Arabs Strive for Honor, Not Peace

Mohammed goes to MeccaThe Arab Middle East today remains beholden to its foundational culture, Bedouin tribal culture. We see Arabs to this day cleaving to their kin groups, their tribes, their religious sects, manifesting in their actions group loyalty, support of closer over more distant, and balanced opposition, each party defined as much by whom they stand against, as what they stand for. At every level honour is at stake: tribes vs. tribes or sedentary authorities, Sunni vs. Shia, Arab vs. Kurd or Persian. Nor should we ignore the loss of Arab honour in their defeats by the Israelis, and the persistent Arab desire to regain that honour.

  • 4subsidiarity

    Europe’s tribes have the same history but were Christianized. The Christian concept that every human being has dignity because every human is stamped with the image of God had profound tribal consequences. It was the recognition of the “other” that changed everything. Loving ones enemy was the inevitable result and spelled the downfall of the worst aspects of tribalism. The Catholic ban on marrying 2nd, 3rd and up to the 6th cousin in the latter part of the 1st millennium also played a huge role in limiting tribalism. The worst aspects of tribalism will need constant “mitigation” till the end of time.

    • “The Christian concept that every human being has dignity because every human is stamped with the image of God…”

      Precisely the reason why Christians who oppose Gay marriage don’t go around beating up and killing Gays. Whereas Muslims don’t recognize the rest of humanity as creatures of God.

  • Norman_In_New_York

    If Arabs continue to pursue honor over peace and justice, they will end up with neither.

    • Clausewitz

      You beat me to it.

  • Kathy Prendergast

    The whole use of the term “honour” to describe Arab-Muslim behaviour and motivation is (as the SJWs say) “problematic”, because “honour” to most modern Westerners implies correct behaviour based on free will and individual choice, and is the source of the term “honour system”. To be honourable in the Western mind is to behave in an honourable way – refusing to lie, cheat, steal, or take unfair advantage of others, keeping promises, and meeting obligations. This is why so many Westerners hate the term “honour killing” because it seems like like an obscene contradiction in terms.