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The Mashreq.docx

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Political Science
POLI 340
Rex Brynen

The Mashreq Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Palestine the uncertain Mashreq .basic data .state formation .regime dynamics .impact of the “Arab Spring” .what next? mashreq: the eastern bit.lavant refers to syria, lebonan, jordan, israel, palestine excluding egypt and iraq. central alqaeda has been seriously damaged by counter terrorism scene. but alqaed name has been franchised. offshoots of alqaeda. authorized to use the alqaeda name. you kinda lsn to alqaeda name. AQ branch active in north africa which is the offshoot who fought the algerian civil war. theres AQAP in arabian peninsula. AQI (alqaeda in iraq) --> syrian civil war --> AQI branched out in syria but we have seen a split in that AQ btw jabbat ul nusra and ISIS (islamic state of iraq or something). shabab --> mall attack in narobi. it has vowed allegiance to AQ. they are affiliates of AQ. they dont use the AQ name. shabab itself has splits cos of pressures on it. aq coming back? regional ones have done very well cos the collapse of former authoritarian states. shabab is weaker then before. aqim has got more life cos of weapons coming out of libya and fall of authoritarian regimes. aqap --> overthrow of salah regime in yemen has meant that theres an ungoverned space which gives them space to operate. only drone strikes can attack them. syrian civil war --> AQ in iraq was badly damaged cos of sunni consitituency cos aq was attacking a lot of shia and backlash came from shia and sunni leaders went to americans for protection against AQ. AQ was also damaged cos of americans. AQ was badly weaken and since american have left aq has come back a bit. aq in iraq has been able to play off corruption and shia dominance in iraqi govt. jihadist flocking to syria to fight against the alawi govt. syrian civil war shows no sign of dying down, it can become an incubator for radicals. also the secterian element of the conflict: plays to a kind of radicalization of secterian which AQ can play as playing against infidels and SHIAS. the foreignors fighting in syria are larger than those who fought in afghanistan against the soviets. syria is the major security challenge since 9/11. its very hard to resolve. add to it the coup against morsi: signal it sends to radical islamist groups is that democ cant work and this is a bad thing cos they might become more radical now. small number of radicals can have a very large impact cos of radical views. rex --> pessimistic about syria. assad is very coilent. the regime has prolly killed more ppl than all the terrorist attacks for years. problem for radicalization is that theres a thinking that west is supporting bashar cos it could stop the war if it wanted to it could stop the revolution if it wanted to but it wont cos it wants to see many dead muslims and so that is making them more radical. so unlike libyan civil war which generated alot of pro american libyan but in syria it generated more syrian against west. same view in iraq cos they think US can do anything. so US wants this bloodshed and civil war and iraq goin mad with nothing. lebonon: partly free rating by freedom house rating. palestine had been rated partly free when elections were competitive but aftr 2006 elections and civil war followin it led to a fall in the rating. •Iraq •60% Arab/Shiite, 20% Arab/ Sunni, 20% Kurd (mainly Sunni), others kurdish identify as kurdish and the religion isnt more of a strong identify scene for em. but sunni shia split in iraq has become more imp. there are other small minorities are. many of the smaller minorities have fled iraq in violence. •Jordan •92% Sunni, 6% Christian •small Chechen and Circassian minority •Palestinian vs East Bank ethnically arab. its cleavage is jordanians originally from palestine and east bank jordanians. about half half. civil war 70 71 btw monarchy and palestenian liberation organization. at times its poli relevant at times it very fuzzy at times its just something you dont talk about in polite convos •Lebanon •35% Shiite, 25% Sunni, 5% Druze; 25% Maronite christians, 10% other Christian •no census since 1932!cos no one then the shias want to know the percentage cos shia population has gone up since 1932 and others is unclear. releigious secterian scene is very institutionalised. millet system in ottoman where minority communities were semi autonomous. no where will u see this more than in lebenon now where communities governed by personal status laws that are unique to their communities. marriage, divorce, inheritance laws. parli seats assigned based on sects. secterian identity is build into the poli and legal system. reinforces secterianism. •Palestine •95% Sunni no deep secterian scene. historically muslim christian differences werent big. that has changed a bit with rise of islamist groups like hammas. secterian split is much weaker and its cos the defining national experience was of occupation and that created an overall sense of palesteniasm which was quite strong. •Syria •90% Arab, 9% Kurds •70% Sunni, 13% Alawi, 10% Christian, 3% Druze, 3% Shiite kurds concentrated in north east of the country. kurds in many ditricts in majority. so minority is a majority in the part of the country (imp: how concentrated a minority is in a country) so in parts of syria there are areas of kurdish majority. kurds are spread btw iraq, syria, turkey and iran. they were promised a state at the end of ww1 but dint get it. significant other minorities. alawis. in many cases the other minorities are also concentrated. druze --> south west of the country alawi --> north west historically been a pattern of disproportionate recruitment in the army of minority groups. particularly the alawi sect. alawis do it not cos of religion but community kind of solidarity north africa has the issue of burbur minority. brubur issue important in algeria and libya. not really in tunisia where minority is very small. but in moroco its not really that much cos of integration. in contrast to this. mashreq: quite significance ethnic and or religious pluralism. lebonan: no majority group. significant identity politics in these countires. This division has defined the politics in Iraq. Ethno sectarian politics has been deeply powerful there. If u go back to the dictatorship period in Iraq (saddam)  the line was very fuzzy particularly in Baghdad where mum was shia and dad was sunni. Iraqi tribes that are both shia and sunni. Saddams secret police dint bother to record wthr suspects were shia or sunni cos it wasn’t imp then. So civil war  sectarian. Cos if you are not on ur side then they kill you. Bosnia. Balkans etc. East Beirut  Christian West Beirut  muslim (shia sunni split within) Christian community has shrunk You can see how minorities are concentrated. modern state formation yes borders are artificial but are not artificial and that by redrawing borders wont work out. Like we ended up with jewish state of Israel but the arab Israel state dint go away. • post-WWI League of Nations Mandates: France got assigned mandate for Syria(including Lebanon) Lebanon administered separatelywith Christian (slight) majority population growing Britain assigned mandates for Iraq, Palestine (including Transjordan) Hashemite monarchy established in Iraq (Faysal) Hashemite monarchy established in Transjordan (Abdullah) Balfour declaration (the Israel one) applied to Palestine (east of Jordan River) British gave Iraq and Jordan nominal independence btw ww1 n 2. During ww2 there was a pro german coup in Iraq and brits went in and took control. modern state formation achieving independence Syria, Lebanon growing nationalist agitation during interwar period gain effective independence after WWII as presidential/ parliamentary republics Britain Iraq and Transjordan gain independence as constitutional monarchies in interwar period violence in Palestine grows through interwar period, culminating in UN partition (1947), Israeli declaration of independence (1948), Arab- Israeli war remaining Palestinian territories (West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza) occupied by Israel in 1967 modern state formation Iraq Monarchy (put in place by the brits) overthrown in 1958 coup series of coups and counter-coups for rest of 1950s and into the 1960s. Ba’th Party (1940 oriigin. Arab nationalist party. The relevant identity was one of arabs. Sectarian identity was irrelevant. Arab world has been divided by colonial entry and the arabs have to come together. They were imp in Iraq and Syria) seizes power in 1963 (briefly) and 1968 actually seizes power. Saddam Hussein (first VP) then emerges as President (1979), until overthrown by US intervention in 2003 deeply authoritariena regime. Regime in which parents would publicly praise saddam at the dinner table cos of the whole kids goin out and talking about it. If they thought u were a regime opponent u would disappear. Secret police everywhere. repression: Halabja 1988: used chem weapons on its own population. Syria series of coups through late 1940s and 1950s 1 of the things which sparked coups in Syria was the failure of arabs in the arab Israeli war 1967 as it was in Egypt also a factor. Most coup prone place. 1958-63 joins with Egypt as United Arab Republic 1963  UAR broke up. Coup  baath party Ba’th party seizes power in 1963 coup, but considerable infightingfollows; split between military vs civilian, Iraqi vs Syrian wings This internal baath party issues continued till  Hafiz al-Asad seizes power in 1970, rules until death in 2000 It went from being one of the most unstable countries in 1970s to being one of the most stable one. powerbase combines Ba`th party, military and state bureaucracy, Alawi community, other minorities Very authoritarian. The army, the military the bureaucracy and the loyalty of alawi and other minority communities with the Baath cos baath said it doesn’t matter if ur a minority cos what matters is is you are arab. repression: Hama 1982 10 20 thousand casualties. After hama who was gonna revolt? Cos regime was very bad.  the dynamics of non-sectarian sectarianization in Syria a key part of the stability of the regime was the active support it enjoyed from non sunni minorities. This is not to say that the regime dint have support from many sunnis cos a lot of state employees. Sunni business man became cosy with regime later too. But the minority was very close to the regime. Paradox: part of the stability of the regime is based on its support from the minorities and on the other hand the ideology of the regime is against the notion of ideologies. Cos they said we are all arabs and that’s what matters. So regime: secular ideology that is partly based on support from a sectarian community. And this support dint come cos of religion. Cos like a lot of alawis don’t really know what alawi is. Alawi instead of becoming a religious ideology became like a community thingy. Like saudia Arabia where religious ideology is extended by the Saudi. But alawi supported the regime cos they were our guys not cos of religion. You get the same thing in Iraq. The regime disproportionately drew support from sunni minority. Senior ranks in the baath party, a lot of sunni ranks. Secret police dint report shia or sunni. Saddam dint talk in term of sectarian term. Saddam came to power he tended to recruit ppl he could trust  his family, his region (his guys) and they happen to be sunni. So saddam dint have a sectarian scene in his mind. He was quite secular. modern state formation Lebanon - National Pact (1943) established foundations for consociational political system: IN WHICH POLI POWERS IS ASSINGED TO IDENTITY GROUPS. o President=Maronite (THE MOST POWERFUL ROLE AT THAT TIME), Prime Minister=Sunni, Speaker=Shiite. Cabinet portfolios were broken down too. o 6:5 ratio of Christians : Muslims in parliament, senior appointments o each religious community has own personal status laws (millet kinda thingy) o sectarian electoral system (so many sunni shia druze seats etc for MPs) you just don’t get to vote for your own mp but u get to vote for all. Its an attempt to force compromise btw different groups to get local alliances even though the system is deeply sectarian. It still happens a bit. - communal and class inequalities Christian community: economically advantaged. Poors and rich in all sects but avg Christian is better off. This has changed a lot over time. Its not clear if this is true now too. Christians were econ and poli better off historically and this was a source of greiviance. Neo patrimonial patron client system. Poli support exchanged for resources coming from up. Lebonese are against corruption except for their leader who is not as bad as the others. The only electoral system where u get to bring ur own ballot. The reason is you can then buy vote. You don’t have a standard vote. Or u could bring a carbon paper to show that u voted for that person to get patronage. Very weak social welfare system. Health care and education is private. Deeply corrupt. Deep patronage. Strong sectarian identities. - sectarian neopatrimonialism - impact of regional environment deeply effected by regional scene.  Arab-Israeli conflict • Palestinian refugees, PLO (1960-1982) Came in lebonan. 400 000 palestenians in lebonan today. Growth of plo or gurella groups. Cross border attack with Israel. • Israeli attacks and occupation lebonan(1982-2000) Hizbollah is born which pushes Israelis out of lebonan. Now lebonan is being deeply effected by the Syrian civil war. Hizbollah has combat units deployed in Syria fighting on regime side. Refugees are fleeing from Syria into lebonan. Sunnis in lebonan raise funds for opposition in Syria. o Arab nationalism Popular in 50s and 60s. o regional competition place where other countries and powers compete. Hizbollah gets massive support from iran. Massive support from saudia for the future largest sunni party. So its still a place where regional actors. Its also tru the other way around as lebonan can now interfare in some one elses civil war (Syria) Lebanon - 1958 civil war (along muslim pro arab nationalist opposition vs conservatice anti arab nationalist Christian govt) - 1975-90 civil war • Syrian intervention (1976- ): managed to stop it but they stopped it by shelling urban areas. Brutal occupation • Taif Agreement (1989) rebalances Lebanese system  ended civil war taif did the following: • powers of President weakened, those of Prime Minister and Speaker strengthened • 1:1 ratio of Christians to Muslims in Parliament • Hariri assassination (hizbolla certainly), the “Cedar Revolution,” and Syrian withdrawal (2005) the national pact system tweaked not changed. Couple of attacks on Egyptian troops: number of soldiers dead. Egyptian politics: demonstration and suppression suggests that military backed regimes enjoy a lot of support but there are also their muslim brotherhood supporters. Muslim brother hood can continue to have demonstrations shows that its still there. The attacks on the security force: in south Sinai. That along with the attack in ismalia. It strengthens the govt stance that they are against terrorism and they are trying to clear it. So when there are attacks against the army, that feeds into that narrative. That it’s a battle against Islamic terrorism. So these attacks don’t weaken the govt. stance but strengthens it. We again saw ppl calling for general cici to run for elections. He keeps saying he doesn’t wanna run but that’s not convincing. Protests in sudan: initially sparked by prices. Great deal of force being used to suppress it. It has only kept the protests going. Some split in the ruling party, president bashirs ruling party about how to deal with the the protests. So far the demonstrations haven’t ignited the country (specific to some social groups) but its very hard to tell how they will go on and will become a full national scne or not. One thing that weakens the regime, eversince the end of civil war, that civil war cant be use an excuse to avoid other issues. So it’s a vulnerable period for the regime cos they cant blame stuff on civil war anymore and the population is expecting better stuff. Critical stuff: open splits in the ruling party. Open splits in the military units. (mutiny). Rapid escalation of the protests in the country? So far demonstrations haven’t been that big. So far no splits seen so obviously in the country. So like someone from regime can come out and go like oh the pres is this and that so other ppl may join in OR if nothing happens and protests go on then the pres might be worried that security forces may think the pres is prob and we have to get rid of him (like in Egypt) Us operation against shabab leader in Somalia (dint go well. They were fired upon and had to withdraw) Operation against alqaeda leader in Tripoli (went better and now the guy captured is somewhere on a ship on middle east) the raid isn’t popular in Libya. The Libyan govt may have known or may not have known. The possibilities: they weren’t told in advance or they were or they were told just 15 mins bfre it. The reason is cos they are afraid of the operation being leaked out. The poli consequences: it wont be popular in Libya. It may strengthern islamist forces. Destabilize the govt which is alrdy under so much issues. How much was the operation done by Libyans and by americans? Syrian chems: mixing machines destroyed. Production equipment destruction. It makes it difficult to produce more and fill ammunitins. Us is clearly very pleased with the degree od cooperations from Syrians and the Russians. Things are moving ahead faster. Syrian have been cooperative too by moving the stock pile to center locations to destroy. They can adulterate the agents to make them less lethal. And then u destroy the less lethal stuff cos it might be easier to destroy them like that. Intl law thingy about how if chem weapons are taken out to Jordan. Prob is Syria signed on to chem weapons convention that prohibits export and import of chem weapons. So you cant send them to Jordan. You can adulterate the chem weapons make them less lethal. Then argue they are not chem weapons. And then ship em out of the country. Part chemistry part intl lawyering. The issue is border with Jordan is not secure. Much of the Syrian opposition is not happy with this cos they would want us to bomb Syria to help them but US are quite happy with their cooperation with Russia on this. (functional cooperation) which can then be build upon to geta civil war end. The US policy wants a negotiated end to the war. And so the cooperation with Russia will help this. Agreement in tunisa  there will be a technocratic govt in Tunisia governing until the next elections occur. Those negotiations are alrdy under way. They still have to have finalise the constitution but then crisis occurred. Jordan • King Abdullah (French wanted Syria. Brits dint want allies to fight. They stopped faysal marching to Syria by saying oh we will give u both: countries brit made Abdullah king) with a lot of brit influence in bureacry brit general of the army • annexes West Bank (1950) at end of arab asraeli war. • assassinated (1951) • abdullahs son King Talal (1951-1952)  brought major reforms • removed on mental health grounds • son  King Hussein (1952-99) rules during often tumultuous era (made modern Jordan) very unstable in 50s 60s and early 70s • rise of Arab nationalism (not frndly with monarchs and were seen as pro western), coup attempts against him by nationalist army officers. Secret contacts with Israelis. Arab isralei war 1967  Israeli tells him to stay out but he says he cant cos if I do ill be overthrown event though he knew he will lose. He lost. • Israeli occupation of West Bank (1967) • rise of PLO, he fought Jordanian civil war (1970-71) to expel PLO from jordan • Parliamentary politics was important in Jordan till 1950s were the parliaments would even criticizes the king but then king  limiting and suspension of parliamentary politics (late 1950s- 1980s) cos he claims the west bank (occupied by Israel) and since its under Israeli occupation he cant have it cos u cant hold elections there • disengagement from West Bank (1988) (gives up his claim when it becomes crystal clear that they don’t want to be with him) • begins political liberalization (1989-) reallowing competitive multi party elections. Jordan is the case where the elections are more or less free and fair but the way politics is conducted tilts the balance of power in favor of the palace. King Hussein died  • King Abdullah II (1999- ) modern (non)state formation Palestine Imp for Palestine, Palestine diaspora, Jordan and Lebanon • establishment of PLO (1964) under the auspises of the arab leage. 1948 forced displacement from Israel, annexation of the WB by Jordan left the palestenian political leadership fractured. The rise of arab nationalism in 50s left the old poli leadership discreditied. So palestenians looked towards pan Arabism to liberate them. They kinda hoped that arab victory over Israel will come around in their liberation. The plo of 1964 was an effort by arab regimes to harness the palestenian issues. The plo wasn’t really independent and popular amongst palestenians. That changed aftr 1967 cos after the defeat of arab forces dealt a fatal blow that arab nationalism will get them liberation. So cos of that very small gurella palestenian organizations (established in 1950s) those organistaion began to gain greater credibility that we have to do it khud and take control of our own national destiny. • Fateh-led takeover of PLO (1968- ), Yasser Arafat emerges as PLO Leader (fatah - largest palestenian gurella group overtook plo from within) Arafat emerged as the new leader. Genuinely palestenian nationalist organization. This battle in carame in 68. These gurella thingys were attractive to palestenians aftr the failed Israeli attack on gurella groups and loads of palestenians came forward to join them. • changing Fateh/PLO goals: original goal was the establishment of a non sectarian state in all of Palestine but that was also in essense the elimination of the state of Israel. This goal was till 1970s. plo led by fatah shifted away from that goal in 1974 to a 2 state solution cos it became clear that Israel isn’t going anywhere. • from “a non-sectarian state in all of Palestine” to a two state solution, 1974-88 • hastened by Lebanese civil war(75 – 89) one of the factors that casued this transformation in plo goals. Cos plo was largely involved in that civil war, 1982 israeli invasion made this transformation possible too, 1987-90 intifada  making wb and gaza more imp in the palestenian issue, 1990-91 Gulf war (expulsion of a lot palestenians from the gulf) most palestenians don’t live in Palestine any more. They were driven out of now what Israel is today. The notion that wb and gaza are the centre is not accepted very easily. It was hard to focus on ppl just to focus on a 2 state solution to just wb and gaza. • emergence of Hamas as a (non-PLO) Islamist alternative in late 1980s, and main political competitor to PLO and fatah ( offshoot from palestenian muslim brotherhood which has argued that it should focus on islam from roots and not get involved in military scene or politics) First palestenian occurs  lots of muslim brother hood ppl say no no we should be fighting  hammas Hammas emerged as major rival to fatah They are about tied for popularity The popularity changes from time to time. Hammas is not plo. There have been negotiations to join but they cant agree on proportion of representation they will get in the exec. Palestine Peace negotiations btw israel and palestine begun in 1992 (end of first world war). Palestenians weren’t recognized by Israel and palestenians had to negotiate by showing themselves as Jordanians and these secret negotiation led to oslo accord. • Oslo Accord establishes interim Palestinian Authority with limited powers over some areas, pending permanent status negotiations under oslo the territories were chopped in areas a b and c in the west bank. Area a (palestenians had civil and security scene) b( civil only had poli control) area c (nothing controlled by palestenians) something similar happened in gaza too • Arafat elected President (1996) • permanent status talks fail (2000-01) as second intifada erupts • Arafat dies (2004), succeeded by Mahmud Abbas • Israel withdraws from Gaza (2005) in large part cos it wanted to remove the gazans from the equation and wanted to focus on the west bank, the areas where it wanted to hold on too. So after that there are no more Israeli settlers left in gaza but there are many in the isreali occupies Palestine. • Abbas wins presidential election, but Hamas wins PLC elections (parli elections) (2006)  intl community not happy with this win. They try to isolate hamas and us wanted fatah to move against hamas. fatah partly lost cos it dint know how to use its political system. (too many fatah candidates for the same seat) • Fateh-Hamas conflict (2007-)  short civil war in gaza. Hammas took control of gaza. regime dynamics: Iraq west bank still looks like that area a b c thingy. But plo is running civil affairs for much of population which is controlled by fatah and suppresses hammas. We have better polling data for Palestine then any other middle east country even then turkey. Also Israelis say if they negotiate with plo and abbas but what if hammas doesn’t agree to it cos hammas controls gaza and plo rules wb. That is deeply problametic. Hammas has been saying that if plo signs a deal which is endorsed by a referendum they will accept. And hammas has signaled that they will be ok with a 2 state solution. But it sint clear how much of the Israel occupied land will be returned to the 2 state thingy or is it just the 2 state solution with the areas how they alrdy are divided. Will refugees return to Israel or what? Hammas itself is internally divided. Some hammas members believe in the 2 state solution. They just don’t believe Israel will do that and so go for the use of force. There are those hammas members who want to liberate the whole of Palestine from Israel. Hammas isn’t clearly telling their position except just vaguely signaling that they will be ok with a negotiated solution of this sort cos they are hoping plo fails in the peace talk and everything will fall in their lap. So they don’t need to keep up with a very detailed position right now and show what they are thinking to others. Hammas a year ago was really please cos there were no peacetalks and cos the govt helped them. But now the new Egypt govt is anti hammas. They also had a falling around with iran cos hammas doesn’t support assad in Syria. They are relatively quiet in the peace negotiations and they are waiting for the peace process to break down. Hammas was a party for struggle against Israel but now it has an effective cease fire with Israel. Plus its an islmist party which hasn’t really tried to islamisize the gaza strip. You don’t have to wear hijab. Ppl lsn to music. Very lil imposition of Islamic conservative values. Prob that hammas has it’s a islamist liberation group which isn’t engaged in Islamism or liberation fighting and so it has to worry that it sort of angry’s radical young members (jihadist) saying that hammas isn’t doing anything and ill just go join some jihadist group. Hammas hates jihadist groups and rocketed them and what not. They have to talk to a couple of jihadist groups cos of issues and tolerate them but hammas doesn’t like jihadist groups. Hammas has a problem that its insufficiently islamist and militant and so it has a problem with its radical flank. IRAQ • overthrow of Saddam followed by insurgency against US and internal civil war 2003 civil war followed. Which was partly an insurgency against American occupation and partly also a civil war btw Iraqi groups. • 100,000+ dead (mainly in insurgent attacks and sectarian violence) a lot of ppl die when occupation begans. Then the violence goes down but then goes up from 2004 – 2006 and then decline till 2008 • security situation begins to stabilize following US surge, “Anbar awakening,” partly cos US puts in more troops but also cos a lot of anti American sunni groups ended up becoming anti alqaeda who were bombing em and what not and so they joined the us who armed them and equipped them and alqaeda in Iraq which has engaged in a lot of violence against shia without shias responding until they bombed a shia mosque tha al aksari mosque which led a to shia response where shia were attacking sunnis and what not and sunni leaders too ran to americans for protection so you literally had the insurgent leaders asking for ceasefires and help (sunnis did this) but violence continues ONLU SUNNI RAN TO AMERICANS COS OF SHIAAND ALQAEDA. But kheir the violence declined steadily. Us troop withdrew in 2011 although the Iraqi govt and the US both wanted US to stay in some number but there was no way they could get that deal throught the Iraqi parli and so they withdrew. • US troops withdraw (2011) regime dynamics: Iraq .new Iraqi constitution (2005) .parliamentary system with weak, indirectly-chosen president chosen by 2/3rds parliamentary majority PM has a more imp role in Iraq. .open-list PR electoral system (2010) by governate. Open list means you vote for individual list. If you get 12 seats the 12 candidates will be in parli. In closed list the pr system the party decides who get the seats instead of the electorate cos it lists its ppl. .Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) enjoys local autonomy In the first election the elections weren’t through the governate (had used the pr system) but what happened was sunnis tended to not vote
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