Thursday, September 24, 2009

How the Arabs reacted to the end of Saddam

Below is a post I put together from two comments for this post and thought it summarizes well my feelings about how the Arabs in general reacted to the overthrow, trial, and hanging of Saddam. I think it's important to document their reaction.

FYI: 90% of Arabs are Sunni Muslim. The combined population of Arab nations is 325 million, about the same population as the US.

'Approximately half of my relatives fled Iraq before 2003. Most of them live in the UK now. None of my relatives worked for the US military except a relative who worked as an economic advisor to the CPA for two years, and he was never harmed. But he was in Kurdistan. A man who was married to my uncle's wife's sister worked as a translator for the Americans (not sure in what capacity) and in 2005 he was shot in the head in front of his family while shopping in Baghdad.

In 2006 on the Angry Arab blog many commenters labeled Iraqi translators and Iraqi police as traitors, which made me very angry. Many of those commenters, even though some of them were born and raised in America, attacked me for being a "traitor" to my country, because I was happy to see the end of Saddam and his murderous dictatorship and one day I called Bush's intentions in Iraq "noble" because I believed that he and many Americans were genuinely interested in helping the Iraqi people overcome years of war and sanctions and build a prosperous democracy. I still believe that this was America's intentions for Iraq. Bush may have had ulterior motives and may have hoped that western oil companies would benefit, and some companies like Halliburton and Blackwater did benefit from the war. But it was Operation Iraqi Freedom, despite the ulterior motives and despite the crimes of US soldiers, which were few in comparison to the crimes of Saddamists and Wahhabi terrorists. Some Shia militiamen also killed innocent Iraqis.

Some accused me of not condemning crimes committed by Americans in Iraq. I know that many innocent Iraqis were accidentally and intentionally killed by US forces, but the vast majority of violent deaths in Iraq since 2003 have been caused by the "resistance" and the jarab who blow up markets and restaurants. I know we're supposed to blame those murders on America too, and many Iraqis have, but I won't do that. Bush made mistakes for sure, but I will always blame the murders on the people who directly participated in the murders.

Saddam's henchmen were responsible for the wrongful imprisonment and murder of many of my relatives, and astoundingly some people expected me to tell the world to keep Saddam in power. It was as if they expected me to shut up about Saddam's crimes, so my writings wouldn't be used as justification to overthrow the mass murderer.

Most people in the Arab world and most leftists have never lived in a dictatorship like Saddam's, and therefore they really have no idea how most Iraqi Shia and Kurds felt about Saddam's regime. The only kind of Shia they seem to like are the ones who fight Americans, like Muntadhar al Zaidi and Muqtada al Sadr.

Since the overthrow of Saddam's regime my relatives have had difficult lives or sure, due to the security situation. I've blamed the Bush administration for not adequately planning for the overthrow of the dictatorship and other things, and I've blamed the new Iraqi govt for being incompetent and corrupt. But the reason there was so much sectarian violence, so much hatred towards the Shia, is because the Sunni extremists provoked the Iraqi Shia in the most horrific ways, and the Sunni Arabs did not protest very much. Many of them insisted that the US was behind the bombings of markets and other public places in Iraq. The extremists proved they would murder 34 Iraqi kids just to kill one American soldier. They did it and committed many more horrible crimes, and all the Arabs and leftists could do is blame Bush. The Sunni Arab "resistance" proved they could make life for Iraqis much worse than before the invasion, and they did, because the Sunni Arabs lost control of Iraq, and therefore they tried to destroy Iraq.

Angry Arab fans attacked me for being angry with the Arab terrorists instead of the Americans. They also attacked me for pointing out that life for Iraqi Shia and Kurds was quite miserable before 2003. The response from the Sunni Arabs, as the Sunni Arab "resistance" blew up Iraqi markets and universities, was "how do you like your freedom now??"' I will never forget the rage I felt after reading the responses of our Arab "brothers" from all over the globe. Some of them could not understand my rage and were merely condemning the perceived meddling in Iraq and the injustice that resulted from such meddling.

In the 60s and 80s, the Sunni Arabs and leftists did not protest US meddling in Iraq. In 1991 they did not scream as loudly about US intervention, even though the US-led coalition bombed Iraq for 40 consecutive days and nights in 1991, even though the US launched the war on Iraq from their HQ in Doha, Qatar.

They did not protest as strongly about US meddling until Saddam's murderous regime was overthrown in 2003, and when the murderers were put on trial for crimes against humanity and the piece of shit was belatedly hung in 2006, the Sunni Arabs got *really* pissed. They escalated their attacks and blew up even more markets, weddings, funerals, universities, restaurants, and just about anything related to the newly elected government in Baghdad. But no bombings of markets in Qatar, the country that hosts the US CENTCOM, from which the US military again launched the air campaign in 2003.

In 2006, after the Al Askari mosque was bombed, the Sunni Arabs discovered Shiite death squads had been murdering innocent Sunni Arabs in Baghdad. Their protests and animosity towards Iraqi Shia grew. Prior to their discovery of Shiite death squads, they did not protest "Sunni death squads", which began their murderous rampages in 2003. The Sunni Arabs did not notice, or perhaps ignored, the 144 suicide bombings in 2004 or the 478 suicide bombings in 2005. Angry Arabs could not easily blame suicide bombings on Americans or Iraqi Shia, because even the idiots among the Sunni Arabs know that Americans and Iraqi Shia don't do suicide bombings in markets and restaurants.

During this time a historic trial, the first trial of an Arab dictator, was taking place. In the past, if an Arab tyrant was overthrown, he was immediately killed. No trial, no questions, no evidence or debate. That's how the Arabs do revolution, and they were pissed that one of their Lions was being humiliated by "infidels". Many Arabs and Arab Americans believed that Saddam was innocent, and that even if he is guilty, he should not be killed. So the war on the Iraqi Shia and US forces intensified.

In 2006 I became acquainted with a Palestinian American woman, born and raised in California, a frequent commenter on Angry Arab. When I first started commenting on the blog she attacked me and called me a traitor and did not believe I am Iraqi, but eventually we became friends and we talked a few times on the phone. The day after the convicted Saddam and his half brother were hung she called me and said "bad move Shia". That is how the Sunni Arabs, even the ones in America, reacted to the overthrow and trial and hanging of a mass murderer, a tyrant who imprisoned and killed millions of innocent Iraqis, a dictator who led Iraq to ruin. They treated him like a hero, they mass murdered Iraqis and blamed it on Americans, and then they asked the Iraqis if THIS is the freedom they wanted!

Certainly not all Sunni Arabs thought alike, and I know many Sunni Arabs, mostly Iraqis, who were happy to see the end of Saddam. But a few Iraqi Sunni Arabs were very angry about the hanging of Saddam and turned him into a hero-martyr:

I suppose I should not have wanted to see the end of Saddam's regime. I should not have ever sought support from the US, the country that helped put the tyrant in power in the 60s and helped him again in the 80s, to remove the tyrant from power in 2003 and help Iraqis set up a semblance of a democracy in Baghdad. I should have known, like many smart people apparently did, that Sunni Arab extremists would incite sectarian violence in Iraq, and that Shiite militias would react by killing innocent Sunni Arabs. Shoulda stuck with Saddam, shoulda kept quiet about his crimes like the Sunni Arabs did so well.

The "brave resistance" demanded an end to the occupation. Well it's been two years now since Shiite militias killed innocent Sunni Arabs, nine months since Bush has been out of office, and it's been three months since US troops withdrew from Iraqi cities. But the "resistance" is still blowing up innocent Iraqis, mostly Shia. Hundreds have been killed in the last few weeks. Is that not injustice? '

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