“In January 2003, during the buildup to the war in Iraq, the journalist and blogger Steven Sailer published an article in the American Conservative in which he warned readers about a feature of that country that had been ignored in the ongoing debate.
“As in many traditional Middle Eastern societies, Iraqis tend to marry their cousins. About half of all marriages are consanguineous (including that of Saddam Hussein, who filled many government positions with his relatives from Tikrit). The connection between Iraqis’ strong family ties and their tribalism, corruption, and lack of commitment to an overarching nation had long been noted by those familiar with the country. [. . .] Sailer presciently suggested that Iraqi family structure and its mismatch with the sensibilities of civil society would frustrate any attempt at democratic nation-building.”
— Steven Pinker, writing on “Strangled by Roots,” in the Aug. 6 issue of the New Republic
What a real star looks like. Marilyn Monroe