Middle East – get in the groove.

Background is important – religion is important.

Who supports terrorism – why do we tolerate our leaders feigning endlessly to the House of Saud?

Sunni and Shia Islam are the two major denominations of Islam – from Wikipedia:-

The demographic breakdown between the two denominations is difficult to assess and varies by source, but a good approximation is that 85-90% of the world’s Muslims are Sunni and 10-15% are Shia – with most Shias belonging to the Twelver tradition and the rest divided between many other groups.

Sunnis are a majority in most Muslim communities – in Southeast Asia, China, South Asia, Africa, and most of the Arab world.

Shi’a make up the majority of the citizen population in Iraq, Iran, Azerbaijan, and Bahrain, as well as being a politically significant minority in Lebanon.

Azerbaijan is predominantly Shi’a – however, practicing adherents are much fewer.

Indonesia has the largest number of Sunni Muslims, while Iran has the largest number of Shi’a Muslims (Twelver) in the world.

Pakistan has the second-largest Sunni as well as the second-largest Shi’a Muslim (Twelver) population in the world.

Turkey is predominantly Sunni – whilst a ‘secular country’ Sunni’s account for 90 percent of the population – Shi’a four percent – how long Turkey does remain a secular state – no official religion – remains to be seen.

If we look in particular at Iran and Saudi Arabia – we can see extreme differences between the extreme Sunni and conventional Shi’a – especially on the subject of terrorism.

From Iran:-

“Everyone acknowledges that if [a country] wants to really confront terrorism, this is only feasible with the cooperation of Iran.”

Rouhani added,

“If there was no Iran or its armed forces, and if there was none of the Supreme Leader’s guidance, there would be no Baghdad or holy shrines; even Mecca and Medina would be occupied by terrorists…Some countries in the region think that they are very powerful. See what has happened to Iraq with their strength. Syria, with its strong army, is struggling with terrorists… just as we defended Karbala, Najaf, and Samarra, we will also defend Mecca and Medina.”

But – who does Iran fund?

If one takes notice of Ms Rice – ex Secretary of State of the US and officials:-

“Iran mostly backs Islamist groups, including the Lebanese Shiite militants of Hezbollah (which Iran helped found in the 1980s) and Palestinian terrorist groups like Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command.”

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So – restricted to the Middle East.

No wonder Israel has an intense hatred for this Shi’a State.

Then we have Saudi Arabia – which is in the UN Human Rights Council courtesy of the United Kingdom and principally Prime Minister David Cameron – one would think that the Saudi’s would respect this appointment – it appears not!

The country is comprised of a puritanical strain of Sunni Islam – referred by supporters as “Salafism” and by others as “Wahhabism”.

This interpretation of Islam became the state religion and interpretation of Islam espoused by Muhammad bin Saud and his successors (the Al Saud family), who eventually created the modern kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1932.

A ‘Wikileaks’ cable (1) clearly quotes then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton saying

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“..donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.”

She continues:

“More needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaeda, the Taliban, LeT and other terrorist groups – And it’s not just the Saudis: Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates are also implicated in the memo.”

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So why do US – UK – Europe support Saudi Arabia over Iran?

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Oh – forgot Israel – thank heavens the United Nations now recognize Palestine as a State.

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1. http://www.theguardian.com/world/us-embassy-cables-documents/242073

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