Phil, it was when the Ottoman elites absorbed the European notion of majoritarian rule that they decided they had to turn all the inhabitants of the empire into "Turks," or ethnically cleanse them (e.g., the Armenians). That was a major element in the chaos of the Empire's collapse. The Turkish Republic could become majoritarian
because the Empire had lost the Balkans (including Ataturk's own native city, Salonica), leaving mostly only so-called "Turks" inhabiting Anatolia. It then got rid of the remaining "Greeks" in exchange for other "Turks," and it defined Kurds as "Mountain Turks" (they have not stopped rebelling as a result). Most of the Empire's successor states--Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon especially, in what I call the "Fragile Crescent"--contain all the variety of the Ottoman Empire, but little of the Ottoman tolerance for linguistic, sectarian, religious and ethnic differences. And so someone is always in open rebellion--Kurds, Shiites, Sunnis, whatever. Those differences will never go away, they can only be moderated, and the attempt to impose a nation-state model on them has failed. So what will be the next model?
FP: And then the Western colonial powers came in and imposed artificial national boundaries on that mess. And now that the West is going down, the ME is reverting to its own self.
How would these people have reacted if Romney gave this speech:
You go into these small towns in
Pennsylvaniathe Palestinian Territories, and, like a lot of small towns in the MidwestMiddle East, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the ClintonRabin administration, and the BushNetanyahu administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not.
And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy toward people who aren’t like them or anti-
immigrantIsraeli sentiment or anti- tradeJewish sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.
I suspect the reaction would have been what it now is, with absurd charges of racism and cultural insensitivity.
What a difference a continent makes.
FP: I guess in Obama’s distorted world Pennsylavnians are worse than Palestinians. Upside down and backwards.
It relates to this story:
At the urging of Valerie Jarrett, President Barack Obama canceled the operation to kill Osama bin Laden on three separate occasions before finally approving the May 2, 2011 Navy SEAL mission, according to an explosive new book scheduled for release August 21. The Daily Caller has seen a portion of the chapter in which the stunning revelation appears.
In ”Leading From Behind: The Reluctant President and the Advisors Who Decide for Him,“ Richard Miniter writes that Obama canceled the “kill” mission in January 2011, again in February, and a third time in March. Obama’s close adviser Valerie Jarrett persuaded him to hold off each time, according to the book.
From friend of the blog @irishspy:
“President Gutsy Call” turns out to be President “Valerie, May I?” wp.me/pqXLW-3Hl
— Phineas Fahrquar (@irishspy) July 30, 2012
Can he do nothing right?
Ziad al-Bandak, an adviser to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, recently visited the site of the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland, where 1.5 million people were killed during the Holocaust. Bandak's visit constituted a rare recognition of the Holocaust by a Palestinian official.
The opposing Hamas party, which rules the Gaza Strip, was outraged by the Bandak's visit. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said: "It was an unjustified and unhelpful visit that served only the Zionist occupation." Barhoum continued by calling into question the scope of the Holocaust, saying the visit was "a marketing of a false Zionist alleged tragedy."
Caroline Glick: The Muslim Brotherhood's American Defenders (MUST READ-Scary!)