Abdul Rahman Arif
|Abdul Rahman Arif Aljumaily
عبد الرحمن محمد عارف الجميلي
|3rd President of Iraq|
16 April 1966 – 17 July 1968
|Prime Minister||Abd ar-Rahman al-Bazzaz
|Preceded by||Abdul Salam Arif|
|Succeeded by||Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr|
|Prime Minister of Iraq|
10 May 1967 – 10 July 1967
|Preceded by||Naji Talib|
|Succeeded by||Tahir Yahya|
Baghdad, Ottoman Empire
|Died||24 August 2007 (aged 91)
|Political party||Arab Socialist Union|
|Battles/wars||1958 Iraqi coup
He was a career soldier, and supported the military coup in 1958 that overthrew the monarchy. He also supported the coup that brought his brother, Abdul Salam Arif, to power in 1963. His brother appointed him head of the army following the coup, and when the younger Arif died in a helicopter crash in April 1966 (a probable act of sabotage), Prime Minister Abdul Rahman al-Bazzaz became acting president; three days later, al-Bazzaz was chosen to become president, then al-Bazzaz immediately relinquished the presidency to Abdul Rahman Arif. It is speculated that the transfer of power possibly occurred because the Iraqi military thought that Abdul Salam should be succeeded by his weak and easier to manipulate brother instead. Arif was appointed president by the Iraqi Revolutionary Command Council. He continued his brother's policies, but with a more nationalistic profile.
Like his brother Abdul Salam, He was overt supporter of Egypt's pan-Arabist president Gamal Abdel Nasser. He sent Iraqi troops to fight in the Six-Day War of June 1967 against Israel which ended in considerable Arab casualties. Nonetheless, the Iraqi military performed better than the troops of other Arab states. Arif Abdul Razzak, another pro-Nasser Air Force Commander, attempted a coup d'état on Arif, and lightly bombed the Presidential Palace with Soviet MiG 17 jets, but the coup failed and he was arrested. It was his second failed coup attempt on the Arif government. President Arif went on TV to declare that on this occasion, Abdul Razzak would definitely be punished, only to then release him with a pardon.
His presidency was widely believed to be slack and indecisive. However, there are historical clues that he was not corrupt. The ill advised law that he passed in 1967 to absolve himself from paying income tax is probably an indication that he was not capable of getting wealth otherwise. On July 17, 1968, while Arif was sleeping, his own assistants along with members of the Ba'ath Party, Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr, overthrew him in a bloodless coup. As Arif and his brother had done in the 1963 coup against Qasim, the coalition declared victory once they had captured the radio station and the ministry of defense. It was accomplished when the defense minister, Hardan Al-Tikriti, phoned Arif informing him that he was no longer president. Arif was exiled to Turkey.
He returned to Iraq in 1979, when Saddam Hussein came to power, and largely stayed out of the public and political spotlight afterwards. He was allowed to leave the country once to undertake the Hajj. Arif left Iraq permanently after Hussein was removed from power by the U.S.-led invasion, and lived in Amman, Jordan from 2004. He died in Amman on August 24, 2007. He was married to Faika Abdul-Mageed Faris Alanee.
- "The existence of Israel is an error which we must put right. This is our opportunity to wipe out the disgrace which is Israel which has been with us since 1948. Our goal is clear- to wipe Israel off the map", speaking on the Radio, 1 June 1967
- "I hope there will be stability and security in all parts of Iraq and neighboring Arab countries,” he said. “I hope there will be national unity in Iraq by forgetting the past and looking for the future."
- "Abdel-Rahman Aref, 91, Former Iraqi President, Is Dead" The New York Times. August 25, 2007.
- "Iraq ex-president dies in Jordan", Middle East Online, August 24, 2007 at age 91.
- Scott-Baumann, Michael (May 2007) . ""The Causes of the Six-Day War of 1967". Conflict in the Middle East: Israel and the Arabs. Hodder 20th Century History (Second ed.). London, United Kingdom: Hodder Education. p. 25. ISBN 978-0-340-92934-6.
- "Abdel-Rahman Aref, 91, Former Iraqi President, Is Dead". The New York Times. August 25, 2007. Retrieved March 29, 2010.
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Abdul Rahman Arif|
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- Remembering Aref - Documentary Film Trailer
Abd ar-Rahman al-Bazzaz
|President of Iraq
April 16, 1966 – July 17, 1968
Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr
|Prime Minister of Iraq