Friday, December 05, 2003

The central issue.

This article is not about Iraq, it is about an issue that has been used in Iraq and other Arab countries to strengthen the grip of Arab tyrants on power.
Why am I writing about it now? well first because this issue, with all its complexities had a huge impact on political events in Iraq (and still have, to a lesser extent) second, maybe that after I've tasted freedom I became a little less self-centered and a little bit more concerned about others misfortune, those who either lack the ability or the free will to speak out their minds.
For nearly a century, the main concern of Arabs and Muslims was (and still is) the Palestinian issue.
I must stress that I do not want to defend any particular party, neither do I want to go deep into the roots of this conflict, who caused it or why a certain super(and minor)power adapted a certain policy.
I just want to focus on the way the consecutive Arab governments dealt with it.
I hope through doing this I could also answer two valid questions that were posted in the comment section of previous articles:
The first asking why Arab cared for Palestinians rights more than they do for their own?
In the second, was asking about the reaction of Arabs and Muslims towards what's happening in Iraq.
Actually the first one was answered in brief by 2 fine readers, but I would like to make more clarifications:
As every one knows, the Arab-Israeli wars started in 1948 following the UN resolution in 1947.
The weak and immature democracies governing most of the Arab nations at that time stepped into the war hesitantly under the pressure of the growing feelings of the (Arab nationalism).
The result is well known, and it helped in the collapse of those governments.
Abdul Nasser-the best representative and the god father of all modern Arab dictators- and his comrades were smarter than their predecessors, they learnt the lesson and turned the tables on their rivals/people.
They took it upon themselves to lead the (crusade) to liberate Palestine and through the Jews into the sea.
this time the defeats were even worse, but the different thing was that Abdul Nasser -and his smart students- not only managed to survive, but even made benefits from those defeats, and grew stronger and tougher(within the boundaries of their countries). Under the slogan (no sound should rise louder than that of the battle), they restrained the freedom of speech, prohibited political activities and declared martial laws to further enforce their control. They did not miss the chance of hitting on the sensitive chord of religion, which was used skillfully by the Arab media (although it didn't have a major role until the early 90's).
They made every possible effort to make the Palestinian issue- which the Ba'ath party named (the central issue)-the only issue worth fighting and dying for.
They kept telling the people how the (imperialism and the global Zionism) had (anchored this wedge In the heart of the Arab world, only to keep it from uniting, rising and dominating the world).
They convinced them that all their misery, poverty and shattering was caused by the west (particularly USA) and its outpost (Israel), and for those who were not convinced with such crap, there was always the vision of a dark dungeon or a whole in a mass grave serving as a warning sign to (go back to reason) and follow the herd. No other points of view were allowed, it was an order rather than a teaching.
As generation passed, the Iraqi and the Arab children were raised/forced to hate not only Israel, but all what's Jewish. They were fed with this hate by the school, the mosque, the media and the unconscious echoes of all these horns in their own houses. This conflict was fed by hating the Jews and the west rather than loving or caring for the Palestinians.
No one dared to ask: can't this issue be settled peacefully?, how could Israel for instance be a hinder in Iraq development ? we don't even have common borders, how did the Jews,- amongst whom more than 120 thousands lived in Iraq- before 1949 peacefully and actively playing their role in building Iraq suddenly became( infidel enemies).
till now, and even in free Iraq, the only question whether the Jews have a right in Palestine/Israel, could cost you a lot and make one an infidel in the eyes of many Muslims(again the clerics and the mullahs proved to be a very handy instrument in the hands of Arab tyrants).
Take this example: following the horrible assassination of (Aytollah Mohammed b. al-hakeem) and the death of more than 80 men and women in the holly sheia mosque in Najaf, I was discussing with some of my colleagues: who could be responsible, and why?
I was (and still) on the belief that either Saddam loyalists or his allies-the fundamentalist terrorists, from abroad- were behind it, and so did most of my colleagues, but it struck me to see some of them declare that they suspect that it maybe the USA and Israel who were responsible.
"WHAT ON EARTH HAS ISRAEL TO DO WITH THIS? AND HOW THE HELL COULD THE USA BENEFIT FROM THIS?" I shouted in despair. "STOP PUTTING ALL THE BLAME ON ISRAEL. AND FOR GODSSAKE IF THERE IS ONE PART (OTHER THAN IRAQ) THAT IS SEEKING AND SHOULD BENEFIT FROM STABILITY AND PROSPERITY OF IRAQ, THEN IT IS THE USA. THE MAN WAS EVEN ON THEIR SIDE!!"
As I said that, one of my colleagues (a Palestinian doctor living in Iraq) looked at me with astonishment and sorrow, and said: "oh God..!, watch it man, you're so close to become an infidel"
There's a lot more to say, and I haven't reached the core point yet, but this article longer than usual, so I will take a break and let you (and myself) sit back and take another look.
Maybe it will become clearer for both of us.
To be continued....

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