Egypt’s political scene has changed radically from the vigorous pluralism that followed the 2011 uprising; in 2015 the Islamist and secular groups that won those elections are excluded or marginalized.
The Egyptian military has gained unprecedented power since overseeing the ouster of two Egyptian presidents, Hosni Mubarak in 2011 and Mohamed Morsi in 2013. But political overreach and internal rivalries may prove obstacles to long-term military control.
A generation gap and regional inequality are fueling the political instability and violent extremism facing Tunisia’s new leaders.
Until Egyptian and Tunisian governments reform their security sectors, the culture of police impunity will deepen and democratic transition will remain impossible for both countries.
The uncertain health of the sultan of Oman has heightened concern about the future of the country. Amid mounting popular frustration, criticism of Qaboos bin Said Al Said has emerged. There are several measures the regime can undertake to avoid further unrest.
Big business has been virtually excluded from recent stimulus plans designed to get Egypt’s wheels spinning after years in recession. However, long-term recovery and stabilization are quite dependent on the resumption of activities by large private enterprises, which still control key sectors of the economy.
The current turmoil in Egypt has cast shadows on the potential for Islamist integration as well as the regime’s ability to achieve political stability.
Even though tensions over Ukraine will inevitably cast a shadow over the bilateral relationship, Russia and Turkey—a NATO member—continue to share a range of important interests.
With a domestic landscape torn apart by competing claims to power and with interference from regional actors serving to entrench divides, restoring stability in Libya and building a unified security structure will be difficult if not impossible without broad-based political reconciliation.
Qatar’s new leadership is reverting to a more pragmatic foreign policy and addressing the fallout from its support for Islamist movements in the region.
Qatar wants to increase its influence and break free from Saudi Arabia’s orbit. But its miscalculations and domestic and international challenges make that difficult.
More than three years after the January 25 revolution toppled then Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, Egypt continues to struggle with an authoritarian media sector and constraints on freedom of expression.
Though it had to operate in a hostile political environment, the Brotherhood ultimately fell because of its own political, ideological, and organizational failures.
Since 2011, Egypt has been facing one of the—if not the—direst sociopolitical crises in its modern history. Will Egypt’s socioeconomic problems overwhelm the next government and doom it to failure?
A schism in the ranks of Kuwaiti Salafists has had far-reaching—and sometimes violent—consequences in Syria and Lebanon.
Tunisia’s secular parties, largely sidelined since the 2011 revolution, have a chance to gain power—but only if they can tackle internal divisions and learn to cooperate.
Violence and tensions between Sunnis, Shias, and Kurds continue to threaten Iraq’s stability and fragile democracy. Iraq needs a political compact based less on sectarian identities and more on individual citizens.
Syria’s civil war is helping destabilize the city of Tripoli and threatening other parts of Lebanon. But today’s challenges have plagued Lebanon since long before the Syrian uprising.
Politics in the Middle East are polarized and fragmented. The Arab Spring’s citizen-led spirit of reform is still alive, but societies are torn apart by bitter tensions.
Mubarak’s overthrow ushered in more of the same in Egypt—an authoritarian political process. The Egyptian state needs to be completely reinvented.