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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 26-Jun-2017
26-Jun-17 World View -- Hezbollah's Nasrallah makes delusional speech about 'foreign fighters' attacking Israel

Web Log - June, 2017

26-Jun-17 World View -- Hezbollah's Nasrallah makes delusional speech about 'foreign fighters' attacking Israel

How to do a generational analysis of the Mideast

by John J. Xenakis

This morning's key headlines from

Hezbollah's Nasrallah makes delusional speech about 'foreign fighters' attacking Israel

Undated image of meeting between Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and a Qatari official (al-Arabiya)
Undated image of meeting between Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and a Qatari official (al-Arabiya)

Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Iran's puppet terror organization, the Hezbollah militia in Lebanon, said in a televised speech on Friday:

"The Israeli enemy should know that if it launches an attack on Syria or Lebanon, it’s unknown whether the fighting will stay just between Lebanon and Israel, or Syria and Israel.

I’m not saying countries would intervene directly — but it would open the door for hundreds of thousands of fighters from all around the Arab and Islamic world to participate in this fight — from Iraq, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan."

Although Nasrallah's speech was nominally about liberating Jerusalem from Israel, it was clear from many of his remarks that it was really about Saudi Arabia and other Sunni countries. He accused the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia of funding the so-called Islamic State (IS or ISIS or ISIL or Daesh), and he accused Turkey of facilitating its operations.

Nasrallah was also harshly critical of Saudi Arabia in Yemen, and the fight against Iran-backed Shia Houthis:

"Despite all challenges of airstrikes, blockade, cholera, poverty and destruction, tens of thousands took to streets to voice solidarity with Palestine and Al-Quds [Jerusalem].

Yemen proved that it will never be part of a scheme to sell Palestine, neither for a throne, nor for Trump and it is still fighting."

Nasrallah further made clear that he was talking about Shia fighters from Iraq, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan, when he referred to Saudi Arabia and said "Al-Quds [Jerusalem] is too sacred to be liberated by traitors and hypocrites."

Nasrallah also referred to Imam Moussa al-Sadr, a highly revered Shia cleric, the leader of Lebanon's Shia Muslims, who said, "The honor of Al-Quds [Jerusalem] refuses to accept any liberation unless it is at the hands of true believers." Al-Sadr vanished in 1978 during a visit to Libya, and his disappearance has been a continuing mystery.

So analysts are interpreting Nasrallah's remarks as saying that an alliance of tens or hundreds of thousands of Shia Muslims from Iraq, Yemen, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and other countries, will spontaneously come to Lebanon to join Hezbollah in a war against Israel. This is about as delusional as you can get.

Supposedly, Nasrallah is thinking for example of the Shia Hazara ethnic group in Pakistan, some of whose fighters came to Syria to defend Syria's president Bashar al-Assad from the Sunni militias he was fighting. However, those were mercenaries, paid by Iran, with no personal interest in fighting either for or against al-Assad. In a general Mideast war, the Hazaras would have their hands full fighting the Taliban, and would not be rushing off the Lebanon to fight Israel.

So Nasrallah's speech, which seemed to be threatening Israel with hundreds of thousands of fighters from Islamic countries near and far, was actually an extremely bitter and vitriolic sectarian speech on the Sunni - Shia fault line, and the Saudi Arabia - Iran fault line.

This is not to suggest that there isn't a war coming between Hezbollah and Israel. There certainly is a war coming, and it will probably kill millions of Israelis and Palestinians, and leave the region soaked in blood. What I'm focusing on here is Nasrallah's boast about hundreds of thousands of Islamic fighters.

The last war between the two occurred in 2006, and was a disaster for both sides, killing a lot of people, destroying Lebanon's infrastructure, but accomplishing absolutely nothing for either side.

Nasrallah's remarks about hundreds of thousands of Islamic fighters was an allusion to the 2006 war, sending Israel a threat that the next war will be a lot worse for Israel than the last one.

Major Gen. Amir Eshel, the head of Israel's air force, specifically referred to the 2006 war last week when he said that Israel would have "unimaginable" military power in hand in any future conflict with Hezbollah:

"What the air force was able to do quantitatively in the [2006] Lebanon war over the course of 34 days we can do today in 48-60 hours.

This is potential power unimaginable in its scope, much different to what we have seen in the past and far greater than people estimate."

Al Manar (Lebanon-Hezbollah) and Reuters and TeleSur TV (Caracas) and Times of Israel

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Saudis report close relationships between Hezbollah and Qatar

The second of the 13 demands that Saudi Arabia is making of Qatar is to "Sever all ties to “terrorist organizations,” specifically the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, al-Qaida, and Lebanon’s Hezbollah. Formally declare those entities as terrorist groups."

Hezbollah is a puppet organization of Iran, which is a bitter enemy of Saudi Arabia. The two countries no longer have diplomatic relations, after protesters in Tehran burned down the Saudi embassy in January of last year. So Saudi Arabia is undoubtedly quite serious in demanding that Qatar end its relations with Hezbollah as a condition for ending the land, sea and air blockade that Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt and Bahrain imposed on Qatar earlier this month.

A Saudi analysis claims that Qatar and Hezbollah have had very close relations with Hezbollah at least since 2008, when there was an agreement that Syria, Iran and Hezbollah would become a regional axis with Qatar's participation. When Syria's civil war began in 2011, and Bashar al-Assad began massacring peaceful anti-government Sunni protestors, including hundreds of innocent women and children in Palestinian refugee camps, there was a rift between Qatar and Hezbollah, according to the report. But that rift was healed, and by November 2013, Hezbollah and Qatar met, and Qatar promised generous funding for Bashar al-Assad, who was facing huge financial difficulties.

Now there are new reports that Hezbollah fighters are joining Iranian Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and Turkish forces in Qatar to protect Qatar's royal family. According to one Saudi analyst, "Qatar is playing with fire. It’s acting as an organization and not as a state." Al Arabiya (Riyadh) and Breitbart Jerusalem

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How to do a generational analysis of the Mideast

As regular readers know, Generational Dynamics predicts that the Mideast is headed for a major regional war, pitting Sunnis versus Shias, Jews versus Arabs, and various ethnic groups against each other. Generational Dynamics predicts that in the approaching Clash of Civilizations world war, the "axis" of China, Pakistan and the Sunni Muslim countries will be pitted against the "allies," the US, India, Russia and Iran.

With the large number of ethnic groups and religious splinter groups in the Mideast, it's not easy to predict exactly who will be fighting whom in the approaching Mideast regional war. This question can be answered with appropriate generational research and analysis. As I've previously said, I certainly don't have anything like the resources to perform such an analysis by myself, but any college student interested in this kind of analysis could make an invaluable contribution to understanding what's going on in the world today by taking on, as a thesis topic, a generational analysis of the tribes and ethnic groups in the Mideast.

A couple of people have asked me how such an analysis would be done, and have asked me to provide additional information.

Generational analyses of historical events -- wars, political upheavals, coups, etc. -- all work pretty much the same way.

I always recommend finding 15-20 sources describing the event from different points of view. These days, the wealth of historical information on the internet has made this much easier.

Some of the 15-20 sources should be written around the time that the event took place, so that the analysis will be less influenced by ideological filters of historians who describe it later. Google Books has turned out to be a really valuable resource, because many of the historical texts you're looking for are available, and are out of copyright, so you can read them without paying for them.

Just to take a couple of examples, I was doing an analysis of the American civil war, and I found several books that were written in the early 1860s, just as the war was beginning. These kinds of sources are extremely valuable in understanding what was going on at the time. In fact, for doing a generational analysis, these kinds of sources are actually more valuable than histories written much later, since the best generational analyses convey the precise thoughts and behaviors of the people of the time -- their nationalism, their xenophobia, their statements, their actions.

As another example, last year I decided that I might write a book on the history Islam in India, from the 600s in the Mideast through the middle ages in India, to the present. I spent a couple of months collecting, reading, and summarizing a lot of stuff, including about a few dozen full length books and documents in English dating back to the 1800s, all the way back to the 600s. Alas, other things came up, and I had to drop the book-writing project. But the more I got into it, the more fascinating it became, and perhaps someday I'll get back to it, if I live long enough.

So when you're doing a generational analysis, it's necessary to collect as many sources as possible, with older sources closer to the event being more valuable than recent sources.

Once you read all the sources related to the event, then you have to figure out what was going on. Was the event a crisis war with a genocidal climax? Or was it an Awakening era confrontation, around 20 years after the climax of the last crisis war, characterized by a "generation gap" and large student riots and demonstrations? Or was it a "velvet coup," an Awakening era climax?

Once you've done that analysis for one event, you have do the same thing for other events for the same society, tribe or nation, in order to develop a generational timeline lasting for as many generations as possible.

Any event has to be analyzed from the point of view of each participant. It's not unusual to read two accounts of the same war by opposing sides, and get the impression that they're talking about two different wars. The same principle is true of major political events, such as bloody riots or coups.

Now, in the case of the Mideast, this job would have to be done for each of the tribes in the Mideast. This would be a lot of work anyway, but the problem is compounded by the fact that a lot of the historical information is only available in such languages are Arabic, Farsi or Urdu. That's why I said that I don't have the resources to do this job, and that it would require having something like a college department back them up.

The current situation between Saudi Arabia, UAE and Qatar is an example. About half an hour ago I saw a "Mideast expert" on television, and he was asked how the Qatar blockade was going to end. He answered that "Saudi Arabia is going to have egg on its face." This is what we get from these "experts." These Washington experts are complete idiots, as I've been seeing for many years now.

Still, I don't have an answer to the question of what the core issues are in the Saudi-Qatar split. Every analysis I've read is extremely shallow, usually no deeper than the "egg on its face" explanation, or something fatuous about Trump. I like to joke that, for these people, history always begins this morning.

From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, it's clear that it's going to be necessary to analyze generational timelines for all the ethnic and religious groups in the region going back at least two centuries, and possibly farther. Perhaps some college department can take this on as a thesis topic, because I don't have the resources to answer this question. I'll be happy to help if anyone is interested.

I've done a little work in analyzing Mideast generational timelines, but I've barely scratched the surface. Below is a list of articles that I've written in the past that contain brief generational analyses of the Sunni-Shia issue.

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(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 26-Jun-17 World View -- Hezbollah's Nasrallah makes delusional speech about 'foreign fighters' attacking Israel thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (26-Jun-2017) Permanent Link
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