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Iraq in the Next Decade: Will Iraq Survive Until 2002?

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This Note on Irag is part of a series of country papers in a project that looks at long-term trends in the Greater Middle East. This study examines the outlook for Iraq over the next ten years. Given the immense turmoil and uncertainty in Iraq today, the events of the near term are almost impossible to predict. Nonetheless, over the longer run certain forces, geopolitical facts, trends, demographic, historical events, and international aspirations will all have a direct impact on Iraq regardless of who is then in power in Baghdad. The research reported here analyzes those factors the author believes are most important over the longer run, based on historical readings, economic trends, and the general direction of politics in the Middle East in the past few decades. A work of this kind directed at the future, cannot cite extensive supporting material since the bulk of the literature on Iraq over the past decade is historical with few direct clues for the future. For this reason, direct analysis by the author, and a reflection of his views, must play a major part in the study. Apart from his reading, the author has also spent many hours in the United States and overseas interviewing Iraqis in exile, including Shia, Sunnis and Kurds, secularists and fundamentalists. Their names are not cited because of political sensitivities. There is no unanimity of views among them, but taken together, a more comprehensive view begins to emerge about what these exiles think about the past and future of Iraq

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  • Government and Political Science

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