The Making of Modern Iraq: A Product of World Forces

Synopsis

The advent of a democratic state among the Arabs arrests at once the attention of the political scientist. When considered from the standpoint of Iraq's historical rôle as a source of social origins, as a strategic center of imperial conflict and power, as the victim of centuries of oppression and exploitation following unparalleled achievements, and, finally, as a ward of world concert for political and social tutelage in the name of the sacred trust of civilization, the story should assume, for the general student of human affairs, fascinating proportions. Whatever may be said to the contrary, the new Iraq must stand in considerable measure for the deliberate repudiation of the practice of annexation by victors. May we not say that she represents a measurable recognition of human interdependence and world neighborliness?

The fundamental ideas of article 22 of the Covenant of the League of Nations are the mandate, tutelage, trust, and their ultimate termination. All these are inherent in the parent-offspring relationship. These, as is the way of nature's laws, crept into the concepts and practices of early systems of private law. The Roman law incorporated the ideas of the mandate and tutelage; Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-American law developed the idea of trust. It remained for modern times to take these ideas into the larger field of public policy and administration. The United States did her own domestic state-making under the ægis of these ideas.

As for article 22, the United States is due much credit for initiating the scheme, and Great Britain for successfully executing it, while other powers watched, criticized and approved.

An extensive book on the story is long overdue. Shorter accounts so far published have been inadequate. It is hoped that this work will be a contribution approximating the present need.

Additional information

Contributors:
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Norman, OK
Publication year:
  • 1935