June 19th, 2014
03:20 PM ET

What I'm reading: The sectarian myth of Iraq

By Fareed Zakaria

“Whether Iraq can survive this most serious threat to its existence remains to be seen,” writes Sami Ramadani in The Guardian. “But those who claim it could only have peace if it is divided into three states do not appreciate the makeup of Iraqi society – the three regions would quickly fall under the rule of violent sectarians and chauvinists. Given how ethnically and religiously mixed Iraq's regions are, particularly in Baghdad and central Iraq, a three-way national breakup would be a recipe for permanent wars in which only the oil companies, the arms suppliers, and the warlords will be the winners.”


“If [Generation] Y-ers were the perfectly connected generation, Z-ers are overconnected. They multi-task across five screens: TV, phone, laptop, desktop and either a tablet or some handheld gaming device, spending 41 percent of their time outside of school with computers of some kind or another, compared to 22 percent 10 years ago. Because of that they ‘lack situational awareness, are oblivious to their surroundings and unable to give directions,’” writes Leonid Bershidsky for Bloomberg View.

“Members of this new generation also have an 8-second attention span, down from 12 seconds in 2000, and 11 percent of them are diagnosed with attention deficiency syndrome, compared to 7.8 percent in 2003. They prefer to communicate in symbols such as Emoji, rather than words: It's faster, less unnecessarily precise and more intuitive. Journalists may have to start experimenting with this new language soon…”


soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. George patton

    As usual, Fareed Zakaria has it all wrong!!!

    June 19, 2014 at 6:08 pm |
  2. Joseph McCarthy

    Where on earth does Fareed Zakaria get the idea that a united Iraq will bring peace? Anyone with half a brain would know better

    June 19, 2014 at 7:31 pm |
    • banasy©

      Fareed Zakaria was quoting Sami Ramadani.
      This is why this article is called What I'm Reading:.

      June 20, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
  3. chri§§y

    Unihted country is pretty much the definition of a peaceful country! A divided country has lots of conflict thereby becomming an unpeaceful country! Not hard to figure that out @ Joseph.

    June 20, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
  4. chri§§y

    United i meant!

    June 20, 2014 at 4:24 pm |
  5. Kumar Srikantan

    Iraq is doomed to split around sectarian lines.
    Instead of wasting time, energy and resources tee should simply let the country split into SHIraq (SHIA Iraq) for the Eastern sector, SUraq (for SUNNI Iraq) for the western segment and Kurdistan for the North Eastern region and call it a day. This may well be the final stable configuration for that region.

    Kumar Srikantan
    Bay Area

    June 21, 2014 at 8:04 pm |
    • Joseph McCarthy

      I've been saying exactly the same thing, Kumar. Unfortunately, in Washington D.C., stupidity rules!

      June 21, 2014 at 10:26 pm |
  6. chri§§y

    And the people of Iraq should make that decision!

    June 21, 2014 at 8:30 pm |
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