Oct 22 2008

Thinking strategically at Beaufort Castle

Published by at 9:50 pm under Historical sites,The south

There are a number of Crusader castles in Lebanon, remnants of the many battles fought between Christian and Muslim armies in the 12th and 13th centuries. One of the most interesting – though perhaps least well preserved – is Beaufort Castle.

Located 1000 metres above the Litani river and with a commanding view to the south and west, Beaufort has been the castle to possess in Lebanon. During the past 800 years it changed hands several times between the Christian and Muslim forces. Even as recently as the civil war in the 1970s and 1980s, Beaufort was initially held by the PLO and then by the Israeli Defence Force. And no wonder: looking to the south you can see into Israel and up to the disputed Golan Heights. This map shows its strategic location.

Unfortunately, through all of these battles the castle has been severely damaged. Most recently, the departing Israeli forces blew up their fortifications at the site, damaging other parts of the castle in the process.

Nonetheless, it’s a fascinating spot to visit, particularly given the Hizballah branding and propaganda that adorns it today. (By the way, the “Islamic Resistance” referred to on the poster is Hizballah.)

4 responses so far

4 Responses to “Thinking strategically at Beaufort Castle”

  1. grandadon 23 Oct 2008 at 11:39 am

    Bottom left picture looks like a dunny with a distress flag (run out of paper?). I’ll send comparison picture for you to insert if you wish so that you and other blog readers can see what I mean.
    Can’t say I’d want to spend too much time up there even if it does have a great view; now if they put in a cresta run a la Jambaroo Bourke would be in 7th heaven.

  2. Exploring Khiam prison | SHERLEX.COMon 03 Feb 2009 at 9:23 pm

    […] One such example is the prison at Khiam. Located several kilometres from the Israeli border, the town of Khiam has had a difficult recent history. On a number of occasions it was the target of Israeli air and ground assaults, most recently in the mid-2006 war. I know one person whose family home there has been bombed and rebuilt three times. Khiam has a commanding view of the surrounding countryside – to the south is the green agricultural lands of Israel, to the east towers majestic Mount Hermon, and to the west across the Litani river is the incredible Beaufort castle. […]

  3. […] range, and having already explored the other end of the chain in Lebanon (eg Tripoli citadel and Beaufort castle), I headed back home via the coast road to take in Qal’at Salah ad-Din and Qal’at […]

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