Matthew Kaminski: The Arab Spring Is Still AliveRoundup: Media's Take
Mr. Kaminski is a member of the Journal's editorial board.
This year of Mideast upheaval is barely half gone and the final acts in Libya, Egypt, Tunisia and Syria are yet to be written. But panjandrums of America's foreign policy establishment are pronouncing the grander, idealistic aspirations aroused by these revolutions all but dead.
An AP headline the other day summed up the conventional wisdom: "Arab Spring Stalled." "The stalling" in the Middle East, wrote Council on Foreign Relations President Richard Haass in the Financial Times the week before, leaves the region "less tolerant, less prosperous and less stable than what existed." Mr. Haass, a leading voice in the realist camp, sounded a nostalgic note for the days the U.S. maintained the Arab status quo together with the Saudi royals. "It will not be springtime any time soon in the Middle East," he concluded.
By this line of thinking, change in the Mideast carries almost exclusively bad consequences (political chaos, empowered Islamists, regional instability) that the U.S. can at best contain—rather than opportunities that Washington might seize to help build better, freer societies and undermine American enemies. Anyone who remembers the debates of the early post-Cold War era may feel the prick of déjà vu...
comments powered by Disqus
- Carla Hayden says Frederick Douglass "might have a lot to do with the fact that I am a librarian”
- Baton Rouge area Catholic school responds to student's racist essay about Black History Month
- How the ‘guerrilla archivists’ saved history – and are doing it again under Trump
- Trump visits the National Museum of African American History and Culture
- New Book Says Bob Woodward Burned Hillary Clinton’s Ghostwriter
- Historian and Antiwar Activist Marilyn Young Dies at 79
- Trump Chooses Historian H.R. McMaster as National Security Adviser
- Holocaust Historian Deborah Lipstadt Explains Why People Believe Trump's Lies
- Princeton’s Harold James warns World War Three is now a "serious threat”
- Israeli schools' history lessons create good soldiers, says pundit