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11/19/2004

Muslim Scholars Association

46 groups, mostly Sunni, are boycotting the Iraq election, in large part because of Fallujah - the Muslim Scholars Association, the largest Sunni religious group, included. Sunnis will not be electorally legitimating leadership anytime soon. The US has, of course, cracked down on the Muslim Scholars, raiding mosques and arresting clerics.

Ironically, a crackdown may be just what the situation calls for. The unique intractability of the insurgency is its decentralization - we don't know with whom to negotiate a cease fire, or how to split a headless mass from the Zarqawi foreign fighters. Imperial crackdowns, especially those accompanied by fiery denunciations and showy explosions, lionize the victims - if the MSA is the best we can get, then lets engage in a little political theater.

 

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