Foreign relations of Lebanon - Wikipedia
A Brazilian delegation met with President Michel Aoun and later with Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri Tuesday, statements from the. Brazil–Lebanon refers to the current and historical relations between the Brazil and Lebanon. Approximately 7 to 10 million Brazilians have Lebanese ancestry. The history of Lebanese emigration to Brazil is long. It is said that Lebanese Christians began to emigrate to Brazil in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, while . Brazil's Evolving Relationship With Refugees.
He describes four main waves of Lebanese emigration, the first of which — from the s until the mid 20th century — was overwhelmingly Christian. For Kalout, Lebanese—Brazilian Muslims remain more connected to Lebanon and particularly to the Arabic language than their Christian counterparts.
Yet Kalout also thinks the connection to the region is greater. Lebanese—Brazilian Muslims are prominent in many areas of Brazilian society — in particular academia and medicine.
Kalout adds that the distinction between the Sunni and Shia branches of Islam has not historically replicated itself in Brazil, with shared mosques and a unified Muslim federation. Underscoring the importance of language, there are a growing number of Arabic-language educational bodies in the country.
Since the Nakba and concomitant birth of Israel inArab Jews across the Middle East have often faced animosity and violence. Sheila Mann was just 13 in We had blackouts at night so nobody knew we were in.
Scared for their children, her parents decided to leave the country — initially for Israel. Within a decade, she says, all the Lebanese Jews she knew had left the country. Yet her parents never liked Israel and would constantly bemoan their refugee status, longing for a return to Beirut. Mann, too, was never happy in Israel and at age 18 moved to Brazil with her new husband.
I cannot imagine not thinking about Lebanon. Lebanese—Brazilian Jews are relatively few but very successful. Perhaps foremost among them is the Safra family — owners of the Safra Group. Mann says she thinks that the forced nature of their emigration has made many members of the Lebanese—Brazilian Jewish community skeptical of other Lebanese—Brazilians.
The vast majority of these new immigrants began to work as mascates — peddlers. As Kirby explains in an article on the topic, this typically involved travelling the country carrying a crate of goods for sale. Yet the rewards were potentially large and, unlike those in agriculture, went into their pockets rather than those of agrarian landlords.
And principally we feel no shame — in Lebanon we live in shame of not having the right house, the right clothes, not speaking the right way, not having the right education. This makes Lebanese in Lebanon ashamed of trying new things.
The “Brazilebanese”, or Brazilians from Lebanon – Orientalia
There are 5, cities in Brazil and in each one you will find Lebanese businessmen. Back in Lebanon this exodus was becoming a source of alarm for some in the Christian community. It took from our churches some of its most useful members; many of the teachers are upset. Nowadays, wandering down Rua 25 de Marco you are perhaps as likely to meet Koreans as Arabs — hundreds of stalls selling knock-off Brazil memorabilia, painting the street yellow and green.
For the first part of the 20th century, the street was the trading quarter for the Lebanese diaspora — where they both produced and sold a range of goods, with textiles the primary lure. Within a few decades, Maalouf had become such a success he was making trips back to the motherland for philanthropy, being received lavishly by Lebanese politicians.
This interaction with Lebanon also went the other way — as stories of success fed back to those in the Middle East, thousands more packed up and left. Lebanese—Brazilian companies at that time also tended to prefer to employ from within the community — when they needed a new peddler, they more often went back to Lebanon rather than employing a Brazilian.
Sons, nephews, or cousins would be summoned — thus encouraging yet more emigration from the home country. Demand for exports collapsed and thousands went out of business. As people struggled to feed their families, it became increasingly common to lash out at immigrants — with Arabs bearing the brunt of many attacks.
At the end of May a rather extraordinary event occurred: Hundreds of Lebanese people flocked to a conference in Beirut. While that may sound far from unusual, for some of the attendees it was their first steps on Lebanese soil.
For these were the diaspora, drawn from around the world in recognition of their shared roots — though some had little previous interaction with the physical state of Lebanon. This is why we want to listen to you and draw on your experiences of success and rich experiences abroad. Launched by President Michel Sleiman inthe LDC aims to encourage the United Nations to formally recognize Lebanon as a country of dialogue and coexistence, where those from many religions, sects and beliefs coexist.
Even in the midst of active warfare, there were efforts for dialogue inside and outside Lebanon … We feel that Lebanon is positioned historically, geopolitically, culturally to be that land [of dialogue] especially in our part of the world. She organized a conference last year — backed by the Brazilian government — that aimed to highlight the Lebanese diaspora and encourage dialogue.
If we can pass this message strongly, it can be very important for the Middle East. InGetulio Vargas rose to power. No group was as well placed to take advantage of this as the Lebanese.
- How the Lebanese conquered Brazil
- Brazil–Lebanon relations
- Lebanese Brazilians
Small textile businesses were transformed into major factories, while national giants rose up in construction and other sectors. In Lebanese President Camille Chamoun visited Brazil and was received in lavish fashion by a diaspora community that was both proud of its roots but also starting to grow beyond them.
More importantly, there was recognition from the rest of the Brazilian society of their importance.
No longer trading in the backwaters, the Lebanese integrated more, with intermarriage on the rise. This was to change with the later generations.How did Arabs become one of the Unspoken Pillars of Latin American Society? Levantine Diaspora
For far from encouraging their children to take over their hand-built empires, many of these pioneers prioritized, above all else, the education of their children. Antonio Chacra, a top Brazilian endocrinologist and former vice president of the International Diabetes Federation, is perhaps emblematic of this shift.
They worked and we studied. Yet this generation was no longer painting on an empty canvas — Brazil had grown and opportunities were sparser than a few decades previous. While some more recent immigrants have managed to build empires, more often they have found themselves frustrated. Relatively few that arrived in that period have risen to the upper echelons of society.
This reporter took the test and, indeed, the first pedestrian who was approached did speak Portuguese. It was Hussein El Jaroush.
Born in Lebanon, he went two decades ago to Brazil, where he lived for 13 years. To Jamal, the most important is to maintain ties with Brazil through the Portuguese language, especially because of his son. He says he always speaks in Portuguese with the boy, though often gets the answer in Arabic. The fact is that this request had been made for many years, and for decades it had been trapped in the bureaucratic network of Brasilia.
Moreover, although the initiative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brazil is laudable, it is still far from meeting the main public for whom the center was created, because Brazilians like Jamal cannot attend it because they live in the Bekaa Valley, where most Brazilians are concentrated. The next step would be to take Portuguese teachers to that region as well as encouraging and supporting Brazilian cultural associations and other cultural centres dedicated, for example, to Latin America, such as the Latin American Studies and Culture Centre at the University of Kaslik and the Project Alecrim International in Lebanon, an institution committed to maintaining the cultural identity of Brazilian children who live abroad.
The time is opportune for Brazil to meet a longstanding demand of Brazilians in Lebanon, but also to involve them as intermediaries in the trade between the two countries. Cite this article as: