Chaos in post-Saddam Iraq
After the toppling of Saddam, the power was offered constitutionally to the Shi’ites in Iraq as a reward for services rendered but, on the other hand, the Americans indirectly punished the Sunnis for their support of the Iraqi dictator. Realizing suddenly that they are a minority, the latter displayed openly their enmity to the Americans and resisted their master plan for dismembering Iraq along sectarian lines.
The insurgency of the Sunnis started in 2003 and is still going on today, it has climaxed with the Fallujah resistance to American troops in 2004 which was quelled in blood and it continued with Abu Musab Zarqawi, the emir of al-Qaeda that gave the Americans hard time before he was eliminated by an American drone strike.
Chaos is in Iraq to stay for many decades to come. It is in the North which is under the control of the Kurd Peshmerga but, also, in central Sunni Iraq and southern Shi’ite Iraq. Chaos is reigning supreme because of the enmity between Sunnis and Shi’ites that might break into a sectarian war that would engulf the whole Middle East anytime. The unfortunate sectarian and irresponsible policies of Nouri El Maliki, who, acts more like the head of Shi’ite party than a national Prime Minister with responsibility for all religious groups and for all Iraqis, are fanning the flames of such future war.
Chaos will, also, thrive in Iraq for a long time to come due to the actions of terrorist groups from either side or from political parties and from the government proper because there is so much bad blood between the different opponents and very little disposition to national willingness for forgiveness and unity. Last but not least, chaos will thrive in this country because of the sectarian strife in Syria, which is not showing any sign of abatement for the time being.
For Allen Pizzey from CBS News, Jihadist-bred chaos is spreading in Mideast in, general, in particular Iraq, and nothing will be able to stop it, for now, at least:
“In Iraq, the government is losing significant ground to al Qaeda militants. On Sunday, fighting in Anbar province killed 22 Iraqi soldiers and 12 civilians. This is happening as Syria's civil war is spilling into Lebanon.
Ongoing chaos in the Middle East is creating what nature abhors and fanatics love: a power vacuum.
Al Qaeda affiliated gunmen have taken over the streets of Fallujah, a resurgence of the civil war that the U.S. invasion of Iraq sparked off.
In what now looks like a wasted effort, more than 100 U.S. Marines lost their lives in Fallujah in 2004 in a fight to drive the militants out and hand control to the Shiites who now run Iraq.
Today, the U.S. has no leverage other than backing the Iraqi government.
Secretary of State John Kerry, mired in the increasingly problematic Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, offered the Iraqis moral support.
"We're not contemplating putting boots on the ground. This is their fight, but we're going to help them in their fight,” Kerry said. “This is a fight that is bigger than just Iraq."”
Chaos in Syria
The Syrian discontent started in March 15, 2011, in the wake of the Arab uprisings which were labeled as Arab Spring. Initially, the protestors demanded more freedom and democracy from the Sh’ite Alaouit minority represented by the Ba’th Party of Bachar al-Assad. The government reacted violently killing dozens of protestors and by April it became a nationwide movement of revolt.
From a protest movement, the situation morphed into a military uprising and a political rejection of the Assad regime. The opposition coalition made of a myriad of political groups fielded a military resistance. Initially, the resistance scored many victories with the help of support from Saudi Arabia and the West and when everybody thought that the Assad regime was about to fall, the Russians brought military help in 2013 to Assad because his demise will mean for Moscow the end of its presence in the Middle East. This much-needed help came at the right time to give the regime a lease of life.
According to the United Nations, the death toll surpassed 100,000 in June 2013, and reached 120,000 by September 2013. In addition, tens of thousands of protesters, students, liberal activists and human rights advocates have been imprisoned and there are reports of widespread torture and terror in state prisons.
The Iranian government realizing that the fall of Assad would mean the loss of their last outpost and would put them directly in the fire line of America and Israel, instructed the fighters of the Lebanese Hizbu Allah and their own Revolutionary Guard to bolster the defenses of their Sh’ite ally Bashar al-Assad, but, in the meantime, the latter committed a grave political error by using his chemical weapons on his own people.
Saudi Arabia outraged by this unpardonable war crime, called on America to strike out of existence Bashar and his clique. But America sensing a change of heart on the part of Tehran over the nuclear issue, preferred not to punish Assad, Iran’s protégé.
The American move gave Assad confidence in the survival of his regime and his negotiators at the Geneva II summit of January 2014 showed that they were not ready to envisage a Syria without Assad, the sine qua non condition of the opposition. As result, chaos will continue in Syria reaping lives of innocent people and more Syrians will flee the country.
The Somalization is looming over the Arab Spring countries
In conclusion, one can say that The Arab Spring has or is going the wrong way, instead of delivering the much-needed democracy and social justice; it is triggering the fragmentation of countries like Iraq, Syria, Libya and Egypt and possibly setting up a Somali-type of Scenarios.
Iraq, though not a fully Arab Spring country is de facto three countries: the Shi’ites in the south, the Sunnis in the center and the Kurds in the north. Iraq will never regain its unity for Nouri El- Maliki is not doing anything to keep the country united. For many Sunnis, his aim is to have Iraq or the Shi’ite provinces join Iran. However, though Iran would want that, it will be dangerous for the country to accept it in the sense that such an act would encourage the Kurds to create their own country and their own Kurd brethren of Iran and Turkey would want to join the new entity, so this could start the dismembering of Iran itself and problems for the whole region.
So far, the only countries that seem to be escaping the scenario of Somalization are: Tunisia that has produced a progressive constitution and also Yemen. If everything goes as planned, these two countries might become democratic in the full sense of the word and save the Arab Spring from total bankruptcy, but only time can tell.
Chaos is coming to the Middle East in the aftermath of the failure of the so-called Arab Spring, and it is coming big.
The Egyptian revolution is undoubtedly the most dramatic episode of the so-called Arab Spring.
Will the Libyan political class opt for that or go the way of the irreversible fragmentation?
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