“The Militarist Origins of Tyranny”


Mesopotamia (means land between the rivers) an ancient name of Iraq, the famous rivers Tigris and Euphrates crossing this land makes it the most fascinating inhabitant. As the world history is evident of this land’s civilization from the ancient times estimated from 3500Bc when the Uruk and Ur was the focal lands. The first of best civilization had been introduced there, the first vehicle, the first king and the first trooping system.

Though this place is fertile from the day first on the phase of earth it had been grasped the sight of every other landowners. This land always gives the lust for power, the lust for gambling and ruling over other beings downsizing by their own will.

Such reality has been magnified by Simon effort in “The Militarist Origins of Tyranny’’. Writer explores the areas of reality deep from the ruler ship from the Ottoman Empire to the dirty trap of Saddam Hussein. Muslim Empire as they made the Arban Rule statesmanship that covers presently Iraq, Syria & Turkey. The kingdom of Iraq major with Baghdad, Basra & Mosul always had been the most popular in Ottoman Empire Era.

The comparison of ancient times with the modern Era considering Iraq, the common points will be in front in major one aspect that whenever a powerful ruling supreme’s troop got insight they will never miss the opportunity to capture the land for their political interest. So did happen in the early eighteen century.

The walls of lands always have been marked by the rulers but when it comes to the extended interplay to fulfill ruler’s longings the most fascinating cultivating lands be the territories and then walls been extended where the Rule of the Survival of fittest belongs. The prevailing of Kurdish troops as Soviet Union and British interest for the land supports the plotting for politics in action in early 1920’s and end of 1930’s where the block of World War II conceal.

So many rhetoric questions came into mind whenever we focus to dig the historical realities of such land Iraq; Reeva Simon, in his 2004 book, Iraq Between the Two World Wars, tries to answer the question:

Why did a group from the Iraqi army seize control of the government and wage a disastrous war against Great Britain, rejecting British and liberal values for those of a militaristic Germany? What impact did these actions have on the thirty-year regime of Saddam Hussein?

Who may follow this quote evidently, I hereafter shall permit no one to make any propaganda for peace and shall oppose anyone who advocates peace’

Departing from previous studies explaining modern Iraqi history in terms of class theory, Reeva Simon shows that cultural and ideological factors played an equal, if not more important, role in shaping events. In 1921 the British created Iraq, and an entourage of ex-Ottoman army officers, the Sharifians, became the new ruling elite.

Simon contends that these elite, returning to an Iraq made up of different ethnic, religious, and social groups, had to weld these disparate elements into a nation. Pan-Arabism was to be the new ideological source of unity and loyalty.

Schools and the army became the means through which to implant it, and a series of military coups gave the officers the chance to act in its name. The result was an abortive revolt against Britain in 1941. And the legacy of the revolt is still apparent in the next two generations of Iraqi officers that led to the regime of Saddam Hussein.

This updated edition locates the sources of Iraqi nationalism in the experience of these ex-Ottoman army officers who used the emergent pan-Arabism to weld a disparate population into a nation.

Simon shows that the relationships forged between Iraqi officers and Germans in Istanbul before WWI left deep legacies that go a long way toward explaining the disastrous war against Great Britain in 1941, the rejection of liberal values, the revolution of 1958 in which the military finally seized power, and the outlook of the leadership recently overthrown by American and British armies. These army officers who turned to Germany were not Nazis.

However, they did like the German idea of cultural nationalism, which they were taught in Ottoman schools in Istanbul. In these schools, they received their first taste of westernization at the hands of German military officers. Education was, thus, the key link between Germany and Iraq.

The book compiled in seven chapters each chapter is vital to understand the importances of background thesis of Military reinforce structure of various breeds that comes in power and commemorate the collaboration with each other.

Chapter 1-‘The Creation of the State’ Assess the situation that faced the Iraqi officers returning to Iraq after World War I. Chapter 2- ‘The Officers, Germany & Nationalism’ discusses the relationship forged between the Iraqis and Germany before World War I – Analysis (i) Legacies of Military Training (ii) German cultural Nationalism related to Arab Nationalism Iraqi-German relationship. Chapter 3- ‘The Officer’s in Iraq’ explores the political maneuvering that brought the officers to political power in Iraq.

Chapter 4 & 5- ‘Education & The Army’ discusses the means they used to inculcate Arab Nationalism First through education and then the Army, once they seized power in 1941. As revealed by this quote ‘And to fill the minds and hearts of the pupils with love for their king and respect for the laws and institutions of the Fatherland.”?

Chapter 6 & 7- ‘The Rashid Ali Coup & Conclusion; Ideological Prelude to Tyranny’ It used the opportunity to put interplay the tenets of political Arab Nationalism, which the officers attempted through the Rashid Ali Coup and the war with Britain in May 1941. The legacy of these events and how they led to the regime of Saddam Hussein will conclude.

The discussion revolves: (i) King Faysal & Sharifians controls Iraq’s political aspects, (ii) France assembles their focus to Syria and interplay with politics there, (iii) British regimes and interplay in Palestine and keep eye upon all around. The inside appears clearer by this quote ‘I’ll never engage in creating kings again;” “it’s too great a strain.?

The tyranny of military assembles with the true examples in The Rashid Ali Coup & Ideological Prelude to Tyranny where all the maximum details given what the wars bring to the living land and to the breathing souls.

Iraq becomes the foundation of National political agenda where the strength of military stay in power under or over grounded with the following regime of the state rulers.

Once there was time that Iraq have rules and they pretended to be or surely move on with the democratic lead; though only consultancy of few of the ruling elites, here after this place convert to the higher focal point of One Man show of one’s self conscious interest and lust, that ruin the state civilization but the commanding force ironically enough enjoys the esteem of Ruling. The main aspects which need to highlight refers here under with book reference:

The Sharifians: The group of army officers who would influence the Iraqi military were known as, “Sharifians.” They were a group of former Ottoman military officers who had been the backbone of the Arab revolt under King Faisal. They were mainly young men who were the products of a bureaucratic military education.

They were dependent on their position within the military for their livelihood. The Sharifians provided a new country with a new ideology. German influence led them to transmit a cultural nationalism with a militaristic bent. The 1871 German unification was seen as the model for Arab unification. The Iraqi officer corps, which was a distinct social class, learned to place an emphasis on the distinction between the ruler and the ruled.

German Influence in the Middle East: Simon shows what kind of influence Germany had in the Middle East. Germany never colonized the Middle East and, therefore, was not seen by many of the people as an enemy. When Britain began to acquiesce to Jewish immigration in the 1930s, more in the Middle East began to support the German anti-Jewish policy.

German radio broadcasts reached the Middle East in the 1930s and 1940s. These broadcasts emphasized British imperialism and its weakness while contrasting that with German strength and its support for pan-Arabism. German agents were also in Iraq. By 1942, British intelligence concluded that 95 percent of the Iraqi population was pro-German.

The most important chapter in the book is the chapter regarding German influence on Iraqi education. The British had lost control of Iraqi education in 1923. Much like in Germany under the Nazis, Iraqi schools would teach order, discipline, cooperation, love of the fatherland, and the role of the individual in service to the nation. Language and national history was emphasized. Students were taught to abandon their comfortable life and sacrifice for the nation.

Nationalists and pan-Arabists fought over control of education. From 1936 to 1940, historic “national” heroes became “Arab” heroes. Arab strength and unity was emphasized. Teachers, in effect, became political agents. The British were concerned about the violent anti-imperial and anti-British tone of the textbooks. Anti-British student riots and an increased militarism in schools also worried the British.

Army Led the Movement toward Militarization: The army became an instrument of propagation for this militarism. It created loyalty to the country and stifled individualism. Following a 1933 military victory over the Assyrians, support for the Iraqi military grew. While the British did regain control of education in the 1940s, many Iraqis believed their form of “liberalism” was a sham and resisted it.

The 1958 revolution brought back Arab nationalists who had been underground since 1941. By the mid-1960s, nationalism had once again become emphasized and accounts of the 1941 revolution had become a source of inspiration for Iraqi youth, including Saddam Hussein.

Blood.” Like all of his social order, Wangenheim worshipped the Prussian military system; his splendid bearing showed that he had himself served in the army, and in true German fashion, he regarded practically every situation in life from a military standpoint.?

Ruler ship, kingdom & the lust of power enhancement combined from Ottoman Empire inside chemistry to the outer forces of Nazi and British regime with German Influence in ascending, descending and assembling the army all they favor their fulfillment to lust of power. This quote explains well ‘Defend their own belongings were killed; while eight miles to the west waited the eager British force which could have prevented all this. Ah, yes, but the prestige of our Regent would have suffered!?

‘The Army ‘Page117 in the book defines and exemplify the keen realities of Military aspect of that time: End of 1930 corruption was rampant. Both Tawfiq-Al-Suwaydi disdainful of the young military upstarts and Taha Al Hashmi Their beloved commander who deplored the spread of the civilian graft epidemic in his army, tell us how the Politian’s completed for support and describes the over ridding importance paid the perquisites of power, prestige and privilege: rank, salary, cheap houring servants and medical treatment in Europe.

Politians certainly tried to keep the army cut of daily decision making but Ghazi continuously asked for the officer’s advice, creating a feeling of military indispensability in political life. The officers interfered nonmilitary matters. Thus, for example they insisted on Baghdad for strategic reasons.

Oct 1936 Army in politics and the slogan rose as ‘’ Iraq’s choice between death and free will’’ and such duration ‘’ were probably the most violent in their Anti-British broadcast.’’ British dominance to forlorn the lead of Rashid Ali was evident. General Walter Warliment analysis of German propaganda directed to the Arab World which is nationalistic:

‘’ An Axis victory will bring to the countries of the Middle East liberation from the British yoke and there with the right of self determination. All who love freedom will therefore take their place in the ranks against England.’’

Baghdad citizens began the work themselves, at time frivolously sometimes vengefully. A woman whose gold button inadvertently appeared through her black Aba was detained for signaling the British as was French violin teacher who was accused of caring a wireless in his violin. All the above facts just rise in such state the deceptive regime of fear, hopelessness and helplessness as From Riots to Rebellion all picture themselves the same.

Right after the Ba’th Rule, the lingering favors and at once the Ruler like Saddam be in position Personality Cult ‘’ Saddamism’’ has been invoked whose key ideologies add sense over all as ‘The leader is a requirement of history……. He sets historical events in motion’. Saddam was equated with Iraq with the Iraqis and with the Arabs. As the father of Iraq he was addressed as ‘’ Our Saddam’’ and a song of children, the verse went as follows:

We are Iraq and its name is Saddam

We are love and its name is Saddam

We are people and its name is Saddam

We are Ba’th and its name is Saddam

The reference of Sami Shawkat’s ‘’Profession of Death’’ in the chapter seven Ideological Prelude to Tyranny page 163 is the most vital imagery of the times where Saddam Hussein apparently and ironically glorified the ruler image (his) enough in Iraq history books as a prototype, love for land and martyrdom is the patriotic sound key for the nation. Such regimes are prolific and also historical novel ‘’ The Long Days’ mention it wide open. Such as Winston Churchill portrays and anticipates in ‘’Warning of War’’ …

Saddam stays in position and world realized the political aspects herein with passage of times. History revives itself by the names they made themselves big and recalls all the happenings by their elite actions though certainly in impact of positive or other way. Saddam identity as ruler, procrastinations of politics and interplay of monopolies later defines by many works in literary zonre, the recent work ‘Devil’s double’ regulates the same. Concept that, ‘ In Iraq there is still—and I say this with a heart full of sorrow— no Iraqi people but unimaginable masses of human beings, devoid of any patriotic?’

Nationalism and National politics undoubtedly, been plotted to Iraq, and inside of the empire and outside boundary wall all been affected to the source of power. Whoever attain the charge always have the self esteem focal foundation. Wars been never sorted out wholly, the thoughts underlying stay, evolve and revolve, even Elites never finished the World Wars, they just quested the new ways to positioning the reasons ……..

SubtitleReeva Spector Simon’s Study of Iraq between the two world wars is “The Militarist Origins of Tyranny (2003-2004).

Tone of Thesis- Reeva Simon’s creates a thoughtful impact by provoking the idea questioning and self elaborating ‘’How the Germany military based military education of an Iraqi elite led to the regime of Saddam Hussein?’’

Short Summary- Writer used common version of thesis considering historical aspects stick to the conscious attempt to aware the world nations the plotting stigma of political gambling, their causes and effects over all, main leads Iraq’s own kingship/Sharifians, German Supreme Militancy, French political approach and Britain political monopolies.

Main ThemeArgumentation over the historical events during World Wars, Presentation of the focus of Supreme National Politics and Reasoning with Persuasiveness of redemption and consumption of main attention of Iraq (as political territory interest).

Background –The resistance for lust of power commemorate the blasts as World Wars I & II against the Ego’s of Elites and Supreme Rulers though they belong to kingdom or militancy. Iraq, Britain in consort with France and the British reoccupying Iraq after the abortive War in 1941.

Conclusion- (Self Judgment by extracting the topic) – Rulings Elites interplay the forces and their sources to be in power, so did the world history covers and humans been caught in World Wars, in political and military tyranny. Even the existing Era somewhat emphasis that World War II been just rectified but not over in context of National Politics, which just has been going on…

This entry was posted on Tuesday, March 27th, 2012 at 1:50 pm and is filed under Notes & theories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

2 Responses to ““The Militarist Origins of Tyranny””

  1. Julz Says:

    Well done arlctie that. I’ll make sure to use it wisely.

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