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Daniel Pipes: Why Iraqis Rebel. . . And what Coalition forces have to do about it.
FrontPageMagazine.com ^ | April 13, 2004 | Daniel Pipes

Posted on 04/13/2004 5:33:14 AM PDT by SJackson

The current insurrection in Iraq was discernable a year ago, as I already noted in April 2003: “Thousands of Iraqi Shi’ites chanted ‘No to America, No to Saddam, Yes to Islam’ a few days ago, during pilgrimage rites at the holy city of Karbala. Increasing numbers of Iraqis appear to agree with these sentiments. They have ominous implications for the coalition forces.”

The recent wave of violence makes those implications fully apparent.

Two factors in particular made me expect Iraqi resistance. First, the quick war of 2003 focused on overturning a hated tyrant so that, when it was over, Iraqis felt liberated, not defeated. Accordingly, the common assumption that Iraq resembled the Germany and Japan of 1945 was wrong. Those two countries had been destroyed through years of all-out carnage, leading them to acquiesce to the post-war overhaul of their societies and cultures. Iraq, in contrast, emerged almost without damage from brief hostilities and Iraqis do not feel they must accept guidance from the occupation forces. Rather, they immediately showed a determination to shape their country’s future.

Second, as a predominantly Muslim people, Iraqis share in the powerful Muslim reluctance to being ruled by non-Muslims. This reluctance results from the very nature of Islam, the most public and political of religions.

To live a fully Muslim life requires living in accord with the many laws of Islam, called the Shari‘a. The Shari‘a includes difficult-to-implement precepts pertaining to taxation, the judicial system, and warfare. Its complete implementation can occur only when the ruler himself is a pious Muslim (though an impious Muslim is much preferable to a non-Muslim). For Muslims, rule by non-Muslims is an abomination, a blasphemous inversion of God’s dispensation.

This explains why one finds a consistently strong resistance to rule by non-Muslims through fourteen centuries of Muslim history. Europeans recognized this resistance and in their post-crusades global expansion stayed largely away from majority-Muslim territories, knowing these would awesomely resist their control.

The pattern is striking: for over four centuries, 1400-1830, Europeans expanded around the world, trading, ruling, and settling – but distinctly in places where Muslims were not, such as the Western Hemisphere, sub-Saharan Africa, East Asia, and Australia. In a clear pattern of avoidance, the imperial powers (Britain, France, Holland, and Russia especially) took control of far-away territories, while carefully avoiding their Muslim neighbors in North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia.

Only in 1830 did a European power (France) find the confidence frontally to confront a Muslim state (Algeria). Even then, the French needed seventeen years just to control the coastal region.

As Europeans rulers conquered Muslim lands, they found they could not crush the Islamic religion, nor win the population over culturally, nor stamp out political resistance. However suppressed, some embers of resistance remained; these often sparked a flame of anti-imperialism that finally drove the Europeans out. In Algeria, for example, a successful eight-year effort, 1954-62, expelled the French colonial authority.

Nor was the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq the first Western undertaking to unburden Muslims of tyrannical rule. Already in 1798, Napoleon Bonaparte appeared in Egypt with an army and declared himself a friend of Islam who had come to relieve the oppressed Egyptians of their Mamluk rulers. His successor as commander in Egypt, J.F. Menou, actually converted to Islam. But these efforts to win Egyptian goodwill failed, as Egyptians rejected the invaders’ proclaimed good intentions and remained hostile to French rule.

The European-run “mandates” set up in the Middle East after World War I included similar lofty intentions and also found few Muslim takers.

This history suggests that the coalition’s grand aspirations for Iraq will not succeed. However constructive its intentions to build democracy, the coalition cannot win the confidence of Muslim Iraq nor win acceptance as its overlord. Even spending US$18 billion in one year on economic development does not improve matters.

I therefore counsel the occupying forces quickly to leave Iraqi cities and then, when feasible, to leave Iraq as a whole. They should seek out what I have been calling for since a year ago: a democratically-minded Iraqi strongman, someone who will work with the coalition forces, provide decent government, and move eventually toward a more open political system.

This sounds slow, dull, and unsatisfactory. But at least it will work – in contrast to the ambitious but failing current project.


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: danielpipes; iran; iraq; southwestasia
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1 posted on 04/13/2004 5:33:14 AM PDT by SJackson
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To: SJackson
We might be better off letting Chalabi be the face of the new Iraqi government.  That should quell some of the concerns of the savages.

Owl_Eagle

" WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
DIVERSITY IS STRENGTH"


2 posted on 04/13/2004 5:39:40 AM PDT by South Hawthorne ("Kill my boss? Dare I live the American Dream?" ~ Homer Simpson)
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To: SJackson
Pipes is often correct. Despite all the PC propaganda about cultural relativity we've had to swallow over the past few decades, Muslims are not like us. Like their belief system, they are hopeless, worthless, destructive primitives. Democracy for these untermensch? What a waste
3 posted on 04/13/2004 5:39:57 AM PDT by rageaholic
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Yehuda; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; ...
If you'd like to be on or off this middle east/political ping list, please FR mail me.
4 posted on 04/13/2004 5:39:59 AM PDT by SJackson (America...thru dissent and protest lost the ability to mobilize a will to win, Col Bui Tin, PAVN)
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To: SJackson
What we need is a modern day Ghengis Khan...

Don't ever forget that these lands and peoples were militarily conquered by Islam. There is no reason why it can not happen the other way.
5 posted on 04/13/2004 5:45:11 AM PDT by 2banana ((They want to die for Islam and we want to kill them))
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To: SJackson
bump!
6 posted on 04/13/2004 5:48:23 AM PDT by Publius6961 (.)
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To: SJackson
Thank you very much for this post. I concur with Dr. Pipes' acute sense of the obvious in this case. Iraq is not governable as the issue is currently framed.

What he omits is the partition option. The medieval, maniacal Moslem tribalism which dominates the mentality of that area should be either annihilated (never happen - nobody has the stomach for that) or left to its historical devices of internecine warfare. The latter would imply that Iraq would be divided up into three or four roughly 'natural' religious and political regions: Sunni, Kurds, Shia...each with their own council. They could and would fight each other long after we were gone.

Pipes' notion of a strongman is sadly and probably the sole mechanism which will work. His point that only the decimation of tyrannical societies (such as the Nazis and Bushido militarists of WWII) results in an acceptance of change, is also well taken. Absent the utter physical crushing of large numbers of Jihadists, this mess will go on indefinitely.
7 posted on 04/13/2004 5:50:38 AM PDT by esopman (Blessings on Freepers Everywhere)
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To: SJackson
For later
8 posted on 04/13/2004 5:52:12 AM PDT by Cuttnhorse
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To: 2banana
these lands and peoples were militarily conquered by Islam. There is no reason why it can not happen the other way.

Here's a reason: "For Muslims, rule by non-Muslims is an abomination, a blasphemous inversion of God’s dispensation. This explains why one finds a consistently strong resistance to rule by non-Muslims through fourteen centuries of Muslim history."

9 posted on 04/13/2004 5:52:15 AM PDT by The kings dead
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To: SJackson
In a clear pattern of avoidance, the imperial powers (Britain, France, Holland, and Russia especially) took control of far-away territories, while carefully avoiding their Muslim neighbors in North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia.

Russia began encroaching on Turkish ruled areas starting in the 16th Century. England began to dominate Islamic areas in India & Malaysia in the 18th Century as did the Dutch in Indonesia.

Spain, of course, reconqured Iberia in the 15th Century.

10 posted on 04/13/2004 5:52:53 AM PDT by Tribune7 (Arlen Specter supports the International Crime Court having jurisdiction over US soldiers)
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To: 2banana
What we need is a modern day Ghengis Khan... Don't ever forget that these lands and peoples were militarily conquered by Islam.

Of course, most of the Mongels converted to Islam.

11 posted on 04/13/2004 5:54:08 AM PDT by Tribune7 (Arlen Specter supports the International Crime Court having jurisdiction over US soldiers)
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To: SJackson
I therefore counsel the occupying forces quickly to leave Iraqi cities and then, when feasible, to leave Iraq as a whole. They should seek out what I have been calling for since a year ago: a democratically-minded Iraqi strongman, someone who will work with the coalition forces, provide decent government, and move eventually toward a more open political system.

If anyone running this war had read their history, this should have been the endgame all along. There is a reason Saddam ruled Iraq for so many decades...

12 posted on 04/13/2004 5:54:21 AM PDT by ContemptofCourt
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To: SJackson
Pretty good analysis.
Bush is correct on sticking to the June deadline and give these losers as near as a possible the government that they want. What we have to figure out is what happened in IRAN where the totalitarian muslim regime finds itself plagued by an "underground movement" of popular desire for democracy. Then we need to start duplicating this (or help to duplicate)in as many muslim countries as possible if we want to stop the enemy.
13 posted on 04/13/2004 5:58:12 AM PDT by UltraKonservativen (( YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID ))
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To: SJackson
" In a clear pattern of avoidance, the imperial powers (Britain, France, Holland, and Russia especially) took control of far-away territories, while carefully avoiding their Muslim neighbors in North Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia."

His glossing over British rule of what is now Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Malaysia and Dutch rule of what is now Indonesia; some of the most populous islamic locations in the world, kind of makes me doubt this guy knows what the heck he's talkng about.
14 posted on 04/13/2004 6:05:07 AM PDT by LN2Campy
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To: ContemptofCourt
>I therefore counsel the occupying forces quickly to
>leave Iraqi cities and then, when feasible,
>to leave Iraq as a whole.

We now live in a global village. There isn't any way to 'leave'.

>They should seek out what I have been calling
>for since a year ago: a democratically-minded
>Iraqi strongman, ...and move eventually toward
>a more open political system.

In other words a benevolent despot? Someone like the Shah?

Pipes is a voice from the past, and the past didn't work. We need to confront the political aims of the mullahs directly. The mullahs are talking to your next door neighbors. There is no hiding from them, or their assassins.
15 posted on 04/13/2004 6:23:01 AM PDT by nonomous
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To: Owl_Eagle
Cousin Marriage Conundrum: Ancient practice discourages democratic nation-building (in Iraq)
steve sailor ^ | Thu Feb 27, 2003 | steve sailor

Posted on 04/12/2004 10:15:16 AM EDT by dennisw

 

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/iSteve/message/316

"Cousin Marriage Conundrum: The ancient practice discourages democratic nation-building" 
by Steve Sailer The American Conservative, Jan. 13, 2003, pp. 20-22 (not online)

16 posted on 04/13/2004 6:26:13 AM PDT by dennisw (“We'll put a boot in your ass, it's the American way.” - Toby Keith)
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To: SJackson
There are two fallacies in Pipes' analysis:

First, acquiescing to the notion that Muslims can only be ruled by Muslims is to submit to dictatorship and enslavement of non-Muslims wherever Islam becomes a majority. It means a loss of human rights and dignity. It means defeatism and fatalism to an ever advancing medieval barbarism. It reverses modern history which has in fact seen Islam rolled back at Tours, at Vienna and from Spain and the Balkans.

And second, it fails to recognise what has been happening since the 1970's at least and what became painfully obvious with 9/11 and that is that Islam is now a threat everywhere on the planet. We can expect a constant stream of bombings and trouble if Islam is not brought under control. And contrary to Mr. Pipes' long held view, "moderate" Islam, if it exists, is not going to rise to the rescue of the West. Muslims do not believe in restraining other Muslims, and certainly not by force, except as a matter of self-preservation.

"Moderate" Islam is a delusion. It has been said that Muslims mistake compassion for weakness. I think Mr. Pipes mistakes intermittent centuries of decadence and indolence for moderation. He looks for a "reformation" of Islam such as happened to Christianity. Reformation, however, is a return to first principles. In the case of Christianity, it was a return to the peaceful message of Jesus Christ and a disavowal of temporal power leading to secular government and pluralism. For Islam it is a disavowal of lethargy and a return to Muhammad's jihad. 9/11 IS the announcement of the Muslim Reformation. And it must be ended one way or the other.
17 posted on 04/13/2004 6:30:58 AM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (Rumble Thee Forth...)
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide
We have a very good strategy in Iraq imo. Rather than allowing them to reconcile the existence of the West by attacking and destroying Western cities and people we show up on their doorstep and force them to reconcile us by being in their living room. Imo that's the only way they'll ameliorate their values.

Allowing Muslim radicals safe havens in their countries to 'strike out against the infidel' is not an option. They have shown they can reach us in the states so they need to meet and confront the West here, in their front yards. They'll have to learn to live with us or we'll speak to them on their terms like we are in Fallujah.

They live under cultural and religious totalitarianism. Just living under different laws amongst them removes the control they're under. Hence the uprising by Ba'athists in central Iraq and Shiite radicals in Sadr. Our presence disrupts their system of control. Tough.

18 posted on 04/13/2004 6:47:58 AM PDT by Justa (Politically Correct is morally wrong.)
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To: esopman
I doubt the partition option is viable politically. It would be nice to see the Kurds able to break off though.
19 posted on 04/13/2004 6:49:22 AM PDT by SJackson (America...thru dissent and protest lost the ability to mobilize a will to win, Col Bui Tin, PAVN)
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide
There are two fallacies in Pipes' analysis:...First, acquiescing to the notion that Muslims can only be ruled by Muslims is to submit to dictatorship and enslavement of non-Muslims wherever Islam becomes a majority...And second, it fails to recognise what has been happening since the 1970's at least and what became painfully obvious with 9/11 and that is that Islam is now a threat everywhere on the planet..."Moderate" Islam is a delusion. It has been said that Muslims mistake compassion for weakness.

While I can't disagree with you. But what's the solution, more troops and a confrontation with Iran, pressure on both sides, and Syria, diplomatic pressure on Egypt and the Saudis? Not going to happen.

20 posted on 04/13/2004 6:52:03 AM PDT by SJackson (America...thru dissent and protest lost the ability to mobilize a will to win, Col Bui Tin, PAVN)
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