Lebanon Table of Contents
The Eighth Brigade, commanded by Colonel Salim Kassis, was the strongest, best equipped, best trained, and most elite unit in the Lebanese Army in 1987. It was regarded as loyal to the president and the government. It consisted of 2,000 men, about 80 percent of whom were Christians from the northern region of Akkar, with the remaining 20 percent Sunni Muslims. It included a mechanized battalion equipped with ninety United States-made armored personnel carriers, an armored battalion with thirty-three United States-made M-48 tanks, and a missile battalion equipped with eighteen pieces of field artillery. It was stationed at the Presidential Palace at Babda and at the Ministry of Defense in the Yarzah section of Beirut. In 1983 the Eighth Brigade bore the brunt of fighting against Druze militia in Suq al Gharb and against leftist militia in West Beirut.
Data as of December 1987