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Old 15-10-2019, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oisin View Post
Iím not a Syrian expert but I have lived in the Middle East 13 years and my impression from talking to Syrians before and after the war is that this is incorrect. Of course the sort of Syrian you meet down the pub in Dubai isnít an Islamist but itís hard not to think that just as in Iraq it was the civil war that radicalized people rather than radicalization that led to the civil war.

Syria suffered massively from the establishment of an Islamist haven in Iraq. The biggest single reason for the explosion of Islamic terrorism is the American led invasion of Iraq to defeat Islamic terrorism. That ended up turning two largely secular countries into hotbeds of Islamic extremism.
I am not saying that there is not an open and democratic strand in Syria, It is hard believe now but that is where the Baathist movement sprang from. My point is that conservative religious forces have always been more powerful and likely to prevail particularly with extremist external support. As an analogy look at what happened to the secular and socialist opposition to the Shah in Iran even though the Iranian progressive forces had a much larger base.
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