Hizbullah’s Documents

From the 1985 Open Letter to the 2009 Manifesto

Joseph Alagha

Hizbullah’s Documents

Joseph Alagha

Distributed for Amsterdam University Press

222 pages | 6 3/10 x 9 1/2
Paper $46.50 ISBN: 9789085550372 Published April 2011 For sale only in the United States, its dependencies, the Philippines, and Canada

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.


A Note on Transliteration




1 The Salient Points of the Open Letter

2 Hizbullah’s Eight Conclaves

3 Analysis of the New Manifesto

4 Thematic Analysis

5 Conclusion

1 Primary Documents

1 The Text of Hizbullah’s Open Letter Addressed to the Oppressed in Lebanon and the World, 16 February 1985

2 Hizbullah: Views and Concepts, Manar TV, Beirut, 20 June 1997

3 Statement of Purpose: Hizbullah Press Office, 20 March 1998

4 Hizbullah: Identity and Goals (August 2004)

2 Election Programs

1 Hizbullah’s 1992 Parliamentary Elections Program (my translation)

2 Hizbullah’s 1996 Parliamentary Elections Program

3 Hizbullah’s 2000 Parliamentary Elections Program (my translation)

4 Hizbullah’s 2004 Municipal Election Program (my translation)

5 Hizbullah’s 2005 Parliamentary Elections Program (my translation)

6 Hizbullah’s 2009 Legislative Election Program: 6 April 2009

7 Nasrallah’s Post-elections Press Conference: 8 June 2009

3 Agreements, Understandings, Pacts

1 Paper of Common Understanding between Hizbullah and The Free Patriotic Movement: 6 February 2006

2 The Beirut Declaration: 15 May 2008

3 Doha Accord: 21 May 2008

4 Hizbullah’s Understanding with the Salafi Movement: 18 August 2008

5 President al-Assad Issues a Decree Stipulating the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations with Lebanon: 14 October 2008

4 The New Manifesto (30 November 2009)

1 Hegemony and Mobilization

2 Lebanon

3 Palestine & The Settlement Negotiations

4 Nasrallah’s Press Conference: 30 November 2009 (in full)

Chronology of Events (1975-2010)

List of Abbreviations





Review Quotes
Kathleen Barry | Penn State University

“Alagha’s book is essential to any scholar hoping to understand the situation in the Middle East, the sectarian patterns of Lebanon and the conflict there. . . . Only with the work of Alagha do we have a chance to construct policy that can realistically respond to Hizbullah’s presence in Lebanon and the Middle East.”

Graham E. Fuller

“I hope Alagha’s work will receive attention in the United States, where US policy on Hizbullah is based on ignorance—often deliberate ignorance.” —Graham E. Fuller, former vice chairman of the National Intelligence Council at the CIA

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