On June 26, Seifiddine Rezgui wandered onto the Sousse beach resort in Tunisia and opened fire, killing 38, including 30 vacationing British citizens. The Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack after information was revealed that Rezgui attended an ISIS training camp in Libya and was part of an ISIS sleeper cell in Tunisia. … More Is the United Kingdom Following the United States in Syria?
The editors of the Middle East Research and Information Project have a great article up about the uprisings in the Middle East (and how the uprisings are framed) and, specifically, in Syria. Two seemingly contradictory passages caught my eye that describe a Syrian uprising in pessimistic terms, but also as inevitably successful. Consider passage one: … More How to Determine if the Syrian Uprising is Successful
In The National Interest Marina Ottaway describes the chaotic nature of the transitional periods in Egypt and Tunisia as a consequence of a lack of an agreed upon transitional plan. The transitional governments in both countries are illegitimate and must make the fundamental shifts necessary to allow elections and the creation of an elected government. … More Should We Be Concerned for Egypt’s Revolution
It has been said lately by Western media outlets that the tent movement going on in Israel is a ‘revolution‘ or ‘Israeli Arab Spring.’ This could not be any more disingenuous, incorrect, or belittling of the Arab Spring movements. Israelis are mostly protesting about prices, specifically for homes and necessary goods. This is the one and only … More Dear Israeli Tent Movement, You are not Tahrir Square
There are many challenges to real reform in the Middle East. These are none of them Now that these longstanding rulers are no longer in power in the two countries, where do these seemingly leaderless Arab revolts take Tunisians and Egyptians, and how will they effect change to their systems of governance? Virtually all previous … More Stupid Reasons to be Skeptical of the Arab Spring
After the fall of President Ben Ali in January (and then Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi in February), protests have quietly continued throughout Tunisia, even as the interim government organizes elections. Slow demonstrable change and periodic violence have led some to question many to wonder if the revolution has stalled in Tunis. This pessimism is compounded … More Change in the Casbah: Optimism in Tunisia
So far, the Arab Awakening has toppled two regimes, in Egypt and Tunisia. Obviously, both countries have fared far better than their bloodier counterparts in Syria and Libya, but serious problem remain. Both countries have postponed elections (both until October – though this is not necessarily a bad thing) and have experienced revolutionary flashbacks with … More What Does a Successful Arab Revolution Look Like?
The Syrian people do not go into uprising because the country is stable! Iraq is immune from the winds of change! At least Assad gave his interview before protests struck. Now Maliki is saying that Iraq is fine while crushing the protest movement. The denial is certainly similar, though the use of informal armed gangs … More The Words of Denial
After the relatively peaceful revolution in Tunisia, many were shocked by the escalated violence utilized by the Mubarak regime in Egypt. Yet after the vicious response to protests by Qaddafi in Libya, hindsight has perhaps redefined the definition of a peaceful revolution. Rather than adopting the mass protest styles that resulted in regime collapse in … More Is Syria The New Libya?
Despite the disingenuous fuss that has been made about the mention of 1967 borders in the President’s Cairo II speech, Obama really did not say anything, despite standing at the microphone for nearly 50 minutes. In many ways unlike his Cairo speech in 2009, President Obama’s beautiful rhetoric was generally empty of any real meaning, … More Obama’s Empty Words