This article furthers the discussion that, in some ways, Iraq appears to be experiencing something similar to the Arab Awakening in other countries–but that, because it has largely not involved the civilian population and because this has been happening for decades if not centuries, the power struggle between insurgents, militias, the government, currently the US troops, etc., is a historical pattern rather than a new or surprising revolution in Iraq. (This research was completed over a four-week span by Iraqi researchers.)
However, in defense of an Arab Spring in Iraq, maybe it’s part in the global movement is simply not quite as clear to the Western eye. Iraq’s role in the so-called Arab Awakening may not be so consistently overlooked with a more broad definition or language used to describe the events leading up to the spring of 2011. Directly from the article, this valid point is made:
“At the same time there is a strong yearning for law and order in Iraqi society. Many ordinary people still do not think in terms of civil war, so long as it is not neighbor against neighbor, but armed thugs attacking civilians. Yet intolerance and mistrust are spreading, especially among the youth. Street slang is violent and dehumanizing. Another worrisome issue is that the tribes on both sides seem to be growing restless – open tribal conflict between tribal groups would add an organized, popular and rural dimension to the sectarian violence.”
Then, the authors go on to say that the violence is neither spontaneous nor popular, and they detail the overwhelmingly widespread displacement of each group within the country that is the result of decades of sectarian violence.
Radical Groups Drive Internal Displacement <—here’s the article