November 22 is Independence Day, which celebrates the independence of Lebanon from France in 1943.
In 64 BC, the region came under the rule of the Roman Empire, and eventually became one of the Empire’s leading centers of Christianity. In the Mount Lebanon range a monastic tradition known as the Maronite Church was established. As the Arab Muslims conquered the region, the Maronites held onto their religion and identity. However, a new religious group, the Druze, established themselves in Mount Lebanon as well, generating a religious divide that has lasted for centuries. During the Crusades, the Maronites re-established contact with the Roman Catholic Church and asserted their communion with Rome. The ties they established with the Latins have influenced the region into the modern era.
The region eventually was ruled by the Ottoman Empire from 1516 to 1918. Following the collapse of the empire after World War I, the five provinces that constitute modern Lebanon came under the French Mandate of Lebanon. The French expanded the borders of the Mount Lebanon Governorate, which was mostly populated by Maronites and Druze, to include more Muslims.
Lebanon gained independence in 1943, establishing confessionalism (a system of government that is a de jure mix of religion and politics), a unique, Consociationalism-type of political system with a power-sharing mechanism based on religious communities.
Lebanon, officially the Lebanese Republic, is a country in Western Asia. It is bordered by Syria to the north and east and Israel to the south.