If you sit around and watch CNN, and a host of other network news episodes....this Iraq ISIS "war" is a fairly big deal. The President has been thrust back into international affairs....which he hates. The Pentagon crowd are a bit peeved because they really don't care to walk back into a hornet's nest. The news media is sitting there and thought that Iraq was all done and finished.
So you come to ask one key question over their news reporting....which comes up to why ISIS is different than your regular ragtag operation....why they are getting traction and taking territory so easily.
The ISIS crowd are Sunni-Muslims....which are different than the Shiite-Muslims that make up most of southern Iraq and most of Iran. This whole western sector of Iraq....is mostly "Sunni-land". If you lived in the area....there's pretty good odds that you were a Sunni and attracted to the Sunni philosphy. And you held a grudge against most of the government folks (the ones in charge by order of the central government in Baghdad)....because they were continually putting Shiite-Muslims in charge of government operations. After a while, it doesn't take much for an entire neighborhood to be anti-Shiite. So the ISIS crowd took advantage of that. The folks slaughtered so far? Mostly all Shiite-Muslims.
So, you'd take a pause and what the heck difference does it make? A Sunni-Muslim and a Shiite-Muslim.
Well, this goes back around twelve-hundred years to the point of the original prophet of Islam....Muhammad, and his passing. You see....as many things as he decreed and wrote as rules of Islam....he just didn't think much over who would preside over things after he passed on. Course, maybe he was busy.....philosophers are that way, you know.
After the passing, the head Islam guys sat down and did some talking, and there's two groups of thinking that occur.
Group one was mostly all buddies and friends of Muhammad. They were of the mind that the exalted leader ought to be elected from the inner circle. Kinda like the method that the Catholic Church used to promote folks up to Pope. The best of the best.....electing the better choice.
Group two was mostly all relatives of Muhammad. You can guess this outcome.....leadership can only come from family kin. Their end result was to select leaders who were within the family or had been Imams who God had indicated they should be promoted. Yeah, it's a fair stretch on the Imam deal, and how God communicated his desires on this. You can imagine the meetings where promotion was discussed and someone kinda mentioned that God told him he was clear to be head guy number one.
The Shiite guys believe in the family rule of leadership. The Sunni guys believe in a guy being elected by his peers.
The curious thing....if you count up all the Muslims in the world.....most come from the Sunni group (the peer leadership). Some folks claim up to eighty-five percent of the Muslims in the world.....are Sunni-Muslims.
Where do you find most of the Shiite Muslims? Well....in Iraq and Iran, with a fair number in Lebanon, Syria, Bahrain, and Yemen. The Saudi crowd and most of the 9-11 players? All Sunnis.
Are all Muslims in Iraq just Sunni-Muslims and Shiite-Muslims? No. You also have the Kurdish guys, and a small number of Christians in the country.
Where does this all lead? If this morphed creature of protection (the US and Iran buddied up to protect poor Iraq).....doesn't get a handle on this.....then Iraq is broken up into three territories (figure the kurds will ask for the norther quarter of Iraq and get it). For Iran, it really invites a bigger mess to develop if ISIS is a long-term player in the region. And Saudi Arabia? Strangely enough, you might note how quiet they've been over the past week. Maybe they aren't unhappy with this episode?
All of this fighting and killing....mostly over how Muhammad never envisioned leadership after he passed on? Yeah.....that's the strange history lesson in this episode. Being a prophet and head guy of your religion is fine....up until you are six feet under, and then? What happens?