Contributed by Chriss Street. Specialist in corporate reorganizations and turnarounds, former Chairman of two NYSE listed companies. His latest book, The Third Way, describes how to achieve management excellence and financial reward by moving organizations from Conflict and Confrontation to Leadership and Cooperation. He lives in Newport Beach, CA.
This week marks the second anniversary of the birth of the “Arab Spring”, which began when President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia fled to Saudi Arabia after only a month of protest against his rule. Egypt, Libya, and Yemen dictators have been overthrown and rebels now control most of Mali and Syria. Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Sudan are also suffering protests.
The United States and Europe directly and clandestinely encouraged this revolutionary fever with the naive expectation that these countries could be pacified by evolving into European-style welfare states. Unfortunately for the West, these people have a common heritage as a series of Caliphate Empires that from 622 AD to 1258 AD were the most powerful, wealthy and cultured nation on earth.
Arab Spring revolutionaries understand it took 200 years for Islamic forces to defeat the Crusaders. They have demonstrated by invading Mali and attacking Algeria that they are embarking on a protracted war of liberation to reestablish Caliphate of the Moors to control of North Africa, the Middle East and Southern Europe.
Western academics have championed an educational common core curriculum for history; economics and sociology that emphasizes the importance of nation states wither away as the world moves toward global decision making, resource management, stakeholder inclusion and role of international institutions. But Vladimir Lenin, founder of Communist Russia, said:
“There are decades where nothing happens; and there are weeks where decades happen.”
Since the 1979 take-over of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, the U.S. and its Western allies have been engaged in fighting a proxy wars to prevent the rise of a new and powerful Persian Empire, while the rest of the Middle East remained relatively quiet. That is why the beginning of the Arab Spring is so momentous. Tunis sits on the ruins of ancient Carthage, which under Hannibal in 218 BC marched 38,000 infantry, 8,000 cavalry, and 37 war elephants over the Alps and almost conquered Rome. The people of Tunis, Morocco, Algeria and Libya are called the Maghreb and referred to as the “Moors“. The Arab Spring heralds the rise of a new war of liberation to reestablish the Caliphate of the Moors.
Moslems reached their point of greatest world domination from 909 AD to 1171 AD under the Moorish Caliphate of Fātimid, which controlled the Maghreb, Egypt, Mauritania, Sicily, Malta, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Palestine, Levant, Spain, Portugal and Southern France. The Fatimid’s built the City of Cairo as their capital and dominated trade in salt, gold, ivory, and slaves they captured from the neighboring Sahara desert (Mali) and from Europeans as pirate booty.
The Moors came into major dispute with Christians when their Persian Seljuk Turks allies decisively defeated army of the Byzantine Empire in 1071 AD, cutting off Christian access to the Holy Land in and around Jerusalem. Pope Urban II rallied Christians for the First Crusade by declaring “It is the will of God“. The Crusaders set off with an army of 700,000 men with 100,000 were knights in armor. They besieged the Syrian City of Antioch for two years until the Crusaders scaled the walls and slaughtered inhabitants.
In 1099 the Crusaders captured Jerusalem and massacred 10,000 Muslim men, women and children who sought shelter in the Al-Aqsa Mosque (Dome of the Rock). The Crusaders also slaughtered the thousands of Jewish defenders in Jerusalem who had sought refuge in their synagogue by burning them alive. The fall of Jerusalem to the Crusades emboldened the Christian Reconquista rebellions in Spain and Portugal that undermined the Caliphate and eventually led to the Moors decline.
Nine centuries later to contextualize 9/11, President Clinton recalled the massacre “is still being told today in the Middle East, and we are still paying for it.”
The Arab Spring follows three generations of revolutionary jihadism led by Salafist Muslims from the Maghreb and Egypt, who are “striving” to expel all foreign influences and create a new world-wide Islamic Caliphate. The Salafist movement was encouraged and financed by Americans and Europeans, because of their willingness to tenaciously battle and even conduct suicide attacks to defeat the Russians in Afghanistan and Serbs in Bosnia. But as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States would report, Al-Qaeda Salafists turned against their Western allies with the 911 terrorist attacks in the U.S., bombings across Europe and Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
When the revolt against Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi began in February 2011 the Western powers intervened with a NATO military “no fly zone”. The CIA covertly armed the Salafists warriors steamed back from Afghanistan and Iraq to join the revolution. When the rebels defeated Libyan army, the Salafists captured a spectacular amount of sophisticated weaponry, including 20,000 shoulder-fired surface-to-air missiles. In February 2012, Al Qaeda military chieftain Ayman al-Zawahiri declared war on Syria. With covert aid from Western nations, the Salafist took military control of the Free Syrian Army and overran 1/2 the country.
But the new Salafist working relationship with the West crumbled after Salafists also seized 2/3 of neighboring Mali led violent U.S. Embassy protests across the world on the 10th anniversary of 911 and murdered of U.S. Ambassador Stevens in Benghazi, Libya. This week French war planes and troops, supported by U.S. and NATO logistics, intervened on the side of the Mali government and started bombing the Salafists.
The Salafists replied with 20 members of their “Masked Brigade” taking 41 Western hostages at a foreign owned oil facility in Algeria as retribution against the Algerian government for allowing French “infidels” to use their airfields to bomb Salafists. When Algerian forces tried to free the captives, it has been reported that 35 hostages were slaughtered.
Earlier this year, I wrote the “Arab Spring Turns To Winter” to warn that putting the full-force of America’s military and diplomatic clout behind leveraging “Arab Spring” protests to transform the Middle East would lead to a disaster. Recent events confirm that the West is in a new protracted war to prevent the establishment of a new Caliphate of the Moors.
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