Serj Tankian is an Armenian-American record producer, singer, and songwriter. Tankian is credited with co-founding the popular band System of a Down. Renowned for his wide vocal range and unusual delivery, Serj Tankian is widely considered one of the best heavy metal vocalists of all time. Also a political activist, Tankian co-founded Axis of Justice, a non-profit organization.
Lebanese author and poet Khalil Gibran is best remembered for his bestselling works The Prophet and Broken Wings. One of the leaders of the Mahjar movement of Arabic literature, he specialized in incorporating mythological and mystical symbols in his works and was inspired by Friedrich Nietzsche and William Blake.
Carlos Ghosn is a French–Lebanese–Brazilian businessman who served as the CEO of Michelin North America. He also served as the chairman and CEO of Nissan and Renault. In 1999, he saved Nissan from near bankruptcy and turned around its fortune. In 2018, he was arrested in Japan for misusing Nissan's assets. He dramatically escaped from the custody is currently an internationally wanted fugitive.
Swedish singer Maher Zain had moved to Sweden from Lebanon with his family at 8. A qualified aeronautical engineer, he is now known for his fusion of Eastern and Western music and for the religious overtones in his songs. He has also worked with UNHCR to support Syrian refugees.
Recipient of Fields Medal and Abel Prize, British-Lebanese mathematician Michael Atiyah emerged as a leading figure in the UK mathematics during the latter half of the 20th century. He specialised in geometry and made remarkable contributions in the fields of geometry, theoretical physics, topology and global analysis, and is best known for proving the Atiyah–Singer index theorem with Isadore Singer.
Lebanese designer Elie Saab had started dressing up his sisters in scraps at age 10. Known for his ornate bridal couture, combining Western silhouettes and Middle-Eastern embellishments, he was the first non-Italian in the governing body of the Milan Fashion Week. He also ventured into interior design in Dubai.
Hassan Nasrallah has been the Secretary-General of Hezbollah since 1992. The Lebanese politician was the son of a grocer in Beirut and was forced to flee when the civil war broke out. He later joined a Lebanese paramilitary group and then the Hezbollah movement. He is also known as al-Sayyid Hassan.
Lebanese singer and TV personality Ragheb Alama started his career with the TV talent show Studio El Fan. The Murex d'Or Award-winning artist is now one of the most popular Arab music artists of the world. A philanthropist, too, he launched the Saint George Schools to educate Arab children.
Edmond Safra was a Lebanese Brazilian banker. His father was a prominent banker, and he began his career working at his father’s bank. He was hardworking, ambitious, and street-smart and started earning millions while still in his teens. He was also a major philanthropist. He died in an arson that attracted wide media interest.
One of the greatest authors and journalists born in Lebanon, Amin Maalouf initially reported major political events around the world. He is known for his internationally bestselling French books, such as Samarkand and Balthasar's Odyssey. His novels usually have a historical setting, with war and migration as prominent themes.
Son of former Lebanese prime minister Rafic al-Hariri, Saad Hariri joined politics after his father was assassinated. After being educated in France and Saudi Arabia, Saad took over his father’s construction business and expanded into the telecom sector. The Future Movement member has also been Lebanon’s prime minister twice.
Ibrahim Maalouf is a French-Lebanese composer and jazz trumpeter. In addition to his many studio albums, Maalouf is also known for his contribution as a composer for many movie soundtracks and symphonic orchestras. In 2014, he was honored at the French Music Awards with the prestigious Best World Music Artist award.
Lebanese composer and pianist Ziad Rahbani was no stranger to music as a child, being the son of legendary Lebanese musicians Assi Rahbani and Fairouz. Known for his tracks such as El Hilwa Di and Allamouni and his iconic album Bennesbeh Labokra Chou, he is a legend in his own right.
Wael Kfoury is a legend in the Arab music scene and is known as The King of Romance for his soulful ballads. He soared to fame after winning the TV show Studio el Fan and later released chart-topping hits such as Ma Wa'adtak bi Njoum el Leyl and Meen Habeebi Ana.
Camille Chamoun served as President of Lebanon from September 23, 1952, to September 22, 1958, and later founded the National Liberal Party. He emerged as a prominent Christian leader during the 1958 Lebanon crisis. An attempt to overthrow his government in June 1958, amidst the crisis, was prevented after he appealed to the US leading to a US military intervention.
Elie Hobeika gained notoriety for his ruthlessness and involvement in Sabra and Shatila massacre as commander of Lebanese Forces militia during Lebanese Civil War. He later served as president of Lebanese Forces until the January 1986 Lebanese Forces coup when he was ousted from the position. Thereafter he formed Promise Party and served two terms in the Parliament of Lebanon.
A legendary figure of Lebanese politics, Nabih Berri was elected as the Speaker of the Parliament of Lebanon for the 7th consecutive term in May 2022. He also heads the Lebanese Amal Movement as its president. He was a successful lawyer before joining politics and worked with the Court of Appeals.
Assi Rahbani, part of the Lebanese composer duo The Rahbani Brothers, which also had his brother Mansour Rahbani, previously worked with Near East Radio. He later mostly composed music for his singer wife Nouhad Haddad, better known as Fairuz. The husband-wife duo also appeared in movies such as The Exile.
Former president of Lebanon, Émile Lahoud was initially part of the Lebanese army and navy. The son of pro-independence politician and military general Jamil Lahoud, he had a 30-year military career and was part of the Lebanese Civil War, too. He also strengthened the Lebanese army with the help of Syria.
Walid Jumblatt is a Lebanese Druze politician who has been serving as the leader of the popular Progressive Socialist Party for many years now. A former militia commander, Walid Jumblatt also played a key role in the Syrian Civil War. Since the late-1970s, Walid Jumblatt has been the subject of photography like many other political leaders around the world.
Musa al-Sadr was an Iranian-born Lebanese scholar and political leader. He founded the Amal Movement, a political party associated with the Shia sect. He was born into an influential family tracing to Musa Ibn Jaafar, the seventh Shia Imam. At the peak of his popularity, he was considered a towering figure in Shia politics. He went missing in August 1978.
One of the most prominent figures of Lebanon’s independence movement, Riad al-Sulh became the country’s first prime minister after its independence. He was assassinated by Syrian Nationalist Party members, while visiting King Abdullah of Jordan. He is regarded as one of the founding fathers of Lebanon.
Known as Al-Hakim, or The Doctor, Lebanese politician Samir Geagea was initially part of the Kataeb Party and then joined the Lebanese Forces. Born into a family of farmers, he had started studying medicine before the civil war forced him to take up a military and political career.
Lebanese-Canadian musician Karl Wolf soared to fame with his cover version of Toto's Africa. Born to musician parents in Beirut, he moved to Sharjah and then to Montreal with his family. His hits include tracks such as Butterflies and collaborations such as Yalla Habibi. He is also part of the collective BAE.
Lebanese politician Tammam Salam served as Minister of Culture from 2008 to 2009. He was assigned to form new government following resignation of Najib Mikati's government. Supported by March 14 Alliance as also by Mikati, Salam served as Prime Minister of Lebanon from February 2014 to December 2016 and as acting President of Lebanon from May 2014 to October 2016.
A Lebanese cultural icon, Wadih El Safi was 16 when he began his musical journey with a singing contest on Lebanese Radio. Over his 75-year career, he had sung more than 5,000 tracks, mostly of the Lebanese folk genre, and in multiple languages, including French and Portuguese.
Lebanese politician and the founder of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party, Antoun Saadeh was also a prolific author, who wrote several books while in prison. He announced a revolution in Lebanon and was promised support by Syria, though Syria handed him over to the Lebanese government, which eventually executed him.
Regarded as the father of modern Lebanon, Fakhr al-Din II had been the Sanjak-bey of Sidon-Beirut and Safed. He had also governed Baalbek and Tripoli Eyalet. He was also the first to unite the Druze and Maronite districts of Lebanon. He was eventually executed by the Ottomans in Constantinople.
Former Lebanese president and Marada Movement politician Suleiman Franjieh was largely blamed for the civil war in his country in the 1970s. Initially an import-export dealer, he was later elected to the Lebanese Parliament. He was named The Tough Man for his mercurial temper and ruthless demeanour.
Lebanese politician and leftist leader Kamal Jumblatt not only established the Progressive Socialist Party but also led the National Movement against the Lebanese Front. He was assassinated along with his driver and bodyguard by his political opponents. A supporter of the Palestine Liberation Organization, he had penned many books, too.
Gebran Tueni, who served as director-editorialist of An Nahar, gained international attention writing a front-page letter to Bashar Assad for withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon. Tueni cofounded Qornet Shehwan Gathering, contributed to Cedar Revolution demonstrations and became Member of Parliament of Lebanon. He was killed in 2005 as part of a series of assassinations that struck Lebanon since 2004.
Former president of Lebanon, Michel Sulaiman initially commanded the Lebanese Armed Forces. An Independent Party leader, he has been part of the Lebanese Civil War, the 2006 Lebanon War, and the Operation Nahr el-Bared, among other military campaigns. His many honors include the National Order of the Cedar.
Lebanese composer, singer, and oud player Marcel Khalife gained international fame with songs such as Rita and the Rifle. Devoted to the Palestinian cause, he is inspired by the Communist Party and the poems of Mahmoud Darwish. His humanitarian efforts made him the 2005 UNESCO Artist for Peace.
Popular Lebanese singer-actor Assi El Helani is also known as The Knight of the Arab Song. Known for his hit tracks such as Shou Bkhaf Alayki, Habibi Yalli Nasini, and Wani Mareq Mareet, he was 17 when he began his career on the show Studio Al Fan.
Charles Habib Malik was a Lebanese diplomat, academic, politician, and philosopher. He is best remembered for his role in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. Charles Habib Malik is also remembered for his service as the Minister of Foreign Affairs between 1956 and 1958.
Former president and prime minister of Lebanon, Fouad Siniora has also been the finance minister of his country. The Future Movement leader had started his career working for Citibank and later also taught at various institutes, such as the Lebanese University. He is also a patron of Arab literature.