Arabs, non Arabs, Muslims and non-Muslims in the Middle-East are skeptical about the Western promises of assistance with democracy and US administration’s apparent change of heart / policies and encouragement of democracy. This is because to this day the Western world, which is now represented in their eyes (mistakenly) by the US, still seems to be advocating the strategy exhorted by the colonialist powers in the early 20th century and highlighted by Carra de Vaux in May 1901, originally published in "questions diplomatiques et coloniales ' p.588. English version quoted in Buheiry 1989,p.114 :
"I believe that we should endeavour to split the Muslim world, to break its
moral unity, using to this effect the ethnic and political division [.] Let us
therefore accentuate these differences, in order to increase on the one hand
national sentiment [...] and to decrease on the other that of religious
community [...] among the various Muslim races. Let us take advantage of
Following WWI, the Treaties of Sevres (1920) and Lausanne (1922-23) basically liquidated the Ottoman Empire - which was the Muslim Empire at that time - making Iraq, Palestine and what is now Jordan, British mandates , while Syria and what is now known as Lebanon became French mandates.
The 21st century witnessed the rise of rhetoric about a 'Greater Middle East'.
"On 19 February 2004, the London-based Arabic newspaper Al-Hayat published a
"leaked" US-compiled document that became known as the Greater Middle East
Initiative (GMEI)[..]The original document, intended for internal distribution
among designated senior officials of the G8 (group of eight industrialised
countries), was meant to signal a new US plan for reform of the Middle East and
some other Muslim-majority countries such as Pakistan, Iran and Turkey. "
This author seems to agree with me :
“The United States has given Israel a free rein because it is confronted with
the probability of two highly disagreeable developments: a nuclear-armed Iran
and a humiliating defeat in Iraq. It urgently needs to regain the initiative in
the wider Middle East and has persuaded itself - or been persuaded by Israel's
friends inside and outside the Administration -- that Israel can help it do so.
The pro-Israeli neocons in the U.S have been trumpeting that a victory for
Israel in Lebanon will be a victory for the United States, and a defeat for
Israel will be a defeat for the United States.The situation is complicated by a
further layer of conflict. The Arab oil producers in the Gulf dread an upset in
the regional power balance. They want to continue enjoying their great wealth
under the umbrella of American protection. These Gulf regimes fear a dominant
Iran and an assertive Shi'ism. This may explain their astonishing passivity in
the face of Israel's aggression.Israel's indifference to Arab life risks
convincing many young Arabs that long-term coexistence with Israel is not
possible. Arab intellectuals are increasingly expressing the view that Israel is
a colonial state, which must eventually disappear, as Europe's colonial empires
did in their time. At their summit meeting in Beirut in March 2002, all the Arab
states declared their readiness to establish normal peaceful relations with
Israel within its 1967 borders. But Israel, intent on expanding its borders,
rejected the offer. It must surely be time for Israel to think again. The offer
may still be on the table.”
Mark my words this relationship will be discarded once Israel is not needed anymore.
The US administration has draped the mantle of the champion of the West, it is furthermore applying pressure to get on with the project of the GMEI. In order to achieve this , Lebanon must be destroyed to start with a clean slate and to get the two remaining opponents Syria and Iran to capitulate. Funnily enough only recently like 5 years ago (I think ) Syria was not an enemy of the US but it has been slowly pushed to align itself with Iran after the Iraq invasion and its alleged interverntion in Iraq. Iraq one of the strongest Arab countries is already destroyed as we know it. It’s people once they get over their civil war will be too busy to build their country and work off the huge debt accumulated. They are not likely to make any decisions for themselves and they are brainwashed into thinking that the other Arab countries do not really care. That leaves the Gulf states and KSA , I hope I am proven wrong but I believe they will never lift a finger for the ME. Look at Qatar, the smart anti-bunker missiles that the US is rushing to Israel will allegedly be shipped from there.
Israel cannot afford to stop it’s momentum now because God only knows if it would ever have another similar perfect opportunity.
The North African states are too far as well and busy with their own set of problems, plus any marching army will be detected immediately along with any movement of equipment. And anyway where is that equipment purchased from ? Yep it will be used opposite that the of the Israelis.
To demonstrate that the west is still acting in terms of what Carra de Vaux advocated , let us look at this little study called : 'US strategy in the Muslim world after 9/11'.
"U.S. Air Force asked RAND Project AIR FORCE (PAF) to study the trends that areThis is an excerpt of what they came up with :
most likely to affect U.S. interests and security in the Muslim
"[…] certain divisions cut across the Muslim world and have implications for
U.S. interests and strategy:
Sunnis and Shi’ites. The majority of
Muslims are Sunni. Shi’ites, who number about 15 percent of the world’s Muslims,
are dominant in Iran and are politically excluded majorities in Bahrain and the
eastern province of Saudi Arabia, as they were in Iraq prior to the removal of
Saddam. The United States may have an opportunity to align its policy with
Shi’ite groups, who aspire to have more participation in government and greater
freedoms of political and religious expression. If this alignment can be brought
about, it could erect a barrier against radical Islamic movements and may create
a foundation for a stable U.S. position in the Middle East.
problem is that shiites also have a history of 'radical' Islam ex Iran
Arab and non-Arab Muslims. Arabs constitute about 20 percent of
the world’s Muslims. The Arab world exhibits a higher incidence of economic,
social, and political disorders than other regions of the so-called developing
world. By contrast, non-Arab sectors of the Muslim world are more politically
inclusive, boast the majority of democratic or partially democratic governments,
and are more secular in outlook. Although the Middle East has traditionally been
regarded as the “core” of the Muslim world, it appears that the center of
gravity may be shifting to non-Arab sectors. The most innovative and
sophisticated thinking about Islam is taking place in areas outside the Arab
world such as Southeast Asia and in the diaspora communities of the West. The
United States should pay attention to these progressive developments because
they can counter the more extreme interpretations of Islam held in some parts of
the Arab world.
Ethnic communities, tribes, and clans. The failure
to understand tribal politics was one of the underlying causes of the
catastrophic U.S. involvement in Somalia. Ten years later, the U.S. government
still knows very little about Muslim tribal dynamics in areas where U.S. forces
are or may be operating. As the United States pursues an activist policy in
disturbed areas of the world, it will be critical to understand and learn to
manage subnational and tribal issues. [..]
diasporas. Diaspora communities are a gateway to networks and may be helpful in
advancing U.S. values and interests. The United States, for instance, can work
with Muslim nongovernment organizations in responding to humanitarian
Rebuild close military-to-military relations with key
countries. Military establishments will continue to be influential political
actors across the Muslim world. Therefore, military-to-military relations will
be of particular importance to any U.S. shaping strategy in the Muslim world.
Rebuilding a core of U.S.-trained officers in key Muslim countries is a critical
need. Programs such as International Military Education and Training (IMET) not
only ensure that future military leaders are exposed to American military values
and practices but can also translate into increased U.S. influence and
Build appropriate military capabilities. The United States
faces a need to reduce the more obvious aspects of its military presence in
sensitive areas of the Muslim world, while working to increase different types
of presence (e.g., intelligence, psychological operations, and civil affairs
such as medical assistance). The U.S. military should improve its cultural
intelligence through more Arab, Persian, and African regional and language
If you read the research in full you will find that it does contain a lot of positive aspects. Here is the pdf version. But In comparing it with the 1901 document I find it telling that over one hundred years later the leopard (though a different one) has not changed its spots. Wrapped in beautiful resounding words it is still all about interest and security and not idealism.
The ‘positive aspects’ which would be democracy, investment etc… are merely the honey pot designed to entrap the gullible masses but also an attempt to have a clearer conscience and give something in return. After all it is better to have a happy population with whom you can trade than a devastated angry mob or a depopulated ME from which you would simply mine resources. We are in the age where although force is important but this kind of action cannot be justified as overtly as in past centuries, unless you can get the opponent to fire at you first.
Baron Carra de Vaux is an eminent respected orientalist who has extensively studied Muslims and the Arab world , you can google his works yourself they are strewn all over the place and are very rich, but it is interesting that he was an important lecturer at the SOCIETE DES ETUDES JUIVES which was the 'Society for the study of Jewish history and literature, and especially of the history and literature of the Jews of France; its headquarters being in Paris. This society was founded in 1880, chiefly through the efforts of Baron James Edouard de Rothschild [and others]" , while the Rothschild family has well known ties to Zionism.
If I was a conspiracy theorist I would have made the link in my head and stated : “It’s the joooooooooooooos (© Sandmonkey) !” but I will only ask the readers for two things (1) to come to their own conclusions, and (2) to explain to me peacefully if there is a different idea re. 1901 and 2004 ?