in category Politics

Are Islamists really rebelling against the imposition of the Westphalian nation-state on the Muslim people?

1 Answer
1 Answer
6 Helpful
2 Unhelpful

As a historian I have the impression that beginning in the West in Morocco, all the way across North Africa, past Palestine, through Lebanon, Syria, to Turkey, then East towards Iraq, Iran and the entire Saudi Arabian peninsula, the Ottoman Empire ruled this area for between 500 to 700 years, until the end of the First World War.

I would like to answer in the affirmative to the question with one caveat, that the Westphalian notion of nationhood itself is an illusion.

The US started out as the 13 colonies, then took another 100 years while it consolidated and expanded. It then relinquished direct control of the Philippines after occupying it for 45 years. The US also covertly controlled Cuba (as it does most of the Caribbean and South America, recall the Monroe Doctorine). The Irish have fought the British for 700 years. The Basque fought the Spanish and the French and the French, Germans, Italians were all nations expanding and contracting up until the early 1900's, as was the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which in turn only collapsed during WW I.....Russia became the Soviet Union, then became Russia again in our lifetime. In Africa, we have South Sudan breaking off from Sudan and Eritrea breaking off from Ethiopia. Then there is Somalia, which stopped being a nation in 1991. In Sri Lanka (the old Ceylon), the Tamil struggled and lost, India and Pakistan fight over Kashmir and no one pays attention to the Polisareo of Spanish Sahara. The Tutsi and Hutu of Uganda and the Congo have not yet settled their differences either.

This only goes to show that the turmoil in the Middle East may very well be considered one of many such disturbances. However, the divisions imposed on this region by the Sykes-Picot Agreement, arguably can be considered Alin and disruptive. That the nations of Jordan and Palestine and Lebanon and Syria for example could well become one nation, creating a homogeneous and harmonious nation, even with the descendants of European Jews present in large numbers.

User Settings

What we provide!

Vote Content

Great answers start with great insights. Content becomes intriguing when it is voted up or down - ensuring the best answers are always at the top.

Multiple Perspectives

Questions are answered by people with a deep interest in the subject. People from around the world review questions, post answers and add comments.

An authoritative community

Be part of and influence the most important global discussion that is defining our generation and generations to come

Join Now !

Update chat message


Delete chat message

Are you sure you want to delete this message?