The Political and Economic Challenges of Energy in the Middle East and North Africa

Author: David Ramin Jalilvand,Kirsten Westphal

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1351783483

Category: Political Science

Page: 302

View: 3454

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The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are in disarray, and shifts in the field of energy have the potential to drastically affect the course of political and economic developments in the region. Declining oil prices, skyrocketing domestic demand, the rise of unconventional oil and natural gas production in North America, as well as shifting patterns of global energy trade all put severe pressures on both producing and importing countries in the MENA region. Policy-makers are facing fundamental challenges in light of the duality of grand transformations in (geo)politics and energy. Changes in the field of energy require substantial political and economic reforms, affecting the very fabric of sociopolitical arrangements. At the same time, the MENA region’s geopolitical volatility makes any such reforms extremely risky. Including contributions by academics and analysts from both inside and outside the MENA region, this volume explores the changes in global and regional energy, the impact of changing international energy dynamics on politics and economies in the MENA region, and the challenges that will result. This is essential reading for researchers, postgraduates, and professionals in Middle Eastern and North African politics, global energy governance and regionalism.

The Political and Economic Challenges of Energy in the Middle East and North Africa

Author: David Ramin Jalilvand,Kirsten Westphal

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781138542419

Category: Petroleum industry and trade

Page: 286

View: 3720

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Declining oil prices, skyrocketing domestic demand, the rise of unconventional oil and natural gas production and shifting patterns of trade all put severe pressures on energy producing countries and present their policy-makers with fundamental challenges. The expert international contributors in this volume engage with these issues to explore the changes in global and regional energy as well as the political and economic challenges they provide.

The Political and Economic Challenges of Energy in the Middle East and North Africa

Author: David Ramin Jalilvand,Kirsten Westphal

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781138706224

Category: Petroleum industry and trade

Page: 312

View: 353

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The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are in disarray, and shifts in the field of energy have the potential to drastically affect the course of political and economic developments in the region. Declining oil prices, skyrocketing domestic demand, the rise of unconventional oil and natural gas production in North America, as well as shifting patterns of global energy trade all put severe pressures on both producing and importing countries in the MENA region. Policy-makers are facing fundamental challenges in light of the duality of grand transformations in (geo)politics and energy. Changes in the field of energy require substantial political and economic reforms, affecting the very fabric of sociopolitical arrangements. At the same time, the MENA region�s geopolitical volatility makes any such reforms extremely risky. Including contributions by academics and analysts from both inside and outside the MENA region, this volume explores the changes in global and regional energy, the impact of changing international energy dynamics on politics and economies in the MENA region, and the challenges that will result. This is essential reading for researchers, postgraduates, and professionals in Middle Eastern and North African politics, global energy governance and regionalism.

Governance in the Middle East and North Africa

A Handbook

Author: Abbas Kadhim

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136959661

Category: Political Science

Page: 502

View: 4260

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Governance in the Middle East is topic of interest to scholars, activists and policy makers. The currently proposed book is intended to present the first comprehensive framework of the question of governance in the Middle East in its various forms and manifestations: political, economic, and government performance. This study will supply the context that is missing in the existing literature on, perhaps, the last bastion of authoritarianism in the world. Proposed Contents This book will be structured into two parts: Part I (Chapters 1-11) provides some theoretical background and analyzes the patterns and challenges of governance in the Middle East, providing some global context; Part II (12-Conclusion) will examine specific cases in selected countries and regions in the Middle East. Part I: Theory and Context Chapter 1 will be an introduction describing the main aspects of the book and highlighting the main points made by the contributors. Chapter 2 will present the theoretical dimensions of governance and review the "state of the discipline" and the latest trends in the literature on governance. The author of this chapter will be an authority in the subject of governance, but does not have to be necessarily a Middle East scholar. Chapter 3 will examine the general political trends in the Middle East and provide a historical background: nation-state formation, colonial and postcolonial experiences in the Middle East and the nature of the Middle Eastern political environment at the present time. Chapter 4 will look into the economic aspects of governance in the Middle East and contextualize the economic challenges and deficiencies affecting the region. Chapter 5 will examine the areas of success and failure in government performance in the region and the aspects of human development. Chapter 6 will look into the role of religion in shaping the governance in the Middle East. After all, most Middle Eastern governments declare Islam as the State religion, while a few consider Islam the source of governance and legislation (e.g. Saudi Arabia and Iran). Chapter 7 will shed light on the sectarian division among Muslims (Shi‘a vs. Sunnis) and the significance of this division for the governance, particularly in countries where the ruling groups belong to a different sect than the governed, such as Bahrain, Saudi, Kuwait and Lebanon. Chapter 8 will examine relation between the state of governance in the Middle East and the progress of human rights, or lack thereof. The Middle East remains one of the most troubling regions on human rights and the respect for human dignity. All of the region’s governments are heavily implicated in very serious violations of the most basic in human rights. Chapter 9 will focus on the status of women in the Middle East and the governmental performance in the region in relevance to women rights and status. The recent years have witnessed many positive changes in this regard, but there remains a lot of work to be done, which is going to be outlined in this chapter. Chapter 10 will look into the role of oil and other natural sources in shaping the economic and political performance of Middle Eastern governments. Also, it will shed light on the various ways these governments distribute the revenues (rents) from these resources and how they use them, or don’t, in the development of their countries or, in most cases, on the military and state oppressive machine. Chapter 11 will examine the role of international organizations and trade agreements on the performance of governments and whether or not such factors influence or shape governance in the region. It is well-known that Turkey has changed many of its laws and social policies in response to the demands of EU members and in hopes of being admitted into the EU. The chapter will elaborate on this and similar cases throughout the region. Part II: Case Studies Chapter 12 will examine the case of Iraq. The country is experiencing perhaps the most dramatic scenarios of governance in the region. This chapter will shed light on the unfolding political process and the struggle of Iraqis to forge a path toward democracy in a region determined to resist any political change within its boundaries. Key issues: Power-sharing, pluralism, federalism, ethnic and sectarian conflict, trust-building, corruption and political violence. Chapter 13 will examine the case of Iran. Thirty years after the Islamic Revolution, Iran is entering into a soul-searching phase in its history. The ongoing battle between the reformers and the hardliners is only a sign on the larger problem of governance. A majority of Iranians have no personal recollection of the problems that led to the Revolution. It is vitally important that the government changes its claims to legitimacy from being the force that toppled the Shah to being the provider of prosperity and development of the country and its young population. Key issues: Political reform, human rights, reconciliation with the West, allocation of resources and services. Chapter 14 will examine the case of Egypt. The country is facing an unknown future with President Mubarak reaching advanced age. The debate over his succession is dividing the country in a dramatic way. Egypt is also a country with depleted infrastructure and an ever-shrinking middle class. If the country falls into a violent cycle after the looming departure of Mubarak, the entire region could fall into the abyss. Key issues: Succession of Mubarak, economic performance, services, religious extremism (Muslim Brotherhood) and Nationalism. Chapter 15 will examine the case of Israel. While politically different from its neighbors, Israel is sinking fast into the same problems that plague the Middle East. The country suffers political corruption and many leadership crises. The government is trying to redefine the identity of the state, which is going to create a showdown with the fast-growing non-Jewish Israeli population, and there is the problem of the government’s inability to conclude peace with Israel’s neighbors. Key issues: corruption, violence and security. Chapter 16 will examine the case of Saudi Arabia. The country is perhaps the most authoritarian regime in the world. The lack of individual liberties and abuses of human rights are the main problems. The government’s treatment of its Shia subjects (approx. 12% of the population) as second-class residents is extremely troubling. The country does not have a meaningful public participation and the Royals who run the government have no accountability to anyone. Key issues: human rights, religious freedom, political reform, public participation. Chapter 17 will examine the case of Bahrain. This small country in the Persian Gulf is facing many challenges. Like Iraq before 2003, it is a country with a clear Shia majority ruled by a small Sunni minority. The Shia are excluded from the government (they were allowed to run for the parliament in the last election for the first time), the military and many other important arenas. The government uses the naturalization of Sunnis as a political tool to change the demographic balance in the country. Key issues: political reform, popular participation, naturalization, human rights. Chapter 18 will examine the case of Yemen. The current struggle over government performance and fairness toward the South has given rise to the calls for separation of the two parts of Yemen. Also, there is the issue of religious freedom, which cases the ongoing war with the Houthi faction that accuses the government of making alliance with the Saudi government and the Sunni extremists in the country to form an existential threat to Shi’ism. Yemen is also a country with many ungoverned spaces and the governance in the "governed" areas is abysmal. Key issues: political violence, human and religious rights, terrorism, tribalism and poverty. Chapter 19 will examine the case of Turkey and its impressive rise as a model for a strong Muslim nation which tries to reconcile Islam and democracy. Turkey’s longstanding problems with social rights, especially of its 12 million Kurds, have always been a formidable challenge to the image of the nation. However, the country’s bid to join the EU has forced many changes that inadvertently helped the government’s international standing. Chapter 20 will examine the case of Syria and the influence of the Arab nationalist ideology on keeping the country as one of the most oppressive regimes in the region. Also examined will be the affect of Syrian-Israeli conflict on the country’s governance. Chapter 21 examines the case of Lebanon. This country which witnessed more governance challenges than any other in the region makes a very interesting case study. The country’s sectarian politics and the client-patron relations and loyalties among the various Muslim and Christian elements of society have undermined the country’s potential to become a fully democratic state. Chapter 22 will focus on the case of Sudan. This country has been in the center of world attention because of the internal conflict and the accusations of serious violations of human rights and the rise of separatist movements that receive much foreign sympathy and support. The country has missed many opportunities to attain social and political reconciliation, but it should not be considered a lost cause. There is a lot of potential in the country, especially when we consider the vibrant politics of government and opposition. Chapter 23 will examine the case of Jordan and the role of the uniqueness of the regime in creating relative social and political stability. Unlike the most of the governments in the region, the Jordanian Monarchy keeps the government as a convenient buffer between the Royals and the people. When popular sentiments turn very negative, the King, acting as the good cop, dismisses the government and orders the formation of a new one. Also, Jordan has achieved some good success in absorbing the Islamist groups into the political system, but not without challenges. The chapter will also focus on the Palestinian factor – Palestinians make more than half of the Jordanian population. Chapters 24, 25 & 26 will examine the Maghreb states (Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia). These states face many challenges in their governance: separatism, terrorism and the government oppressive history in Morocco; the Islamism challenge, internal war in the tribal areas and ethnic conflict in Algeria; and the stifling of personal freedom and liberties in Tunisia in the name of secularism and the war on extremism are all challenges that need to be highlighted in a chapter about each country. Chapter 27 will focus on governance in Libya. Having ruled the country for forty-seven years, the Libyan president is the dean of Middle Eastern dictators. He has taken his country though all kinds of political adventures. The rule through popular committees is a unique system that gives Col. Mu‘ammar Qadhafi the opportunity to oppress through popular participation and acquiescence. Chapter 28 will focus on the governance in the United Arab Emirates. This confederation of seven emirates has witnessed some excellent success in the economic and infrastructural development, especially in Dubai, which competes with the richest cities in the world, thanks to the energy and vision of its Emir, Muhammad b. Rashid. While it is generally considered much better than its fellow Gulf States, the UAE has its own challenges, especially in light of the absence of unified system of governance, because each emirate has the autonomy to shape its internal affairs. Chapter 29 will examine the governance and, in certain cases, lack thereof in the countries that form the Horn of Africa, i.e. Somalia, Eritrea and Djibouti. These countries face some tremendous challenges in the areas of refugees, resources, stability and ethnic & conflict. The failure of these states, as seen in the case of Somalia, can make the problems of security in the whole region much worse than it is now. Famine and anarchy have already led to wars, piracy and the flood of refugees, not to say much about the humanitarian catastrophes in the region. This chapter will highlight the problems of governance in these often forgotten countries. Chapter 30 will be a conclusion and final remarks on the general framework of the regional governance and the way forward. This book is aimed at a wide variety of audience. Policy makers, policy analysts, as well as journalists will benefit from the history and analysis that will be presented in the book. Also, academics will find in the book important materials for research and class work. Professors teaching courses on US Foreign policy, Middle East, International Relations, Comparative Politics and many related fields will find the book a very suitable choice for their students to read. Given the media and general public’s interest in the Middle East and the Middle East, the book will also appeal to a wide range of educated readers in the United States, the United Kingdom and many other countries world-wide.

Challenges of Growth and Globalization in the Middle East and North Africa

Author: George T. Abed,Hamid Reza Davoodi

Publisher: International Monetary Fund

ISBN: 9781589062290

Category: Africa, North

Page: 33

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The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) is an economically diverse region. Despite undertaking economic reforms in many countries, and having considerable success in avoiding crises and achieving macroeconomic stability, the region's economic performance in the past 30 years has been below potential. This paper takes stock of the region's relatively weak performance, explores the reasons for this out come, and proposes an agenda for urgent reforms.

Politics of Social Change

In the Middle East and North Africa

Author: Manfred Halpern

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 140087534X

Category: Political Science

Page: 460

View: 6982

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The author, analyzing major social groups in this area, treats particularly the "new middle class," a group socially isolated from the traditional life of Islam and committed to a wide-ranging modernizing impulse. Originally published in 1963. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Globalization and the Politics of Development in the Middle East

Author: Clement Moore Henry,Robert Springborg

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1139490818

Category: Business & Economics

Page: N.A

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In this 2010 edition of their book on the economic development of the Middle East and North Africa, Clement Henry and Robert Springborg reflect on what has happened to the region's economy since 2001. How have the various countries in the Middle East responded to the challenges of globalization and to the rise of political Islam, and what changes, for better or for worse, have occurred? Utilizing the country categories they applied in the previous book and further elaborating the significance of the structural power of capital and Islamic finance, they demonstrate how over the past decade the monarchies (as exemplified by Jordan, Morocco and those of the Gulf Cooperation Council) and the conditional democracies (Israel, Turkey and Lebanon) continue to do better than the military dictatorships or 'bullies' (Egypt, Tunisia and now Iran) and 'the bunker states' (Algeria, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Syria and Yemen).

Combining Economic and Political Development

The Experience of Mena

Author: Giacomo Luciani

Publisher: International Development Poli

ISBN: 9789004336445

Category: Law

Page: 236

View: 9942

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Democratic transitions since 2011 in the Middle East and North Africa have mostly failed to consolidate and have been hindered by the difficult economic heritage of previous authoritarian governments. Which short-term economic policies may help consolidate the early democratisation process?

Official Stories

Politics and National Narratives in Egypt and Algeria

Author: Laurie A. Brand

Publisher: Stanford University Press

ISBN: 0804792321

Category: History

Page: 296

View: 7010

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Until the recent uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, the resilience of authoritarian regimes seemed a fundamental feature of regional politics. While economic, political, and internal security policies are most often considered in discussions of regime maintenance, Laurie Brand introduces a new factor, that of national narratives. Portrayals of a country's founding, identity, and bases of unity can be a powerful strategy in sustaining a ruling elite. Brand argues that such official stories, which are used to reinforce the right to rule, justify policies, or combat opponents, deserve careful exploration if we are to understand the full range of tools available to respond to crises that threaten a leadership's hold on power. Brand examines more than six decades of political, economic, and military challenges in two of North Africa's largest countries: Egypt and Algeria. Through a careful analysis of various texts—history and religion textbooks, constitutions, national charters, and presidential speeches—Official Stories demonstrates how leaderships have attempted to reconfigure narratives to confront challenges to their power. Brand's account also demonstrates how leaderships may miscalculate, thereby setting in motion opposition forces beyond their control.

Contemporary Morocco

State, Politics and Society Under Mohammmed VI

Author: Bruce Maddy-Weitzman,Daniel Zisenwine

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 0415695465

Category: History

Page: 202

View: 8854

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Discussions of the unsettled political and social landscapes in the Middle East and North Africa frequently point to Morocco as an exception. An Arab League member-state, Morocco enjoys a favorable image in the West, seemingly combining a healthy and balanced mix of tradition and modernity, authenticity with openness to foreign cultures, political stability and evolution towards greater pluralism, and a marked improvement in the legal and social status of women. This book offers a comprehensive and detailed scholarly examination of Morocco's political, social and cultural evolution under King Mohammed VI. Contributions from an international lineup of experts on Moroccan history, politics, economy, society and culture explain the tension and dynamics between the state authorities and competing social actors, and highlight the durability of the monarchical institution while also pointing to the continued challenges it faces from a variety of directions. The analysis touches on a number of issues, notably youth, and women and religious reform to investigate how the country has become significantly more open and less repressive, and how any unrest Morocco experienced during the recent 'Arab Spring' has been controlled. Employing various disciplines and theoretical perspectives, the result is an analytically rich portrayal which sheds important light on the country's prospects and the challenges it confronts in an era of steadily accelerating globalization. As such, it will be of interest to students and scholars who focus on modern Morocco, North Africa and the Middle East, as well as researchers in the fields of Comparative Politics and International Relations.

Eruptions of Popular Anger

The Economics of the Arab Spring and Its Aftermath

Author: Elena lanchovichina

Publisher: World Bank Publications

ISBN: 1464811539

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 174

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Eruptions of Popular Anger: The Economics of the Arab Spring and Its Aftermath sets out to answer three puzzles—the “Arab inequality†? puzzle of civil uprisings in countries with low-to-moderate and stagnant economic inequality, the “unhappy development†? paradox of increasing dissatisfaction at a time of moderate-to-rapid development, and the paradox of political violence in middle-income countries. The book’s empirical investigation rules out high and rising inequality as a reason for the Arab Spring uprisings. It shows that the real problem was the erosion in middle-class incomes and the growing dissatisfaction with the quality of life, the shortage of formal sector jobs, and corruption. Frustration was particularly high among the young, educated, middle-class residents in urban areas. The old social contract, which had delivered development results in the past and under which Arab governments provided public-sector jobs and subsidized services in return for subdued voice, was unsustainable and malfunctioning. The public sector could no longer be the employer of choice, but the private sector did not generate enough formal sector jobs, because of distortions that constrained its growth and policies that offered advantages to a few firms with political connections, limiting competition and private investment. The breakdown in the social contract increased the premium on freedom and created impetus for political change. This report shows that the Arab Spring revolutions and the subsequent spread of violence and civil wars in the post†“Arab Spring Middle East and North Africa region can be traced to the broken social contract, institutional weaknesses, and regional divisions in societies polarized along ethnic and sectarian lines. The Arab Spring and its aftermath indicate the need for a new social contract under which governments promote private-sector job creation, design public services in a way that holds providers accountable to beneficiaries, and promote inclusion and good governance.

The New Politics of Strategic Resources

Energy and Food Security Challenges in the 21st Century

Author: David Steven,Emily O'Brien,Bruce D. Jones

Publisher: Brookings Institution Press

ISBN: 0815725345

Category: Political Science

Page: 365

View: 4736

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Since 2008, energy and food markets—those most fundamental to human existence—have remained in turmoil. Resource scarcity has had a much bigger global impact in recent years than has been predicted, with ongoing volatility a sign that the world is only part-way through navigating a treacherous transition in the way it uses resources. Scarcity, and perceptions of scarcity, increase political risks, while geopolitical turmoil exacerbates shortages and complicates the search for solutions. The New Politics of Strategic Resources examines the political dimensions of strategic resource challenges at the domestic and international levels. For better or worse, energy and food markets are shaped by perceptions of national interest and do not behave as traditional market goods. So while markets are an essential part of any response to tighter resource supplies, governments also will play a key role. David Steven, Emily O'Brien, Bruce Jones, and their colleagues discuss what those roles are and what they should be. The architecture for coordinating multilateral responses to these dynamics has fallen short, raising questions about the effective international management of these issues. Politics impede here too, as the major powers must negotiate political and security trade-offs to cooperate on the design of more robust international regimes and mechanisms for resource security and the provision of global public goods. This timely volume includes chapters on major powers (United States, India, China) and key suppliers (Russia, Saudi Arabia). The contributors also address thematic topics, such as the interaction between oil and state fragility; the changing political dynamics of climate change; and the politics of resource subsidies.

Land and Hydropolitics in the Nile River Basin

Challenges and new investments

Author: Emil Sandstrom,Anders Jagerskog,Terje Oestigaard

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317414357

Category: Political Science

Page: 238

View: 1681

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The Nile River Basin supports the livelihoods of millions of people in Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan and Uganda, principally as water for agriculture and hydropower. The resource is the focus of much contested development, not only between upstream and downstream neighbours, but also from countries outside the region. This book investigates the water, land and energy nexus in the Nile Basin. It explains how the current surge in land and energy investments, both by foreign actors as well as domestic investors, affects already strained transboundary relations in the region and how investments are intertwined within wider contexts of Nile Basin history, politics and economy. Overall, the book presents a range of perspectives, drawing on political science, international relations theory, sociology, history and political ecology.

The Political Economy of Energy in Sub-Saharan Africa

Author: Lucky E. Asuelime,Andrew Emmanuel Okem

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 135167210X

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 190

View: 2553

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A deepening ecological crisis is rearing its head in sub-Saharan Africa, as it faces a myriad of challenges in regards to the development of its energy sector. The ‘dirty now and clean up later’ approach to the environment has a strong appeal, particularly because it is often thought of as the last place to try to edge in another priority - especially if that priority is perceived by many to be an economic luxury. Asuelime and Okem bring together a team of specialist contributors who investigate to what extent sub-Saharan Africa has displayed foresight or politico-economic integrity. The book shows the state’s ability to meet the demands of provision of energy in sub-Saharan Africa has led to heavy investments in infrastructure, transmission and distribution of energy to the citizens. However, the inefficiencies, corruption and unhealthy bureaucratic challenges that accompany this have led urgent problems, which will be thoroughly explored in this book. The Political Economy of Energy in Sub-Saharan Africa will be of interest to students and scholars of African Studies, Development Studies, political science and environment.

State, Power and Politics in the Making of the Modern Middle East

Author: Roger Owen

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134432917

Category: Political Science

Page: 296

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Roger Owen has fully revised and updated his authoritative text to take into account the latest developments in the Middle East. This book continues to serve as an excellent introduction for newcomers to the modern history and politics of this fascinating region. This third edition continues to explore the emergence of individual Middle Eastern states since the fall of the Ottoman Empire at the end of the First World War and the key themes that have characterized the region since then.

A Political Economy of the Middle East

Author: Alan Richards,John Waterbury

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9780813343488

Category: History

Page: 474

View: 3519

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A comprehensive analysis of the interactions of economic development, state systems, and social actors as factors promoting or blocking change in the Middle East

Water, Civilisation and Power in Sudan

Author: Harry Verhoeven

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107061148

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 336

View: 1441

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Water, Civilisation, and Power in Sudan offers an alternative account of how water policy, violence, and economic modernisation are linked.

Saudi Arabia in the New Middle East

Author: F. Gregory Gause

Publisher: Council on Foreign Relations

ISBN: 0876095171

Category: HISTORY

Page: 64

View: 1267

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The United States'' relationship with Saudi Arabia has been one of the cornerstones of U.S. policy in the Middle East for decades. Despite their substantial differences in history, culture, and governance, the two countries have generally agreed on important political and economic issues and have often relied on each other to secure mutual aims. The 1990-91 Gulf War is perhaps the most obvious example, but their ongoing cooperation on maintaining regional stability, moderating the global oil market, and pursuing terrorists should not be downplayed. Yet for all the relationship''s importance, it is increasingly imperiled by mistrust and misunderstanding. One major question is Saudi Arabia''s stability. In this Council Special Report, sponsored by the Center for Preventive Action, F. Gregory Gause III first explores the foundations of Riyadh''s present stability and potential sources of future unrest. It is difficult not to notice that Saudi Arabia avoided significant upheaval during the political uprisings that swept the Middle East in 2011, despite sharing many of the social and economic problems of Egypt, Yemen, and Libya. But unlike their counterparts in Cairo, Sanaa, and Tripoli, Riyadh''s leadership was able to maintain order in large part by increasing public spending on housing and salaries, relying on loyal and well-equipped security forces, and utilizing its extensive patronage networks. The divisions within the political opposition also helped the government''s cause. This is not to say that Gause believes that the stability of the House of Saud is assured. He points out that the top heirs to the throne are elderly and the potential for disorderly squabbling may increase as a new generation enters the line of succession. Moreover, the population is growing quickly, and there is little reason to believe that oil will forever be able to buy social tranquility. Perhaps most important, Gause argues, the leadership''s response to the 2011 uprisings did little to forestall future crises; an opportunity for manageable political reform was mostly lost. Turning to the regional situation, Gause finds it no less complex. Saudi Arabia has wielded considerable influence with its neighbors through its vast oil reserves, its quiet financial and political support for allies, and the ideological influence of salafism, the austere interpretation of Islam that is perhaps Riyadh''s most controversial export. For all its wealth and religious influence, however, Saudi Arabia''s recent record has been less than successful. It was unable to counter Iranian influence in post-Saddam Iraq, it could not prevent Hezbollah taking power in Lebanon, and its ongoing efforts to reconcile Hamas and the Palestinian Authority have come to naught. The U.S.-Saudi relationship has, unsurprisingly, been affected by these and other challenges, including Saudi unhappiness with Washington''s decision to distance itself from Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, the lack of progress on the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, and Iran. For its part, the United States is unhappy with the Saudi intervention in Bahrain and Saudi support for radical Islamists around the region and the world. The two traditional anchors of the U.S.-Saudi relationship-the Cold War and U.S. operation of Riyadh''s oil fields-are, Gause notes, no longer factors. It is no wonder, he contends, that the relationship is strained when problems are myriad and the old foundations of the informal alliance are gone. It would be far better, Gause argues, to acknowledge that the two countries can no longer expect to act in close concert under such conditions. He recommends that the United States reimagine the relationship as simply transactional, based on cooperation when interests-rather than habit-dictate. Prioritizing those interests will therefore be critical. Rather than pressuring Riyadh for domestic political reform, or asking it to reduce global oil prices, Gause recommends that the United States spend its political capital where it really matters: on maintaining regional security, dismantling terrorist networks, and preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons. There have been few relationships more important to the United States than that with Saudi Arabia, and it is vital that, as it enters a new phase, the expectations and priorities of both countries are clear. In Saudi Arabia in the New Middle East, Gause effectively assesses the challenges and opportunities facing Saudi Arabia and makes a compelling argument for a more modest, businesslike relationship between Washington and Riyadh that better reflects modern realities. As the United States begins reassessing its commitments in the Greater Middle East, this report offers a clear vision for a more limited-but perhaps more appropriate and sustainable-future partnership.

Women and Power in the Middle East

Author: Suad Joseph,Susan Slyomovics

Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press

ISBN: 0812206908

Category: Political Science

Page: 256

View: 7888

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The seventeen essays in Women and Power in the Middle East analyze the social, political, economic, and cultural forces that shape gender systems in the Middle East and North Africa. Published at different times in Middle East Report, the journal of the Middle East Research and Information Project, the essays document empirically the similarities and differences in the gendering of relations of power in twelve countries—Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Sudan, Palestine, Lebanon, Turkey, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, and Iran. Together they seek to build a framework for understanding broad patterns of gender in the Arab-Islamic world. Challenging questions are addressed throughout. What roles have women played in politics in this region? When and why are women politically mobilized, and which women? Does the nature and impact of their mobilization differ if it is initiated by the state, nationalist movements, revolutionary parties, or spontaneous revolt? And what happens to women when those agents of mobilization win or lose? In investigating these and other issues, the essays take a look at the impact of rapid social change in the Arab-Islamic world. They also analyze Arab disillusionment with the radical nationalisms of the 1950s and 1960s and with leftist ideologies, as well as the rise of political Islamist movements. Indeed the essays present rich new approaches to assessing what political participation has meant for women in this region and how emerging national states there have dealt with organized efforts by women to influence the institutions that govern their lives. Designed for courses in Middle East, women's, and cultural studies, Women and Power in the Middle East offers to both students and scholars an excellent introduction to the study of gender in the Arab-Islamic world.

North African Politics

Change and continuity

Author: Yahia H. Zoubir,Gregory White

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317412095

Category: Political Science

Page: 414

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In the aftermath of the turmoil that shook North Africa in late 2010 and early 2011, commentators and analysts have sought explanations to the factors that triggered the uprisings and to understand why a region, seemingly characterized by relative stability for decades, would suddenly erupt in convulsions. Had an underlying dynamism in the region overwhelmed what were ostensibly stable authoritarian regimes? What were the connections to events and dynamics beyond the region, such as countries in the Middle East, international commodity markets, and environmental factors, amongst others? Why had allies abetted authoritarianism for so long, and what were the implications for such alliances? North African Politics: Change and continuity brings together experts to explore these questions, providing in-depth analyses of important developments in the region, which build upon and complement the 2008 companion volume, North Africa: Politics, Region and the Limits of Transformation. This 21-chapter volume is a key contribution that responds to the need in the Anglo-American sphere for sustained, critical studies on North Africa and examines political, economic, security, social and military aspects of the region. Focused studies on individual countries allow detailed discussion of regional factors. The book also examines extrinsic, trans-regional dynamics, such as North Africa’s influential interdependencies with the Levant and the Gulf, Europe, Sahelian and sub-Saharan Africa, and North America. Its innovative approach provides new perspectives on North Africa, extending its research scope to include Egypt and exploring China’s evolving role in the region. Providing an important contribution in the assessment of the ever-shifting political and social tectonics within and beyond North Africa, North African Politics is an essential resource for students, scholars and policy makers in Middle Eastern and North African Studies, and beyond.