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 Adequacy sheds light at our darkest hour

 Author:  Topic:  Posted:
Sep 12, 2001
In light of yesterday's tragedy and the ongoing fallout, has realized that what the US badly needs right now is some facts. Due to our position as the web's premier source of controversial content, we are uniquely situated to provide you, the reader, with these facts in order for all of us to make some sense of these terrorist acts and those that caused them.

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A·ra·bi·a (-rb-) also A·ra·bi·an Peninsula (-b-n)
A peninsula of southwest Asia between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf. Politically, it includes Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, and Kuwait. Arabia has an estimated one third of the world's oil reserves.

We are hearing the word Arab being thrown about quite frequently in the media, on web discussion boards, and in conversations with friends and family. Let's look close at that listing of countries again, shall we?

Saudi Arabia
The United Arab Emirates

Interesting list, isn't it? You might even be shocked to discover that a couple of those countries are US allies, including the one that takes up the vast majority of the landmass. For those a little slow on the uptake, let's quickly review a few countries that are not on that list:

Israel (Bonus fact: This is where the Palestinians live)

And finally, in case you have trouble with long lists full of foreign-sounding words, here is a nice, pretty picture for you to look at. You may notice a fairly distinct land mass located just right of center in this picture. One of the big words on this land mass is 'Arabia'. Note that the word 'Arabia' doesn't appear anywhere else in this picture. Also note that the landmass in question makes up only a small portion of the overall picture.

We at are pleased to have had this opportunity to make you, our loyal readers, aware of some key facts that may or may not be related to recent terrorist activities. Thank you for reading.


Arab != from Arabia (2.00 / 1) (#4)
by bigmouth strikes on Wed Sep 12th, 2001 at 01:05:07 PM PST
From The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition (Copyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company)

  • A member of a Semitic people inhabiting Arabia, whose language and Islamic religion spread widely throughout the Middle East and northern Africa from the seventh century.
  • A member of an Arabic-speaking people.
  • An Arabian horse.
  • Offensive Slang. A waif.
I dunno about the last one, but the the second one is pretty clear to me.

The Arabic language is the official language of countries in the west Africa to Iraq in the east. Here's a map. Iran and Afghantistan speak other Persian languages.

Very true (5.00 / 2) (#5)
by fluffy grue on Wed Sep 12th, 2001 at 02:01:41 PM PST
Of course, that still means nothing with some of the countries which are often mentioned, such as Pakistan (where the primary language is Punjabi, one of the many Indian - meaning "from India," not "Native American" - languages).

Arabi statistics (5.00 / 1) (#6)
by chloedancer on Wed Sep 12th, 2001 at 05:38:29 PM PST
The population of Arabi is approximately 8,787.

The approximate number of families is 3,657.

The amount of land area in Arabi is 4.55 sq. kilometers.

The amount of surface water is 0.937 sq kilometers.

Arabi is positioned 29.95 degrees north of the equator and 89.99 degrees west of the prime meridian.

The distance from Arabi to Washington, DC is 990 miles.

The distance to the Louisiana State capital is 77 miles (as the crow flies).

(Just a reminder that "Arabi" is also the name for a ne'er-do-well, shabby cousin suburb of New Orleans... Louisiana -- America's own Third World Country and proud of it!)

Great information (none / 0) (#7)
by number nine on Wed Sep 12th, 2001 at 07:14:00 PM PST
Great information, and we should be sure to use the right terms when necessary. In this case however, the use of the word "Arab" is justified. Some of the material that was uncovered by the FBI today includes passports from the the United Arab Emirates, and the FBI has identified a handful of suspects, including a former commercial airline pilot from Saudi Arabia. Additionally, while Bin Laden is now a resident of Afghanistan, he is originally of Arabian descent. In fact, every suspect mentioned by the FBI to date has Arabian origins.

I applaud your attempt to inform the masses about the proper usa of the term "Arab," however under these circumstances it has been applied correctly.

Careful. (5.00 / 1) (#8)
by legolas on Wed Sep 12th, 2001 at 08:59:09 PM PST
In fact, every suspect mentioned by the FBI to date has Arabian origins.

Be careful with this, however. The initial suspects for Oklahoma were Arab too. With the large amount of Anti-Islamic FUD circulating around, and the high emotions everywhere, we have to be doublepluscareful not to lay blame until we're sure.

Besides that, I'm still not convinced that a pilot training manual and a rental car are abnormal things to find at an airport. Also, you would think that an organization capable enough to simultaniously hijack 4 planes would be smart enough not to leave incriminating evidence lying around to be found. *Conspiricy Theroy*


A minor (but necessary) correction (5.00 / 1) (#9)
by jukeboxcharlie on Fri Sep 14th, 2001 at 01:08:28 PM PST
Many of those countries you claim not to be Arab are in fact Arabic. Let's take a look at your original source,, but let's look "Arab" instead of Arabia.
"Arab- 1.A member of a Semitic people inhabiting Arabia, whose language and Islamic religion spread widely throughout the Middle East and northern Africa from the seventh century. 2.A member of an Arabic-speaking people."

So an Arab is either a resident of Arabia or a member of an Arabic speaking people. All the countries you excluded except Isreal and Turkey speak predominantly Arabic (and in Isreal, the Palestinians DO speak Arabic).

But do these nations perceive themselves as Arabs? Some do. I could not find info on Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Jordan or Lebanon. Israel (who consider themselves Israeli), Iran (Persian), Turkey (Turkish), and Sudan (who are a multiethnic conglomerate of sub-Saharan Africans and some Arab Egyptians) are not generally Arab.

However, the remainder of these countries do consider themselves Arab. (Incidentally, I admit not knowing what to make of the Pakistanis, who are more closely related ethnically to their hated rival India than to the Arab nation, but are closer politically and obviously religiously to the Arabs.)

"The Arab Republic of Egypt is a Socialist Democratic State based on the alliance of the working forces of the people. The Egyptian people are part of the Arab Nation and work for the realization of its comprehensive unity." Source- Constitution of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Article 1.

"Iraq is a part of the Arab Nation." Source- Constitution or Iraq, Artice 5.

"The people in the Syrian Arab region are a part of the Arab nation." Source- Constitution of the Syrian Arab Republic, Article 1.

I am confident that if I could track down info on Jordan, Libya and Lebanon, those countries would turn out to be self proclaimed Arab states.

This is my sig. Here I have a pithy quote or wry comment.

Nearly right (none / 0) (#10)
by Anonymous Reader on Fri Sep 28th, 2001 at 08:43:07 AM PST
"All the countries you excluded except Isreal and Turkey speak predominantly Arabic (and in Isreal, the Palestinians DO speak Arabic)"
I am certain the other countries on the list
Iran (Farsi)
Pakistan (urdu)
Afghanistan (various, including Pashtun)
Sudan (various, less than 20% arabic speakers)
Would be shocked to discover that they DO speak arabic...or "count themselves as Arabs"!
It should aslo be noted that Iran and parts of afghanistan are Shi-ite, about as "religiously linked" as the protestants and catholics of northern Ireland!!
Turks neither speak arabic, nor are arabs, and as a secular state is not Islamic. As for Lebanon (30% Christian) and Iraq (10% Christian)
Just my 2 cents


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