What are your thoughts on Baathism? - Page 2 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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I don't follow.

He disagreed with the Marxist view that dialectical materialism was the only truth.

Michel Aflaq, Fī sabīl al-Baʻth wrote:[Socialism is] a means to satisfy the animal needs of man so he can be free to pursue his duties as a human being.

Aflaq, a Greek Orthodox Christian, converted to Islam in 1980 and took the Muslim name “Ahmed Michel Aflaq.”

Ayad Aflaq, his son, in response to a question whether 'Michel Aflaq's vision of faith and religion was spiritual or ideological' wrote:He saw Islam as a revolution and a religion at the same time.

Oxymandias wrote:I absolutely agree. A unified Middle Eastern country would be a great source of stability in the region and benefit both Middle Easterners and Westerners as well.

Westerners have never been able to view the world from an Arab perspective. If we start to respect the Arab world and allow it to achieve self-realisation, the Arabs will stop feeling angry and hateful towards us.

Unfortunately we are always given reasons why this is not possible. None of them are at all convincing or grounded on any imperatives. I have never understood why, given the choice of supporting governments and movements that the vast masses of the Arab peoples support, or supporting unpopular, tyrannical and regressive forces, we choose the latter. Time and time again we have seen that we cannot control this part of the world. Nasser nationalied the Suez Canal in 1956, and an Anglo-French intervention did nothing to stop it. The Iran revolution of 1979 also ended any guarantee of Western energy interests in Iran from then until today, putting in vain all efforts to overthrow Mossadeqh. All Western foreign policies towards this part of the world are against the interests of the average Westerner.
Oxymandias wrote: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".

I'm not a Conservative.
I believe so since you point to Saddam as an example of Baathism and probably haven't bothered to read my post.

Saddam was Aflak's defender. He was rejected by al-Bakr and sentenced to death by Hafez Assad. Sorry I can't find the quotes now, but my accusations of Aflak as a worthless empty waffler were made by prominent Baathists before his fall from power. The Baath Socialist party never stood for anything distinctive of substance, itself being an unhappy merger of the Baath party and Socialist party. It completely dissolved as a meaningful ideological force form its conflicts with Nasser and the power struggles within.

You seem like one given your political beliefs.

So? I am not talking about Saddam, I am talking about Baathism as an ideology. Make that distinction. The Baathist Socialist Party isn't Baathism if we are to compare the tenants of the ideology and the actions of the party. You fail to understand this throughout your time with politics.
But what does that have to do with your thoughts on it?

I think about the number of former Ba'athists in the Islamic State leadership and their influence upon the organisation.


Michel Aflaq (1960) wrote:To put the nationalist Arab cause in a comprehensive ideological formula was the first task in building the Arab revolutionary movement on solid foundations.


Michel Aflaq, Al-Ba'ath July 13, 1956 wrote:[t]he faithfulness of a person is not only demonstrated by intention and proclamation but also, and especially, by the forces on which he depends for the realization of his policy and by the method he uses for this realization.

weren't faithful

To Islam or the cause?

You must take the 'faithfulness' quote in context. In 1956, Aflaq was a Christian who worshiped Islam (Makiya 1998).

Therefore Saddam and his imitators weren't faithful.

To the cause?

It's not as simple as that. The question to be asked is "Which 'Aflaq' were Saddam and his imitators listening to?"

As a young man, Aflaq believed that the end justifies the means.

Michel Aflaq (1936) wrote:He who thinks that socialism is a religion of pity is gravely mistaken. We are not hermits taking refuge in mercy to give peace to a conscience disturbed by seeing misery and suffering, so that we become great in our own eyes and sleep untroubled.

Twenty years later he did not.

Michel Aflaq (1956) wrote:The faithfulness of a person is not only demonstrated by intention and proclamation but also, and especially, by the forces on which he depends for the realization of his policy and by the method he uses for this realization.

Baathism's tenants [sic].

In 1973, the Syrian constitution was amended to give the Ba'ath Party unique status as the "leader of the state and society".

Syria - Constitution, Article 3, Adopted 13 March 1973 wrote:(1) The religion of the President of the Republic has to be Islam.

(2) Islamic jurisprudence is a main source of legislation


So what? ISIS makes Islam the state religion and Venezuela is a democracy and pays lip service to democracy. Does that mean that ISIS or Venezuela adheres to the beliefs of Islam or democracy? No. Baathism is no different. Saddam destroyed many of the things Baathism holds as a tenant such as liberty, good education, and the eventually democratization of the Arab people.
eventually democratization

Note the date.

Syrian Constitution, Article 8, Adopted February 2012 wrote:1. The political system of the state shall be based on the principle of political
pluralism, and exercising power democratically through the ballot box;

2. Licensed political parties and constituencies shall contribute to the national
political life, and shall respect the principles of national sovereignty and

3. The law shall regulate the provisions and procedures related to the formation of
political parties;

4. Carrying out any political activity or forming any political parties or groupings
on the basis of religious, sectarian, tribal, regional, class-based, professional, or
on discrimination based on gender, origin, race or color may not be undertaken;

5. Public office or public money may not be exploited for a political, electoral or
party interest

So what?

An internal NATO study shows that 70% of Syrians support President Bashar al-Assad, and 20% adopt a neutral position. Only 10% expressed support for the "rebels."

NATO Data: Assad Winning the War for Syrians’ Hearts and Minds

good education

Syrian Constitution, Articles 29, 30, 31, Adopted February 2012 wrote:Article 29

1. Education shall be a right guaranteed by the state, and it is free at all levels. The
law shall regulate the cases where education could not be free at universities
and government institutes;

2. Education shall be compulsory until the end of basic education stage, and the
state shall work on extending compulsory education to other stages;

3. The state shall oversee education and direct it in a way that achieves the link
between it and the needs of society and the requirements of development;

4. The law shall regulate the state’s supervision of private educational institutions.

Article 30

Physical education shall be an essential pillar in building society; and the state shall
encourage it to prepare a generation which is physically, morally and intellectually

Article 31

The state shall support scientific research and all its requirements, ensure the
freedom of scientific, literary, artistic and cultural creativity and provide the
necessary means for that end. The state shall provide any assistance for the progress
of sciences and arts, and shall encourage scientific and technical inventions, creative
skills and talents and protect their results.

The Syrian Civil War is a major barrier to quality education for all in Syria, reversing development gains in the country. In addition to causing widespread destruction of learning spaces, the crisis has forced more than 2.1 million children and youth out of school in Syria; an additional 3.3 million in Syria need educational assistance, and 1.4 million Syrian children and youth are refugees in the five main host countries (Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey). In 2011, Syria had achieved universal primary enrolment and was near universal enrolment in lower secondary education. More concretely, 91% of primary school-aged children were in school in 2011, but by 2015 the rate had plummeted to 37%.

http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/0 ... 44333e.pdf


Popular support does not mean that it's a democracy and you know that. Furthermore Saddam utilized propaganda to make people vote for him and he had the resources to create such a large propaganda campaign. Not only that but Saddam would never let someone else win the elections. China's government is popular with the people but that doesn't mean it's a democracy.

Then we must define education. The education system of Saddam's rule was also full of propaganda and made sure not to educate them to the point by which they can question the government. Also Syria isn't Iraq.
Syria isn't Iraq.

Iraq isn't Ba'athist.

After the fall of the Iraqi regime in 2003, the new, US-led Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) introduced a sweeping, indiscriminate de-Ba'athification process intended to rid the country of the Ba'ath party's influence.

a sweeping, indiscriminate de-Ba'athification process

By October 2006, 17,504 party members employed by the Iraqi Ministry of Education had been dismissed.


Schools were so severely short-staffed as a result that the CPA ordered many reinstated.

Iraq's de-Baathification still haunts the country, Al Jazeera, Mar 12, 2013 wrote: De-Ba'athification in Iraq was a dysfunctional, counterproductive process that intensified social, sectarian and political divisions.

Last edited by ingliz on 28 Jul 2017 16:52, edited 1 time in total.

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