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Why did the invasion of Iraq result in cultural destruction and killings of intellectuals? Convention sees accidents of war and poor planning in a campaign to liberate Iraqis. The authors argue instead that the invasion aimed to dismantle the Iraqi state to remake it as a client regime. Post-invasion chaos created conditions under which the cultural foundations of the state could be undermined. The authors painstakingly document the consequences of the occupiers' willful inaction and worse, which led to the ravaging of one of the world's oldest recorded cultures. Targeted assassination of over 400 academics, kidnapping and the forced flight of thousands of doctors, lawyers, artists and other intellectuals add up to cultural cleansing. This important work lays to rest claims that the invasion aimed to free an educated population to develop its own culture of democracy.
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If you are looking for a textbook that provides a view of Middle East politics free of colonial bias, ... [this] book plainly fulfil this fundamental requirement. Informed by the empathy of belonging as well as by a critical objectivity enhanced by a long experience in teaching the region to students ... , this book is a safe guide to the political intricacies of the Middle East. (Gilbert Achcar, Professor at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London)About the Author:
Raymond William Baker is Professor of International Politics, Trinity College, USA, and Adjunct Professor of Political Science at the American University in Cairo. His most recent book is Islam Without Fear: Egypt and the New Islamists.
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