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Syria is controlled by Alawites who follow a specialized, somewhat secretive religion. This religion is often described as "shiite muslim," but that is a gross oversimplification. The Alawites have friendly, although sometimes uneasy, association with not only the Maronites, but with other Christian and non-Christian minorities including the Druse and ...


The Maronites were themselves divided and some elite families engaged in Mafia style gang-wars to control valuable smuggling routes. Suleiman Frangieh- a notorious Maronite war-lord, Gang Boss, but also a President of Lebanon, had become close friends with the Assads (who took control of Syria). He invited the Syrians in to Lebanon. His son was killed by ...


the area of northern Mesopotamia and eastern Syria is also known as the Jazira (or Al-Jazira) but this does not include the Levant and the Damascus and Aleppo regions.

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