THE FOUR W’S OF YEMEN 5-27-2015

Doomer Doug, a.k.a. Doug McIntosh now has a blog at www.doomerdoug.wordpress.com
My end of the world e book “Day of the Dogs” will soon be available for sale at smashwords. The url is
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/267340 It is also at the following url
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B007BRLFYU

We are now living in very interesting times. The recent events in Yemen have profound implications for daily life here in the USA. The fact the mainstream media, our government and military don’t seem to understand that is disturbing, dangerous and potentially fatal.

The four W’s are Who, What, Where and Why. The first is where. The brief answer is the entire Middle East. The eastern boundary is the Pakistan and Indian border. You then continue west, through Afghanistan, what are called the Russian stans, all the way to Turkey and the Black Sea. You then go south through Syria, Lebanon, Israel all the way to Egypt. You then go west through North Africa all the way to the Atlantic Ocean. Next, you head south to Northern Nigeria. After that, you go east all the way to the Horn of Africa, including Somalia. And finally, you include the entire Arabian Peninsula. The Arabian Peninsula includes Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman and the Gulf States. This entire area is what the military would call the theater of operations. It is upon this stage the world will impale itself in a whirlwind of chaos and blood.

The next W is who. The list of individual nations involved is a long one. The basic divide is between Sunni and Shia Muslims. Shia Muslims total roughly fifteen percent of all Muslims, over one billion at the last count. Sunni Muslims are about eighty five percent of all Muslims. They despise, loathe; hate each other. They are quite willing to kill each other on sight. This is due to what I can only call a difference of opinion over the succession after the Prophet. It is enough to know this battle has lasted for over thirteen hundred years and is now a fundamental driving force in the Middle East. The West makes the same mistake with Islam they made with Communism. There was never monolithic Communism during the Cold War. There is no monolithic Islam either. We ignore this to our peril.

The third W is what is really going on in the Middle East. The answer involves a complex mix of religion, economics, culture and military issues. The most basic force driving all events in the entire Middle East is the civil war between Shia and Sunni Muslims. We are now, in my opinion, engaged in the final phase of a one thousand, three hundred year war between the Shia and Sunni Muslims. I will not deny oil plays a part in the ongoing chaos. I will simply point out the core of the violence is religious. The violence is between Shia and Sunni Muslims. The violence is between various sects of the Sunni branch of Islam. Of course, as Tom Lehrer sang, “Everybody hates the Jews.” We are now seeing a violent family feud inside of Islam itself.

The final W is why. The answer to that also involves oil and the money, politics and power flowing from oil revenue. I will only say the primary, not the only, but the primary reason is religious. Islam has three Holy sites. The first is Mecca and the Kaaba. All Muslims are required to make a Hajj, or pilgrimage, to Mecca if they are able to do so. The second site is Medina. Medina is where the first Muslims fled to after being kicked out of Mecca. The third site is Jerusalem. Jerusalem contains the Dome of the Rock. You will note two of the three Holy sites are in modern Saudi Arabia. They are under the control of the House of Saud and bestow both legitimacy and power on the current leadership of Saudi Arabia. The oil revenue flowing to the House of Saud from the oil fields is not in fact the basis of their power. The power comes from what the ancient Chinese called “the mandate of Heaven.”  The House of Saud is thought by the entire Sunni branch of Islam to gain credibility and authority which makes Saudi Arabia the dominant power in Sunni Islam.

We are now seeing open warfare over the control of the entire Arabian Peninsula. The players are the House of Saud, ISIS and the Shia represented by Iran. The House of Saud is willing to do whatever it takes to maintain the current status quo. ISIS, which is a sect of Sunni Islam, is also willing to do whatever it takes to gain control of the Holy sites. ISIS has recently proclaimed their intention to create, or restore, the ancient Islamic Caliphate. ISIS needs physical control of all three sites to do that. ISIS realizes to do that they will first need to overthrow the House of Saud. ISIS also understands they need to conquer Israel in order to get control over the Dome of the Rock. Finally, the Shia in general, and Iran in particular, need to conquer both Israel and Saudi Arabia to gain control of the Holy Sites.

We are now seeing a three sided contest for control of Islam’s Holy sites. Everything that is now going in Yemen, Syria and Iraq is a result of this battle over the Holy sites. Again, this is a religious war. It does have other aspects. However, it is a religious war between the Shia and the Sunni, as well as between different sects of the Sunni, over control of Islam’s Holy sites.

I will also say this battle over control over Islam’s Holiest sites will eventually drag in the rest of the world, perhaps being dragged, kicking and screaming, but this will happen. I will also admit I see no solution to this ongoing Islamic Civil War. It will play out on its own timetable. It will not be settled by economic or political responses. It will be settled on the battlefield. It will be settled in blood and fire.

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