Beyond the Cusp

November 16, 2017

Israel Cannot be Another United States


The first and most obvious reason is size, though that is the least important reason. But the long version of the title for this article should read, “Why Israel cannot be another United States and why the Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA) are in such a mess.” Then the first sentence would change. So, let us start again. Israel cannot and must not be made into a small version of the United States in the Middle East any more than Japan made into United States Asia Pacific, Thailand made into United States Southern Asia, Tanzania made into United States Africa or Poland made into United States Europe. In every case, these are nations which have been homelands to a particular people in some cases since before written history. The Jewish People are directly traceable to the southern nation between the two nations of the Hebrews who came out of Egypt. The two nations were, the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judea whose people became known as Judeans which over time, and for ease of pronunciation, became Jews. The northern kingdom of Israel was the northern ten tribes with their priest lived in the tribes of Judea and the far smaller Benjamin and their priest, which resulted in the tribe of priests, the Kohanim and the Levites divided between the two kingdoms. As the newly reformed nation invites all of the tribes of Israel and Judea to return, the older name Israel was chosen for the nation of the Jews.


Let us now speak to why there are so many wars and unrest throughout the nations making up the area called MENA. The problems derive from the decisions made on how to break up the areas which had belonged to the Caliphate and then the Ottoman Empire as the Ottoman Empire had sided with Germany and Austria-Hungarian Empire in World War I, the losing side. The Allies; Serbia, Russia, France, United Kingdom, Italy, Belgium and the United States were left to decide the new boundaries for the losing forces. The decision was decided to return lands to their indigenous peoples with the exception of the Ottoman Empire as these lands had been transformed into Arab-Muslim lands under Arab rule with their original indigenous tribal demarcations pretty much erased. Germany and Austria-Hungarian Empire were redefined with new borders defined for Germany with their losing areas to Poland and France. The Austria-Hungarian Empire was broken up into numerous nations which were again divided after the fall of the Soviet Union leading to the nations Czech Republic, Slovakia, Austria, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Hungary, Romania and Serbia today (see map below). These divisions were presumed to make nations too weak to begin a new war as Austria-Hungarian Empire had, forcing the Great War. As further punishment, Germany was restricted in the size of their military and police, forced to pay prohibitive reparations and was forbidden from making air or naval power sufficient to threaten England, France or Russia. Obviously, that plan had failed, as it was one of the mitigating factors leading to World War II. We can only pray that the divisions made of the lands of the Ottoman Empire do not cause World War III.


Austro-Hungarian Empire Break-up into Independent Nations

Austro-Hungarian Empire Break-up into Independent Nations


The division of the Ottoman Empire came under two main rulings, the first resulting from the San Remo Conference and the Treaty of Sèvres which was restated and included in the Treaty of Lausanne. Many ask why all of these treaties, conferences and other agreements from World War I, especially what became known as the Mandate System, and the reason is Article 80 of the United Nations Charter. Article 80 states, in simple English rather than Legalese, that all these agreements from World War I are enforceable by the United Nations and remain recognized and applicable. Two men had met before the end of World War I and decided between them how to “fairly” divide the Ottoman Empire with much of the lands being turned over to, you may have guessed, France and Great Britain. These two men were the Frenchman François Georges-Picot and the British sent Mark Sykes who together drew up the lines which became the Sykes-Picot Agreement. This agreement gave colonial powers to the various allied powers including Spain, Italy, France and Great Britain. Subsequently, all of these powers have relinquished their rule permitting independent states (see map below). We must note that the 1979 date for Iranian independence notes the Islamic revolution and coup which removed the Shah and in his stead placed the Ayatollah Sayyid Ruhollah Mūsavi Khomeini (Persian: سید روح‌الله موسوی خمینی‎‎) into power of the Islamic Republic of Iran. These lines were drawn willy-nilly, as the British might say. There was no regard given for tribal lines, or at least that is the normal reason given. We hold to another more sinister reason for these lines, a combination of complete laziness and the idea that each nation would be near ungovernable. The borders below (see map) are drawn with slight regard for obvious boundaries such as rivers and very straight lines. By dividing peoples into different nations and splitting up tribes in like fashion while placing numerous tribes within every nation, Sykes and Picot guaranteed that rule could only be established through a dictatorial strongman such as Saddam Hussein, Muammar al-Qaddafi and Bashir al-Assad.


Dates that the MENA nations received their independence after colonial rule many since the times of the Persians or even earlier

Dates that the MENA nations received their independence after colonial rule many since the times of the Persians or even earlier


This very likely was the plan, leave nations near ungovernable and leave tribes and peoples split between different nations preventing their coming together to try to establish their natural homelands. This was the opposite of the European plan where they returned lands to the local peoples while in MENA they mostly did the opposite with select exceptions. These exceptions included the Mandate areas which were divided between Arab Muslim from Christian and Jewish lands granting Lebanon to the area Christians to rule and Israel to its indigenous peoples, the Jews and other tribes of the Hebrews. Thus, Jordan and Syria were made Arab Muslim lands. The Kurdish were promised their own lands but the discovery of oil and a lucrative agreement with King Faisal I (Arabic فيصل الأول) and the British (read Getty) left the Kurds divided between Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey. Of these countries, Turkey and Iraq were the two most determined to remove their Kurdish presence through genocide if required. Saddam Hussein used chemical weapons amongst other horrific methods against the Kurds in Iraq and Turkey would do to the Kurds what they did to their Armenian people starting in 1913 and continuing through to nearly the end of World War I in 1917. There were also the added struggles between Shiite and Sunni Moslems with these differences felt the most severely in Iraq, Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and many of the Gulf States. This is in part what caused much of the violence during the Arab Spring.


The Arab Spring very quickly became and remains the Arab Winter except where the state was strong enough and willing to use that strength to squash any rebellion. That was how Saudi Arabia treated any rebellion amongst its fellow gulf states with the best example being Bahrain where Saudi Armor poured down all lanes of the connecting causeway to the main island bringing the demonstrations and any ideas of a revolt to a very fast and permanent end. There are still numerous revolts in various levels of violence ongoing in Libya, Syria and Yemen with possible problems still existing in Turkey, Jordan and Egypt. There is also the continuing violence committed by the Sudan on the recently established South Sudan. This is a sectarian struggle pitting the Islamic fighters from the north against Christians and Animists residing in the south. This war between the Islamists against the Christians and Animists continues across the continent of Africa in what is referred to as the African Transition Zone (see below). Eventually these lands will form borders based on their tribal affiliations. Even then, there will be those who believe as if it were their religion that it is their destiny to expand over more lands. If one were to ask how many more lands, their answer would be all of the lands and they and their children will fight until all lands belong to them and their beliefs. Fortunately, their claim to land is limited to those lands where mankind live, so founding colonies on other planets simply provides them with more lands which must be brought to the one true faith. That is their religious law until the Imams decide otherwise.


African Transition Zone

African Transition Zone


Therein lies the answer, convince their Imams to change the law or at least how they interpret their laws. We are far from alone in this proposal as some have proposed this before and others continue this cry for hope in their future. They see that continuing on the path of eternal conquest can end only one way, one greatly destructive conflagration. These almost singular voices are all but undiscernible over the cacophony of the raging world around them. One such voice has even carried his plea to the center of Islamic teaching, Al-Azhar University. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has walked into the den from which the most renowned and influential of Imams graduate. Al-Azhar University is the Oxford University for Imams. President Sisi has taken the lead position with his appearances and demands for transforming Islam and teaching coexistence, cooperation and acknowledgment of other religions leading inevitably to peace and possibly harmony for mankind at long last. There is the Muslim Reform Movement which are standing for just such a change as are those mentioned at the end of this article. These are people who should be provided prominence as an option worth consideration.


To some extent, the allied powers from the First World War, or at least Mark Sykes and François Georges-Picot, is responsible for the discontent and violence which had ravaged the Arab Muslim world for the past quarter a century or so. Then, on the other side, the allied powers did not actually do such a great job with Europe judging by the ensuing World War II. The truth is the exact reason why the resurgence of Islam must be handled with a sense of urgency as well as tactfully. If the near future is bungled, then the result could very well be World War III. The entire problem was born of World War I and led to World War II and must be prevented from ending with World War III. All one need remember is the answer Albert Einstein gave when asked, “What weapons will World War III be fought?” To this Einstein replied, “I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” Perhaps it would be best not to test the validity of Einstein’s prediction of a possible future.


Beyond the Cusp


1 Comment »

  1. Reblogged this on Oyia Brown.


    Comment by OyiaBrown — November 24, 2017 @ 10:36 AM | Reply

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