Who Wants Democracy in the Middle East?
We all want democracy in the Middle East, right? Some of the leading Arab intellectuals are calling for “rapid progress toward democracy,” and they’re saying this progress is being hindered by Israel and the United States.
The Arab Human Development Report has been released, after six months of being blocked by the Bush administration. The report says Arab governments will be facing massive civil unrest unless democratic reforms begin soon.
The report puts most of the blame on the centralized structure of Arab governments. But in earlier drafts, the report also said Israeli control of Palestinian territories and U.S. occupation of Iraq were hindering the spread of democracy in Arab countries.
Sure, that’s reason enough to suppress this document for six months. We’d like to have democracy in the Middle East, but here are the priorities — First and Foremost: everyone have the utmost praise and respect for the United States and Israeli governments. Distant Second: democracy for the Arab countries — if they’re good. Diss us, and democracy gets it!
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