The Lebanese Civil War saw the playing out of sectarian tensions that have harshly divided Lebanese society for generations, but these tensions were used by outside exploitative powers for over a century, to gain influence in the region. This helped to instill a divisive sectarian political landscaped that worsened over time and still affects the country today. This process began under Ottoman rule, when divisive administrative divisions, put in place by the Ottomans, led to the 1860 civil war when Druze and Maronite Christians massacred each other by the thousands. This suffering under harsh leadership continued as the Ottoman Empire stagnated through the early 20th century, and worsened when the Empire was partitioned and Lebanon and Syria fell under a French Mandate. But even through independence religious divides solidified politically as colonialism and foreign interference set the stage for decades of conflict in Lebanon later in the century.