Friday, February 25, 2011

Could the Iraqi people have overthrown Saddam?

'The Tunisian and Egyptian uprisings succeeded because the military forces of those countries refused to protect the regimes by cracking down on their own countrymen. The Egyptian military's self-image is that of a force that protects the nation and the people, not Hosni Mubarak. Yes, many top officers were his cronies, but when the push came to shove, their loyalty to the state was greater than their loyalty to the regime. The same was true in Tunisia.

Saddam, on the other hand, could always count on two armed groups whose ONLY reason for being was their loyalty to him: the Republican Guard, and the paramilitary Fedayeen Saddam. As they showed while putting down the Shi'ite uprising after the Kuwait war, these forces were perfectly happy to kill tens of thousands of Iraqis on his orders.'

Read more:

Thanks RhusLancia for posting over at Zeyad's Healing Iraq.

Fedayeen Saddam were not formed until after 1991. Otherwise Bobby Ghosh is right. Fedayeen was just another tool Saddam & Sons used to control Iraqis. Saddam was stronger in 2003 than he was in 1991.

I asked my my mom a couple of weeks ago if she thought Saddam would have fallen as easily as Mubarak. She said maybe not as easily, but she thinks eventually he would have fallen. I didn't have time to talk about 1991, but I disagree with her. Saddam had already brutally put down a major uprising in 1991 and he had a firm grip on Iraq in 2003. Saddam might have been overthrown if Iraq's Sunni Arabs, including his Republican Guard and Fedayeen, had been united with the Shia and Kurds to overthrow Saddam.


Don Cox said...

It is not certain yet that Ghaddafi can be overthrown.

I do not think the Iraqis could have overthrown Saddam. The Iranians are having great trouble trying to get rid of their rulers.

The North Koreans have no hope, I think.

CMAR II said...

Two articles:
RAND Study on how to "coup-proof" your dictatorship:

What does it mean to be "Arab"
(also, why are Arab Christians such adamant Arab Nationalists--this touches on why Iraqi Christians ended up defacto supporters of Saddam):

Anonymous said...

actually the iraqis could have overthrown saddam.
they weren't successful because america backed saddam against the majority iraqis (shia+kurds) instead of backing up the majority (like they promised)