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Lebanese Phalanx (Lebanon)

Al-Kataeb Al-Lubnanieh, Phalanges Libanaises

Last modified: 2020-07-31 by ian macdonald
Keywords: lebanese phalanx | phalanx | kataeb | phalanges libanaises | lebanon christians | cedar | tree: cedar | tree (green) | tree (white) | tree (black) | christian | maronite | black panthers | text: arabic (black) |
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الكتائب اللبنانية, Al-Kataeb Al-Lubnanieh, Phalanges Libanaises, (Lebanese Phalanx)

[Lebanese Phalanx or Kataeb (Lebanon)]
[Lebanese Phalanx or Kataeb (Lebanon)]
image by Jorge Hurtado and Michel Lupant
image by Jorge Hurtado, Michel Lupant and Eugene Ipavec

See also:


This is the party of the Jamail [Gemayel] family and has a rich history, so its flag may have changed during the ages. The Christians had two parties, the Jamail family one and the Chamoun family one (Ahrar).
Dov Gutterman, 11 May 1999

The Phalanx party is the same thing as Kataeb – which is Arabic for "phalanx" – or, as they are most commonly called, the Phalange.
John Kennedy, 06 Aug 2001

"Al Kateeb Allubnanieh" is a Christian party established in 1936 by Pierre Gemayel.
Bill Garrison, 29 Jan 2007


In the [Flags of Aspirant Peoples chart appears "30. Lebanese Christians". White field with a schematic cedar (one green triangle over two green trapezes over a brown trapeze). The schematic cedar is similar to those used by the Kataeb Phalangist Party. It looks rather like a party logo-flag.
Ivan Sache, 13 Sep 1999

[Gaceta de Banderas, January 2002, contains images of Lebanese political parties, reported by Michel Lupant and drawn by Jorge Hurtado following his specifications. (...) The flag of the Lebanese Phalanxes is like the Kataeb one. Proportions 8:11.
Santiago Dotor, 22 May 2002

There is no political party called "Lebanon Christians." The above flag (...) is actually the flag of the Phalange (Kataeb); the colour and shape is correct.
Jac Asmar, 27 Jul 2002

This flag belongs to the Lebanese Kataeb, according to the Kataeb Toronto website (image here) and the Kataeb Sweden website (images here and here, photograph here).
Santiago Dotor, 11 Nov 2002

The big question is, what colour is the "trunk" – the bottom trapezoid? It appears as brown in most sources, including the Kataeb website(s) and in photographs, however Lupant showed it as black.
Santiago Dotor, 06 May 2003

The flag Lupant has shown in Goslar (2001 DGF meeting) had a black trunk (I checked my photo of the flag). However, I wouldnt be surprised if both versions are in existence.
Marcus Schmöger, 09 May 2003

Obviously at least two versions of the flag are (or have been) in use. The one with the brown base has shown up inphotos recently, while on the other hand our image with the black base is based on an actual flag brought by Michel Lupant from Lebanon and shown at the German meeting (Goslar, 2001). It is certainly not surprising that the colours of the cedar tree are not fixed, as even the national flag was for most of its history used with a brown trunk, although legally defined as green.
Marcus Schmöger, 04 Feb 2007

[Flag With Green Cedar (Kataeb Party, Lebanon)]
image by Tomislav Todorović, 16 November 2012

Another flag of the party, with a fully green cedar, is shown on a photo in the gallery at the website of the Christian Falangist Party of America, a now-defunct political group from the USA which claimed to
have been inspired by the Lebanese Phalanx.
(WARNING: contains photos showing people giving Roman salute, which is a remnant of the borrowings from the Spanish Phalanx, after which the Lebanese Phalanx was originally modelled.)
Tomislav Todorović, 16 November 2012

Former Flag With Red Cedar c. 1970

[Former Flag With Red Cedar c. 1970 (Kataeb Party, Lebanon)]
image by Eugene Ipavec

Eduardo Panizo reported in the Spanish Vexilologia mailing list the flag of the Lebanese Phalanx party he saw on TV about 30 years ago as being exactly like the one above but with a fully red (stylized) cedar.
Santiago Dotor, 19 Feb 2002

Flag Variant With Inscription

[Flag Variant With Inscription (Kataeb Party, Lebanon)]
image by Eugene Ipavec, 14 March 2012

The Kataeb Sweden website shows an animated GIF from which I extracted the above image. Can anybody translate what is written around the cedar?
Santiago Dotor, 03 Sep 2001

I could identify al-Wattan (the people) and Allah (God). See also the flag in this photograph at the same website (a Swedish website, by the way).
Anonymous, 03 Sep 2001

The three words are:

  1. الله (Allah) = God
  2. ال-وأتان (al-Watan) = (the) Homeland or (the) Country
  3. ال-عايله (al-3aeilah) = (the) Family NOTE: "3" represents the letter "ein" and the "e" represents "hamza," which is a glottal stop

So, the three alliances listed are those same three commonly found throughout the world: "God, Country, & Family."
Stephen Cardoos, 22 Mar 2005

The third word is Al- A'elat, "The family."
Actually, "God, Country, Family" has often been the motto of many fascist parties. This motto, as well as the name of the Kataeb party, The Phalanx (or the Falange), has been misunderstood and has greatly harmed the image of the party, especially in Europe where the memory of Italian and Spanish fascist parties are still very much alive.
Bernard Baz, 22 May 2005

Flag Variant, Possibly Mistaken

[Flag Variant, Possibly Mistaken (Kataeb Party, Lebanon)]
image by António Martins-Tuválkin

The flag of the Kataeb Phalanges Libanaises from the Kataeb Party [broken link] website. The Kataeb is a Christian party.
Dov Gutterman, 15 Mar 1999 and 11 May 1999

At the Kataeb Party website [broken link] there is a stylized cedar (top green, bottom purplish), surrounded by Arabic texts. I have downloaded it and fooled around, with striking results: white easily becomes black, blue becomes green, yellow, etc. On that page it is green on white. Clicking on it leads to a page with this picture [broken link] of Pierre Gemayel and in the background a white flag with a stylized green cedar. The flag above is a combination of the Lebanese flag and the Kataeb flag, with the Kataeb flag in wrong colours.
Jarig Bakker, 06 Oct 1999

Kataeb Military Colour

[Kataeb Military Colour (Kataeb Party, Lebanon)]
image by Eugene Ipavec, 14 March 2012

In this photo, Pierre Gemayel, founder of the "Phalanges Libanaises" or Kataeb appears to be decorating a military colour with a red streamer. The flag is black with a red nettle-leaf-like element (an upside-down, triangular leaf), on its centre a black Kataeb cedar. Gold fringe.
Santiago Dotor, 07 May 2003