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Kai Bird…a heartfelt defense of his Lebanese countrymen, their patchwork sectarian political system and their paradoxical liberalism. Young defends Lebanon's sectarianism on sociological grounds. Its mosaic of Maronites (his mother's family), Druze, Greek Orthodox and Sunni and Shiite Muslims is the untidy reality. And while he admits that its system can be dysfunctional, his book celebrates the fact that an independent Lebanon has survived the Palestinian-induced chaos, the civil war, numerous Israeli invasions and the Syrian occupation (1976-2005).
—The Washington Post