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Why Do Arabs Not Revolt?

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posted on Jul, 2 2009 @ 05:50 PM
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Tehran Bureau


By RAMI G. KHOURI in Beirut
The stark contrast between the street demonstrations in Iran in the past two weeks and the absence of any such popular revolts in the Arab world during the past half-century is more than just fascinating in terms of political anthropology. A major question that hangs over the Arab world like a ton of bricks is: Why do the top-heavy, non-democratic political control and governance systems of the Arab world persist without any significant popular opposition or public challenge?
The events in Iran — the second major popular rebellion in the past 30 years — accentuate the relative quiescence in the Arab world, but this is not for lack of grievances among Arabs. The same pressures and indignities that annoy many Iranians and push them to openly challenge their rulers are prevalent throughout much of the Arab world:
• abuse of power by a self-contained ruling elite,

• absence of meaningful political accountability,

• dominance of the power structure by security-military organs,

• prevalent corruption and financial abuse,

• mediocre economic management,

• enforced leadership hero-worshiping and personality cults,

• strict social controls — especially on the young and women.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Here Rami G. Khouri, of the American University of Berut, analyzes some of the reasons why Arabs as a rule do not revolt under the same conditions that would cause the Persian Iranians or the Turks to rise up and attempt to overthrow an unpopular regime.

He attributes it in part to the differing ways the two groups approach discontent with the government. While the Persians might revolt, the Arabs tend to form their own separate societies or subcultures within and in many ways despite the ruling authorities.

It's lengthy but an interesting read.




posted on Jul, 3 2009 @ 01:03 PM
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yes.. very interesting article.

some ethnic / religious groups are well protected and want the status quo to remain the same.

the trouble makers on the other hand are being tracked down and taught not to meddle in politics.



posted on Jul, 3 2009 @ 03:55 PM
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I suppose it is because post colonial societies, having emerged from centuries of foreign occupation, have never had the experience of a democratic civic life and the prerequisite institutions in place. Instead their colonial masters handed them to the strongmen appointed to rule over them.

Further still, democratic societies are particularly unwieldy and an anathema to multinationals when it comes to resource rich third world countries. It is in the interest of Western countries that their corporations achieve their goals and accordingly define their foreign policies. These policies manifests itself in deploying immense resources in undermining the evolutionary processes needed to create democratic societies.

Case in point; the early and vibrant democracies throughout the Middle East and the subsequent subversion by Western security services like the overthrow of the democratically elected Muhammad Mosaddeq of Iran and placing of a strongman, the Shah.

These processes have effected many countries in Africa and South America and they are all former colonies.



posted on Jul, 3 2009 @ 07:01 PM
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Originally posted by masonwatcher
I suppose it is because post colonial societies, having emerged from centuries of foreign occupation, have never had the experience of a democratic civic life and the prerequisite institutions in place. Instead their colonial masters handed them to the strongmen appointed to rule over them.

Further still, democratic societies are particularly unwieldy and an anathema to multinationals when it comes to resource rich third world countries. It is in the interest of Western countries that their corporations achieve their goals and accordingly define their foreign policies. These policies manifests itself in deploying immense resources in undermining the evolutionary processes needed to create democratic societies.


That makes a lot of sense to me. Certainly the west has been, and still is, inordinately interested in the natural resources (especially oil) of the middle east. But IMO it's too easy to blame everything on the west. It can also be argued that it was western civilizations that helped to bring democracy to the middle east.

Several middle eastern countries do have fledgling democracies -- Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the UAE, even Jordan (although it also still has a king)--although these democracies can be said to be less developed at this time than many western ones. Are you arguing that democracy is the result of natural evolutionary processes and owes nothing to the examples of other nations? For example, it can be argued that Americans got their ideas of democracy from ancient Greece and Rome, both of which (especially Rome) were conquerors of other nations.

Saudi Arabia, for example-- a fledgling democracy, (and one of the richest countries in the world)--is far more concerned about the Sunnis and the Shias than about colonization from the west, and it depends on the U.S. for military support, just as it depended on the intervention of the U.S. when Iraq invaded Kuwait.

East-west relations and their history are much more complicated than a simple matter of the good guys vs. the bad guys.



posted on Jul, 4 2009 @ 07:55 AM
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reply to post by Sestias
 


The term "fledgling democracies" is valueless beyond the definition of each word. It is a neocon invention used in the context of "regime change" (another neocon invention for destabilisation policies).

There is no such thing as a fledgeling democracy; you cannot have a democracy without the precursor institutions such as a strong judiciary that enforces a constitution or bill of rights. These kind of institutions can not develop instantly and with geopolitical interference being imposed.



posted on Jul, 4 2009 @ 12:58 PM
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reply to post by masonwatcher
 


Yes, well the neocons are another can of worms altogether. They believe in spreading democracy ( or their version of it) to other nations even if those nations don't want it. They took the U.S. into Iraq on the pretense of national defense and then tried to establish the kind of regime the U.S. wants to have there. Thank God they are out of power now.

Hopefully Obama will not be so imperialistic.



posted on Jul, 5 2009 @ 02:05 AM
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I was reading a few reports on other threads around this site. and it got me thinking..

why dont the American people revolt against their government?

You got a million and one reasons to do so.

Many believe, and I cant say these are facts, but I believe most of them;

USA is a terrorist state.
Usa backs terrorist states.
The Federal reserve bank is a private bank.
The Irs is private.
The USA is the biggest threat to world peace.
The USA Gov backs Oil/Med companies (among others) to sabotage the planet and human heath.

and the list goes on.

There are threads about all these topics around here, and many more..

So, Why dont the people in the USA revolt?



posted on Jul, 5 2009 @ 11:24 AM
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reply to post by LordKnowaLot
 


That's a good question, but I think there are a number of threads that address that question already and so it doesn't need to be taken up here.

My opinion, in brief, is that there are many different factions that want to revolt, but they have different agendas. I think a revolution here, are this time, would quickly disintegrate into warfare between the factions, each of which would want to control. I don't see the communists and/or socialists getting along with the anarchists or the far right, for example.



posted on Jul, 5 2009 @ 12:06 PM
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Originally posted by Sestias
reply to post by LordKnowaLot
 


That's a good question, but I think there are a number of threads that address that question already and so it doesn't need to be taken up here.

My opinion, in brief, is that there are many different factions that want to revolt, but they have different agendas. I think a revolution here, are this time, would quickly disintegrate into warfare between the factions, each of which would want to control. I don't see the communists and/or socialists getting along with the anarchists or the far right, for example.


I agree with you that if they did revolt they would end up fighting each other over who will be in power next (this would be true for many countries), nobody can get along and set a common goal because they want things their way.



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