East Lake-Orient Park in Hillsborough County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
1958 Lebanon crisis
Hillsborough County Veterans Memorial Park
In July 1958, Lebanon was threatened by a civil war between Maronite Christians and Muslims. Tensions with Egypt had escalated earlier in 1956 when pro-western President Camille Chamoun, a Christian, did not break diplomatic relations with the Western powers that attacked Egypt during the Suez Crisis, angering Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser. These tensions were further increased when Chamoun showed closeness to the Baghdad Pact. Nasser felt that the pro-western Baghdad Pact posed a threat to Arab nationalism. As a response, Egypt and Syria united into the United Arab Republic (UAR). Lebanese Sunni Prime Minister Rashid Karami supported Nasser in 1956 and 1958. Karami formed a national reconciliation government after the 1958 crisis ended.
Lebanese Muslims pushed the government to join the newly created United Arab Republic, while the Christians wanted to keep Lebanon aligned with Western powers. A Muslim rebellion that was allegedly supplied with arms by the UAR through Syria caused President Chamoun to complain to the United Nations Security Council.The United Nations sent a group of inspectors that reported that
The President of the United States, Eisenhower responded by authorizing Operation Blue Bat on July 15, 1958. This was the first application of the Eisenhower Doctrine under which the U.S. announced that it would intervene to protect regimes it considered threatened by international communism. The goal of the operation was to bolster the pro-Western Lebanese government of President Camille Chamoun against internal opposition and threats from Syria and Egypt. The plan was to occupy and secure the Beirut International Airport, a few miles south of the city, then to secure the port of Beirut and approaches to the city.
The operation involved approximately 14,000 men, including 8,509 United States Army personnel, a contingent from the 1st Airborne Group, 187th Infantry from the 24th Infantry Division (based in Germany) and 5,670 officers and men of the United States Marine Corps (the 2nd Provisional Marine Force, of Battalion Landing Teams 1/8 and 2/2). They were supported by a fleet of 70 ships and 40,000 sailors. On July 16, 1958, Admiral James L. Holloway, Jr., CINENELM and CINCSPECCOMME, flew in from London to the Beirut airport and boarded the USS Taconic (AGC-17), from which
Erected by Hillsborough County.
Topics and series. This memorial is listed in this topic list: War, Cold. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #34 Dwight D. Eisenhower series list. A significant historical date for this entry is July 15, 1958.
Location. 27° 58.645′ N, 82° 21.677′ W. Marker is in East Lake-Orient Park, Florida, in Hillsborough County. Memorial can be reached from U.S. 301, 0.2 miles south of East Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, on the right when traveling south. Marker starts within Hillsborough County Veterans Memorial Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 3602 N US Highway 301, Tampa FL 33619, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Berlin blockade (here, next to this marker); United States occupation of the Dominican Republic (1916-1924) (here, next to this marker); Cuban missile crisis October 1962 (here, next to this marker); United States occupation of Haiti (here, next to this marker); United States occupation of the Dominican Republic (1965-1966) (here, next to this marker); United Task Force (1992-1993) (here, next to this marker); United States Invasion of Panama (1991) (here, next to this marker); Mayaguez Incident (1975) (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in East Lake-Orient Park.
Also see . . . 1958 Lebanon crisis. (Submitted on March 31, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida.)
Credits. This page was last revised on April 1, 2022. It was originally submitted on March 31, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. This page has been viewed 123 times since then and 49 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 31, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.