brown add tomatoes, then beans, salt 
and spices. After two minutes turn the beans with a flat ladle. Repeat this 
four times. Add boiling water and cook fast for 30 minutes. Reduce heat
and continue cooking, stirring occasionally until beans are done.
Serve with rice on the side.

 Potato kibbeh recipe from the book
_The Art Of Cooking_ or Fann al Tabkh

Potato Kibbeh


1 kg.  of potatoes
1 cup of Burghul (soaked in water) [alternatively called Bulgur]
1/2 cup of flour
2 onions (chopped) 
3 cloves of garlic (chopped)
1 bunch of fresh cilantro (or coriander) chopped
salt (to taste)
1 gram of ground white pepper
1 gram of ground black pepper
1 pinch of cumin
1 pinch of nutmeg
150 grams of olive oil

Boil potatoes, taking extra care not to overcook them, peel potatoes.
Saute' onions, garlic and cilantro in a little bit of
olive oil.  Mash the potatoes, mix in the flour, the burghul (after
draining them and squeezing excees water out), the spices and the 
sauteed ingredients.  Form into small patties, and fry them in olive
oil over medium heat for approximately 20 minutes (until they
are golden brown color).


Here is another recipe for "Potato Kibbeh". I suppose this one is a 
"jabalieh"!! Mountaineer Potato Kibbeh ;-)

3 potatoes (large)
1/2 cup of Burghul Na'em (Fine Bulgur)
1 onion
1 to 2 cloves of garlic (according to taste)
3 tablespoons of Tehini

Boil potatoes and peel.
Mash the potatoes and the onion together using either 
a hand-mill or a food processor. I have personally found that a mill usually
gives better results (maintains a solid mixture). Add the burghul and the
garlic and mix well. You may choose to pass everything
through the mill or food processor once more to get good mixing. Finally, add
the tehini and again mix well. If you find the tehini to be a little
too thick, add some water. Serve chilled on a platter and decorate with
fresh mint leaves and olive oil. Good appetite.

Mjadara recipe.
1 cup of lentil (the orange-colored type that you can find in health stores
                 international stores and even some groceries)
4 cups of water
1/2 cup of rice
1 huge onion
pepper and salt to taste (a couple of pinches should do)
Chop the onion and fry with some oil until moderately brown.  Place the rice
lentil and water in a pot, add the salt and pepper and the onion and bring to
a boil.  After the mixture reaches the boiling point, reduce temperature to
low, cover the pot, and let simmer for 20-40 minutes.  I like the mjadra to
have a pudding consistency.  So uncover the pot 30 minutes after letting it
simmer to check if the pudding consistency has been reached.  If the thick
pudding consistency was not achieved, then cover the pot again and let simmer
for 10 minutes.  Keep checking until the pudding consistency has been achieved.
At this point, pour content in deep dishes and let cool in room temperature.
When cooled, the mjadra will become firm.  Get a small white onion, cut it in
quarters and place in saucer w/ cold water.  Heat some Lebanese bread.  And...
Hint: it takes me a couple of times before I fully achieve the desired flavor
when I cook.  My first time around is usually experimental, though I learn from
it in order to perfect the dish the second time around.  My latest experiment
was Mloukhieh.  That was rather complicated but it turned out delicious!!


Meat Filling:
1 tablespoon butter			1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 small onion chopped			Pinch of cinnamon
5 to 1 lb ground beef or lamb		Salt and pepper to taste
3 to 4 tablespoons of pine nuts		2 teaspoons of lemon juice

Melt butter in saucepan and add onion.  Saute' until tender and then
add meat.  Cook until just brown, then add remaining ingredients.  Cook
and stir about 2 minutes.

Spinach Filling:
1 lb spinach fresh or frozen		Juice of one squeezed lemon
1/4 cup olive oil			1/4 teaspoon sumak
1 small onion chopped			Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 crumbled feta cheese or
 cottage cheese

Rinse spinach throughly several times and trim off stems.  Chop leaves
and drain well.  If you use frozen spinach, squeeze dry after thawing
and fluff with a fork to separate.  Put it in a large bowl, and then
start heating olive oil and add onion.  Saute' about a minute and then
add this to the bowl of spinach.  Add remaining ingredients and toss/
stir gently to mix well.

Cheese Filling:
1 cup crumbled feta, ricotta,		1/2 cup fresh parsley
 or Syrian cheese			Salt and pepper to taste
1 small onion grated

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.

Prepare filling.  Preheat oven to 350F.  Using filo dough (about 20 sheets
for each recipe, or one box), cut lengthwise into thirds (making long, thin
strips).   Keep the rest covered with plastic wrap to prevent it from drying
out.  Using one strip (of the three), take one from the top and brush it with
clarified (melted) butter.  Then continue until you have a total of four, all
stacked on top of each other, each one brushed with butter (except the top

Place a heaping tablestoon in the corner of each strip, and fold it flag-
flag fashion, to make a triangle.  Place seam-side (when you are done folding
it, it looks like a seam - just turn it upside down) on a baking sheet with
as many as the baking sheet can hold, but give each a little space inbetween.
Brush each top with butter and bake about 15 or 20 minutes or until the top
is golden.

If your butter starts to get cold (hard to brush sheets with), just put it
on the stove for a few minutes until it melts.  The butter is best when it is
melted, but not too hot.  It is good to use a paint brush to brush the sheets,
and I don't know if you've ever made baklawa before, but follow the directions
of thawing the filo dough.  It is hard to make sometimes, but if you have it
at the right temperature, it will work very well.  Be sure to cover the dough
that you are not using, to make sure it doesn't dry out on you.

I think this is the best recipe (easiest), but if it's the first time you are
using it, it won't take very long before you know how to wrap each triangle.

Salam and sahteen,

Rice Bidfeen Recipe

3 lb. rump of lamb with bones (boneless beef can be substituted)
2.5 lb small onions
1.25 lb rice (soaked)
3 tsb cumin
1/2 tsp spices *
8 oz. soaked chickpeas (or Garbanzo beans)
11 oz. butter
3.5 tsp salt
3 pts water (9pts if "American" rice is used)

Cut meat into medium-sized pieces. Melt butter in a pan and fry the meat and
bones till they are a golden brown. Lift meat and bones into a pot and add
salt, pepper and water and allow to boil for about an hour. In the meantime,
fry the onions and chickpeas in the same butter in which the meat was fried,
until golden brown. Add onion, chickpeas with the butter to the boiling meat.
Add cumin and spices. After the meat is done, remove a large portion of the
meat, onions and chickpeas and put them aside. Add the rice to the water
and remaining meat. Cook rice until it's done.

When ready to serve, put rice in a platter and arrange the meat and onions that
were put aside on top of it.
Yogurt can be served on the side.

* A mixture of cinnamon and hot and sweet peppers.

Pita Bread Recipe

This recipe comes from Bernard Clayton's "New Complete Book of Breads, 
Revised and Expanded", Simon and Schuster, 1973, p 679

I have tried the recipes for pita in Moosewood and in Beard on Bread
but this one has consistently produced the best results for me.

If you have any interest in making breads, Clayton's book is a must!

     PITA    -  eight 6-inch pieces

The pieces of dough must be rolled flat before they are placed into a
hot (500F) oven.  The dough should be rolled to a thickness of no more
than 3/16 inch.  This is the thickness of a wooden yardstick, the kind
given away at country fairs, auto dealers, and paint stores.  It can
be used as a gauge.  The oven heat generates steam inside the pita which
causes the dough to puff into a ball.  Later, as it cools the dough will
collapse.  The oven must be hot.  If it is not, the piece of dough will
think it is meant to be a bun, and will rise slowly but without the all-
important pocket in the center.

While this is a yeast dough, it puffs because of the steam.  The yeast
only adds flavor and texture.  Don't overpower the dough with flour
or it will be too dry to allow sufficient steam to be generated.
Leave the dough on the soft side.  Sprinkles of flour will take care
of stickiness.


2.5 cups bread flour, approx.
2 tsp salt
1 Tbs sugar
1 package dry yeast
2 Tbs oil, olive oil preferred
1 cup hot water (120-130F)

Eight 7-inch squares of aluminum foil

Into a large mixing bowl measure 1 cup flour and stir in the dry
ingredients.  Add the oil and hot water.  Mix for about 30 seconds
to blend and then beat vigorously with a wooden spoon for three
minutes.  Stir in the balance of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time.
The dough should be a rough, shaggy mass that will clean the sides
of the bowl.  If the dough is moist, add a small amount of flour.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead with a
rhythmic motion of push-turn-fold.  Knead for about 6 minutes.

Preheat oven to 500F.

Divide the dough into eight pieces.  Roll into balls, cover with
wax paper or a towel, and let rest for 20 minutes.

With the palm of your hand, flatten each ball into a disk.  With
a rolling pin, flatten the dough into a disk about 6 inches in
diameter and 3/16-inch thick.  Their thinness is more important
than making perfect circles.  Irregularity adds charm!

Place each round on a prepared piece of foil.  Placing the
rounds on the foil rather than on a baking sheet or stone allows
a softer heat to surround the dough.  A direct thrust of heat
from a baking sheet or stone would form a crust difficult to puff.

Carefully place 2 or 3 of the breads (on their foil) directly on
an oven rack in the oven.   Back for about 8 minutes, or until
they are puffed.  Repeat with remaining disks.  Place the pitas
under the broiler for 2 minutes if a browner crust is desired.

Remove the breads from the oven and wrap in a large piece of
foil.  The tops will fall and there will be a pocket in the
center.  Serve warm, or let cool and freeze.   Thaw before
using.  To reheat, stack several in a pile, wrap in foil,
and place in 375F oven for 10 to 15 minutes.

Marhaba ya Ibtissam,
One recipe is the following:
2 cups of flour
1/2 cup semolina (sameed)
1 tea spoon yeast (best to use Red Star quick Rise brand)
1 1/2 tea spoon baking powder
Mix all the ingredients and let them sit for 5-6 hours.
Now is the tricky part.  You need a flat evenly heated surface to pour on it
the atayef.  You could use those "grills" that are used for bacons, omelelets,
etc..  Any way, just pour a little of the mixture on the surface.  When the
surface of the mixture is dry, it is ready to take it off.  You only cook one
side, so do not flip it over.
Then you can simply stuff the atayef with sweetened cheese (put it in a pot
under a running tap for few hours, let the tap run like a fine line).  Or you
can use a mixture of walnuts, sugar and cinnamon for stuffing.  Close the
atayef, put them in a pan and put a little bit of butter on top of each atayef.
Cook until they are light brown.  Prepare the sugar syrup (qatir) and drop the
cooked (still hot) atayef in the qatir.
Halewet l-jibn:

you need to have:

1/2 kilo of shredded mozarella
2 glasses of water (glass size = medium)
1 glass of sugar
1 glass of semolina

start by boiling the water and adding the sugar. 
Once it starts boiling add the semolina slowly and mix.
Once it starts boiling add the shredded mozarella cheese slowly and keep mixing
till all the cheese has been added and had melted completely.
Then spread the entire mix on a dish and let it cool down.
Put in your fridge for the nignt.

The day after u have 3 alternatives:
1 -> send it to me :-)
2 -> eat it like it is...
3 -> get some 'ouchta 3arabieh and spread on the 7alawa or try to roll the
7alawa with the 'ouchta in it...that's getting really difficult. I like (2)
the best :-)))

--> New:
Ma@moul btamir (b-@ajweh)

Here is a recipe for ma@moul btamir that I recently tried and it seems
to work :-). [I tried it out of memory so that is why I use the
approximation word many times ;) ]

Ingredients (for approx : 45 little pieces)
(Maybe a good idea is to try with 1/2 or 1/4 of the ingredients ;)

1   Kg         of wheat flour.
500  g         of butter
1   Kg         of dates
8   tea spoons of orange flower water (arabic ma' l-zaher, French Eau
               de fleur d'oranger)
Powder sugar.

Remove dates' hearts then cut them, (like each date into 6 or 8
pieces) put them into a casserole and add about 15 normal spoons
(French: cuillere de soupe) of water, cook them for about 15 mn on a
low fire while stirring and trying to smash the pieces in order to have
a kind of a homogeneous dough. Then let them cool.

Meanwhile cut the butter into small cubes and add them to the flour
then rub them together till they look like little bread pieces (in
French comme la mie de pain ;-).

Put the flower water into a small pot and add to it about 8 to 10
normal spoons of water, mix then add the mixture to the flour and
butter while trying to get the liquid homogeneously into the dough
(you can use a knife or a fork to get the liquid inside). Then rub
until you obtain a homogeneous dough. Keep it rest for half an hour
or 40 minutes while covering it with a tissue.

Take a part of the dough and make a cylinder out of it, approx 3 cm of
diameter, then cut the cylinder into equal pieces of 2 cm approx of
thickness. Take each of the pieces and make a ball out of it then make
a hole in it with your thumb while holding it in the other
hand. Continue rolling it around your thumb to shape it like a an
arabic coffee cup. Then fill it with about 1 1/2 tea spoon of dates,
close and reshape. Continue until the end of the dough or the dates

You can decorate the pieces with a fork, by doing some drawing on

If you have the a wood "shaper" (I don't know the word in English,
arabic: qAlib). Then you can avoid the thumb part and maybe you'll
have better decoration on your ma@mouls ;-)).

warm the oven to 180 C approx, butter an oven "plateau" place the
ma@mouls and cook them for about 25 to 30 min (the dough becomes hard
and they start to have a little bit of red color).

After taking them out, powder them with the powder sugar, then let
them cool.

Voila, SaHtein


36. Where can I find information about US State Department visa regulations
    for foreigners.

     If you need any information about US visas or related subjects,
check out the new State Department BBS.
Here is a detailed description on how to access the BBS:

  In order to access the Sate Department's BBS, you need to have
  a Telecommunications software, such as Procomm, a modem, and a
  phone line (of course!).
  In the Telecommunications software, set the transmissions options
  as follows:

  Baude Rate: 9600(or 2400 if 9600 is not available)
  Parity:     None
  Data bits:  8
  Stop bits:  1
  Duplex:     Full
  Phone number: 1-(202) 647 9225
  Then, use the dial command to connect to the BBS. Once connected,
  online information will come up on screen, and it is easy to follow.

This procedure was tested with a 9600 baud modem, and it worked fine!

Note:  The BBS is not connected to Internet, yet! 

The U.S Embassy is to reopen in Beirut. For more details here a UPI article of
Sun, 14 Nov 93

Date: Sun, 14 Nov 93 11:40:10 EST
Subject: U.S. Embassy announces partial reopening in Lebanon

	AWKAR, Lebanon (UPI) -- The U.S. Embassy in Lebanon announced Sunday
the partial reopening of its consular section, which will resume
granting tourist visas to Lebanese with previous U.S. visas in a first
such move since the 1984 bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.
	Charge d'Affaires Vincent Battle made the announcement at the heavily
guarded hilltop embassy compound in the Christian neighborhood of Awkar,
8 miles (13 km) northeast of Beirut.
	``The service of visitor visas will be reintroduced at the U.S.
Embassy in Beirut with immediate effect,'' Battle said.
	He said only Lebanese who can prove they previously held visas to
enter the United States will be allowed to apply in Lebanon.
	Battle said first-time applicants must continue seeking U.S. consular
services outside Lebanon.
	For nearly a decade, Lebanese have been forced by the closure of the
U.S. consular section in Beirut to travel to neighboring Syria or Cyprus
for U.S. visa services.
	The United States suspended its consular activities in Lebanon after
a suicide bomber rammed the embassy compound in Awkar on Sept. 20, 1984.
	A dozen people, including two U.S. nationals, were killed and 90
others were wounded in the attack, which was claimed by the pro-Iranian
Islamic Jihad.
	One year earlier, on April 18, 1983, a suicide truck bomber wrecked
the U.S. Embassy in then Muslim-controlled west Beirut, killing more
than 60 people. Seventeen U.S. nationals died, including the CIA's top
Middle East agent.
	The U.S. charge d'affaires described the long-awaited, although
incomplete, move to reissue non-immigrant visas to Lebanese as a ``first
but significant step toward a full establishment of the consular
services in Lebanon.''
	Battle said he expected some 50,000 to 60,000 Lebanese who previously
held visas will benefit from the reactivated consular services.


37. How can I get the latest travel advisory for Americans wishing
    to visit Lebanon or the Middle-East ?

  A collection of all travel advisories released by the State
Department during the last 4+ months is FTPable from

          RASCAL.ICS.UTEXAS []

          file Travel-Advisories in directory misc/misc.

There is another copy of these travel advisories in,
 /pub/travel-advisories/advisories on

38. Are there available statistical and basic general information about 
    Lebanon, and what are they ?


Several files have been added to the Lebanon archives on

Forty Six files named:



consisting of 46 pages were scanned  from:

        Title:             The Middle East and North Africa
        Published by:      Europa Publications Limited
        Copyright:         Europa Publications Limited 1993
        Printed and bound: In England by "Staples Printers Limited" at the 
                           Stanhope Press, Rochester, Kent, establishment.
        Issued:            In 1993.

The chapter concerning Lebanon is  entitled :

"LEBANON: Physical and Social Geography" 
       edited by  W. B. Fisher 

The average size of each of these binary gif files is 250K.

The article treats the different aspects of the country. 
It introduces the reader to its geography and economic life.  
The article contains a somewhat detailed section about the history of 
Lebanon, starting from the ancient history going through the Ottoman 
period, and discussing the economic difficulties  and constitutional 
reforms in the early days of independence from  the French occupation.  
This particular section about the history of the country ends 
with modern day Lebanon, highlighting the most recent civil war with
its inter-alliance fightings and the several Israeli invasions.  
In addition, it deals with the circumstances and events leading up
to the Taef accord. The history section was revised  by Fida Nasrallah.  

The economic section (revised by Alan George) offers seven pages of treatment
of the subject from the early days of the country to the current situation.  

The statistical survey section offers a good general idea of the country, 
and thus is especially beneficial to people who were not previously
familiar with Lebanon, or those who have a recent interest in the country.
It also provides a diversified general look at the economy as well as the 
social  and political, institutional and constitutional structure of Lebanon.  

A list of the different newspapers, magazines, radio and TV stations currently
in operation is also provided.  The addresses and phone numbers of the 
Diplomatic representations in lebanon are listed  in the Directory section
towards the end of the chapter.

A long list of bibliography is included which may prove helpful to people
interested in further researching the subject.

These files were scanned in GIF format and are NOT uuencoded so ftp 'ing
should be done in the image or binary form (type i for image before ftp'ing).

********************IMPORTANT NOTICE:******************************************
Due to the size of these files you are urged to download them at 
a time that would not inconvenience other users of the archive server rama.
The files should thus ONLY be downloaded on weekends, or in evening
times between 5:00 pm and 8:00 am US Eastern Standard Time, which is GMT-5:00.
Individuals interested in viewing these files can use any of the available
utilities that can handle GIF files to view the document.
Note: xv, on unix, and PhotoFinish for MS windows are recommended choices
      since both offer zooming in capabilities; this function does seem 
      to be more easily  applicable in the latter option.

The screen gif document is a very legible form of the original document even 
when viewed on a PC using a standard VGA monitor (640x480), although the 
higher resolution monitors would certainly provide a better image quality of
the scanned document.  There appeared no need for magnification (zooming in),
in terms of legibility, when each of the documents was viewed on a 19" 
monitor using xv.

Due to the volume of these documents, a better solution might be 
to print those documents rather than individually viewing them on the 
screen.  This procedure was tested on a postscript printer and the printed 
copy is  of fairly good quality.  Depending on the type of printer used,
processing  might be time consuming.  In such a case, overnight batch jobs 
do offer a reasonable alternative.  A note of caution,  when using 
"xv" to convert the GIF files into PS files, the printed  document was 
illegible.  However,  using PhotoFinish to view the GIF files and selecting
"Print" to send the document to a PS printer resulted in a quality
very comparable to a photocopy of the originals.

This work is a result of the collaborative effort of several individuals:

    Original Material: Rached Zantout  <>
    Coordination:      Basil Hamdan    <>
    Archiving:         Bassem Medawar  <>
    Scanning:          Samir M. Fahs   <>

These files are available by ftp from:

in directory:




     lebnn.gif(nn here is a double digit variable integer counter from 1 to 46)


The file "lebfiles.msg" contains a description of the contents of the 
of the lebnn.gif files.

Important Note:  This file is to accompany the digitized material, or parts
thereof, at all times.  
****************************  DISCLAIMER  *************************************
This material has been digitally reproduced without permission for
non-commercial use.  The intent of the archiving of this material is to
give ready and convenient access to the information included in this document
to people interested in Lebanon, or for research purposes.  All other
uses of this document would be a breach of applicable copyright laws.
All rights reserved to: Europa Publications Limited and Staples Printers


  Here are two listings of general information about Lebanon, one is taken from
the CIA fact book and has information dated to 1992, the other is from another
database (Kaleidoscope) and has information dated to 1990.

*******   DISCLAIMER   *********

These were published "as is", with no editing on my part,so if anyone wishes to
disagree with the numbers or the information offered, please address your 
grievances to the issuing agency, not me.  By publishing these, I do not imply 
that what is in them is "the" truth, however, I think that the information can 
be of some use to someone interested in Lebanon.  As always, one has to be
careful to not take everything one reads as god given or indisputable.


a) CIA Factbook on Lebanon listing (dated 1993):
*Lebanon, Header

Note: Lebanon  has made progress toward rebuilding its political  institutions
and  regaining  its  national  sovereignty  since the  end of the  devastating 
16-year civil war in October 1990. Under the Ta'if accord - the  blueprint for
national reconciliation  -  the  Lebanese  have  established a  more equitable 
political system,  particularly  by  giving  Muslims  a  greater  say  in  the 
political  process.   Since December 1990,  the  Lebanese  have  formed  three 
cabinets and conducted the first legislative election in 20 years. Most of the
militias  have been weakened or disbanded. The Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) has
seized  vast  quantities  of  weapons used  by the militias during the war and
extended  central  government  authority  over  about one-half of the country.
Hizballah, the  radical Sh'ia  party,  retains  most  of its weapons.  Foreign
forces  still  occupy  areas  of  Lebanon. Israel maintains troops in southern 
Lebanon  and  continues  to support a proxy militia, The Army of South Lebanon
(ASL), along a narrow stretch of territory contiguous to its border. The ASL's
enclave  encompasses  this self-declared security zone and about 20 kilometers 
north  to the strategic town of Jazzine. As of December 1993, Syria maintained
about  30,000-35,000 troops  in  Lebanon.   These  troops  are based mainly in 
Beirut,  North  Lebanon,  and   the  Bekaa  Valley.   Syria's  deployment  was
legitimized  by  the Arab League early in Lebanon's civil war and in the Ta'if 
accord.  Citing  the  continued  weakness  of  the LAF, Beirut's requests, and 
failure  of  the  Lebanese  Government  to implement all of the constitutional
reforms  in  the  Ta'if  accord,  Damascus  has so far refused to withdraw its 
troops from Beirut.

*Lebanon, Geography

Middle East, in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, between Israel and Syria 

Map references:
Africa, Middle East, Standard Time Zones of the World 

total area 10,400 sq km 
land area 10,230 sq km 
comparative area about 0.8 times the size of Connecticut 

Land boundaries:
total 454 km, Israel 79 km, Syria 375 km 

Coastline: 225 km 

Maritime claims: 
territorial sea: 12 nm 

International disputes: separated from Israel by the 1949 Armistice Line;
Israeli troops in southern
Lebanon since June 1982; Syrian troops in northern, central, and eastern 
Lebanon since October 1976 

Climate: Mediterranean; mild to cool, wet winters with hot, dry summers;
Lebanon mountains experience heavy winter snows 

Terrain: narrow coastal plain; Al Biqa' (Bekaa Valley) separates Lebanon 
and Anti-Lebanon Mountains 

Natural resources: limestone, iron ore, salt, water-surplus state in a 
water-deficit region 

Land use: 
arable land 21% 
permanent crops 9% 
meadows and pastures 1% 
forest and woodland 8% 
other 61% 

Irrigated land: 860 sq km (1989 est.) 

current issues deforestation; soil erosion; desertification; air and water 
natural hazards NA 
international agreements party to - Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection,
Ship Pollution; signed, but not ratified - Biodiversity, Climate Change, 
Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping,
Marine Life Conservation 

Note: Nahr al Litani only major river in Near East not crossing an 
international boundary; rugged terrain historically helped isolate, protect,
and develop numerous factional groups based on religion, clan, and ethnicity 


Population: 3,620,395 (July 1994 est.) 

Population growth rate: 1.98% (1994 est.) 

Birth rate: 27.89 births/1,000 population (1994 est.) 

Death rate: 6.55 deaths/1,000 population (1994 est.) 

Net migration rate: -1.52 migrant(s)/1,000 population (1994 est.) 

Infant mortality rate: 39.5 deaths/1,000 live births (1994 est.) 

Life expectancy at birth: 
total population 69.35 years 
male 66.92 years 
female 71.9 years (1994 est.) 

Total fertility rate: 3.39 children born/woman (1994 est.) 

noun Lebanese (singular and plural) 
adjective Lebanese 

Ethnic divisions: Arab 95%, Armenian 4%, other 1% 

Religions: Islam 70% (5 legally recognized Islamic groups - Alawite or Nusayri,
Druze, Isma'ilite, Shi'a, Sunni), Christian 30% (11 legally recognized 
Christian groups - 4 Orthodox Christian, 6 Catholic, 1 Protestant), Judaism 

Languages: Arabic (official), French (official), Armenian, English 

Literacy: age 15 and over can read and write (1990 est.) 
total population 80% 
male 88% 
female 73% 

Labor force: 650,000 
by occupation industry, commerce, and services 79%, agriculture 11%, 
government 10% (1985) 


conventional long form Republic of Lebanon 
conventional short form Lebanon 
local long form Al Jumhuriyah al Lubnaniyah 
local short form none 

Digraph: LE 

Type: republic 

Capital: Beirut 

Administrative divisions: 5 governorates (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah);
Al Biqa, 'Al Janub, Ash Shamal, Bayrut, Jabal Lubnan 

Independence: 22 November 1943 (from League of Nations mandate under French

National holiday: Independence Day, 22 November (1943) 

Constitution: 23 May 1926, amended a number of times 

Legal system: mixture of Ottoman law, canon law, Napoleonic code, and civil
law; no judicial review of legislative acts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ

Suffrage: 21 years of age; compulsory for all males; authorized for women at
age 21 with elementary education 

Executive branch: 
chief of state President Ilyas HARAWI (since 24 November 1989); note - by 
custom, the president is a Maronite Christian, the prime minister is a Sunni
Muslim, and the speaker of the legislature is a Shi'a Muslim 
head of government Prime Minister Rafiq HARIRI (since 22 October 1992) 
cabinet Cabinet; chosen by the president in consultation with the members of
the National Assembly 

Legislative branch: unicameral 
National Assembly (Arabic - Majlis Alnuwab, French - Assemblee Nationale) 
Lebanon's first legislative election in 20 years was held in the summer of 
1992; the National Assembly is composed of 128 deputies, one-half Christian 
and one-half Muslim; its mandate expires in 1996 

Judicial branch: four Courts of Cassation (three courts for civil and
commercial cases and one court for criminal cases) 

Political parties and leaders: political party activity is organized along
largely sectarian lines; numerous political groupings exist, consisting of 
individual political figures and followers motivated by religious, clan, and 
economic considerations 

Member of: ABEDA, ACCT, AFESD, AL, AMF, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, 

Diplomatic representation in US: 
chief of mission Ambassador Riad TABBARAH 
chancery 2560 28th Street NW, Washington, DC 20008 
telephone (202) 939-6300 
FAX (202) 939-6324 
consulate(s) general Detroit, New York, and Los Angeles 

US diplomatic representation: 
chief of mission Ambassador Mark HAMBLEY 
mailing embassy Antelias, Beirut 
address P. O. Box 70-840, PSC 815, Box 2, Beirut; FPO AE 09836-0002 
telephone [961] 417774 or 415802 through 415803, 402200, 403300 
FAX [961] (1) 407-112 

Flag: three horizontal bands of red (top), white (double width), and red with
a green and brown cedar tree centered in the white band 


Overview: Since 1975 civil war has seriously damaged Lebanon's economic 
infrastructure, cut national output by half, and all but ended Lebanon's 
position as a Middle Eastern entrepot and banking hub. Following October 1990,
however, a tentative peace has enabled the central government to begin 
restoring control in Beirut, collect taxes, and regain access to key port and
government facilities. The battered economy has also been propped up by a
financially sound banking system and resilient small- and medium-scale
manufacturers. Family remittances, banking transactions, manufactured and farm
exports, the narcotics trade, and international emergency aid are the main
sources of foreign exchange. In the relatively settled year of 1991,
industrial production, agricultural output, and exports showed substantial
gains. The further rebuilding of the war-ravaged country was delayed in 1992
because of an upturn in political wrangling. In October 1992, Rafiq HARIRI was
appointed Prime Minister. HARIRI, a wealthy entrepreneur, has announced
ambitious plans for Lebanon's reconstruction which involve a substantial
influx of foreign aid and investment. Progress on restoring basic services is
limited. Since Prime Minister HARIRI's appointment, the most significant
improvement lies in the stabilization of the Lebanese pound, which had gained
over 30% in value by yearend 1993. The year 1993 was marked by efforts of the
new administration to encourage domestic and foreign investment and to obtain
additional international assistance. 

National product: GDP - exchange rate conversion - $6.1 billion (1993 est.) 

National product real growth rate: 4.2% (1992) 

National product per capita: $1,720 (1993 est.) 

Inflation rate (consumer prices): 35% (1993 est.) 

Unemployment rate: 35% (1993 est.) 

revenues $990 million 
expenditures $1.98 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1993 est.) 

Exports: $925 million (f.o.b., 1993 est.) 
commodities agricultural products, chemicals, textiles, precious and 
semiprecious metals and jewelry, metals and metal products 
partners Saudi Arabia 21%, Switzerland 9.5%, Jordan 6%, Kuwait 12%, US 5% 

Imports: $4.1 billion (c.i.f., 1993 est.) 
commodities Consumer goods, machinery and transport equipment, petroleum 
products partners Italy 14%, France 12%, US 6%, Turkey 5%, Saudi Arabia 3% 

External debt: $700 million (1993 est.) 

Industrial production: growth rate 25% (1993 est.) 

capacity 1,300,000 kW 
production 3.413 billion kWh 
consumption per capita 990 kWh (1992) 

Industries: banking, food processing, textiles, cement, oil refining, 
chemicals, jewelry, some metal fabricating 

Agriculture: accounts for about one-third of GDP; principal products - citrus 
fruits, vegetables, potatoes, olives, tobacco, hemp (hashish), sheep, goats;
not self-sufficient in grain 

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of hashish and heroin for the international
drug trade; hashish production is shipped to Western Europe, the Middle East,
and North and South America; increasingly a key locus of cocaine processing
and trafficking 

Economic aid: aid for Lebanon's reconstruction programs currently totals
$1.3 billion since October 1992, including a $175 million loan from the 
World Bank 

Currency: 1 Lebanese pound (&pound;L) = 100 piasters 

Exchange rates: Lebanese pounds (&pound;L) per US$1 - 1,713.00 
(December 1993), 2,200.00 (1992), 928.23 (1991), 695.09 (1990), 496.69 (1989) 

Fiscal year: calendar year 


Railroads: system in disrepair, considered inoperable 

total 7,300 km 
paved 6,200 km 
unpaved gravel 450 km; improved earth 650 km 

Pipelines: crude oil 72 km (none in operation) 

Ports: Beirut, Tripoli, Ra'Sil'ata, Juniyah, Sidon, Az Zahrani, Tyre, Jubayl,
Shikka Jadidah 

Merchant marine: 63 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 268,268 GRT/399,
054 DWT, bulk 4, cargo 39, chemical tanker 1, combination bulk 1, container 2,
livestock carrier 9, refrigerated cargo 1, roll-on/roll-off
cargo 2, specialized tanker 1, vehicle carrier 2, combination ore/oil 1 

total 9 
usable 7 
with permanent-surface runways 5 
with runways over 3,659 m 0 
with runways 2,440-3,659 m 3 
with runways 1,220-2,439 m 1 

Telecommunications: telecommunications system severely damaged by civil war;
rebuilding still underway; 325,000 telephones (95 telephones per 1,000 
persons); domestic traffic carried primarily by microwave radio relay and 
a small amount of cable; international traffic by satellite - 1 Indian Ocean
INTELSAT earth station and 1 Atlantic Ocean INTELSAT earth station (erratic
operations), coaxial cable to Syria; microwave radio relay to Syria but
inoperable beyond Syria to Jordan, 3 submarine coaxial cables;
broadcast stations - 5 AM, 3 FM, 13 TV (numerous AM and FM stations are
operated sporadically by various factions) 

Defense Forces

Branches: Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF; including Army, Navy, and Air Force) 

Manpower availability: males age 15-49 827,267; fit for military service 

Defense expenditures: exchange rate conversion - $271 million, 8.2% of GDP
(1992 budget) 

Remark: The Kaleidoscope listing (dated 1990) contains old statistics,
I thought that it is better not to post it with the FAQ, eventhough this
listing is available at the ftp server file
name: kaleidoscope_1990_lebanon
the above CIA Factbook listing is also availble from the same diectory 
file name:
39. I know someone's name, and I think they might have an electronic mail 
address somewhere.  How can I find it?

  This question was repeated several times on s.c.l so I'm refereing to a FAQ
with the name : "FAQ: How to find people's E-mail addresses" posted on 
*.answers newsgroups. The archive name of this FAQ is finding-addresses.
A copy of it is on

You can have the mentionned FAQ, as this one from the where all 
the FAQs are archived. (/pub/usenet) 

end of part 4/5

Alaa Dakroub     | 'al-'arD waTanI wa al-'insAnyah 'usratI          
Sophia Antipolis | La terre est ma patrie et l'humanite' ma famille 
France           | The earth is my fatherland and humanity my family
                 | (Gibran Khalil Gibran)                           
------------------ ------------------

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