How 1979 Set Back the Islamic World

April 3 2020

A half-century ago, writes Michael Totten, the Muslim world was less repressive and the Middle East less riven by war and political disfunction than it is now. All of that changed in the fateful year of 1979, argues Kim Ghattas in her recent book The Black Wave, due to three events: the Islamic Revolution in Iran, the siege of Mecca, and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The second of these, which is also the least known, was a standoff between some 300 Islamist insurgents and the Saudi government, as Totten explains in his review:

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Read more at Commentary

More about: Afghanistan, anti-Americanism, Iran, Islamism, Israel-Arab relations, Middle East, Saudi Arabia

 

How the U.S. Can Get Smart about Promoting Democracy and Human Rights in the Middle East

Sept. 27 2021

Considering the current state of the region and the policy mistakes of the recent past, David Pollock and Robert Satloff outline a strategy that is “both virtuous and realistic” for defending human rights and encouraging democratization in a region plagued by autocracy, chaos, and brutality. They argue that “in the long run, more democratic, tolerant, and inclusive governments are likely to be better at defending themselves, and more reliable and effective security partners for the United States.”

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Read more at Washington Institute for Near East Policy

More about: Arab democracy, Human Rights, Middle East, U.S. Foreign policy