Reclaiming “minorities” in the Middle East

Authored by: Paul S. Rowe

Routledge Handbook of Minorities in the Middle East

Print publication date:  October  2018
Online publication date:  September  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138649040
eBook ISBN: 9781315626031
Adobe ISBN:


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A revealing headline featured on the satirical news site The Onion at the height of global concern over the rapidly expanding civil war in Syria announced: “Everyone in Middle East Given Own Country in 317,000,000 State Solution”. The involvement of multiple ideological, ethnic, and religious groups spoke to the apparent impossibility of achieving a harmony of interests in the region. The solution was simply to surrender to its intricacies. The article went on to quote a fictional president of the United Nations Security Council who stated that

We are confident that with every man, woman, and child possessing his or her own autonomous area of sovereignty to run as he or she sees fit, we will avoid many of the conflicts that have plagued this part of the world for centuries 1 .

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