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Well said

Reader comment on item: Four Middle Eastern Upheavals
in response to reader comment: Wasted Exercise

Submitted by sara (United States), Mar 29, 2011 at 19:48

Jay,

I could not agree more. The artificial divisions and creations of most Arab countries ignores the fact that the culture is at its core a tribal one. Look at the interactions with Hamas in Gaza with the large tribes and their leaders. They can't move without their agreement. Iraq is one of the more glaring examples of the random groupings of tribes which have made impossible a unified Iraq under one government.

The truth is, there are local tribes and then the larger sects, Sunni, Shia, Sufi, etc. Any interaction by the western powers with these countries must take into consideration this culture and configuration. Also, as tribal as they are, they barter for gain and will cooperate with whichever hand is best at feeding them at a given moment. They have no real political ideology and most are not even religiously fanatic unless it helps them. Witness the fiasco in Iraq when the local tribes helped the US against the insurgents until someone screwed up royally with their 'salaries'. They are of a primitive and clannish mindset, not a national one.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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