CAN DEMOCRACY AND FANATICISM COINCIDE?

Charles of LGF argues ritual self-flaggelation is proof that Iraqis can’t be democratized. I must admit, there’s a lot of work to be done in establishing a rational civic culture.


Iraqi Shiite pilgrims slash open their heads with swords as they march and chant in front of Imam Hussein Shrine in Karbala, Iraq Tuesday April 22, 2003. For the first time in decades, Shiite Muslims in Iraq are able to perform this ritual done to mark the killing of one of their most important saints, Imam Hussein. During the rule of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, such rituals were banned.
(AP Photo/David Guttenfelder)

FILED UNDER: Iraq War, Middle East, Religion
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.