dinsdag 26 juni 2012

Waking from the Democratic Dream

Robert W. Merry

June 25, 2012

The time has come for the United States to give up on the notion of democracy in the Middle East. It isn’t going to happen, at least not anytime soon, and the country is starting to look silly with so many of its intellectuals clinging to a notion that has no basis in reality. Just look at Iraq, set upon a course that many Americans thought would lead to democracy, and paid for with the blood of more than four thousand American dead and some thirty-three thousand wounded. What do we see in today’s Iraq? A budding dictatorship moving in the direction of the last one—but with a big difference: this one is dominated by Shiites, a power arrangement that appreciably enhances the regional influence of neighboring Iran, considered by many Americans as their country’s most nettlesome adversary.

Look at Egypt, where the “Arab Spring” set American hearts aflutter with the prospect of democratic pluralism. The lesson there is that it’s impossible to overestimate the willingness of the traditional power blocs to upend any democratic structures or procedures that threaten their position and prerogatives in that venerable land. Consider tiny Kuwait, where the highest court just annulled the duly run parliamentary elections of February, in which opposition forces made serious gains against the country’s status quo forces. And look at Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, where any democratic sentiments are quickly quashed whenever they gain any apparent traction at all.

Read more at: The National Interest