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Author Topic: What is the Arab Nation?
fatcalf
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posted 25 March 2003 10:14 PM      Profile for fatcalf        Edit/Delete Post
On another thread, Moredreads quotes an article that repeatedly uses the phrase "the Arab Nation". I've asked what this phrase means, but I don't think he knows. Can anyone define this term, "the Arab Nation"?
From: vancouver | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
rabble-rouser
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posted 25 March 2003 11:53 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Fatcalf seems to think that since the term Arab Nation and the Aryan Nation rhyme, it is evidence of a political link.

Fatcalf, where do you think Arafat is storing Hitler's DNA until he can be cloned and rise again to stike down the Jewish people as the leader of the Arab Nation?

As important, given the present situation in Iraq how will Saddam funnel the money to the Raelians in order to affect the actual cloning operation?


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
fatcalf
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posted 26 March 2003 12:08 AM      Profile for fatcalf        Edit/Delete Post

[ 26 March 2003: Message edited by: fatcalf ]


From: vancouver | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
fatcalf
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3859

posted 26 March 2003 02:00 AM      Profile for fatcalf        Edit/Delete Post
What is "the Arab Nation" -- the PLFP uses this term to collectively identify nations with an Arab population. But does such a monolithic entity exist? Commentators talk about the "Arab Street", but I get the same feeling when that term is used: it lumps everyone together in an inaccurate, sloppy way. I understand the term "la Francophonie" (ie. French speaking parts of the world). Does the term "the Arab Nation" work the same way?

A number of years ago, I read V.S. Naipaul's "A Journey Through Islam", and was struck by how diverse the Arab world really is -- it does not speak with one voice, just as other "worlds" don't.


From: vancouver | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
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posted 26 March 2003 03:17 AM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
For a fella who claims to be rather well-read you sure make some dumb comments at times, as witness other threads around here.
From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
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posted 26 March 2003 08:07 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Doc, lay off. Don't be bringing fights from other threads into this one.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
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posted 26 March 2003 09:55 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Whether or not it's a troll, it is a legitimate question. Hmm, my knowledge on this one is very rusty - my classes on Modern Arab History go back about 13 years or so - but the idea of one unified Arab Nation (taking into account the great diversity, but seeing the latter as regional) relates to the Arab nationalist push after the fall of the Ottoman empire. One thinks of Nasser, and of the different wings of the Ba'ath party in Syria and Egypt.

Indeed, in the Arab world there has always been a huge difference between the Maghreb - North Africa west of where the desert reaches the sea in Libya (it used to encompass Spain and Sicily) - and the Machrek - the Arab Middle East.


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Will
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posted 26 March 2003 10:01 AM      Profile for Will     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
fatcalf,

Naipaul's 'Among the Believers, An Islamic Journey' is an account of his travels through Iran, Pakistan, Malaysia and Indonesia in the late 1970's. So it may not be the best source for information on "the Arab Nation", but very interesting if you are looking for views on the non-Arab Islamic world.


From: there's a way | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
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posted 26 March 2003 10:10 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think it is without doubt politically offensive of Westerners to speak of "an" Arab nation, as though all Arabs are the same and it doesn't matter where they are put (which certainly has been an influential view in the West, used as a weapon against the Palestinians).

That would be a judgement from the outside, and more a judgement on our divisions and debates than on theirs. I am not competent to speak from within any of the North African or Middle Eastern cultures, except it seems to me obvious that regional, local, and tribal differences among them are many and great.

And fatcalf, Naipaul's book is about the peoples of Islam, which of course means it extends far, far beyond the Arab nations. I believe that the largest Islamic populations are in South Asia and the Pacific.

[ 26 March 2003: Message edited by: skdadl ]


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Mandos
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posted 26 March 2003 10:33 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I find Naipaul somewhat offensive as he appears to be pushing a certain philosophy and using it beat these populations over the head with it.
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fatcalf
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posted 26 March 2003 10:56 AM      Profile for fatcalf        Edit/Delete Post
Thanks to all of you -- you've answered my question completely. Cheers.
From: vancouver | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Will
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posted 26 March 2003 10:57 AM      Profile for Will     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
My (fuzzy) memory of this particular book is that Naipaul was not very sympathetic to his subjects. Maybe even condescending. But he did talk to some pretty wacky mullahs.
From: there's a way | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
paxamillion
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posted 26 March 2003 10:59 AM      Profile for paxamillion   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
However, there is an Arab League, isn't there?
From: the process of recovery | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
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posted 26 March 2003 01:11 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
I think it is without doubt politically offensive of Westerners to speak of "an" Arab nation, as though all Arabs are the same and it doesn't matter where they are put (which certainly has been an influential view in the West, used as a weapon against the Palestinians).

This thread is an off shoot of another where I posted a press release from the PFLP. The PFLP used the phrase Arab Nation. My explanation was more or less in line with Legatta's but Fatcalf didn't think that sufficient. That was where he made the allusion to the phonetic parrallel that inspired my post. Just to put this silliness in context.


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swallow
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posted 26 March 2003 04:44 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I'd heard that the "Arab nation" can include several different states -- ie. state and nation are not the same thing. "Nation" in English expresses too many different concepts (country, state, people, ethnicity etc).

I'm looking at Naipaul's follow-up book, Beyond Belief which about the same countries -- all chosen as specifically non-Arab countries, so he has nothing at all to say about Arabs. Nor is it a terribly Islam-friendly perspective. From the prologue: "Everyone not an Arab who is a Muslim is a convert. Islam is not simply a matter of conscience or private belief. It makes imperial demands. A convert's world view alters. His holy places are Arab lands; his sacred language is Arabic. His idea of history alters. He rejects his own; he becomes, whether he likes it or not, a part of the Arab story."

I only know one of the four countries he mentions, but a less accurate and more biased picture of Indonesian Islam would be hard to imagine. Didn't bother reading the parts on other countries, since he clearly is talking out of his ass.


From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged

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