Observations on the Middle East

There are a couple of points I couldn’t work into my last post that I want to include here. I tend to think that the simplest explanations are best and I think that the greatest single problem in the Arab world is factionalism. In that light the Arab world’s problem isn’t Israel or colonialism. Those are just pretexts and they’re explained by factionalism rather than causing it. The Arab world’s tyrannical leaders exploit the factionalism to promote their own power and wealth.

The second point is that Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Turkey are all vying for leadership of the Muslim world and there can be only one. Don’t expect any lasting alliance between Iran and Turkey. Their interests are opposed. And each of their interests coincide only tangentially with ours.

And even less don’t expect a Muslim world to unite against us or anybody else on anything but the most temporary of bases.

1 comment… add one
  • mike shupp

    I have two thoughts. The first is that the Arabs have benefited over the last century or so, in large part from the rapid industrialization of the world, which has been powered by the abundant petroleum under their feet, and also because the more advanced nations of the world have abandoned their charming tradition of simply taking what they want, without worry about the consequences to natives.
    We’ve played nicely with them, in other words.

    The second thought is that come the last half of this century, petroleum will probably be less important an asset, especially if global warming constrains our thirst for oil, and that also probably the US and Europe will not be running the world. The Arabs will then find themselves bordered by Russians to the North, Chinese to the Northeast, Indians to the Southeast, Africans to the South, and The Deep Blue Sea. This will not be a comfortable position.

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