What are your thoughts on Baathism? - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#14819244
Personally I think Baathism is doomed to failure by trying to avoid using liberal capitalism to develop their economies in a world dominated by globalist capitalist powers. Without capital expansion they can't really develop and for small poor countries in the Arab world trying to expand capital and their economies without dealing with those global powers and institutions is like trying to swim up a waterfall.

Even China has largely bowed to capitalist reforms and they have more manpower and resources than the entire Arab world.

I honestly don't know how the middle east gets from where it is now to relatively democratic liberal states however. Iran is probably the closest example (though hardly democratic I would argue) to actually being something of a liberal capitalist country. Ultimately though religious sectarianism, Israel, and historical happenstance has put us in a position of mutual distrust and animosity.

I had hopes that the nuclear deal would be a small step towards healing that divide but I feel less optimistic about it nowadays. I doubt anything positive will happen in the region until oil is no longer a central necessity of the economies of the great powers.

But I'm getting off track. Basically I think Baathism is the idea that you will take complete political control until eventually where in the meantime you will develop the economy by trying to directly control everything in a world of much more powerful countries always trying to expand their markets.
#14819248
@mikema63

However isn't Baathism anti-communist? I think when it means socialism it could mean something like Switzerland or China or something. More likely something like China since Switzerland to my knowledge doesn't have such state-owned enterprises as Baathism discusses.

Or until Western influence wanes (which is what is happening now). However this could be replaced by Chinese influence which I think could be equally disastrous however at least Israel won't be supported since China seems to want to get Iran on their side (Iran is a better bet than Israel because 1. It isn't a democracy which means no political ideological conflict 2. Iran at least has some sort of history of with China since Persia and China have had good diplomatic relations since the Parthians).
#14819251
China is increasingly less socialist, has been for decades now. It's a heavily subsidized economy of course but theres also a good amount of enterprise going on. Most describe it as state capitalism.

Switzerland is a very liberal country.

I don't think western influence will really wane per se in so far as we only had the illusion of influence to begin with. Our relationships with saudi arabia have always been purely pragmatic on both sides and theres no love lost. We never really controlled them or anyone else.

Israel will be supported by the US regardless for religious reasons. It's basically part of both Christianity as well as Judaism that the Jews be in Israel, specifically Jerusalem. Trying to convince americans to cut Israel loose is like telling Muslims to give up on one of the Pillars of Islam.

Iran is a better bet than Israel because 1. It isn't a democracy which means no political ideological conflict


There is always conflict, it simply isn't resolved through the political system in a non-democracy. It is suppressed, until it can't be suppressed. I tend not to trust political institutions that rely on suppression over sublimating conflict through the political process.
#14819261
@mikema63

The paradox is that Baathism is both pro-liberty and pro-state intervention. This is a key reason why you can either interpret it as being similar to Switzerland or being similar to China. Not only that, but Baathism considers the one-party state form of government to be strictly temporary and does not dismiss the idea of democracy. Nasserism, a ideology influenced by Baathism also incorporated many democratic ideas such as republicanism and also emphasized that the authoritarian form of government was also temporary.

Therefore I cannot see which one it is. Like I said before it's probably more similar to China's model. However what I would really like to know is, does it have to be similar to China? Can there be a form of Baathism that does favor a Switzerland?

Then must it be that the West is getting weaker in terms of power rather than losing influence? I don't why this is the case. The West has been more unstable before and yet many countries in the West still held extreme amounts of power. I think this is an internal thing rather than an external one. Fascism is becoming more popular in the West.

Of course that is the case. The US will continue to support Israel to it's very last breath. However if the West's power declines they won't be able to support Israel even if they wanted to. Of course I think Israel will be able to handle things by itself but I do think that the fighting ground will be much more fairer don't you think?

Ah, I should've rephrased my statement to "It isn't a democracy which means there's less political ideological conflict". Iran is easier for China to deal with than Israel because their political systems have alot more in common with one another than Israel. And as I said before, Iran also is more closer culturally to China to an extent moreso than Israel. Iran has a much more similar culture to China while Israel is I think a combination of European and Middle Eastern Jewish culture.
#14819368
The paradox is that Baathism is both pro-liberty and pro-state intervention. This is a key reason why you can either interpret it as being similar to Switzerland or being similar to China. Not only that, but Baathism considers the one-party state form of government to be strictly temporary and does not dismiss the idea of democracy. Nasserism, a ideology influenced by Baathism also incorporated many democratic ideas such as republicanism and also emphasized that the authoritarian form of government was also temporary.


There isn't a paradox between liberty and state interventionism. All states are interventionist in one way or another to some degree or another.

The only distinction that matters is whether or not you are a capitalist economy. Baathism is not a capitalist ideology and thus runs against every modern great power, including China. It is unlike Switzerland or China because it tries to resist the global market and ignore the unavoidable institutions of the world.

Temporary one party authoritarianism has a tendency to be less than temporary. People always cling to power whenever they are given it. Democracy is always forced on a government either from the outside or within, not simply handed to the people after a specified allotment of time.

It also harms economic development since all your institutions that were set up for simple one party authoritarianism now has to exist in the very different political environment of a democracy.

In the same way international institutions set up by the west are liberal, and will hurt an authoritarian or socialist government just because they work on such different principles and rules.

Therefore I cannot see which one it is. Like I said before it's probably more similar to China's model. However what I would really like to know is, does it have to be similar to China? Can there be a form of Baathism that does favor a Switzerland?


It isn't like either. It's more similar to the soviet union than anything despite being anti-communist. There too authoritarianism was supposed to be temporary. There too the state tried to control enterprise.

Switzerland and china both have capitalist markets, which are incompatable with baathist socialism.

You could modify baathism to some sort of state capitalism similar to china's but so long as baathism is authoritarian it can't be like switzerland.

You seem to admire switzerland, but switzerland is the definition of a liberal capitalist country. If you want to be like them you'd have to be a liberal capitalist country.

Then must it be that the West is getting weaker in terms of power rather than losing influence?


The west has plenty of power, NATO literally accounts for about 70% of the worlds military spending. We could probably simply invade the entire middle east and directly control it. Though it would be expensive.

However the west doesn't operate that way, we want to bring countries into our institutions and cement them as part of our axis through trade deals, multilateral institutions, alliances, etc.

We don't want to control the Middle east in the way that would make us look powerful or as having great influence. It's simply been an utter failure in the middle east because of the specific problems of the middle east. Elsewhere we have some measure of success using this method.
I don't why this is the case. The West has been more unstable before and yet many countries in the West still held extreme amounts of power. I think this is an internal thing rather than an external one. Fascism is becoming more popular in the West.


Not particularly, the west before WW2 was simply more directly colonialist which ended, and the cold war spurred us to do specific things to combat the reds. Nowadays those things are no longer necessary so we no longer feel that it is worth endless money and american lives simply to exert control over a region that will never become ours by our simple occupation.

Fascism is not more popular in the west than it once was. Most rightwing resurgence is just a stirring in the corpse of racialist politics that used to dominate our politics.

Of course that is the case. The US will continue to support Israel to it's very last breath. However if the West's power declines they won't be able to support Israel even if they wanted to. Of course I think Israel will be able to handle things by itself but I do think that the fighting ground will be much more fairer don't you think?


Israel is a strong diversified economy so we will continue to trade with them. It is unlikely that we will ever stop supporting them even if we lost general interest in the region. They are also a major ally to NATO, and have several trade agreements with the west. We will likely always sell them weapons and they will always ultimately be supported by the west.

Ah, I should've rephrased my statement to "It isn't a democracy which means there's less political ideological conflict". Iran is easier for China to deal with than Israel because their political systems have alot more in common with one another than Israel. And as I said before, Iran also is more closer culturally to China to an extent moreso than Israel. Iran has a much more similar culture to China while Israel is I think a combination of European and Middle Eastern Jewish culture.


Don't be so sure that China couldn't get along with Israel. China has long had the policy of not caring what goes on internally within a country and I'm sure israel would love an ally that wasn't constantly whinging at them to end the whole Palestinian conflict thing. Israel is just already too closely tied with western institutions for China to get a foothold.

For what it's worth, I do think the US and Iran could be allies in some far future. All we ultimately want is trade and cooperation. I had hopes that the nuclear deal would be a step forward (and the Saudi's were terrified that it would be a step forward). We see Iran as an enemy because we see a state that we can't work with on anything. The main thing really preventing it is the sunni shia divide and our unwillingness to cut lose the relationships we have in the region just to take a risk on a country we don't trust.

For all that we criticize iran as undemocratic the Saudi's are far worse. Most american's greatly dislike them and there are constant calls to cut ties from both sides of the political spectrum.

Pretty much the only reason it hasn't happened already is that we can't risk the threat to our oil supply on a country where there is so much animosity and bad blood.
#14819383
@mikema63

Well I should've rephrased that statement to be "anti-democratic". I think I just said state inverventionism because I had China on my mind at the time.

Baathism does not disregard capitalism though and in terms of it's socialism, it's actually socialist for the only reason that it seems in opposition to the West. Baathism is socialist only in name and not in beliefs (which makes sense given that everyone was using socialism in name at the time). This is why it's puzzling because the only economic concept it introduces is state owned enterprise but this could either go the Chinese route or the Switzerland route.

Yes I do admire Switzerland and I would like Iran to be something similar to that!

And cost thousands of lives. And if won't be expensive if you use Modern Monetary Theory.

You have many good points. I agree with all of them.

Eh, I guess I just hang around in the internet too much. PoFo probably does not reflect reality.

Isn't that the UN and not the USA?

Hey I would love for Iran and the US to be allies. I supported the nuclear deal upon it's first conception!
#14820618
It had the potential to be a great ideal but was ruined by the realities of power intrigue and the egotism of Arab politics. The Ba'athists dreamed of a united and strong Arab world where the people would be united, regardless of religion and tribe. It envisioned an independent Middle East where the people were educated and well off.
#14821050
@Political Interest

It is still a good idea and could've been possible and was possible. It doesn't have to do with the nature of Middle Eastern politics but of the geo-political situation of the time. I personally think that Baathism can be possible today if Syria's situation just stops.
#14826865
what socialism means to them

An addendum to Islam.

Michel Aflaq, 5th of April 1943 wrote:Those who desire to make of Islam a one-size-fits-all container that can hold everything, and a factory to create all kinds of prescriptions and medicines that cure all, are in this process destroying its spirit and personality. They are robbing Islam of its vitality, independence, and appointed purpose: In the same manner, they are empowering the enemies of Islam, the oppressors and unjust rulers, to take from within Islam weapons to stab Islam itself and in the process, to stab the Arab nation.
#14826870
What are your thoughts on Baathism?

Total and utter contempt.

Michel Aflaq was the ideological successor of the Ottoman court Eunuchs. A Beta Cuck Christian grovelling before his Muslim oppressors. Middle East Christians and their descendants should have three watch words when it comes to Islam: "Vengeance!, Vengeance!, Vengeance!" Baathism was always great big nothing when it came to substance. Saddam's take over was to pre-empt the formation of a united Iraq and Syria. From that point it became a complete joke. Lets never forget that Saddam allied with the West to attack Iran, which was backed by Syria and then Hafez took part in Desert Storm. Which is why we'll take no lectures from Baathist hypocrites about western intervention in the Middle East.
#14826959
@ingliz

?

@Rich

WTF are you even talking about? Baathism is secular [Zag Edit: Rule 2] and Baathism respects both Christianity and Islam as a part of Arab culture. You know how conservatives like you call yourself "culturally Christian" the same can be said of Baathism which both is "culturally Islamic and Christian". Furthermore Islam is against revenge and the Quran keeps on talking about forgiving everyone so that's out of the way. Have you even read any Baathist works at all? I believe so since you point to Saddam as an example of Baathism and probably haven't bothered to read my post.

Your post shows absolutely no understanding of Middle Eastern politics or Baathism. You only base your knowledge off of biased information and current events. I gave you the opportunity to learn about Baathism but instead of looking at it's concepts, you decided it would be sooo much more better to give your "expert" opinion about Baathism, an ideology you probably didn't even Saddam adhered to until recently.
#14826974
What Westerners do not understand is that a unified, wealthy and stable Arab world is in their real immediate interest. A Middle East that is divided and weak, containing many religious and ethnic tensions, will be a source of instability and violence which will influence Europe. Our major mistake was not supporting the Nasserists and Ba'athists back in the 1950s and 1960s. Gamal Abdel Nasser chose America before he chose Russia, and he was putting communists and fanatical Islamists in prison. Nasser approached America to buy arms, but Washington rejected his offer. So much for the supposedly anti-colonial America of the early Cold War. Until we start to support popular and positive forces in this part of the world we will never have peace with it. The Russians were much smarter than us and their Middle East policy has always been superior to ours.
#14826984
?

wiki wrote:Michel Aflaq (Arabic: ميشيل عفلق‎‎‎, Arabic pronunciation: [miːʃeːl ʕaflaq], 9 January 1910 – 23 June 1989) was a Syrian philosopher, sociologist and Arab nationalist. His ideas played a significant role in the development of Ba'athism and its political movement; he is considered by several Ba'athists to be the principal founder of Ba'athist thought.

Michel Aflaq, In Memory of the Arab Prophet wrote:In the past, one person’s life summarized the life of a nation. Today the life of the whole nation in its new revival should become a detailed exposition of the life of its great man. Muhammad was all the Arabs. Let all the Arabs be Muhammad today.


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