The Arab Spring at Two: Lessons, Challenges and Opportunities

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Event Description

As the Arab Spring enters its third year, new Arab democracies are struggling with a myriad of serious issues, which could impact the future success or failure of democratic transitions in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Yemen, and other countries in the region. These issues include governance; Islamic politics; social complexity and diversity of Arab society; human rights and women’s rights; and continued violence and repression in Syria, Bahrain, and elsewhere. A key challenge revolves around job creation and entrepreneurship. The new Arab democracies will have to adopt creative economic policies and promote economic growth to provide jobs for the millions of Arab youth in the new democracies. In the final analysis, an employed population is the backbone of a democratic society. Furthermore, economic prosperity will be critical for the stability and social peace of the new democracies in the Middle East. The presentation will highlight the les sons, challenges, and opportunities for the US and for the region.

Dr. Nakhleh is a retired Senior Intelligence Service Officer (SIS-3), a Research Professor at UNM, a NIC Associate, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Since retiring from the U.S. Government in 2006, he has been consulting with different U.S. government entities and departments on national security issues, particularly Islamic radicalization, terrorism, and the Arab states of the Middle East. He has published frequently in the Financial Times and the Inter Press News Service. At CIA, he was a senior analyst and director of the Political Islam Strategic Analysis Program and of regional analysis in the Middle East. He was awarded several senior commendation and distinguished medals for his service, including the Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal and the Director’s Medal.

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