The Middle East Essay

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While it may seem like an indigenous creation, the perception of the Middle East as a source of terrorism and violence in the United States is an archetype imported from historic Europe. The conceptualization of the Middle Eastern ‘terrorist’ is rooted in the time of Sassanid and Byzantine Empire competition. In this era the two empires identified themselves and their people in opposition to one another, beginning a pattern of “othering” and dehumanization that would continue for centuries and remain significant in the formation of Europe and the Middle East region. Later, the Iranian hostage crisis of 1979 and the 1983 Beirut barrack bombing solidified the imported concepts and provided an American context for the Middle Eastern terrorist. These attacks and the subsequent loss of Americans lives finalized the concept of Middle Eastern based terrorism, which was amplified by the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In contemporary post 9/11 history the Middle Eastern ‘other’ has become more polarized, violent, and barbaric in comparison to the United States ‘citizen’. State terror and torture have been attributed almost exclusively to the Middle East in popular Western media and society. Yet, state sponsored torture and terrorism is not a tool only utilized by the Middle East, or even most frequently by the Middle East. This paper will explore how the United States government employed torture as a tool of degradation and demoralization in the Baghdadi prison Abu Ghraib during the period

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