Corrective Movement (Syria)

The Corrective Movement (Arabic: الحركة التصحيحيةal-Ḥaraka at-Taṣ'ḥīḥiya), also referred to as the Corrective Revolution or Glorious Corrective Movement, was a political movement in Syria, initiated by a coup d'état, led by General Hafez al-Assad on 13 November 1970.[1] Al-Assad's program of reform, considered revolutionary in Syria, aimed to sustain and improve the "nationalist socialist line" of the state and the Ba'ath party.[2] Al-Assad would rule Syria until his death in 2000, after which he was succeeded by his son Bashar al-Assad.

Corrective Movement
Part of the Arab Cold War and the prelude to the Syrian Civil War
General Hafez al-Assad (1930-2000), the new president of Syria in November 1970

Hafez al-Assad shortly after the success of the movement
Date13 November 1970
Location
Result
  • Overthrow of Salah Jadid and his allies
  • Appointment of a Temporary Regional Command of the Ba'ath Syrian Regional Branch
Belligerents
Syria Syrian Government
Syrian Regional Branch of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party
Hafez al-Assad loyalists
Commanders and leaders
Salah Jadid (POW)
Nureddin al-Atassi
Hafez al-Assad
Rifaat al-Assad
Mustafa Tlass
Casualties and losses
No mortal casualties

Events

Al-Assad started planning to seize power shortly after the failed Syrian military intervention in the Black September crisis in Jordan.[3] While Al-Assad had been in de facto command of Syrian politics since 1969, Salah Jadid and his supporters still held all the formal trappings of power.[3] After attending Gamal Abdel Nasser's funeral, Al-Assad returned to Syria to attend the Emergency National Congress held on 30 October 1970.[3] At the congress, Al-Assad was condemned by Jadid and his supporters, who formed the majority of the party delegates.[3] However, before attending the congress, Al-Assad had ordered troops loyal to him to surround the building in which the congress was held.[3] Criticism of Al-Assad's political position continued, but with Assad's troops surrounding the building, the majority of delegates knew that they had lost the battle.[3] Assad and Mustafa Tlass were stripped of their government posts during the congress, although this move had little practical influence.[3]

When the National Congress broke up on 12 November 1970, Al-Assad ordered loyalists to arrest the leading members of Jadid's government.[4] While many leading middle men were offered posts in Syria's embassies abroad, Jadid refused, telling Assad, "If I ever take power you will be dragged through the streets until you die."[4] In response, Assad imprisoned Jadid who spent the rest of his life at Mezze prison.[4] There were no fatalities, and the country remained calm following the coup.[4] The only proof to the outside world that something was amiss was the fact that official dailies, radio, and, television stations either stopped publishing or were off the air.[4] A Temporary Regional Command was established shortly after, and on 16 November 1970, the new government published its first decree.[4]

Reforms

Domestic

Political reforms

Assad's faction, which was far smaller than the pro-Jadid faction, began recruiting Aflaqites to top positions to cement their power.[5] Assad appealed directly to Michel Aflaq's sympathizers by stating: "Let us rebuild together and if we fail our heads will all be on the block together".[5] An estimated 2,000 people responded to Assad's invitation, among them were Georges Saddiqni, a party ideologist, and Shakir al-Fahham, one of the secretaries of the Ba'ath Party's founding congress in 1947.[6] However, despite trying to strengthen his hold on the party, at a 1970 Regional Command meeting, its members opposed Assad's motion to appoint a figurehead to lead the party. As a result, Assad went on to establish a separate power base apart from the party.[7]

As part of his "corrective movement," at the 11th National Congress Assad introduced a general revision of national policy. Included in these revisions were measures introduced to consolidate his rule. His Ba'athist predecessors had restricted control of Islam in public life and government.[8] Because the Constitution allowed only Muslims to become president,[9] Assad, unlike Jadid, presented himself as a pious Muslim. In order to gain support from the ulama—the educated Muslim class — he prayed in Sunni mosques, even though he was an Alawite. Among the measures Assad introduced were the raising in rank of some 2,000 religious functionaries, and the appointment of an alim as minister of religious functionaries and construction of mosques. He appointed a little-known Sunni teacher, Ahmad al-Khatib, as Head of State in order to satisfy the Sunni majority.[8] Assad also appointed Sunnis to senior positions in the government, the military, and the party. All of his prime ministers, defense ministers, and foreign ministers, a majority of his cabinet, were Sunnis. In the early 1970s, Assad was verified as an authentic Muslim by the Sunni Mufti of Damascus and made the Hajj—the pilgrimage to Mecca. In his speeches, he often used terms such as "jihad" (a holy war) and "shahada" (martyrdom) when referring to fighting Israel.[9]

The coup turned Syria's social and political structures upside down. The Alawites, Assad's sect, although no more than 12% of the population, came to occupy coveted positions in every sector of life in Syria.[1]

Economic reforms

Assad reverted his predecessor's policy of radical economic socialism, and strengthened the private sector's role in the economy.[10] In many ways the Corrective Movement resulted in a tacit alliance between the political elite and the Damascene bourgeoise.[11]

Foreign policy

The reforms also sought to normalize Syria's relations with the other Arab states since it had been isolated diplomatically during Jadid's short-lived rule.[10] Assad tried to establish working relations with Egypt and Saudi Arabia in order to establish the so-called "Cairo–Damascus–Riyadh axis" to strengthen security cooperation against Israel.[10] The cooperation agreement was effective, and when Egypt and Syria failed to win the October War in 1973, Saudi Arabia and other Arab oil producers ceased selling oil to the West.[10]

Legacy

The Syrian government commemorates the Corrective Movement with an official holiday, observed on 16 November of each year.[12][13]

When the communist governments in the Eastern Bloc collapsed, an ideological crisis within the government arose.[14] However, Assad and his supporters hit back, stating that because of the "Corrective Movement under the leadership of the warrior Hafez al-Assad", the principles of economic and political pluralism, which had been introduced "some two decades" beforehand, safeguarded the Syrian government from the possibility of collapse.[14]

Later, on 27 January 2000, Syrian foreign minister Farouk al-Sharaa stated, "I am not exaggerating when I say that the Corrective Movement, which took place in 1970 under the leadership of Hafez al-Assad ... has crystallized for the first time in modern Arab history a mature and realistic pan-Arab ideology."[15]

References

  1. ^ a b Seale, Patrick (15 June 2000). "Hafez al-Assad". The Guardian. Guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 19 March 2011.
  2. ^ Hinnebusch 2001, p. 61.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Seale 1990, p. 162.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Seale 1990, p. 164.
  5. ^ a b Seale 1990, p. 171.
  6. ^ Seale 1990, pp. 171–172.
  7. ^ Lefevre 2013, p. 12.
  8. ^ a b Alianak 2007, pp. 129–130.
  9. ^ a b Reich 1990, p. 55.
  10. ^ a b c d Freedmen 2002, p. 179.
  11. ^ Hinnebusch 2001, p. 87.
  12. ^ Weeden 1999, p. 42.
  13. ^ Ayalon 1993, p. 670.
  14. ^ a b Ziser 2001, p. 47.
  15. ^ Korany & Dessouki 2010, p. 430.

Bibliography

  • Alianak, Sonia (2007). Middle Eastern Leaders and Islam: A Precarious Equilibrium. Peter Lang. ISBN 9780820469249.
  • Korany, Baghat; Dessouki, Ali (2010). The Foreign Policies of Arab States: The Challenge of Globalization. American University in Cairo Press. ISBN 9774163605.
  • Freedmen, Robert (1993). The Middle East After Iraq's Invasion of Kuwait. University Press of Florida. ISBN 0813012147.
  • Freedmen, Robert (2002). The Middle East Enters the Twenty-first Century. University Press of Florida. ISBN 0813031109.
  • Hinnebusch, Raymond (2001). Syria: Revolution from Above (1st ed.). Routledge. ISBN 978-0415267793.
  • Lefevre, Raphael (2013). Syria: Revolution from Above. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0199365334.
  • Seale, Patrick (1990). Asad: The Struggle for the Middle East. University of California Press. ISBN 9780520069763.
  • Reich, Bernard (1990). Political Leaders of the Contemporary Middle East and North Africa: A Biographical Dictionary. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 9780313262135.
  • Ziser, Eyal (2001). Asad's Legacy: Syria in Transition. C. Hurst & Co. Publishers. ISBN 9781850654506.
ASEAN Declaration

The ASEAN Declaration or Bangkok Declaration is the founding document of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). It was signed in Bangkok on 8 August 1967 by the five ASEAN founding members, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand as a display of solidarity against communist expansion in Vietnam and communist insurgency within their own borders. It states the basic principles of ASEAN: co-operation, amity, and non-interference. The date is now celebrated as ASEAN Day.

Arms race

An arms race occurs when two or more nations participation in interactive or competitive increases in "persons under arms" as well as "war material". Simply defined as a competition between two or more states to have superior armed forces; a competition concerning production of weapons, the growth of a military, and the aim of superior military technology.

The term is also used to describe any long-term escalating competitive situation where each competitor focuses on out-doing the others.

An evolutionary arms race is a system where two populations are evolving in order to continuously one-up members of the other population. This concept is related to the Red Queen's Hypothesis, where two organisms co-evolve to overcome each other but each fails to progress relative to the other interactant.

In technology, there are close analogues to the arms races between parasites and hosts, such as the arms race between computer virus writers and antivirus software writers, or spammers against Internet service providers and E-mail software writers.

More generically, the term is used to describe any competition where there is no absolute goal, only the relative goal of staying ahead of the other competitors in rank or knowledge. An arms race may also imply futility as the competitors spend a great deal of time and money, yet end up in the same situation as if they had never started the arms race.

Asian Relations Conference

The Asian Relations Conference took place in New Delhi in March-April 1947. It was hosted by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who then headed a provisional government that was preparing for India's Independence, which came on 15 August 1947. The Asian Relations Conference brought together many leaders of the independence movements in Asia, and represented a first attempt to assert Asian unity. The objectives of the conference were "to bring together the leading men and women of Asia on a common platform to study the problems of common concern to the people of the continent, to focus attention on social, economic and cultural problems of the different countries of Asia, and to foster mutual contact and understanding."

In his writings and speeches, Nehru had laid great emphasis on the manner in which post-colonial India would rebuild its Asia connections. At this conference Nehru declared: "... Asia is again finding herself ... one of the notable consequences of the European domination of Asia has been the isolation of the countries of Asia from one another. ... Today this isolation is breaking down because of many reasons, political and otherwise ... This Conference is significant as an expression of that deeper urge of the mind and spirit of Asia which has persisted ... In this Conference and in this work there are no leaders and no followers. All countries of Asia have to meet together in a common task ..."

Ba'athist Revolution

Ba'athist Revolution may refer to:

Ramadan Revolution

1963 Syrian coup d'état

1966 Syrian coup d'état

17 July Revolution

Corrective Movement (Syria)

Corrective Revolution

Corrective Revolution, Corrective Movement, or Corrective Stepmay refer to:

Corrective Revolution (Egypt), a reform or change in policy introduced by Anwar Sadat

Corrective Movement (Syria), a reform program in Syria when Assad took power

Corrective Move, a South Yemeni internal coup within National Liberation Front in 1969

Eisenhower Doctrine

The Eisenhower Doctrine was a policy enunciated by Dwight D. Eisenhower on January 5, 1957, within a "Special Message to the Congress on the Situation in the Middle East". Under the Eisenhower Doctrine, a Middle Eastern country could request American economic assistance or aid from U.S. military forces if it was being threatened by armed aggression. Eisenhower singled out the Soviet threat in his doctrine by authorizing the commitment of U.S. forces "to secure and protect the territorial integrity and political independence of such nations, requesting such aid against overt armed aggression from any nation controlled by international communism". The phrase "international communism" made the doctrine much broader than simply responding to Soviet military action. A danger that could be linked to communists of any nation could conceivably invoke the doctrine.

Exercise Verity

Exercise Verity was the only major training exercise of the Western Union (WU). Undertaken in July 1949, it involved 60 warships from the British, French, Belgian and Dutch navies. A contemporary newsreel described this exercise as involving "the greatest assembly of warships since the Battle of Jutland."

Frozen conflict

In international relations, a frozen conflict is a situation in which active armed conflict has been brought to an end, but no peace treaty or other political framework resolves the conflict to the satisfaction of the combatants. Therefore, legally the conflict can start again at any moment, creating an environment of insecurity and instability.

The term has been commonly used for post-Soviet conflicts, but it has also often been applied to other perennial territorial disputes. The de facto situation that emerges may match the de jure position asserted by one party to the conflict; for example, Russia claims and effectively controls Crimea following the 2014 Crimean crisis despite Ukraine's continuing claim to the region. Alternatively, the de facto situation may not match either side's official claim. The division of Korea is an example of the latter situation: both the Republic of Korea and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea officially assert claims to the entire peninsula; however, there exists a well-defined border between the two countries' areas of control.

Frozen conflicts sometimes result in partially recognized states. For example, the Republic of South Ossetia, a product of the frozen Georgian–Ossetian conflict, is recognized by eight other states, including five UN members; the other three of these entities are partially recognized states themselves.

Glasnost

In the Russian language the word Glasnost (; Russian: гла́сность, IPA: [ˈɡɫasnəsʲtʲ] (listen)) has several general and specific meanings. It has been used in Russian to mean "openness and transparency" since at least the end of the eighteenth century.In the Russian Empire of the late-19th century, the term was particularly associated with reforms of the judicial system, ensuring that the press and the public could attend court hearings and that the sentence was read out in public. In the mid-1980s, it was popularised by Mikhail Gorbachev as a political slogan for increased government transparency in the Soviet Union.

Guerrilla war in the Baltic states

The Guerrilla war in the Baltic states or the Forest Brothers resistance movement was the armed struggle against Soviet rule that spanned from 1940 to the mid-1950s. After the occupation of the Baltic territories by the Soviets in 1944, an insurgency started. According to some estimates, 10,000 partisans in Estonia, 10,000 partisans in Latvia and 30,000 partisans in Lithuania and many more supporters were involved. This war continued as an organised struggle until 1956 when the superiority of the Soviet military caused the native population to adopt other forms of resistance. While estimates related to the extent of partisan movement vary, but there seems to be a consensus among researchers that by international standards, the Baltic guerrilla movements were extensive. Proportionally, the partisan movement in the post-war Baltic states was of a similar size as the Viet Cong movement in South Vietnam.

Hoxhaism

Hoxhaism is a variant of anti-revisionist Marxism–Leninism that developed in the late 1970s due to a split in the Maoist movement, appearing after the ideological dispute between the Communist Party of China and the Party of Labour of Albania in 1978. The ideology is named after Enver Hoxha, a notable Albanian communist leader.

Jamaican political conflict

The Jamaican political conflict is a long standing feud between right-wing and left-wing elements in the country, often exploding into violence. The Jamaican Labor Party and the People's National Party have fought for control of the island for years and the rivalry has encouraged urban warfare in Kingston. Each side believes the other to be controlled by foreign elements, the JLP is said to be backed by the American Central Intelligence Agency and the PNP is said to been backed by the Soviet Union and Fidel Castro.

Johnson Doctrine

The Johnson Doctrine, enunciated by U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson after the United States' intervention in the Dominican Republic in 1965, declared that domestic revolution in the Western Hemisphere would no longer be a local matter when "the object is the establishment of a Communist dictatorship". It is an extension of the Eisenhower and Kennedy Doctrines.

Le Cercle

Le Cercle is a foreign policy think-tank specialising in international security. Set up after World War II, the group has members from twenty-five countries and meets at least bi-annually, in Washington, D.C., United States.

Nixon Doctrine

The Nixon Doctrine (also known as the Guam Doctrine) was put forth during a press conference in Guam on July 25, 1969 by US President Richard Nixon and later formalized in his speech on Vietnamization on November 3, 1969. According to Gregg Brazinsky, Nixon stated that "the United States would assist in the defense and developments of allies and friends", but would not "undertake all the defense of the free nations of the world." This doctrine meant that each ally nation was in charge of its own security in general, but the United States would act as a nuclear umbrella when requested. The Doctrine argued for the pursuit of peace through a partnership with American allies. The Nixon Doctrine implied the intentions of Nixon shifting the direction on international policies in Asia, especially aiming for "Vietnamization of the Vietnam War."

Syrian Revolution

Syrian Revolution may refer to:

The Great Syrian Revolt

The Alawite Revolt of 1919

The Hananu Revolt

The 1963 Syrian coup d'état

The 1966 Syrian coup d'état

The Corrective Movement (Syria)

The Syrian Civil War

Titoism

Titoism is described as the post-World War II policies and practices associated with Josip Broz Tito during the Cold War, characterized by an opposition to the Soviet Union.It usually represents Tito's Yugoslav doctrine in Cold War international politics. It emerged with the Yugoslav Partisans' liberation of Yugoslavia independently of, or without much help from, the Red Army, resulting in Yugoslavia being the only Eastern European country to remain "socialist, but independent" after World War II as well as resisting Soviet Union pressure to become a member of the Warsaw Pact.

Today, Titoism is also used to refer to Yugo-nostalgia, a longing for reestablishment or revival of Yugoslavism or Yugoslavia by the citizens of Yugoslavia's successor states.

Ulbricht Doctrine

The Ulbricht Doctrine, named after East German leader Walter Ulbricht, was the assertion that normal diplomatic relations between East Germany and West Germany could occur only if both states fully recognised each other's sovereignty. That contrasted with the Hallstein Doctrine, a West German policy which insisted that West Germany was the only legitimate German state.

East Germany gained acceptance of its view from fellow Communist states, such as Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, and Bulgaria, which all agreed not to normalise relations with West Germany until it recognised East German sovereignty.

West Germany eventually abandoned its Hallstein Doctrine, instead adopting the policies of Ostpolitik. In December 1972, a Basic Treaty between East and West Germany was signed that reaffirmed two German states as separate entities. The treaty also allowed the exchange of diplomatic missions and the entry of both German states to the United Nations as full members.

Western Bloc

The Western Bloc during the Cold War refers to capitalist countries under the hegemony of the United States and NATO against the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact. The latter were referred to as the Eastern Bloc. The governments and press of the Western Bloc were more inclined to refer to themselves as the "Free World" or the "Western world", whereas the Eastern Bloc was often called the "Communist world or Second world".

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