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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 08:29 AM
Original message
Shia and Sunni agree; SUNNI are Iraq's majority
I'm trying to get the facts on this, it's my current pet peeve, lol!

Here's what I gots:

The constantly-cited "60-20" Shia majority is from the "CIA Fact Book", from 1992. The CIA didn't actually ever do a census so I assume that was their "best guesstimate" or it was propaganda because chanting about overthrowing the MAJORITY regime wouldn't get the US very far:

"Observers said the contrasted Shiite and Sunnis statistics could have been politically motivated, as the U.S. occupation forces seeking to marginalize the role of Sunnis now launching almost-daily resistance attacks that killed hundreds of American soldiers."

Some Iraqis say the claim that Shia were the majority first came from Jewish writer Hanna Batto.

The Shia & the Sunni both agree Iraq is a Sunni majority of 50-ish% Sunni and 40-ish% Shia;

"the number of Shiites, I think, is averaged at 40 or 45 percent of the whole population against 53 percent of Sunnis," the Shiite Mohamed Jawwad Ali told Quds Press news agency.

"Shiite scholars conceded that Shiites could make up as much as 40 percent of the whole population."

In 2003, an international humanitarian organization did a census, and they too found a Sunni majority;

"Fresh statistics by an international organization suggested that Iraq's Sunnis are in a clear majority...

The statistics, released by a reliable international humanitarian relief agency in 2003, suggested that Sunnis make up 58 percent of the Iraqi population and Shiites 40 percent."

Sites w link to the above info:

So I'm trying to find more info; which "international humanitarian org" did the census? Are there any more articles floating around backing up the various Shia & Sunni academicians quoted in 2003 as saying Sunni are in fact the majority?

If anyone has a better search engine (or search ability than me, which means most of you :D) or comes across any such referances to this issue, would you please please please help me feed my pet peeve!

TIA! :)
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 08:34 AM
Response to Original message
1. Walking on the Sunni side of the street...
sorry, just wanted to use that line somewhere... :-)
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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 08:42 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. LOL! GOOD one!
I love that! :D

I think perhaps part of the problem is most people aren't aware that the Kurds are Sunnis.

So in fact right off the bat it's AT LEAST 40% Sunni to the oft-cited 60% Shia.

I'm so determined to find facts on this sucker, LOL! This "relief agency" released their stats, according to the original news article, so where IS it???!! ARRRRRGH I hate obsessions! :D

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KharmaTrain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 08:41 AM
Response to Original message
2. The Goal Is To Divide, Not Unite
The Kurds already have their "state in a state" with control of the oil in the north & the Shiite are being encouraged to do the same in the south where the remainder of the oil is. In the middle are the Sunnis who will be literally pounding sand. And that's the way this regime likes it.

The last thing this regime wants is a united, strong Iraq since it's so much easier manipulating the oil with small groups in control rather one large government, like Saddam had, that can't be steamrolled by Exxon, Aramco, Haliburton and other U.S. corporates.

Remember, Iraq was a bastardized nation to start off with...carved out by the British following WWI to consolidate their own imperialistic gains after that war...thus the concept of a national identity has only been established over the barrel of a gun.

In the end it doesn't matter who wins or controls things in Iraq as this regime will do whatever it can to manipulate power and will remove those who they feel aren't "democratic" or doing their will. Elections are supposed to unite a nation, this one is designed to further divide.
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Jonathan_Hoag Donating Member (112 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 08:48 AM
Response to Original message
4. The new CIA World Factbook states Shi'as are the majority group ...
Edited on Wed Jan-26-05 08:51 AM by Jonathan_Hoag
as well. So it's not only the 1992 figures.

Ethnic groups: Arab 75%-80%, Kurdish 15%-20%, Turkoman, Assyrian or other 5%
Religions: Muslim 97% (Shi'a 60%-65%, Sunni 32%-37%), Christian or other 3%

Note that the total number for Sunnis includes the 15-20% of Kurds making Sunni Arab population smaller. If 40% Shi'a - 60 Sunni split were right no group would claim the majority of the population, as it would be 40% Shia Arab - 15-20% Sunni Kurd - 40-45% Sunni Arab.

Now, the facts on the ground suggest that Shiites have a majority or at least a plurality as they are the relatively calm group. If they feel they will win in the election that would make sense. Equally, if Sunni Arabs held control over the whole country under Saddam and are now set to lose because their numbers are too few their insurgency is predictabe. But not so if they are the majority or a plurality group.

Jonathan Hoag
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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 09:31 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. And the CIA did a census? LOL!
The CIA have no credibility because 1. They have an agenda, 2. They've proved their lack of credibility esp concerning Iraq and 3. There is no way the CIA did a recent census during a raging war.

And yep what you say MAY explain things EXCEPT for one fact that bushCartel & the rightwingnuttery totally ignore, another false dichotomy from them;

The reason the more Sunni-populated regions are seeing more fighting than the more Shia-populated areas is because the more-Sunni area happens to contain apx 65% of the entire population of Iraq, including the largest city, Baghdad, AND guess what region the vast majority of US troops went directly to from the beginning and have remained since?

My guess, if the majority of US troops had remained in a more Shia-populated region, that would be the region now experiencing the majority of attacks.

The next thing is the NATIONALISTIC nature of the insurgency. The insurgency is divided, by a group I personally deem highly credible, into the SHIA insurgents which are for the most part remaining & fighting in Shia-dominated areas, and the SUNNI/NATIONALIST insurgents, ie Sunni & Shia together, who are wider-ranging and the bulk of the insurgents.

Also, IF the Shia are the majority, then they are the MAJORITY SUPPORTERS of the insurgents.

Recent polls also prove this; look at the breakdowns. Shia & Sunni are very united with their opinions against the US, the Shia slightly more so than the Sunni. If Shia are the majority, then in absolute numbers there are FAR MORE SHIA opposed to the US than Sunnis.

For example, the most recent polls show that some 56% of both the Sunni and Shia feel attacks on US troops are justified. That shows that in absolute numbers, assuming Shia are the vast majority of 60% to 20%, then there are far more Shiites who approve of attacks on Americans than there are Sunni Arabs.

Look at the response breakdown to the question "did the invasion do more harm than good":

56% of Sunni Arabs say it did more harm

Among Shiites, 47% say it did more harm

If one assumes, for ease of argument, that Shia are 60,000 and Sunni are 20,000;

Sunni: 56% @ 20,000 =11,200
Shia: 47% @ 60,000 =28,200

That totally contradicts the bushCartel, the rightwingnuttery and the entire US StenoMedia who insist it's "just the Sunnis".

To the question of whether coalition military forces are mainly liberators or mainly occupiers, both Sunni and Shia were in agreement at apx 80% each. Again, assuming the Shia majority of 60-20, then clearly in absolute numbers far more Shia are against us.

Things that make you say HMMMmmmmmm... LOL!

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