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  • Arab Spring

    Lessons of Libya

    That indigenous forces backed by Western military power could overthrow an odious unpopular regime backed by a second-rate military ought to come as no surprise. That was, after all, exactly what the Bush Administration did in Afghanistan. In fact, operationally, the fall of Kabul looks a lot like the fall … More

    Arab Autumn: Elections, Crackdowns, and Sectarian Tensions Part 1

    The promises of the “Arab Spring” wilted in many Arab countries during the long, hot summer, and now these nations face uncertain prospects in the autumn. As Tunisia and Egypt take the initial steps toward democratic transition, they face significant challenges, including the need to revive slumping economies, address sectarian … More

    Egypt: The Military's Chaotic Approach to Democratic Transition

    Nine months ago, Egyptians were protesting in Tahrir Square, calling for former president Hosni Mubarak to step down from office. Today, Egyptians are demanding that the country’s military, a once revered entity, return the country to civilian rule in next month’s parliamentary elections. Since Mubarak’s fall, the Supreme Council of … More

    New Technology and the Arab Revolt

    Political and technological changes have a history of going hand in hand. Technology empowers individuals to overcome their isolation and connect to share ideas, information, hopes, and dreams. The most recent phenomenon in this long history (which dates back at least as far as the Gutenberg printing press) is the … More

    Bahrain Walks a Political Tightrope

    Last weekend, Bahrain held special elections to fill 18 parliamentary seats left vacant after members of the Islamist al Wefaq party resigned last February amid anti-government protests. Despite the government’s attempts to fill the seats without incident, Bahrain’s opposition seized the opportunity to revive anti-government protests, which the government had … More

    Tunisia's Hizb Al-Nahda: A Nightmare for Some and a Blessing for Others

    Next month, Tunisians will go to the polls for the first time since former president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fled the country last January. Voters will determine the members of the National Constituent Assembly, which will be tasked with re-writing the constitution and determining the selection process of the … More

    Where's Qadhafi?

    The search for Muammar Qadhafi has intensified after Libyan rebels seized most of Tripoli. The initial focus was on Qadhafi’s Bab al-Aziziya compound and nearby apartment blocks in a neighborhood that contains many Qadhafi loyalists. Today, the chairman of the rebel Transitional National Council, Mustafa Abul Jalil, stated that the … More

    Arab Media (New and Old) Under Attack

    As governments in the Middle East struggle to come to grips with the surging demands for freedom of expression among their populations, media across the spectrum are coming under attack. Repressive regimes do not discriminate between old media and new. Sometimes the threat does not originate from a government but … More

    U.S. Agenda for Libya Must Include Securing of WMD, Arms Stockpiles

    Rebel forces reportedly took control of Muammar Qadhafi’s fortified Bab al-Aziziya command base in Tripoli today as they further consolidated control of the capital. Confusion reigned amid reports that Qadhafi’s son Seif al-Islam, whom the opposition Transitional National Council had claimed to detain, apparently roamed free inside Tripoli rallying support … More

    Egypt Must Take Stronger Action After Sinai Terrorist Attacks

    A string of coordinated cross-border terrorist attacks against Israelis launched from Egypt’s Sinai peninsula and Gaza yesterday underscored one of the ominous side effects of the “Arab Spring”: Egypt’s state security institutions have lost control over the Sinai region and are fighting a losing battle against Islamist terrorist groups and … More