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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 10-Aug-2008
Iraq's Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr turns from arms to "culture"

Web Log - August, 2008

Iraq's Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr turns from arms to "culture"

This follows several Sunni "Tribal Awakenings" to expel al-Qaeda.

Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr ordered most of his militiamen to disarm on Friday, but said he will maintain "small and limited" Úlite fighting units to resist Americans.

Related Articles

Iraqi 'Civil War'
Brookings Institution does a full reversal on Iraq war: As Americans withdraw from cities, Brookings admits there's no civil war.... (1-Jul-2009)
On "60 Minutes," Bob Woodward makes ridiculous claims about Iraq.: He says the surge succeeded because of some magic new military technique.... (7-Sep-2008)
Iraq's Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr turns from arms to "culture": This follows several Sunni "Tribal Awakenings" to expel al-Qaeda.... (10-Aug-2008)
Obama continues to damage his candidacy with his Iraq policy.: Obama is hurting himself by bobbing and weaving on the success of the "surge."... (27-Jul-2008)
The Iraq war may be related to the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.: On the first anniversary of the successful "surge" strategy,... (17-Feb-08)
Casualties are down sharply in Iraq.: This issue has been a spectacular validation of Generational Dynamics theory.... (31-Oct-07)
Washington Post says that al-Qaeda in Iraq is "crippled": Meanwhile, Iraqi citizens' political opposition to America is growing.... (16-Oct-07)
Iraq: Suicide bombers interrupt celebrations in Baghdad over soccer win: Iraq's stunning 4-3 soccer victory over South Korea in the Asia Cup semi-final... (26-Jul-07)
The al-Askariya Shrine in Samarra, Iraq, is bombed again: Last year's bombing triggered months of vicious sectarian violence in Baghdad,... (14-Jun-07)
Iraqi Sunnis are turning against al-Qaeda in Iraq : This is exactly the kind of thing that generational theory predicts. (1-Apr-2007)
Robert Gates on "civil war" in Iraq.: Following the release of the Iraq National Intelligence Estimate on Friday,... (2-Feb-07)
News as theatre: NBC announces it will call Iraq war a "civil war": On Monday morning on the "Today Show,"... (29-Nov-06)
Debate over civil war in Iraq rages over semantics: An actual crisis civil war in Iraq is impossible, but it's now embroiled in the November elections,... (23-Aug-06)
Washington becomes hysterical again over an Iraqi 'civil war' : A civil war in Iraq is impossible, as I've said many times, because only one generation has passed since the Iran/Iraq war of the 1980s. Here's some additional historical information. (7-Aug-2006)
Bombing of 1200 year old Shi'ite mosque inflames Iraq to the verge of massive civil war rhetoric: Shi'ites conducted over 90 revenge attacks on Sunni shrines on Wednesday,... (23-Feb-06)
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Al-Sadr's Shi'ite militia fighters turn in their weapons: The war in Iraq took a significant turn this week when the Shi'ite militias agreed to disarm,... (13-Oct-04)
The press is talking about another "uprising" in Iraq. Yawn.: Nothing shows more how clueless the press is about what's going on in Iraq than this constant talk about civil war and uprisings.... (7-Aug-04)
Iraq Today vs 1960s America (Revised): They have much in common: Bombings, assassinations, student demonstrations, violent riots, calls for insurrection and civil war and harsh rhetoric. That's much more than a coincidence. (8-May-2004)
What Iraqi Civil War?: Early in 2003, I predicted that there would be no popular uprising against the Americans, and that there would be no civil war. After the overthrow of Saddam, I said that an Iraqi civil war was impossible. Despite the constant near-hysteria of the politicians, journalists and high-priced analysts, I've been right so far. Here's why. (09-Apr-04)
Terrorist suicide bombings in Iraq may backfire against terrorists: During an awakening period, terrorist acts cause masses of people to shrink from more violence. (19-Aug-03)

According to an al-Sadr spokesman, al-Sadr is creating a cultural wing that will be part of a complete reorganization of the Mehdi Army to "transform it into a social organization" from a militia.

On the Sunni side in Iraq, the "Anbar Awakening" that drove most of al-Qaeda out of Iraq is more and more being seen as one of series of "Awakenings" that are uniting the Sunni tribes against the radical Islamists. For example, the assassinated original founder of the Anwar Awakening is being "praised ... as a martyr and as a true non-sectarian Iraqi patriot."

"Iraqi and Arab progressives have long tended to view the persistence of tribes and tribalism as a negative phenomenon that is keeping the Middle East from developing modern societal relations based on voluntarism and a modern political system. ...

Recently, [Iraqi] liberals have begun to rethink this view of the Iraqi tribes, and, in light of the successes of the tribal Awakenings Councils, have begun to argue that the tribes can be a force for progress and a positive alternative to Islamists.

Iraqi author Hussein Karkush wrote ... that the tribes are relatively secular and that the Awakenings are essentially Iraqi civil society's revolt against political Islam."

The Iraq situation has been a remarkable test case for the validity of Generational Dynamics that's turned out to be incredibly successful.

Many people describe this web site as "too negative," because it focuses on the increasing danger of world war. That focus is quite appropriate, inasmuch as most countries of the world, those that fought in WW II as a crisis war, are in a generational Crisis era.

But from the point of view of validating generational theory, the contrast between countries in Crisis and Awakenings eras has been startling.

At the end of the 2006 war between Israel and Hizbollah, I wrote a lengthy analysis in "Aftermath of Lebanese war: The winners and losers." What was really striking is how closely the Hizbollah warriors of Lebanon, a country in a generational Awakening era, followed their precise generational archetype.

In fact, if you want to say that many discussions on this web site are "too negative," then you'd have to call the discussions of Lebanon and Iraq as "extremely positive." In both cases, there were widespread claims by pundits, analysts, politicians and journalists that the countries were near or in civil war. In both cases, this web site said that a civil war was impossible, because the country was in a generational Awakening era, or that if anything like civil strife broke out, it would fizzle quickly.

Today, we can look back at the last few years, and see that generational theory has been remarkably successful in predicting certain types of outcomes. In particular, the predictions that Lebanon and Iraq would follow typical Awakening-era behaviors were completely counter-intuitive, were completely opposed to the analyses and predictions of pundits, analysts, politicians and journalists -- and were completely correct.

(See "List of major Generational Dynamics predictions" for more information about these predictions.)

On this web site, there are three kinds of discussions, and I phrases like "according to generational theory" or "my expectation is" to distinguish among them:

The point is that this web site gives you the information you need to know, and tells you how to evaluate it. In particular, you may disagree with my opinion on something, but you can't disagree with the Generational Dynamics analyses because of their success record. Moqtada al-Sadr's recent announcement that he's disbanding his militia, is a striking confirmation of that.

This is a good time to remind you that you can write to me with comments and questions. You can write to me at mailto:comments@GenerationalDynamics.com, or else use the "Comment" link at the top of every page. It may take a few days or a couple of weeks to get back to you, but so far I've been doing OK keeping up with the e-mail messages. (10-Aug-2008) Permanent Link
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