Geography Archives: Iraq

  • The Syrian Opposition’s “National Initiative for Change”: A Missed Opportunity

      Given the atrocities currently committed in Syria and the spectacularly bad press this generates for the regime, one would think that issuing an effective petition calling for political change in this country would be an easy task.  All such a petition needs to do is to jump on the bandwagon of rapidly mounting protests […]

  • Demystifying Syria

      Two relationships have long been key to the stability of the Syrian regime.  The first is an economic relationship: the regime puts back into national production just enough to create jobs and produce cheap national goods to keep the working population in steady or, better yet improving, living conditions.  The second is a political […]

  • The Pillars of Democracy

      Nicolas Sarkozy: “Boys, these are the pillars that support authentic democracies!” Barack Obama: “Well said, Sarko!” José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero: “This is not Iraq . . . This is not Iraq . . . This is not Iraq . . . This is not Iraq . . .” Ferran Martín, born in Barcelona in […]

  • The Lessons of Iraq

      “Come on, boys!  Let’s teach those Libyans everything we have learned in Iraq!” Ferran Martín, born in Barcelona in 1970, is a cartoonist, illustrator, web designer, and radio and TV screenwriter.  This cartoon was first published in La información on 18 March 2011; it is reproduced here for non-profit educational purposes.  Translation by Yoshie […]

  • When China Overtakes the United States

    Various observers have noted this week that China’s economy will be bigger than that of the United States in 2016.  This comes from the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) latest projections, which were made in its semi-annual April World Economic Outlook database.  Since 2016 is just a few years away, and it will be the first […]

  • Iraqis Demand “Unconditional Departure of Occupation Forces from Iraq”

    On Friday, Iraqis demonstrated in Mosul City’s Ahrar Square (Square of the Free) for the ninth consecutive day to demand “the unconditional departure of occupation forces from Iraq” and the release of detainees. Meanwhile, in Sulaymaniyah province’s Hurriya (Freedom) Square, protestors demanded that the government and parliament be dissolved and asked for political reform.

  • Only in America: Former U.S. Official Sued Haiti Contractors for Kickbacks

    Corruption takes many forms, and if the United States seems like it has less of it than many developing countries, this is partly because we have legalized so much of it.  Election campaign contributions are only the most costly and debilitating form, a legalized bribery that, for example, gives the pharmaceutical and insurance companies a […]

  • Why the Bombing of Libya Cannot Herald a Return to the 1990s Era of Humanitarian Intervention

      On 4 April 2011, when David Chandler’s essay below was first published in e-IR, French and UN forces intervened in Ivory Coast on behalf of Alassane Ouattara and his forces, eventually deposing President Laurent Gbagbo on 11 April 2011.  Humanitarian pretexts were offered for that intervention, but rather perfunctorily, almost as an afterthought to […]

  • The United States and the Gulf Arab States: Interview with Adam Hanieh

    Adam Hanieh: Well, we’ve seen over the last few days a wave of repression [in Bahrain] that’s ongoing, repression against the protests after the Saudi troops went in on March 15, about a month ago.  As you said, there have been reports that up to 31 people have been killed during the demonstrations.  And now […]

  • Obstruct Militarization and the Usurpation of Democracy

    On behalf of the American University Anthropology department, I am deeply honored to welcome you all to AU, and to the Latin American Solidarity Coalition’s “Conference to Build a Stronger Movement to End US Militarism and the Militarization of Latin America.” It’s exciting personally to be involved in such an important event — after all, demilitarization of the Americas is now more important than ever — and I sincerely hope that we can continue this relationship and work to increase AU’s involvement with the event in the years to come, not only because it would save us money on the facility fees, but more importantly, because there is a deep thirst among AU students to become more engaged in this kind of solidarity work and because, I believe, the AU community can contribute to it in important ways. This conference is a perfect fit with all of the best aspects of this university, and those aspects — the dedication to community involvement, to social action and public intellectualism — always need reinforcing.

  • The Arab Spring and the Saudi Counter-Revolution

    We return from a recent trip to the region persuaded that the main question engaging people with respect to the “Arab spring” is no longer “who’s next,” but rather “how far will Saudi Arabia go in pushing a counter-revolutionary agenda” across the Middle East?  Whether Saudi Arabia is really capable of coping with the momentous […]

  • (Former) Communists for Liberal Democracy

      Tuesday, April 12, 2011 Yassin Al-Hajj Saleh in the New York Times Of course, Saleh suffered from the brutality of the Syrian regime and I share many of his criticisms of the Syrian regime although I don’t share his decision to write about Syria in racist anti-Syrian (people) right-wing publications, like An-Nahar and Al-Hayat […]

  • Tell America: There’s an Alternative to Domestic Budget Cuts

    To hear the mainstream media tell it, America confronts a choice: Republican plans for cutting domestic spending or President Obama’s plans for cutting domestic spending.  That’s what they want us to think. You’d never know from the mainstream media that 80 Members of Congress have put forward an alternative to cuts in spending on domestic […]

  • “Artists in Exile: Forgotten Iraqi Refugees in Syria”: Interview with Mel Lehman of Common Humanity

      “Syria hosts the largest number of Iraqi refugees who have fled their home since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.  Estimates as to how many refugees are huddled in Syria vary, but most organizations estimate that roughly 1.2-1.5 million Iraqis have staked a temporary claim on neighboring soil.  ‘Temporary,’ however, is a relative time-frame for the […]

  • Whither Syria?

      Flynt Leverett, a professor of international affairs at Penn State and a senior fellow at the New America Foundation, is the author of Inheriting Syria: Bashar’s Trial by Fire.  Andrew Tabler, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, is the author of the forthcoming book In the Lion’s Den: An Eyewitness […]

  • Mid-East Upheaval: What the Empire Sees

      The US left and progressives have been preoccupied about what we can do to impact events in the Mid-East, particularly obsessing about what we can do to counter US intervention.  In general, it is good to want to act, not just talk or analyze, in a crisis situation. However, despite the valiant and necessary […]

  • Taking Over the West

    Hi, my name is Sukant Chandan.  I’m 32 years old.  I was born in Chandigarh in North India, in Punjab, in April 1978.  I always say, teasingly to my parents, they brought me here, in the winter of 1981 without my consent, at the age of three and a half. . . .  I remember […]

  • Gilbert Achcar’s Defense of Humanitarian Intervention

    Gilbert Achcar defends the recently “UN-authorized” imperialist intervention in Libya on the ground that general principles may require exceptions in concrete cases.  “Every general rule admits of exceptions.  This includes the general rule that UN-authorized military interventions by imperialist powers are purely reactionary ones, and can never achieve a humanitarian or positive purpose.”1  This kind […]

  • Egypt, Iran, and the Middle East’s Evolving Balance of Power

    The full extent of the ramifications of the extraordinary developments in Egypt since the beginning of this year — for Egypt itself, for the Middle East, and for the world — will not be clear for some time.  At this juncture, though, it seems virtually certain that post-Mubarak Egypt will have a much more balanced […]

  • Who Rules Syria and How?  Interview with Joshua Landis

    Paul Jay: The title of your upcoming book, Syria’s Democratic Experiment, first of all, what is the experiment?  And then talk a little about how we got there. Joshua Landis: Well, the book really deals with a period at the time of independence — 1946, ’45, ’46 — in Syria, when the French left and […]