Postscript: A Few Words on the Sweeping Changes in the Middle East
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The popular movements in the Middle East, at the time of the writing of these pages in 2011, have overtaken all expectations with untold regional and international ramifications. Starting with Tunisia, and continuing with Egypt and Libya and now engulfing Syria, Yemen and possibly Bahrain, there is now justifiably talk of an Arab awakening that may well affect other countries in the area too. Interestingly, thus far, there does not appear to be an overwhelming fundamentalist factor that can effectively subdue all other moderate and secular elements in those societies. The killing of bin Laden by the US forces in Pakistan last year did not seem to trigger any substantial wave of protest among Muslims in the world either. These observations may point to a weakening of the grip radical Islamism has had on the minds and hearts of young Muslims. The monumental failure of political Islam, wherever it has been practised, may well have had something to do with that. So could the indiscriminate killings and carnage that has marked almost every step of the way along the fundamentalists’ path. It may have dawned on the younger generation of Muslims that prospects for Islam and Muslims may in the end be better served by deposing Muslim dictators than by focusing on and attacking non-Muslim liberals.
KeywordsMiddle East International Relation Islamic Republic International Tribunal Economic Sanction
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