Emir Farid Chehab Collection

Scope and Content

Lebanese intelligence reports and analysis covering internal Lebanese politics, communist parties in the Middle East and political developments in Syria, Morocco, Turkey, Kuwait, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and Israeli and Palestinian politics.

Administrative / Biographical History

Chehab, Farid (1908-1985)

Born in Hadeth, Mount Lebanon approx. 28 February 1908 (dates on birth certificates vary between 1905 and 1911) to the Emira Maryam Chehab (granddaughter of the last ruler of Lebanon, Emir Bashir III) and to Emir Hares Sayyed Ahmad Chehab (Honorary member of the Turkish Parliament). Graduated from the Faculty of Law, Saint Joseph University in 1930. That same year, enrolled in the French Police in Lebanon and rose through the ranks to become Head of the Counter Espionage Section and the Anti Communism Section. Accused of alleged covert activities in favour of Hitler's Germany, he was jailed in February 1941 until October 1943; released on the personal request of newly elected President Bechara el Khoury, Emir Farid was reinstated in his former position with all charges against him dropped. From 1944 to 1948, he held the successive posts of: liaison officer between the Palestinian Directorate of Police and the Lebanese Security Forces; director General of the Judicial Police and Governor of the Beqaa Valley. In January 1948, he was appointed Director of General Security and quickly preceded to the reorganisation of its departments and upgrading of its procedures. In April 1950, appointed to lead the Anti-Communism Section. In 1957, he was elected Vice President of Interpol. In 1958, following civil unrest in Lebanon, he resigned from his post, and six months later was appointed Ambassador to Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon; in 1960, he was accredited to Tunisia and in 1966 to Cyprus. He retired in 1969 and returned to Lebanon. He was married to Yolande Nakad; two children, born in 1953 and 1957. He died in Beirut on February 5th, 1985.


  • Box 1. Journalist Informer
  • Box 2:
  • A Armenians
  • B Kurds
  • C Assyrians
  • D Islamic Liberation Party
  • E The Muslim Brotherhood
  • F Parti Populaire Syrien
  • Box 8:
  • A Morocco
  • B Turkey
  • C Kuwait
  • D Iraq
  • E Saudi Arabia
  • F Egypt
  • G Palestine
  • Box 9. Communism in Lebanon
  • Box 10:
  • A Iraqi Communist Party
  • B Syrian Communist Party
  • C Lebanese Communist Party
  • D Communist Organisations in the Gulf
  • Box 11. Jordan
  • Box 12. Syria
  • Box 13. Lebanon
  • Box 14. Lebanon
  • Box 15:
  • A Photocopied Documents
  • B Miscellaneous
  • Box 16. Syrian and Lebanese news
  • Box 17 Police, security, receipts, correspondence

Conditions Governing Access


For further information on how to use the Middle East Centre Archive, please see our Archon entry at http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/a/A13531965

Acquisition Information

Received as a loan from Youmna Asseily on 3 February 2006.

Other Finding Aids

Archivist's Note

Fonds level description created by Debbie Usher 3 Feb 2006 and revised 25 Oct 2012. Box level descriptions created by Debbie Usher 16 Feb 2006. Related material note added by D. Usher 8 Oct 2009. Item level descriptions created by Youmna Asseily, Mr Ahmad Asfahani and Mrs Djenane Gemayel during 2005-2006. Biographical history supplied by Youmna Asseily.

Conditions Governing Use

No restrictions on copying or quotation other than statutory regulations and preservation concerns

Custodial History

In the possession of Emir Farid Chehab and his family.

Related Material

In Middle East Centre Archive

GB165-0269 Sir Edward Spears Collection: This contains papers relating to Syrian and Lebanese affairs including the Spears Mission, 1941-44; the Lebanese constitutional crisis, 1943; Syrian and Lebanese independence; the future of Palestine; Anglo-Arab Association correspondence, 1946-66.

In Other Repositories

Centre for Arab and Middle Eastern Studies, American University of Beirut: Interview of Emir Farid Chehab made in the early 1970s. In Oct 2009 a transcript and sound files of the interview were available online athttp://ddc.aub.edu.lb/projects/cames/interviews/farid_chehab/index.html


Fi khidmat al-watan: mukhtarat min al-watha’iq al-khassa li’l-Amir Farid Shihab [ In the service of the nation: selections from the private papers of Amir Farid Chehab] (Beirut: Kutub publishers, 2005)

Asseily, Y., Asfahani, A., A Face in the Crowd. The secret papers of Emir Farid Chehab 1942-1972 (Stacey International, 2007)