Arab Spring Implications for British Policy

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140-the Arab Spring
Implications for
British Policy
October 2011Foreword 1
preface 2
introduction 3
Chapter 1: Regional Overview 4
Eugene Rogan (university of Oxford)
Chapter 2: Tunisia: the Trailblazer and the Benchmark 8
Michael J. Willis (university of Oxford)
Chapter 3: Egypt: transition to democracy 13
Tariq Ramadan (university of Oxford)
Chapter 4: Six lessons from Libya 16
Shashank Joshi (RUSI)
Chapter 5: Syria:revolution and repression 20
Marwa Daoudy (university of Oxford)
Chapter 6: Yemen’s youth revolution 24
Kate Nevens (Chatham House)
Chapter 7: Gulf States: the challenge of reform 28
Salman Shaikh (Brookings institute, Doha)
Chapter 8: Bahrain:unresolved divisions 32
Jane Kinninmont (Chatham House)
Chapter 9: Israel-Palestine: new pressures for peace 36
Daniel Levy (New America Foundation)
Chapter 10: Iran:domestic discontent and
regional ambition 40
Ali Ansari (university of St. Andrews )
Chapter 11: Islamism: extremists or democrats? 44
Maha Azzam (Chatham House)
Chapter 12: Economy: the root of the uprising 49
Rodney Wilson (Durham university )
Chapter 13: Democratisation:uprising, violence and reform 53 Katerina Dalacoura (London school of economics)
Chapter 14: Britain and the Middle East from 9/11 to 2011 57 Rosemary Hollis (City University)
ContentsThe Conservative Middle East Council would like to thank Paul Shea and Dr Magdy Ishak for their generous support of this project. Conservative Middle East Council the Arab Spring: Implications for British Policy 1

Chapter One
Foreword
The Rt Hon Nicholas Soames MP, CMEC President
The Baroness Morris of Bolton, OBE, DL, CMEC Chairman
It gives us great pleasure to present CMEC’s first published briefing and policy paper: The Arab Spring: Implications for British Policy. CMEC’s work in helping the Conservative parliamentary party understand the Middle East and shaping an intelligent policy response to the remarkable challenges of the region is more important now than ever before.

Every country is undergoing change in its own way and the Arab Spring defies generalisation. The one common theme, however, is the desire for dignity that unites people across the Arab world. This desire is universal to us all; the desire for a job, a future for one’s children and the ability to fulfil one’s potential. While the Government has played a very positive and resolute role in Libya, and is doing what it can to help elsewhere, the denouement of the Arab Spring remains unclear. What is certain is that its implications for British policy will continue to be profound. We are extremely grateful for the generous contributions of all fourteen authors.Conservative Middle East Council the Arab Spring: Implications for British Policy 2

Chapter One
preface
Dr Mohammed Abdel-Haq
Chairman of the CMEC Advisory Board
For forty years or more the pace of change in the Middle East has been slow, making the events of recent months all the more surprising. Who could have foreseen that the desperate act of a 26-year old street vendor, Mohamed Bouazizi, who set himself on fire in Tunisia in December last year, would have triggered the astonishing train of events we are still seeing unfold?

The underlying desire for democratic reform and the lack of anti-Western rhetoric have been hugely positive factors, but the situation across the region remains unstable. The reason for this can largely be found in the question being asked the world over: ‘What happens next?’ Whatever has been achieved, future success might be obstructed by the absence of established political structures. Central amongst these is a constructive, democratic opposition – which legitimises dissent at the heart of a democracy, but does so with a shared loyalty to the state, and thus to the political system. A strong, viable alternative government prevents the untrammelled exercise of power, and all citizens of a country benefit from its...
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