Sunday, June 8, 2008

Dismissive Iraqi Resistance Reaction to Nasrallah's Speech

On May 26, Hezbollah Secretary General Hasan Nasrallah gave a speech on Hezbollah’s foreign policy that, depending on the reaction of Arabs throughout the Mideast, could turn out to be an important contribution to the development of Arab nationalism. Here’s the reaction of one Arab group that evidently is not buying Nasrallah’s sudden expression of concern for the whole region. Thanks both to "Arab Woman Blues" and Amre al-Abyad, who translated this article.

Comments by Dr. Abdallah Suleiman Al-Omaree, spokesman for the 1920 Revolution Brigades, an Iraqi insurgent group, from an interview with al Jazeera:

Regarding the statements made by Nasrallah - where he (Nasrallah) urged the Iraqis to resist, Al-Omaree made it very clear that he (Nasrallah) was pushed to do so by the neighbouring country (IRAN) who is working on destabilising Iraq. Al-Omaree adds that these statements by Nasrallah came at the right time (for Iran) as a bargaining tool on other issues.• Furthermore, Al-Omaree didn’t exclude the fact that Nasrallah's statement was an attempt by him to gain a free ride on the resistance struggle and achievements. A move that would polish his image in a last minute propaganda stunt.Otherwise how can one explain that he has just remembered the Iraqi resistance now? It would have been timely, had Hezbollah come out and called the dead resistance fighters as martyrs when the Resistance had asked them (Hezbollah) to do so. But this latter did not .

No one ever said becoming the leader of Arab nationalism would be easy. As Jean-Francois Revel discussed in a chapter entitled "La revolution n'aura pas lieu dans le tiers monde" of his 1970 book Ni Marx Ni Jesus about world revolution, the past (p. 79) is the enemy of traditional societies trying to modernize. The past includes a "structural blockage" (p. 81) in society, a major example of which is sectarian disputes within Islam that inhibit cooperation among Arabs to defend their interests against outside interference. As long as sectarianism trumps nationalism, Arab unity is likely to remain a mirage.

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