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Write a brief analysis of how militant Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is affecting TWO of the following countries: Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, or another country of your own choice in the MENA study area.

Write a brief analysis of how militant Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is affecting TWO of the following countries: Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, or another country of your own choice in the MENA study area.

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An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards Competition by Jillian Frayne. Originally submitted for Geography at St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, with lecturer Gerry O'Reilly in the category of International Relations & Politics
An essay for the 2011 Undergraduate Awards Competition by Jillian Frayne. Originally submitted for Geography at St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, with lecturer Gerry O'Reilly in the category of International Relations & Politics

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Published by: Undergraduate Awards on Aug 29, 2012
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11/19/2013

 
Write a brief analysis of how militant Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is affecting TWO of thefollowing countries: Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, or another country of your ownchoice in the MENA study area.
AbstractThis report analyses the disrupting effect of militant Islamic fundamentalism incountries located in Middle East (Mashreq) and North Africa (Maghreb), collectivelyknown as the MENA region. Its focus is on two countries chosen due to theinterconnectedness evident in the body of literature available on the Middle East and North Africa, including news reports on the countries in question. It provides a brief  profile on each country analysed from geographical perspectives including thehistorical, physical, and human geography of the territories. It applies conceptsderived from the course lectures including the nature of governance, definition of fundamentalism as applied to militant Islamism. It demonstrates how pan Islamismhas a detrimental effect on countries within the MENA region and how the ideologiesspawned in this region spread to countries outside of the region into areas, which arevulnerable due to the type of governance, economic status and social and culturalmake up of these areas. It reflects on colonialism as the breeding ground for theunnatural boundaries that are portrayed on cartographic representations of the MENAregion. Moreover, it comments on International interference as a result of the Westernworlds need for valuable resources such as oil are primarily found in this region. Itdemonstrates that the stakeholders in this region such as Russia, The United States,Great Britain and China not only contribute to the ongoing conflict but also benefitfrom the undemocratic structures that exist in the countries in the region and in thisway often contrive to maintain these structures in a bid to protect their own intereststo the detriment of those civilians living in the area. A clear-cut example of thiscontentious issue is that of the collateral damage caused by international attempts toenforce such principles as the United Nations R2P responsibility to protect protocol,whereby instruments such as smart bomb technology serves to reduce the number of casualties on the side of forces invading under the guise of protecting those threatened by their own governments.Militant Islamic fundamentalism is the exploitation of Islam as justification for acts of terrorism to further political agendas. Fundamentalism precipitates centripetal forcesincluding pan Arabism/Islamic ideology and reflects the failure of development processes and democracy in post-colonial societies. This report attempts to analysehow militant Islamic fundamentalism discourses are expressed in the theocratic statesof Iran and Sudan.Mountainous Iran has been Islamic since the 7
th
century, located in the shatter beltregion of the middle east it has strategic access to maritime routes for oiltransportation in the Strait of Hormuz and the Persian gulf. It is unique in that it hasnever been colonised nonetheless, following USA Operation Ajax which overthrew prime minister Mohammed Mossadegh, it has been beset by conflict since the 1970’s based on oil reserves (it is the second largest oil exporter in the world) and dissenttowards the ‘White Revolution’ under Mohammad Reza Pahlavi's autocraticgovernance. TheAyatollahRuhollah Khomeiniwho was exiled to France for openly criticising Pahlavi returned in 1978 during the anti western, anti-Russian Iranianrevolution and with monumental public support Iran became an Islamic republic in1979 with a theocratic constitution ruled by Khomeini as the supreme leader (wikipedia, 2010).
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Write a brief analysis of how militant Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is affecting TWO of thefollowing countries: Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, or another country of your ownchoice in the MENA study area.
Source: country reports, 2010According to Robert Harkavy the MENA region and its oil resources has come to be‘viewed by contending and aspiring world powers--the United States, Russia, a unitedEurope, China--as a strategic prize’ (Harkavay, 2001), thus during the Iran-Iraq war 1980-1988 between a corrupt dictatorship and a fanatic theocracy, the twosuperpowers openly assisted the Iraqis against Khomeini’s Iran in order to defeatmilitant fundamentalism there. The Soviets openly supported Iraq while covertlyassisting Iran in exchange for not meddling inAfghanistan. The United Statessupplied the Iraqis with intelligence, and committed the US Navy to safeguarding theflow of oil out of (and the flow of money and arms into) Iraq, but secretly sold armsto Iran in order to fund anti-Communist rebels in Nicaragua, and gain influence withHostage-holding Muslim militias inLebanon. Most of the diplomatically isolatednations of the world, such asIsrael,South Africa, Taiwan, Libya and Argentina, supported Iran in a bid for a rare ally and trading partner.In August 1988, the two exhausted countries agreed to a cease-fire negotiated by theU.N. Since then Iran’s political system has experienced various advances andsetbacks as regards making Iran more free and democratic for its population of 76,923,300 million Shia 89% and Sunni 9% Muslims (CIA factbook, 2010).Supportive of Hezbollah and home to many refugees from neighbouring Muslimcountries affected by geo-political conflict and militant fundamentalism, despite‘overtures to the west’ Iran is portrayed as a centre from which Islamicfundamentalism is spreading worldwide. (Gourley, 2003)Sudan hit the headlines during the International hostage situation in 2009. Despite itslocation at what appears a remove from countries associated with Militant IslamicFundamentalism, it is the first country to be governed by the Muslim brotherhoodIslamic fundamentalism (Wikipedia, 2010), is increasingly linked with the ‘Iraniannetwork’ and has a post-colonial relationship with Egypt as a riparian Muslim statethus in addition to ethnic tensions, water territoriality is a chief concern and potentialthreat of future conflict (Allan, J.A, 1992)
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Write a brief analysis of how militant Islamic fundamentalism (Islamism) is affecting TWO of thefollowing countries: Morocco, Algeria, Lebanon, Israel/Palestine, or another country of your ownchoice in the MENA study area.
 
Source: country reports, 2010Home to the most geographically diverse counties in Africa and located in North-eastof the continent.Sudan has an 853km coastline along the Red Sea in the northwest andshares borders with Egypt, Eritrea and Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda, DemocraticRepublic of Congo, Central African Republic, Chad and Libya. Its mountain ranges;the Jebel Marra in the West and Mount Kinyeti Imatong in the South divide thedeserts of the north from the swamps and the rain forest of the south while the River  Nile splits the country from east to west. Sudan has large areas of cultivatable land,gold and cotton while South Sudan is oil rich despite this it has remained mainlyundeveloped due to civil war. 2009 Census data reveals a population of 39 million.Two major ethnic groups occupy the 967,493-sq.mile region, Arabic speaking SunniMuslims in the North (75%) and Christian/Animist Nilote in Southern Sudan (25%).(Country reports, 2010)Joint British-Egyptian colonial administration since 1896 focused on agriculturaldevelopment in the Muslim North while Southern Sudan was isolated. In the postworld war II lead up to Independence in1956 Britain sought to includeSoutherners in a federated government (Flashpoint, world conflict, 2010). As aresult, fundamental disagreement over state legislatures versus the federalgovernment and stark socio-economic distinction between north and south set thestage for violent conflict. Drawing on colonial experiences and narratives of pan-Arabism, first General Abboud pursued an agenda of Unity through Arabizationin 1958 through military rule, then, in 1969 Col. Mohammed Jaa’far Nimeirideclared an Islamic law state. Negotiations brought a ceasefire and limited autonomy for the South. However since the agreement never materialised Sudan People’s Liberation Army andMovement (SPLA/M) arose taking control over areas of southern Sudan. In 1989General el-Bashir and the National Islamic Front declared a holy jihad, counter attacks against the SPLA caused a split into SPLA-mainstream and SPLA-united: both groups are a source of friction with mainstream most influential inthe upper Nile and Southern Kordofan region. While the Sudan Allied Forces areactive in the North Eastern Darfur provinces.
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