Tuesday, January 12, 2016

On Sectarianism

If you ever wonder about how the heck the Muslim world gets divided by sectarian lines, Israel vs Palestine, Shia vs Sunni, Kurdish vs everyone else, check out a recent op-ed by former Alaska governor Sarah Palin on President Obama's foreign policy.

"...The whole world weeps waiting for American leadership in these troubled times as Islamic savages commit genocide against the Christians of the Middle East and terrorize innocent people in cities across the globe..."

There are obvious errors and misperceptions: ISIS has primarily killed Shi'as, Yazidis, Kurds, Sunnis that don't pledge allegiance to ISIS, their own people, and so on; they're not committing genocide against Christians because, well, Christians had mostly fled and there's not that many of them left in the battleground.   However the implication of her (somewhat bizarre) rant is clear.  She has tranformed a civil war pitting local tribes and factions within Iraq and Syria, into a total war between Muslim and Christian civilizations.  The entire world is forced to choose sides. That's how sectarianism becomes the defining factor for the world we live in.

We are better than that. Don't fall for this nonsense.

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