Term Paper: Iraq's History of Social Conflict

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Iraq's History Of Social Conflict

As the "cradle of civilization," it is not surprising that the history of social conflict in Iraq is an ancient as mankind itself. Unfortunately, the intervening millennia have not brought any substantive or lasting peace to this region, but have rather been opportunities for still further major social conflicts over resources and ideological differences that have shaped the course of the country's destiny and served to mold it into modern-day Iraq. Moreover, it would appear reasonable to assert that, based on the powerful historic religious differences that have divided the country, these patterns of social conflict will likely continue well into the foreseeable future. To gain a better understanding of what the basis for this divisiveness has been, this paper provides a review of the relevant peer-reviewed and scholarly literature concerning modern Iraq's history of social conflict, of power struggles between rival clans, of hostility and wars with neighboring states, as well as the struggles' aftermath, and Iraq's deteriorating relations with the West. An analysis of the course of the modern state of Iraq's development and how this led to its distinctive politics today is followed by a summary of the research and salient findings in the conclusion.

Review and Discussion

As the United States continues to prosecute a war on terrorism with its front lines in Iraq today, the people of Iraq at least have something in common they can agree upon. No one likes foreign troops on their soil, at least against their collective will, and it is likely that most Iraqis citizens would like to see the war over and things return to "normal" as soon as possible. Unfortunately, Iraq never has been able to achieve a long-term sense of "normality" in terms of social conflict because when foreigners are not invading them, the different peoples of Iraq have plenty to disagree about anyway. According to Staub (1999), "We live in a time where genocide, mass killing, and other violence by groups of people directed at groups defined by their ethnicity, race, religion, culture, or political affiliation is widespread" (p. 303). In reality, though, such social conflict based on such differences is not a modern phenomenon, but is rather as ancient as mankind itself and its roots can be traced directly to the country of Iraq and the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The encyclopedic entry for Iraq shows that before the Arabs conquered the country in the 7th century AD, Iraq had been the site of a number of flourishing civilizations, including the Sumer, which developed one of the earliest known writing systems, Akkad,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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"Iraq's History of Social Conflict."  Essaytown.com.  December 21, 2007.  Accessed October 16, 2019.