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ما نشرته جريدة فالدوستا نيوز في29/4/2009

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Dr. Abdulamir Al-A’asam

Iraqi scholar shares views
Johnna Pinholster
The Valdosta Daily Times
The invasion has only created several collective dictatorships and deepened Iran’s influence on the country, Al-A’asam said.

“Because of the terrorism of Al-Qaeda, Iraq played a large price with victims who did not belong to any regime before the war, nor do they belong to those sectarians today,” he said.
Universities in Iraq today are not being used as academic institutions. The University of Al-Mustansiriyyah, is used by sectarians as a prison and jail, Al-A’asam said.
For Al-A’asam the real tragedy is the loss of human rights for many Iraqi scholars.
“I can’t imagine democratic principals in play when scholars are being slaughtered,” he said.
After his lecture Al-A’asam answered questions from the audience.
One asked if Iraqis were happy with the invasion.
“Imagine if a strange person comes to your house to take your clothes,” Al-A’asam said. “It would not be something you would agree with.”
Even though Iraqis are not happy with the invasion there is a general uncertainty that the country will fall into even more violent chaos once the American troops pull out, he said.
A person then asked if Al-A’asam would ever return to Iraq.
Al-A’asam said he would not return to Iraq as many of his academic publications branded him anti-sectarian and criticized those that distorted Islamic creeds to fit their needs.
Al-A’asam will teach at VSU for a year and a half. He holds a doctorate in religious philosophy from University of Cambridge, Cambridge, England, and has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in philosophy at Iraqi universities.
He is a founding member of the House of Wisdom, a multi-university, post-graduate research institute in Baghdad. He is also a former president of the Arabic League of Islamic Scholars.
At VSU he will teach Islamic studies and related issues.
His fellowship at VSU was made possible through a collaboration between VSU’s Center for International Programs and the Institute of International Education’s Scholar Rescue Fund.
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