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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Peace is a Dead Road in the Middle East

Right now Sunni and Shia are busy fighting with purist Sunni Islam represented by the Wahhabist Al Queda and purist Shia Islam represented by Iran's Mullah. So too within Israel, Hamas and Fatah are fighting as well. But what they are fighting over is who will lead the Arab\Muslim world and their main form of competition is less about killing each other and more about competing to see who can kill the most Americans\Israelis.

The struggle for primacy in the Arab\Muslim world has been going on ever since Britain and France went home and turned over the Middle East to a handful of jumped up desert shieks who then proceeded to put their boot on the Jew, the Christian, the Sufi, the Bahai, the Kurd, the Copt, the Circassian and Armenian and the entire diverse range of Middle Eastern peoples chained together by the Arab slavemaster.

With the colonial powers gone, America and Russia stepped in, with the former trying to maintain the power of the Arab tyrants while the latter tried to push coups and revolutions and install new governments friendly to it.

The old colonial powers had hoped to treat the Arab states like client states, but instead coups overturned most of the old style rulers leaving some leftovers like the House of Saud and the Hashemite Kingdom in Jordan (itself a Saudi leftover) in power. Military coups turned Egypt, Syria and Iraq socialist, while a religious coup turned Iran into a theocracy.

Throughout all this the one thing that had not changed was that the struggle for primacy in the Arab world was based on their capacity for Jihad. The ability to inflict damage on Israel or on Western powers was what made an Arab country respected under the Honor-Shame code. By contrast signing peace agreements was a deep form of humiliation.

Egypt and Jordan, once the region's primary powers, have never been able to recover from their peace treaties with Israel and their populations feeling the burning shame of the peace accords are fueled by an almost unimaginable bitterness and hate for Israel, not so much for the wars, as for the peace. By contrast the ascension of the Mullahs Iran and Saddam's Iraq was driven by their hostility and proxy wars against Israel.

That is of course why the "Peace Process" or any peace process in the Arab world cannot and will not work. In an Honor-Shame culture respect is gained from defeating one's enemies, but making peace with them is a sign of humiliating weakness. And that is the situation today.

Iran and Al Queda are jockeying for supremacy in making war on the infidel in order to compete for the leadership of the Arab world. The stakes are high with Sunni and Shia religious affiliation on the table, which is why the Gulf Arab states have been increasingly nudging America and even Israel to do something about Iran.

Al Queda took an early lead with 9/11 and a few years of terror in Iraq, and then made the mistake of picking a proxy war with Iran. The US has managed to clean up much of Al Queda in Iraq, but hasn't been able to do much about Iran's terror militias, in no small part because of the ideologues behind the pro-Islamic terrorist foreign policies of the Carter Administration responsible for helping put the Ayatollah Khomeni in power. Obama and Biden are their boys, lock, stock and barrel.

The Democrats can't wait to duplicate the North Korea boondoggle, giving Iran hundreds of millions in aid and possibly nuclear fuel, in exchange for a temporary lull in the fighting allowing for a "Peace with Honor" withdrawal from Iraq, followed of course by a bloody civil war that Iran's tank brigades will crush. The fallout will make Cambodia look like Disneyland, but the media will make sure that none of the ashes and bone fragments blow their way to Obama's front door. The only hang up is getting Iran to the table, so the bright boys in the State Department can give away the kitchen store.

In Israel meanwhile, Hamas is not the more popular terrorist group because it is less corrupt. Hamas is more popular because Hamas kills more Jews than Fatah does. Naturally Arafat and Abbas' Fatah have to compete by staging terrorist attacks against Israel. The United States then insists that Israel tolerate this situation for the sake of "peace" because the State Department knows quite well that the only way Fatah can remain in power is by continuing is attacks on Israel.

Were Abbas, the "man of peace", to genuinely terminate all hostilities with Israel and seek peace, he would be a corpse far sooner than Sadat. So the charade goes something like this, Fatah's thugs paid for with US tax dollars continue engaging in "limited" terrorism to maintain the legitimacy of Abbas' government with Palestinian Arabs... in order to be able to make peace with Israel.

It would take a forensic psychiatrist specializing in war crimes to even begin to make any kind of sense of this pattern of justification which has nevertheless served as the basis for the willingness of US, Europe and several Israeli Prime Ministers' willingness to maintain and support first Arafat and then Abbas.

But the pattern stays the same. US diplomats bully Israel into negotiating with weakened Arab governments that have suffered a major defeat, such as Sadat's Egypt or Arafat's PLO and are ready to cut a deal. The deal isn't worth the paper it's written on, it merely extracts Israeli concessions for a ceasefire that is already either in place (Egypt) or will never be in place (Fatah) and photos are snapped as journalists and Western politicians declare that a new era of peace is at hand.

Yet those same journalists and politicians never seem to grasp that shoving democracy and peace treaties down the Arab gullet never works. You can have one or the other. Democracy in an Honor-Shame culture will reward the party or politician with the most militant stands. Peace or cooperation against terrorism requires a tyrant. Yet time and time again America insists on bringing democracy into the picture.

In Egypt democracy means the foul nest of the Muslim Brotherhood out of which Hamas and Al Queda both crept. In Israel it means Hamas. In Pakistan it means pushing out Musharraf, from whom we could count on some cooperation, in favor of a weak government indebted to the same terrorists we're supposed to be fighting, which has twice opened fire on our forces.

What is required to win the war or achieve a peace is realism. It also means understanding that short of all out conquest and colonization, we cannot have things our way and in tandem with our principles. It simply isn't going to work because it denies reality. We can either keep our high ground or achieve our goals. We can't do both.

Meanwhile the same liberal values of the politicians and pundits insist that we can achieve peace and an end to conflict by atoning for our foreign policy. The futility of that whole approach is that if Israel has proven anything in the decades of striving for peace, is that peace is a dead road in the Middle East. Signing accords weakens the Arab governments that sign them and signing accords with terrorists is less than useless. You can't buy your way out of a conflict when you are the stronger or the weaker party in an Honor-Shame culture, all it does is demonstrate your inability to go the distance and finish the fight. And that perception just pours fuel on the fire.

In the Middle East peace is an admission of defeat and an enduring peace cannot even be had between fellow Muslims, let alone Muslims and Infidels. To survive in the harsh desert, you must struggle and endure without hope of oasis. It is when you see the mirage of an oasis and allow yourself to stumble toward it that you are lost. Peace in the Middle East is a mirage. Conflict is the reality. To survive requires a willingness to stand on guard for however long it takes until your enemies have withered away or to go out and destroy them. There is no third option except your own destruction.

10 comments:

Will48 said...

There is no peace process, never was.

There's only an APPEASEMENT process. Its goal is forcing Israel's withdrawal to the indefencible borders of 1967, in order to appease the Arab revanchism.

Of course it is a futile enterprise, and I suspect many Western elite know that, but it gives them time, in the mean time.

One would expect the terrible lesson of WWII to be learned by the World: NEVER APPEASE EVIL! It'll just strengthen it before the inevitable decisive war. It was on this premise that the UN was founded - how ironic!

Hitler could've been stopped in 1938 with little to no blood. His generals were ready to depose him at the slightest sign of Western resistence to his demands for Sudetenland.

Alas, no. The West just won't defend freedom. Then AND now.

Will48 said...

Honor/Shame classification of the Arab culture/civilization which Dr. Sanity has made so much to promote does describe a lot, though it always seemed more right to me to describe it as a Master/Slave culture. What I mean is, on the atomary individual existence level of society in their interactions with others in immediate vacinity, individuals of Arab culture assume two roles - they either are Master, or a Slave. Hence their fake Honor is more aptly be named Pride.

The concept of equal innate self-worth of individuals of whichever provenance and extraction (so readily degeneratable into fake egalitarianism) is the basis for Magna Carta, the negotiation of social contract, the parliamentary democracy.

The slave/master concept can't be but a base for tyranny of various kinds, or the feared chaos in short periods between tyrannies - what is known by Arabs as Fitna.

So it might be more correct to speak of Arab culture being of pride/honor, master/slave type.


Another (unrelated) point is the deal with Iranians. It obviously was struck by the second Bush Jr. administration, and was officiated by the Baker/Hamilton report which caled for "legitimate regional aspirations of Iran" to be accomodated, and which policy's overseer, Bob Gates, was installed in the WH ever since. So it is obviously a bypartisan policy, and Obama was chosen as a better front man for it (having his own agenda as he might) by the powers behind the curtain, of Brzezinski "realist" fascist faction currently in power in Washington (which is undeniable by their forgery of the NIE in 2007 letting Iran continue with their bomb scot free).

When the degenerate Roman Republic broke down, the fascist Roman Empire came in its place.

Anonymous said...

I wish our politicians would read your blog and learn from it! Now Bibi is telling us we have to carve Israel up. Just what we need--another spineless sack of skin willing to do anything to keep his bank account full.

Keli Ata said...

I don't know if Bibi is corrupt as much as timid and probably scared. Every picture of him post Obama trip to Israel he looks like a man with a gun to his head, like the Americans in the Russian Roulette scene in "The Deer Hunter."


Sometimes I get the feeling that politicians and Hollywood are in cohoots to produce the greatest feel-good Hollywood peace production--like the year they interrupted the Academy Awards to air live TV coverage of Sadat and Begin (think it was Begin)shaking hands over their peace deal. Peace in the Middle East. Loud applause.
****

Will--very interesting re pride/honor. If the Arabs truly cared about honor Arab country would be one of chivalry. The wouldn't break peace agreements because it would dishonor them and their people.

I don't know what the answer is to the problem in the Middle East but I know for sure we have to stop letting Muslims into our country, stop brokering deals with Arab nations hoping it will be in our best interests.

Israel just needs to tell Fatah, Hamas to go to hell. They need to stop providing humanitarian aid to terrorists and terrorist supporters.

Lemon said...

Well its a darn shame.
I blame Britain mainly.

SabaShimon said...

Lemon said...
'Well its a darn shame.
I blame Britain mainly.'


british role in Palestine.pdf

Will48 said...

Keli - we should be very careful using our words in translations from alien cultures. Same words usually have very different meanings. For me, knowing a little bit of the culture of Caucasus, I know what "honor" means for the mountain horse-riding peoples - and the Arab (specifically, bedouin) culture is very similar in that respect, with its looting raids (ghazzaw) etc.

For them, "honor" is to kill one's enemy, preferably by trick and subterfuge.

For us this would be a disgrace. Honor is in adherence to one's moral code, so only the win in a fair fight is honorable.

Morry Rotenberg said...

An honor shame society only leads to pieces and not peace. Israel has done well without peace and prospered, and will continue to do so. When the Moslems run out of oil peace may come to the region. It may be at that time that they realize that they need the Jews to show them how to run a modern society. Bibi is only patronizing the great patron. Building continues. So long as the “peace process” continues, all the diplomats will be happy to carry on the charade.

Bruce said...

David Pryce-Jones has one of he best studies of "Shame / honour" as well as its bed-fellow, "Money / Favour", in his excellent book, " The Closed Circle - An Interpretation of the Arabs."

Potted comments from Publishers Weekly:

"Following the end of colonial rule in the Middle East, the newly independent Arab nations did not become progressive and free: they are despotic; most persecute religious or ethnic minorities; all oppress women; none has participatory institutions. In a scathing and provocative critique, Pryce-Jones ( Paris in the Third Reich ; Cyril Connolly ) blames these dismal conditions on what he sees as a Muslim reversion to tribal and kinship structures as well as slavish obedience to complex codes of honor and shame that prevent concepts such as open debate, democracy and accountability from taking root. With Islamocentric shortsightedness, Arabs understood Nazism in terms of German revenge for humiliation suffered in World War I. Arab leaders admired both Hitler and Lenin as careerist conspirators who made good. Pryce-Jones sees the same tribal, king-of-the-hill mentality at work today in the Palestine Liberation Organization, a careerist group built around a few audacious personalities who arrogated the right to speak for a whole people.
(Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. )"

One of the best places to start for insight on this matter.

Sultan Knish said...

Thanks, seems like a good source

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