Are you looking for my non-technical blog?

This is now my technical-only blog, my non-technical blog is here.

01 September 2006

IRAQ III, A Tale of Two Tribes

Life in Iraq / Security, BBC News

Omar of ITM (Iraq The Model) had the following conversation with one of his realtives in Iraq. Here you are a part of it.
The Relative: It all started several months ago when a bunch of young men from the local tribes began showing strange extreme religious behavior we're not familiar with in this area. They did not have influence here in the beginning and their apparent action was limited to hate talk against Shia who they refer to as the "enemies" while we coexisted here and lived peacefully with Shia tribes for centuries. It didn't take long before they translated their rhetoric into violent action, they started to carry out ocassional kidnapping and assassinations against Shia men from neighboring tribes and even attacked Shia neighborhoods deep inside Baghdad after they acquired heavy mortars and katyusha rockets. At this point we began to realize the true identity of those young men and we began to believe that they became part of al-Qaeda. The Shia community showed restraint for a while but then their patience ended and the militias started to fire back…at us unfortunately. The worst escalation happened last week when al-Qaeda snatched a relative of a senior Shia party official near his home, the militia of that party retaliated by kidnapping ten men of a Sunni tribe and there were also incidents of forced displacement on both sides…we don't know if a peaceful settlement can be ever reached.
Omar: Did you try to talk to them, intimidate them or do anything to dissuade them from keeping up their dangerous game?
The Relative: We tried, first they told us they were protecting us from Shia death squads and they fooled many of people here with that claim but that's bull shit because now they are the reason death squads are after us.
Omar's Father: That doesn't make any sense! You mean the entire tribe and neighboring ones can't control a dozen of militants?
The Relative: The problem is that these people behead victims and mutilate bodies, they plant bombs and use dirty tricks…the tribe's men are not adapted to dealing with this kind of horrors. When sheikhs met to arrange for reconciliation the terrorists sent messages telling the sheikhs they were "no longer wanted" and that they were "ripe" for beheading. By the way this was the 2nd meeting between Sunni and Shia sheikhs, the first one was held immediately after the Samarra bombing, it was a purely local initiative without mediation from the government or clerics…we had been good neighbors for ages! The sheikhs signed a pact of honor that forbid bloodshed and displacement and that what kept sectarian violence away from the area until those bastards came in.
Actually this was expected. Imagine a country where the Minority - part of them - continue to attack and kill people who belong to the Majority there. It's normal to see a violent response from the other side, who have more power, especially from the uneducated and immature people there. And that's why Sayed Ali Sistani for example continued to warn Shiits from attacking anyone. But it seems that at a certain point it was hard to stop the people from responding. It's said that the killing accelerated most sharply after the bombing on Feb. 22, 2006 of Imam Al Askari shrine, which unleashed a wave of sectarian bloodletting.
Though some observers state that a full blown civil war has not happened, many agree the framework for a potential civil war exists and is seen as a pressing concern. The whole civil war story may have been started with the bloody attacks happened there since August of 2003. You may see here a timeline of the attacks and the violent unrest in Iraq since 2003.
I myself don't see it as a Sunni-Shiiy civil war, for me it's a war between extremist groups from both sides. Not all Iraqi Sunni Arabs belong to Al-Qaeda, or The Association of Muslim Scholars, and not all Shiits there belong to Al Mahdi Army for example. But the problem is, as Omar's relative said, when the silent majorities in both sects cannot have control nor effect on the extremists there

Wikipedia, Iraqi insurgency
Wikipedia, Sectarian violence in Iraq
Wikipedia, Al Askari Mosque bombing
Iraq the Model Blog
BBC News, Life in Iraq
Iraq, Reasonable Answers for our Questions
IRAQ I, Saddam Era
IRAQ II, The Instability

Tags: , ,


  1. First
    donde esta senior Blanco ??
    I believe what are facing in Iraq is also related to what so known the racial tribal thing التعصب القبلى
    usually when the religion ,the really religion is absent for along time in such places of tribal systems , the violence and hatred will be the only mutual language
    you know Iraqis shiite and sunni and all other sects ,those who want one Iraq should stick together behind one person that would represent them all , I am a dreamer
    you know in multi-ethnic country you need some sort of a political group like Saad Basha in Egypt , El-Wafad
    Another problem you may forget some of those people who fight shiites and cause all these massacres are from the Old Baathi members who if you think carefully you will find that they can reach easily to weapons
    familiar with bombs
    familiar with roads and hide places
    Hate Shiite ,Iran and also those who are against them
    the problem is ya Tarek El-Qaida is made up by C.I.A in the first place
    so I believe that those who kill other Iraqis whether Shiites or Sunnis are american agents servants to the invaders
    of course I don't suspect the really Iraqi resistance which fought and is fighting the occupation in Iraq like in Fallugah or El-Nagf if you remember last year
    but if we look carefully it is from the benefit of American administration that Iraq to be divided for the new Middle East , the division cannot be reached like in the old days of Colonalism El-Basra for England and another city I can't remember for France , no because they know people will refuse and fight
    they are working to make the Iraqi people themselves seek to this solution of dividing the state by them to ensure their own Peace
    this is the only thing I found after reading in Iraqi issue from here and there
    I got confused by all these names , and thus I tried to think in a wider perspective , about the new middle east
    Yesterday The Kurdish president Barazni ,a long time ally to Israel ordered that no Iraqi flag to be hanged in official places in Kardistan , very dangerous move but what do you expect
    The Ashurian Iraqi christian , a very old sect by the way ,has its own channel on Nile sat with its own language I believe the Ashurian or kaldian something like this
    The Turks are doing the samething
    The invasion is on who is pushing all these conflicts to happen
    I am not with this Irani danger for one good reason , Iraq just like Egypt was and is protecting its identity from outside influence unfortunately the identity of a nation I believe is in danger when it is sealed in the prisons of dictatorship who used it to its own account