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Arbaeen: The world’s biggest event

By Kevin Barrett, Veterans Today Editor

Editor’s note:  One minor word, some of us were invited to attend then 24 hours before getting on a plane were told “forget it.”

This is a peaceful gathering except if you are a foreign dignitary invited to attend.  Then it is something else.  Pissed off in Grand Haven

Today is Arbaeen, the annual commemoration of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson. During the past decade an estimated twenty to thirty million people (with outlier estimates closer to fifty million) have been making the pilgrimage to Karbala each year. Wikipedia’s list of “largest peaceful gatherings” is dominated by recent Arbaeen pilgrimages.

It seems rather miraculous that Iraq—the nation most devastated by the 9/11-triggered Zionist-incited scorched-earth operations—should be hosting a pilgrimage five to ten times as big as the much better known canonical Muslim Pilgrimage, the Hajj. The Saudis, with all their Western protection and oil wealth, have been forced to cap the number of Hajjis at slightly over 3 million. At that rate it would take 581 years to get all the world’s Muslims to Mecca. But despite the fact that the Hajj is obligatory, the Saudis just can’t handle much more than 3 million per year. How can the war-devastated Iraqis, with zero help from the West, host tens of millions every Arbaeen?

The answer is that the Iraqi government doesn’t have to organize Arbaeen. It is largely self-organizing. In many ways Arbaeen is more of a spontaneous act of mournful protest than an officially-sanctioned state-organized event. And it works so well, and attracts so many people, because it resonates so beautifully with the spirit of the age. We live at a time of unparalleled injustice and oppression. And all of the world’s injustice and oppression has never been more visible, thanks to communications technology. So the natural human thirst for justice arises in response. Arbaeen is about mourning the triumph of injustice—and vowing to atone by pursuing justice even to the extreme of self sacrifice should that be necessary.

Now THAT is a protest gathering! It makes iconic Western protests like Woodstock, the women’s march against Trump, various global warming protests, and so on seem rather petty by comparison.

No wonder Arbaeen thrives in Iraq, a nation crushed under the weight of so many accumulated layers of injustice: British colonialism, American neocolonialism, Saddam’s fascism, Zio-American occupation, ISIS’s madness. Dr. Gideon Polya, a leading expert on avoidable mortality, writes:

Iraqi deaths from violence (1.7 million) or war-imposed deprivation (2.9 million) since 1990 total 4.6 million [1]…The appalling legacy of a quarter of a century of Western violence against Iraq (1990-2015) – for oil, US hegemony and Apartheid Israeli hegemony – is summarized below, with much of the data being found in “Iraqi Holocaust Iraqi Genocide” [1], “Genocide in Iraq” volumes I and II by Iraqi scholars Dr Abdul-Haq Al-Ani & Tariq Al-Ani and reviews of these works [18-21] and noting that about half of the Iraqi population of 30 million are children :

(1). 1.7 million Iraqi violent deaths.
(2). 2.9 million Iraqi avoidable deaths from violently -imposed deprivation.
(3). 2 million under-5 year old Iraqi infant deaths, 90% avoidable and due to gross violation of the Geneva Convention by the US Alliance.
(4). 7,700,000 Iraqi refugees.
(5). 5,000,000 Iraqi orphans.
(6). 3,000,000 Iraqi widows.
(7). 1,000,0000 Iraqis missing.
(8). 4,000 Iraqi women (20% under 18) missing and presumed “trafficked”.
(9). 3.5 million Iraqi children living in dire poverty.
(10). 1.5 million Iraqi children are undernourished.
(11). Iraqi cancer cases in cases per 100,000 people were 40 (1990), 800 (1995) and 1,600 (2005).
(12). 40% of Iraqi professionals have left since 2003.
(13). 34,000 doctors (1990) declined to 16,000 doctors (2008).
(14). More than 2,200 doctors and nurses killed.
(15). The Iraqi health budget dropped from $450 million pa (1980-1991) to $22 million (2002),
(16). Most of Iraqi children are traumatized by war.
(17). From high literacy pre-1990 to 74% illiteracy in 2011.

Iraq has become a nation of martyrs and survivors…and generous hosts. Arbaeen pilgrims report that the magnanimity of Iraqis is “off the charts.” If you’re an Arbaeen pilgrim folks feed you, take care of you, and generally don’t ask for a penny. To say this compares favorably with the way Saudis host the Hajj would risk belaboring the obvious.

Though Arbaeen is identified with Shia Islam, it has always attracted a fair number of Sunni Muslims, who like Shia Muslims revere Imam Hussein and mourn his tragedy at Karbala. In recent years this Sunni participation has increased, and more and more Christians have been joining as well. Observing Arbaeen may symbolize rejection of the fanatical anti-Shia sectarianism of ISIS, which could account for its increasingly broad -based appeal in places like Iraq. But ultimately the appeal of Arbaeen rests on its message: The martyrdom of saints and heroes like Hussein is emblematic of the world’s domination by tyrannical Yazids. Until enough of us vow to stand with the Husseins against the Yazids, even unto death, the tragedy of Karbala will continue.

 

Author Details
Dr. Kevin Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist, is one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror.

He is host of TRUTH JIHAD RADIO; a hard driving weekly radio show funded by listener donations at Patreon.com and FALSE FLAG WEEKLY NEWS (FFWN); a audio-video show produced by Tony Hall, Allan Reese, and Kevin himself. FFWN is funded through FundRazr.

{p}He also has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the Chicago Tribune, and other leading publications.

{p}Dr. Barrett has taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin; where he ran for Congress in 2008. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, author, and talk radio host.

17 Replies to “Arbaeen: The world’s biggest event

  1. The distinction between the Hajj, the one and only canonical Muslim Pilgrimage, and the criminals who have usurped it is too obvious to require comment. What is shocking is that the world’s nearly two billion Muslims are allowing the Ibn Saud crime family to continue its usurpation of this beautiful event.

  2. During the time of Sadam Hussain it was not easy and not safe for some people to visit Iraq, that is why now you see the spike in number of people who visit Iraq for Arbaeen, even though Iraq does have some restrictions. To my mind it is no protest but simply an expression of devotion for Shias to pay their respects for their Imam. If you check the number of visitors to Karbala (Iraq) through out the year you will understand my view.

  3. Some people think you bad-mouthed the Hajj. It’s not your fault if they failed to understand the point you were making in your article. Don’t take the dis-invite directly, or personally. It was the hosts that you failed to understand might have been put out with the article you wrote. Being pissed off in Grand Haven is a lot better than . . . what might have happened to the host. You do know what part of the world you’re dealing with right?!?

  4. Would you people please explain the difference between Islam and Wahhabi? How it came about? I understand the House of Saud is Wahhabi but I still don’t understand it.

  5. Harry, their demise may be sooner than you think.
    The only thing that’s keeping them in power is via U.S. backing, ie: weapons and support and oil revenues. without it the House of Saud would crumble like a month old cake.

  6. @Khalid, I will point out only two things as this isn’t the forum to have a discussion about Islamic history. 1) Our prophet (pbuh) himself appointed his successor on more than one occasion, with the event of Ghadir being the most prominent one. And as the Quran tells us, the prophet does not speak for himself, he speaks for Allah. Woe on you and others like you who say it was Allah’s will for a bunch of folks to usurp the Khilafa while Amir Almomenin was busy burying our prophet. 2) You rightfully point out that “the best amongst you should be your ruler”… and Allah knows and our prophet made it clear that none could come close to Imam Ali (as). Wassalam and Ya Ali!

    1. Yes Khalid, I will proudly reject the usurpers until yowm alghiyamah and beyond. There is no reaching true Islam unless you go through Imam Ali (as).

    1. Thanks @liangluang, this publication is very well thought out, thoroughly researched and supported by well-documented sources.

  7. Do any of you believers think that the House of Saud has failed to properly support the Hajj? And that this could eventually bring about their demise, losing the support of the people. Just a ponder.

  8. Good point & in a normal paradigm yes that would be the case. Everyone knows (or should know by now) that the UK picks the Crown. Old deal made sub rosa via Ottoman Empire. The EL-ite hierarchy rule through ancient Babylonian/Roman Mithraism/Hermeticism/Kabbalh/Freemasonry tenets. Secrecy dominates this world, and foremost as the secret of domination. Secret Societies & symbols rule the world not rules or laws still. The simulacra & hypocrisy are deafening & blinding to those who can see & hear.

    1. How many of these “royal families” gained legitimacy through the Papacy? How many of them collaborated with the Church during the Reformation and what was their reward?
      It is known that some bought their way into the Papacy. who knows, maybe it’s continues.
      The idea of royal bloodlines being that of the original Grail is pure rubbish anyway.
      The idea of royal families continuing into the 21st century is an anachronism, a conundrum.
      Time for humanity to grow up.

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