Interventions

Interventions is a feature in Middle East Report Online offering critical reviews of important Middle East-related books, films and other cultural production. Click here for past Interventions articles.

Men Behaving Badly

by Moustafa Bayoumi | published September 2012

Here we go again. A preposterous provocation easily manages to ignite fevered protests in Muslim-majority countries around the world, and everyone is worse off as a result. The episode is playing like a sequel to the 2005 Danish cartoon controversy, but with bigger and better explosions than the original.

Ordering Egypt's Chaos

by Joshua Stacher | published June 29, 2012

To the left of a makeshift stage in a Cairo five-star hotel, the waiting continued. Ahmad Shafiq, the last prime minister of the deposed Husni Mubarak and one of two remaining candidates in Egypt’s first post-Mubarak presidential race, was three hours late. Fewer than 60 hours were left until voting was to start in the June 16-17 runoff. But the atmosphere, beside the burgundy backdrop with its decorative maple leafs flanking the podium, felt more like a garden-variety junket than a last-minute campaign stop. It was not clear why Shafiq would choose on this of all days to address the Egyptian-Canadian Business Council.

Algeria's Elections Show Islamist Strength

by Arun Kapil
published in MER166

The June 12 municipal and provincial elections, the first multi-party election held in Algeria since independence in 1962, delivered a stunning defeat to the ruling National Liberation Front (FLN). The victorious Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) has now emerged as the leading opposition party and principal threat to the regime of President Chadli Benjedid.

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.

Tunisia Moves to the Next Stage

by Issandr El Amrani , Ursula Lindsey | published November 8, 2011

Tunisia was the first Arab country to have a pro-democracy uprising in the winter of 2010-2011, and now it is the first to have held an election. Tunisians took to the polls on October 23 to choose a constituent assembly that will be tasked with drafting the country’s first democratic constitution and appointing a new transitional government. The elections were judged free and fair by a record number of domestic and foreign observers, testimony to the seriousness with which the interim government approached the poll. In the eyes of many observers, Tunisia is lighting the way forward where others -- notably Egypt -- are faltering.

Media Wars and the Gulen Factor in the New Turkey

by Joshua D. Hendrick
published in MER260

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.

Funding Fundamentalism

The Political Economy of an Islamist State

by Abbashar Jamal
published in MER172

While Islamic fundamentalism has become a major political force in the Arab world in recent years, particularly in the countries of the Maghrib, it is in Sudan where the Islamist movement has realized its greatest ambition: controlling the levers of state power and setting itself up as a model for similarity oriented movements. Its leaders in Sudan have actively supported groups elsewhere -- reportedly helping to plan a recent failed military coup in Tunis and convening meetings with high officials of Algeria’s Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) in Khartoum. [1]

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.

The Resilience of Algerian Populism

by Boutheina Cheriet
published in MER174

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.

Algeria's Democracy Between the Islamists and the Elite

by Lahouari Addi
published in MER175

Algeria’s experience over the past three years has shown that in a Muslim land the process of democratization gives rise to currents that seek to destroy it. But neutralizing these currents by force entails halting the democratization process and encloses society in repression. Society can escape that enclosure only if Islam is depoliticized -- that is, if it no longer serves as a political resource in the struggle for power.

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.

The Islamist State and Sudanese Women

by Ellen Gruenbaum
published in MER179

The Islamist government in Sudan recently celebrated the third anniversary of the military coup that brought it to power by building a huge public park south of the Khartoum airport, featuring hundreds of hurriedly transplanted trees, bushes and flowers. The impressive determination and efficiency the project commanded seemed calculated to prove to Khartoum’s masses that this is a can-do government.

Please Subscribe to access the full contents of this article.