Cultural Culture In Syria

1820 Words 8 Pages
As we currently stand on the brink of war in Syria, it is imperative that we as a country understand our chances and possible outcomes of such a war. Syria resides in the breadbasket of human civilization, and has a rich, diverse, and historical culture. To win a war you must fully understand the operational environment. The focus of this paper will be on the different people, organizations, and groups found in this diverse country. To assist in that objective, this paper will attempt to define the complex culture, geography, military history, and weather effects on the culture. With the complexity of Syria’s culture, we could write a ten-page paper on culture alone, and still be wanting. Culture is defined as “the beliefs, customs, …show more content…
The nation state now known as Syria can be traced all the way back to 2700 B.C.E. It was part of a conglomerate known as Sham, consisting of modern day Jordan, Israel, and Lebanon (Culture of Syria, n.d.). This land was bloodied by every empirical superpower in civilized history, including Romans, Persians, Greek, and The Ottoman Empire. The Turkish Ottoman Empire took control of this region in 1516, and stayed in control until France attempted to colonize it following World War I (Culture of Syria, n.d.). In 1946, Syria gained a long over-due independence from France. This lead to decades of civilian-led, political-led, and military-led coups. Hafez al-Assad became president in 1971 as the leader of a radical Muslim group known as Baath (Culture of Syria, n.d.). The Baath party is a strong handed organization that mimics the practices of the Ottoman empire, allowing cultural, ethnic, and religious freedoms as long as you do not question their rule (Polk, …show more content…
Again, on paper the religious make-up seems to be very straight forward. Sunni Muslims make up about 74% of the overall population, the Alawites, the Druze, and other Muslim Sects make up about 16%, and Christians account for approximately 10% of the overall population (Culture of Syria, n.d.). In the 1980’s a radical movement known as the Muslim Brotherhood became prominent, and has been one of the biggest social, cultural, and political players within the country (Polk, 2013). These numbers do not accurately represent all the different religious sects within the country. An example of this is the fact that the most powerful family in Syria for the last 50 years is a minority Alawite family. This highlights the issues of unity and a sense of nationalism within Syria. Essentially, ethnicity and religion run the political environment within

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