Explain the origins of the sectarian conflict In Iraq (from Shia's prospective).How Saddam Hussein's policies intensify this conflict, and how was the conflict a factor in the politics of post-Ba'ath Iraq?

Sectarian tensions and conflict in Iraq began to find violent expression when the Shia’s felt that from the beginning of resistance in Sunni cities, there had been a small jihadist element, including a few foreign nationals (Schwartz, 2008). Al-Marashi & Salama (2008) says that Shia’s started the war because of the distrust the Shia population and leaders felt for the old army and they remembered the slaughter carried out by Saddam’s army after the Gulf War. Many Shia’s felt lingering anger that America had not intervened to stop the killing. The escalating jihadist violence in Shia communities provided a recruiting tool, since angry Shia could be offered the opportunity to avenge their own injuries and suppress further attacks by serving in the Sunni communities that were the source of suicide car bombs (Schwartz, 2008).

Saddam Hussein’s policies intensified this conflict with the regular army that existed well before he came to power in 1968. The addition to the parallel militaries by Saddam Hussein fostered such as the expanded Republican Guard suppressed the post-Gulf War uprising with banners on that said “No Shia will be left after today”. Al-Marashi & Salama (2008) says that during the uprising, the Republican Guard fought against members of the regular Army who were in revolt against Saddam Hussein government. Saddam Hussein government portrayed ethno-sectarian divide, ignoring the cleavages within Iraq’s communities. Al-Marashi & Salama (2008) says that “the army was viewed along ethnic and sectarian lines which did not factor in more visible fault lines in the Iraqi military, such as class, rural-urban, religious-secular and tribal divisions within the armed forces” (p. 203).

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The Shia’s regarded the military as an institution responsible for brutal domestic repression and discrimination in favor of the Sunni Arabs. Al-Marashi & Salama (2008) says that the Baath government could not have survived as long as it did without Shia and Kurds taking part in security forces to repress other rebellious Shia’s and Kurds. Monshipouri (2009) noted that “in a period of 35 years of political coercion by the Baath Party did little to moderate a wide split between the Sunni, Shia’s, and Kurdish populations” (p. 100). This increased the conflict because the Baath Party acted as an Arab nationalist movement whose pan-Arabism quashed cultural and political pluralism (Monshipouri, 2009). 

Is it possible for the Israeli state to be Jews in character while guarantying full citizenship to all its inhabitants? Give one example

It is possible for the Israeli state to be Jews in character while guarantying full citizenship to all its inhabitants. Handelman (2004) says that the Israel’s Declaration of independence in 14 May 1948 affirmed Israel as a Jewish state, which will uphold the full social and political equality of all its citizens, without distinction of race, creed or sex and in this context called on the Arab inhabitants of the state to become full equal citizens. He continues to note that in Israel, the state does not divide its citizens among categories of nationality. Handelman (2004) says that this has the taxonomic effect of capture and containment, of not dividing citizens into those who belong to a Jewish nation or people within the state and those who are inhabitants.

Israel gives its inhabitants the moral equality that each citizen acknowledges towards others so defined and classified by the state. Handelman (2004) rather says that it not a must for Israel to share in any essential sameness of being to all its inhabitants. This implies that in principle the identity of each citizen may be distinct from that of any other inhabitants in the Jewish state. Classifying persons as non-Jews has negated the likelihood of their applications for citizenship being granted (Handelman, 2004). This strengthens the claim that only Jews are entitled to decide on the topographical shaping of the state.

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