The upcoming Palestinian presidential elections have raised a variety of questions. Here, experts discuss how the process has worked, what is at stake, and why other Palestinian elections are potentially more important.
The United States faces no greater challenge today than successfully fulfilling its new ambition of helping bring about a democratic transformation of the Middle East. Uncharted Journey contributes a wealth of concise, illuminating insights on this subject, drawing on the contributors’ deep knowledge of Arab politics and their experience with democracy-building in other parts of the world.
Although the United States and Europe share in interest in promoting political reform in the Middle East, they have not yet worked out whether they can work productively together on this task. Recent efforts to forge joint initiatives have demonstrated a tendency to devolve into lowest common denominator approaches that generate only lukewarm commitment.
President Bush has suggested that other nations follow the example of Libya, which ended links with terrorist groups and surrendered weapons of mass destruction and delivery systems. But there is a second lesson: The United States will forgo its declared interest in democratization if a country takes positive security-related steps and has enough petroleum to offer.