Small Wars Journal

Deconstructing Civil War: An Interview with Iraq Writer Fanar Haddad

Wed, 07/25/2012 - 9:46pm

Frequent contributor Bob Tollast has posted a valuable interview at Global Politics.  

What factors push humans to the path of war? Is it our thirst for resources, or do political, religious or ethnic differences play a bigger role?

Often overlooked in such analysis is human nature and identity formation, which Fanar Haddad examines in detail, gaining deep insights into the Iraq conflict in his excellent study Sectarianism In Iraq.

Haddad is a London based academic and analyst of Middle Eastern affairs. His research interests are Middle Eastern social history, identity, minority politics, nationalism and popular memory. He previously lectured at the University of Exeter and worked in the Middle East and North Africa Research Group at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He has published widely on Iraq and the broader Middle East and is author of Sectarianism in Iraq: Antagonistic Visions of Unity. Currently he lectures at the School of Politics and International Relations at Queen Mary, University of London.

Looking at the Iraq war through the prism of identity politics, Haddad’s book also stands out for its analysis of social media such as YouTube to understand the propaganda of civil conflict. As much as being a book about Iraq, Haddad’s work is full of insights for anyone interested in conflict studies, and provides some answers to the question Rodney King once posed: “can’t we just get along?”