Political Turmoil in the North Africa and the Middle East

TV/Radio Broadcast Diane Rehm Show
As protests continue throughout the Middle East and North Africa, the international community is seeking to curb the increasing violence in Syria, continue military engagement in Libya, and convince Yemen’s President Saleh to step down.
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The Middle East continues to experience unprecedented upheaval. In Syria, the Assad regime has implemented a violent crackdown on protesters that has drawn strong condemnation from the U.S. government and resulted in the imposition of sanctions against the regime. Speaking on the Diane Rehm Show, Carnegie’s Michele Dunne explained that Obama’s statement condemning the Syrian government was intended to “to show a U.S. audience that the administration is doing something and to show the Syrian people that Assad regime is losing any support it made have had from the U.S.”

International attention is also focused on the unrest occurring in Libya. Dunne argued that while the current situation in Libya is not good for the United States, “it could have been much worse.” She pointed out that Qaddafi was threatening to initiate a violent crackdown on rebels in Benghazi that would have resulted in the loss of thousands of lives.

Turning to Yemen, Dunne said that there seems to be an end in sight. The Gulf Cooperation Council, President Saleh, and the Yemeni opposition parties have agreed on a plan for Saleh to abdicate power. However, she pointed out that this plan has not placated the protesters on the street, who have seen Saleh break promises in the past. The outcome in Yemen, like that in many countries across the region, remains unclear, Dunne concluded.

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About the Middle East Program

The Carnegie Middle East Program combines in-depth local knowledge with incisive comparative analysis to examine economic, sociopolitical, and strategic interests in the Arab world. Through detailed country studies and the exploration of key crosscutting themes, the Carnegie Middle East Program, in coordination with the Carnegie Middle East Center in Beirut, provides analysis and recommendations in both English and Arabic that are deeply informed by knowledge and views from the region. The program has special expertise in political reform and Islamist participation in pluralistic politics.

Source http://carnegieendowment.org/2011/04/26/political-turmoil-in-north-africa-and-middle-east/3b2l

In Fact



of the Chinese general public

believe their country should share a global leadership role.


of Indian parliamentarians

have criminal cases pending against them.


charter schools in the United States

are linked to Turkey’s Gülen movement.


thousand tons of chemical weapons

are in North Korea’s possession.


of import tariffs

among Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru have been eliminated.


trillion a year

is unaccounted for in official Chinese income statistics.


of GDP in oil-exporting Arab countries

comes from the mining sector.


of Europeans and Turks

are opposed to intervention in Syria.


of Russian exports to China

are hydrocarbons; machinery accounts for less than 1%.


of undiscovered oil

is in the Arctic.


U.S. government shutdowns

occurred between 1976 and 1996.


of Ukrainians

want an “international economic union” with the EU.


million electric bicycles

are used in Chinese cities.


of the world’s energy supply

is consumed by cities.


of today’s oils

require unconventional extraction techniques.


of the world's population

will reside in cities by 2050.


of Syria’s population

is expected to be displaced by the end of 2013.


of the U.S. economy

is consumed by healthcare.


of Brazilian protesters

learned about a massive rally via Facebook or Twitter.


million cases pending

in India’s judicial system.

1 in 3


now needs urgent assistance.


political parties

contested India’s last national elections.


of Egypt's labor force

works in the private sector.


of oil consumed in the United States

is for the transportation sector.


of Chechnya’s pre-1994 population

has fled to different parts of the world.


of oil consumed in China

was from foreign sources in 2012.


billion in goods and services

traded between the United States and China in 2012.


billion in foreign investment and oil revenue

have been lost by Iran because of its nuclear program.


increase in China’s GDP per capita

between 1972 and today.


billion have been spent

to complete the Bushehr nuclear reactor in Iran.


of Iran’s electricity needs

is all the Bushehr nuclear reactor provides.



were imprisoned in Turkey as of August 2012 according to the OSCE.

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