Bringing Regimes Back in – Explaining Success and Failure in the Middle East Revolts of 2011
25 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2013
Date Written: March 10, 2013
Studies of the Arab Revolutions and Revolts of 2011 have stressed the power of popular mobilization, driven by social media and youth, and were hopeful in regard to the emergence of democracy. In fact, Islamist parties with questionable commitment to democracy, pluralism and human rights have been steering the outcomes in Egypt and Tunisia, runaway militias are creating chaos in Libya, and Syria has become mired in a horrific civil war. To understand the great variation in the trajectories and outcomes of these events, one must focus on the characteristics of regimes, both their internal structure and their place in international relations to other states. One must also recognize that these events are revolutions, not mere democratic reform movements, and that they will fit the pattern of disappointment and long drawn out change typical of the former.
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