Middle East and North Africa News

The Year Ahead in Political Demography

Jun 11, 2012
The Arab Spring was anticipated by few, but for a handful of political demographers it was a watershed of sorts. Although such game-changers are rarely predictable, the year ahead promises to be eventful as well, with new demographic research and major policy initiatives on the horizon.

The Stalled Arab Spring

Jun 07, 2012
Unless the Arabs figure out a way to share power toward some common purpose, the prospects for anything resembling democratic and accountable polities will be slim to none, writes Distinguished Scholar Aaron David Miller.

The Arab Awakening: A Step Forward or Back For Women?

Jun 06, 2012
The initial optimism in the wake of the "Arab Spring" has in some cases given way to fears of women being marginalized through the rise of fundamentalist religious political parties. An expert on the global struggle for human rights, Rangita de Silva de Alwis, offers her analysis.

'Little Value' in UN Peace Plan

Jun 05, 2012
Wilson Center President, Director, and CEO Jane Harman says offering asylum to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad - similar to the plan offered to former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh - would be her preferred solution to the crisis.

How Egypt will shape the new Middle East order

Jun 04, 2012
Egypt’s long election season is not just about forming a new government. The real stakes in the 12-week vote for parliament and the two-stage presidential contest are defining a new order—the critical issue across the Middle East for years to come. The final combination of political forces will influence regional dynamics far beyond Egypt too...

Iran Asserts Right to Enrichment as Baghdad Six Party Talks End

May 30, 2012
“Significant differences remain,” yet recent talks between major world powers and Tehran have at least set the stage for a second and hopefully more productive meeting slated for mid-June in Moscow. Both sides “want to make progress, and there is some common ground,” European foreign-policy representative Catherine Ashton said, following no agreement last week in Baghdad.
Jalili Nuclear Talks

Is a Diplomatic Breakthrough Possible in Baghdad?

May 23, 2012
With the threat of further sanctions looming, Iran may be more inclined to halt uranium-enrichment efforts, and this week’s meetings on the country’s nuclear program is less tense than past talks. Still, plenty of obstacles lie on the road to an agreement, not least of which is US domestic politics this election year. Wilson Center expert Michael Adler analyzes the situation.
The Islamists are Coming CONTEXT

The Islamists Are Coming: Who They Really Are

May 17, 2012
Greater political pluralism in Tunisia, Egypt, and other countries of the region could augur less dependency on the US and a more independent foreign policy, Wilson Center expert Samer Shehata says. In this interview, Shehata and Distinguished Scholar Robin Wright analyze the Middle East’s evolving political landscape.

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1969–1976, Volume XVI, Soviet Union August 1974–December 1976

May 16, 2012
This volume, the final of five covering relations between the United States and the Soviet Union during the Nixon-Ford administrations, presents documentation on how matters as diverse as strategic arms limitation, European security, the Middle East, Jewish emigration, and Angola intersected to influence the course of Soviet-American relations during the presidency of Gerald R. Ford.

Tunisia’s Islamists Struggle to Rule

May 15, 2012
In stark contrast to Islamist victories elsewhere, Algeria’s election on May 10 produced a “crushing defeat” of two moderate Islamist parties, reports David Ottaway in a new analysis from Algiers. The outcome defied public predictions by Islamist politicians that they would win at least a plurality of seats—and potentially even enough to lead a new government. Two secular parties aligned with the former government instead increased their dominance in the National People’s Assembly, winning 288 seats – or 62 percent of the vote. The moderate Islamists have instead been marginalized politically—a position that may undermine prospects of cooperation with the new government.

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