RSSTous les articles taggés avec: "Moyen-Orient"

The Arab Tomorrow

DAVID B. OTTAWAY

octobre 6, 1981, was meant to be a day of celebration in Egypt. It marked the anniversary of Egypt’s grandest moment of victory in three Arab-Israeli conflicts, when the country’s underdog army thrust across the Suez Canal in the opening days ofthe 1973 Yom Kippur War and sent Israeli troops reeling in retreat. On a cool, cloudless morning, the Cairo stadium was packed with Egyptian families that had come to see the military strut its hardware.On the reviewing stand, President Anwar el-Sadat,the war’s architect, watched with satisfaction as men and machines paraded before him. I was nearby, a newly arrived foreign correspondent.Suddenly, one of the army trucks halted directly in front of the reviewing stand just as six Mirage jets roared overhead in an acrobatic performance, painting the sky with long trails of red, yellow, purple,and green smoke. Sadat stood up, apparently preparing to exchange salutes with yet another contingent of Egyptian troops. He made himself a perfect target for four Islamist assassins who jumped from the truck, stormed the podium, and riddled his body with bullets.As the killers continued for what seemed an eternity to spray the stand with their deadly fire, I considered for an instant whether to hit the ground and risk being trampled to death by panicked spectators or remain afoot and risk taking a stray bullet. Instinct told me to stay on my feet, and my sense of journalistic duty impelled me to go find out whether Sadat was alive or dead.

Démocratie libérale et l'islam politique: le Search for Common Ground.

Mostapha Benhenda

This paper seeks to establish a dialogue between democratic and Islamic political theories.1 The interplay between them is puzzling: for example, in order to explain the relationship existing between democracy and their conception of the ideal Islamic political
régime, the Pakistani scholar Abu ‘Ala Maududi coined the neologism “theodemocracy” whereas the French scholar Louis Massignon suggested the oxymoron “secular theocracy”. These expressions suggest that some aspects of democracy are evaluated positively and others are judged negatively. Par exemple, Muslim scholars and activists often endorse the principle of accountability of rulers, which is a defining feature of democracy. On the contrary, they often reject the principle of separation between religion and the state, which is often considered to be part of democracy (at least, of democracy as known in the United States today). Given this mixed assessment of democratic principles, it seems interesting to determine the conception of democracy underlying Islamic political models. In other words, we should try to find out what is democratic in “theodemocracy”. To that end, among the impressive diversity and plurality of Islamic traditions of normative political thought, we essentially focus on the broad current of thought going back to Abu ‘Ala Maududi and the Egyptian intellectual Sayyed Qutb.8 This particular trend of thought is interesting because in the Muslim world, it lies at the basis of some of the most challenging oppositions to the diffusion of the values originating from the West. Based on religious values, this trend elaborated a political model alternative to liberal democracy. Broadly speaking, the conception of democracy included in this Islamic political model is procedural. With some differences, this conception is inspired by democratic theories advocated by some constitutionalists and political scientists.10 It is thin and minimalist, up to a certain point. Par exemple, it does not rely on any notion of popular sovereignty and it does not require any separation between religion and politics. The first aim of this paper is to elaborate this minimalist conception. We make a detailed restatement of it in order to isolate this conception from its moral (liberal) foundations, which are controversial from the particular Islamic viewpoint considered here. En effet, the democratic process is usually derived from a principle of personal autonomy, which is not endorsed by these Islamic theories.11 Here, we show that such principle is not necessary to justify a democratic process.

L'islamisme revisité

MAHA AZZAM

There is a political and security crisis surrounding what is referred to as Islamism, a crisis whose antecedents long precede 9/11. Over the past 25 ans, there have been different emphases on how to explain and combat Islamism. Analysts and policymakers
in the 1980s and 1990s spoke of the root causes of Islamic militancy as being economic malaise and marginalization. More recently there has been a focus on political reform as a means of undermining the appeal of radicalism. Increasingly today, the ideological and religious aspects of Islamism need to be addressed because they have become features of a wider political and security debate. Whether in connection with Al-Qaeda terrorism, political reform in the Muslim world, the nuclear issue in Iran or areas of crisis such as Palestine or Lebanon, it has become commonplace to fi nd that ideology and religion are used by opposing parties as sources of legitimization, inspiration and enmity.
The situation is further complicated today by the growing antagonism towards and fear of Islam in the West because of terrorist attacks which in turn impinge on attitudes towards immigration, religion and culture. The boundaries of the umma or community of the faithful have stretched beyond Muslim states to European cities. The umma potentially exists wherever there are Muslim communities. The shared sense of belonging to a common faith increases in an environment where the sense of integration into the surrounding community is unclear and where discrimination may be apparent. The greater the rejection of the values of society,
whether in the West or even in a Muslim state, the greater the consolidation of the moral force of Islam as a cultural identity and value-system.
Following the bombings in London on 7 Juillet 2005 it became more apparent that some young people were asserting religious commitment as a way of expressing ethnicity. The links between Muslims across the globe and their perception that Muslims are vulnerable have led many in very diff erent parts of the world to merge their own local predicaments into the wider Muslim one, having identifi ed culturally, either primarily or partially, with a broadly defi ned Islam.

L'Irak et l'avenir de l'islam politique

James Piscatori

Il y a soixante-cinq ans, l'un des plus grands savants de l'islam moderne posait la question simple, «Où l'islam?", où allait le monde islamique? C'était une période de troubles intenses dans les mondes occidental et musulman - la disparition de l'impérialisme et la cristallisation d'un nouveau système étatique en dehors de l'Europe; la création et le test du néo- L'ordre mondial wilsonien à la Société des Nations; l'émergence du fascisme européen. Sir Hamilton Gibb a reconnu que les sociétés musulmanes, incapable d'éviter de telles tendances mondiales, ont également été confrontés à la pénétration tout aussi incontournable du nationalisme, laïcité, et occidentalisation. Alors qu'il mettait prudemment en garde contre les prédictions - risques pour nous tous intéressés par la politique du Moyen-Orient et de l'islam - il était sûr de deux choses.:
(une) le monde islamique évoluerait entre l'idéal de solidarité et les réalités de la division;
(b) la clé de l'avenir réside dans le leadership, ou qui parle avec autorité pour l'Islam.
Aujourd'hui, les pronostics de Gibb pourraient bien avoir une pertinence renouvelée alors que nous sommes confrontés à une crise de plus en plus grave en Irak, le déroulement d'une guerre expansive et controversée contre le terrorisme, et le problème palestinien persistant. Dans cette conférence, je voudrais examiner les facteurs qui peuvent affecter le cours de la politique musulmane dans la période actuelle et dans un avenir proche.. Bien que les points que je vais soulever sont susceptibles d'avoir une pertinence plus large, Je m'appuierai principalement sur le cas du monde arabe.
Hypothèses sur l'islam politique Les prédictions ne manquent pas en ce qui concerne l'islam politisé ou l'islamisme. «L’islamisme» est mieux compris comme le sentiment que quelque chose ne va pas dans les sociétés musulmanes contemporaines et que la solution doit résider dans une série d’actions politiques.. Souvent utilisé de manière interchangeable avec «fondamentalisme», L’islamisme est mieux assimilé à «l’islam politique». Plusieurs commentateurs ont proclamé sa disparition et l'avènement de l'ère post-islamiste. Ils soutiennent que l'appareil répressif de l'État s'est avéré plus durable que l'opposition islamique et que l'incohérence idéologique des islamistes les a rendus inadaptés à la concurrence politique moderne.. Les événements du 11 septembre semblent contredire cette prédiction, encore, inébranlable, ils ont fait valoir qu'un tel spectaculaire, des actes pratiquement anarchiques ne font que prouver la faillite des idées islamistes et suggèrent que les radicaux ont abandonné tout espoir réel de s'emparer du pouvoir.

L'Égypte au point de basculement ?

David B. Ottaway
Au début des années 80, J'ai vécu au Caire en tant que chef de bureau du Washington Post couvrant des événements historiques tels que le retrait du dernier
Les forces israéliennes du territoire égyptien occupé pendant la 1973 Guerre israélo-arabe et assassinat du président
Anouar Sadate par des fanatiques islamiques en octobre 1981.
Le dernier drame national, dont j'ai été témoin personnellement, s'était avéré être une étape décisive. Il a forcé le successeur de Sadate, Hosni Moubarak, se tourner vers l’intérieur pour faire face à un défi islamiste aux proportions inconnues et mettre fin au rôle de leader de l’Égypte dans le monde arabe.
Moubarak s'est immédiatement montré très prudent, leader sans imagination, terriblement réactif plutôt que pro-actif pour faire face aux problèmes sociaux et économiques qui accablent sa nation comme sa croissance démographique explosive (1.2 millions d'Egyptiens de plus par an) et déclin économique.
Dans une série en quatre parties du Washington Post écrite alors que je partais tôt 1985, J'ai noté que le nouveau dirigeant égyptien était encore à peu près
une énigme totale pour son propre peuple, n'offrant aucune vision et commandant ce qui semblait être un navire d'État sans gouvernail. L'économie socialiste
hérité de l'époque du président Gamal Abdel Nasser (1952 à 1970) était un gâchis. La monnaie du pays, la livre, fonctionnait
sur huit taux de change différents; ses usines gérées par l'État étaient improductives, non compétitif et très endetté; et le gouvernement se dirigeait vers la faillite en partie parce que les subventions alimentaires, l'électricité et l'essence consommaient un tiers ($7 milliard) de son budget. Le Caire avait sombré dans un marais sans espoir de trafic embouteillé et d'humanité grouillante - 12 millions de personnes coincées dans une étroite bande de terre bordant le Nil, la plupart des vivants joue par bajoue dans des immeubles délabrés dans les bidonvilles en constante expansion de la ville.

Les racines du nationalisme dans le monde musulman

Shabir Ahmed

Le monde musulman a été caractérisé par l'échec, désunion, effusion de sang, oppression et arriération. Maintenant, aucun pays musulman au monde ne peut prétendre à juste titre être un chef de file dans aucun domaine de l'activité humaine. En effet, les non-musulmans d'Orient et d'Occident
dictez maintenant le social, agenda économique et politique de la Oummah musulmane.
en outre, les musulmans s'identifient comme turcs, Arabe, Africain et pakistanais. Si cela ne suffit pas, Les musulmans sont encore subdivisés au sein de chaque pays ou continent. Par exemple, au Pakistan, les gens sont classés comme Punjabis, Sindhis, Balauchis et
Pathans. La Oummah musulmane n'a jamais été confrontée à un tel dilemme dans le passé sous la domination islamique. Ils n'ont jamais souffert de désunion, oppression généralisée, stagnation de la science et de la technologie et certainement pas des conflits internes auxquels nous avons assisté ce siècle comme la guerre Iran-Irak. Alors qu'est-ce qui ne va pas avec les musulmans ce siècle? Pourquoi y a-t-il tant de querelles entre eux et pourquoi sont-ils perçus comme se battant? Qu'est-ce qui a causé leur faiblesse et comment se remettront-ils jamais de la stagnation actuelle?
De nombreux facteurs ont contribué à l'état actuel des choses, mais les principaux sont l'abandon de la langue arabe comme langue permettant de comprendre correctement l'islam et de pratiquer l'ijtihad, l'absorption de cultures étrangères telles que les philosophies des Grecs, Persan et les hindous, la perte progressive de l'autorité centrale sur certaines provinces, et la montée du nationalisme depuis le XIXe siècle.
Ce livre se concentre sur les origines du nationalisme dans le monde musulman. Le nationalisme n'est pas apparu naturellement dans le monde musulman, il ne s'est pas non plus produit en réponse aux difficultés rencontrées par le peuple, ni en raison de la frustration qu'ils ont ressentie lorsque l'Europe a commencé à dominer le monde après la révolution industrielle. Plutôt, le nationalisme a été implanté dans l'esprit des musulmans grâce à un plan bien pensé par les puissances européennes, après leur échec à détruire l'État islamique par la force. Le livre présente également le verdict islamique sur le nationalisme et les mesures pratiques qui peuvent être prises pour éradiquer la maladie du nationalisme de la Oummah musulmane afin de la restaurer à son ancienne gloire..

La culture islamique politiques, Démocratie, et droits de l'homme

Daniel E. Prix

Il a été avancé que l'islam facilite l'autoritarisme, contredit le

valeurs des sociétés occidentales, et affecte de manière significative des résultats politiques importants
dans les pays musulmans. par conséquent, savants, commentateurs, et gouvernement
les responsables désignent fréquemment le «fondamentalisme islamique» comme le prochain
menace idéologique pour les démocraties libérales. Cette vue, cependant, est basé principalement
sur l'analyse des textes, Théorie politique islamique, et études ad hoc
de pays individuels, qui ne tiennent pas compte d'autres facteurs. C'est mon argument
que les textes et traditions de l'islam, comme ceux des autres religions,
peut être utilisé pour soutenir une variété de systèmes politiques et de politiques. De campagne
des études spécifiques et descriptives ne nous aident pas à trouver des modèles qui aideront
nous expliquons les relations variables entre l'islam et la politique à travers le
pays du monde musulman. D'où, une nouvelle approche de l'étude des
un lien entre l'islam et la politique est nécessaire.
je suggère, par une évaluation rigoureuse de la relation entre l'Islam,
la démocratie, et les droits de l'homme au niveau transnational, trop
l'accent est mis sur le pouvoir de l'islam en tant que force politique. Je l'ai fait en premier
utiliser des études de cas comparatives, qui se concentrent sur les facteurs liés à l'interaction
entre groupes et régimes islamiques, influences économiques, clivages ethniques,

et développement sociétal, pour expliquer la variance de l'influence de

L'Islam et la politique dans huit pays.

Islamist Opposition Parties and the Potential for EU Engagement

Toby Archer

Heidi Huuhtanen

In light of the increasing importance of Islamist movements in the Muslim world and

the way that radicalisation has influenced global events since the turn of the century, il

is important for the EU to evaluate its policies towards actors within what can be loosely

termed the ‘Islamic world’. It is particularly important to ask whether and how to engage

with the various Islamist groups.

This remains controversial even within the EU. Some feel that the Islamic values that

lie behind Islamist parties are simply incompatible with western ideals of democracy and

droits de l'homme, while others see engagement as a realistic necessity due to the growing

domestic importance of Islamist parties and their increasing involvement in international

affairs. Another perspective is that democratisation in the Muslim world would increase

European security. The validity of these and other arguments over whether and how the

EU should engage can only be tested by studying the different Islamist movements and

their political circumstances, country by country.

Democratisation is a central theme of the EU’s common foreign policy actions, as laid

out in Article 11 of the Treaty on European Union. Many of the states considered in this

report are not democratic, or not fully democratic. In most of these countries, Islamist

parties and movements constitute a significant opposition to the prevailing regimes, et

in some they form the largest opposition bloc. European democracies have long had to

deal with governing regimes that are authoritarian, but it is a new phenomenon to press

for democratic reform in states where the most likely beneficiaries might have, from the

EU’s point of view, different and sometimes problematic approaches to democracy and its

related values, such as minority and women’s rights and the rule of law. These charges are

often laid against Islamist movements, so it is important for European policy-makers to

have an accurate picture of the policies and philosophies of potential partners.

Experiences from different countries tends to suggest that the more freedom Islamist

parties are allowed, the more moderate they are in their actions and ideas. In many

cases Islamist parties and groups have long since shifted away from their original aim

of establishing an Islamic state governed by Islamic law, and have come to accept basic

democratic principles of electoral competition for power, the existence of other political

competitors, and political pluralism.

ISLAMIC RULINGS ON WARFARE

Youssef H. Aboul-Enein
Sherifa Zuhur

The United States no doubt will be involved in the Middle East for many decades. To be sure, settling the Israeli–Palestinian dispute or alleviating poverty could help to stem the tides of Islamic radicalism and anti-American sentiment. But on an ideological level, we must confront a specific interpretation of Islamic law, l'histoire,and scripture that is a danger to both the United States and its allies. To win that ideological war, we must understand the sources of both Islamic radicalism and liberalism. We need to comprehend more thoroughly the ways in which militants misinterpret and pervert Islamic scripture. Al-Qaeda has produced its own group of spokespersons who attempt to provide religious legitimacy to the nihilism they preach. Many frequently quote from the Quran and hadith (the Prophet Muhammad’s sayings and deeds) in a biased manner to draw justification for their cause. Lieutenant Commander Youssef Aboul-Enein and Dr. Sherifa Zuhur delve into the Quran and hadith to articulate a means by which Islamic militancy can be countered ideologically, drawing many of their insights from these and other classical Islamic texts. In so doing, they expose contradictions and alternative approaches in the core principles that groups like al-Qaeda espouse. The authors have found that proper use of Islamic scripture actually discredits the tactics of al-Qaeda and other jihadist organizations. This monograph provides a basis for encouraging our Muslim allies to challenge the theology supported by Islamic militants. Seeds of doubt planted in the minds of suicide bombers might dissuade them from carrying out their missions. The Strategic Studies Institute is pleased to offer this study of Islamic rulings on warfare to the national defense community as an effort to contribute to the ongoing debate over how to defeat Islamic militancy.

L'émergence des «démocratie musulmane”

Vali Nasr

Un spectre hante le monde musulman. Ce spectre est particulièrement notthe méchante et très discutée esprit de l'extrémisme fondamentaliste, ni encore de l'espoir fantôme connu comme l'islam libéral. Plutôt, le spectre que j'ai à l'esprit est une troisième force, a hopeful if still somewhat ambiguoustrend that I call—in a conscious evocation of the political tradition associated with the Christian Democratic parties of Europe—“Muslim Democracy.”The emergence and unfolding of Muslim Democracy as a “fact on the ground” over the last fifteen years has been impressive. This is so even though all its exponents have thus far eschewed that label1 and even though the lion’s share of scholarly and political attention has gone to the question of how to promote religious reform within Islam as a prelude to democratization.2 Since the early 1990s, ouvertures politiques dans Un certain nombre de pays à majorité musulmane, tout, Il est vrai que, en dehors de la Arabworld-vu orientée vers l'islam (mais non islamiste) votes parties successfullyfor lice au Bangladesh, Indonésie, Malaisie, Pakistan (beforeits 1999 coup d'Etat militaire), et les islamistes Turkey.Unlike, avec leurs visions de la règle par la charia (loi islamique) oreven un califat restauré, Démocrates musulmans de voir la vie politique avec des yeux apragmatic. Ils rejettent, ou du moins de réduction de la demande classique islamiste que l'islam commandes à l'exercice d'un état charia, et leurs principaux goaltends être le plus mondain de l'artisanat viables sable plate-forme électorale des coalitions gouvernementales stables pour servir les intérêts individuels et collectifs-islamique ainsi que laïque dans un cadre démocratique whosebo, gagner ou perdre. Les islamistes considèrent la démocratie non pas comme quelque chose de profondément légitimes, mais au mieux comme un outil ou une tactique qui peut être utile pour obtenir le pouvoir de construire un Etat islamique.

Le Hamas et la réforme politique au Moyen-Orient

David Mepham

La leçon de l'élection de la Palestine est que la communauté internationale devrait devenir plus graves et plus complexes au sujet de la réforme politique au Moyen-Orient, explique David Mepham de l'Institute for Public Policy Research.
Hamas’s stunning victory in the 25 January elections to the Palestinian Legislative Council raises three critical questions for international policymakers:
• why did it happen – that an organisation labelled asterroristby the Israelis, the European Union and the United States manages to win the support of a majority of Palestinian voters?
• how should the international community now respond?
• where does Hamas’s victory leave the cause of political reform and democratisation in the middle east?
The rise of Hamas
Much of the immediate international commentary on the election result has focused on the failings of Fatah during the decade in which the movement held power in the Palestinian Authority (PA) – including the rampant corruption of senior Fatah officials and the lack of meaningful democracy within the PA. There was also a sizeable positive vote for Hamas. The organisation is seen by many Palestinians as untainted by corruption, et, unlike the PA, it has a good track record of providing health, education and other services.
The other part of the explanation for the Hamas victory – less discussed in the international media – has been the failure of thepeace processand the radicalising and impoverishing effects of the Israeli occupation. Under the premiership of Ariel Sharon since 2001, Israel has all but destroyed the infrastructure of the Palestinian Authority. Israel has also continued its policy of illegal settlement expansion in the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem, and it is in the process of building aseparation barrier”.
Israel is not building the barrier on its pre-1967 occupation border (which it would be allowed to do under international law). Rather it plans to build 80% of the barrier inside Israeli-occupied Palestinian territory. This involves incorporating the main Israeli settlement blocs, as well as taking over Palestinian agricultural lands and water resources. This restricts Palestinian freedom of movement, and makes it much harder for Palestinians to access their schools, health facilities and jobs.
These policies are oppressive and humiliating; they also have disastrous economic consequences. The United Nations estimates that poverty levels have more than trebled in the last five years, cette 60% of Palestinians are now living in poverty, and that unemployment is around 30%. These conditions have provided very fertile soil for the radicalisation of Palestinian opinion and for the rise of Hamas.
The short-term challenge
Hamas’s electoral victory presents the international community with a real conundrum.
D'un côté, le “Quartet” (the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations) is right to say that full-scale peace negotiations with Hamas will require significant movement on Hamas’s part. Hamas does not recognise the state of Israel. It also supports violence, including attacks on Israeli civilians, as part of its strategy for Palestinian national liberation. Anyone expecting an immediate and formal shift in Hamas policy on these issues is likely to be disappointed.
But intelligent international diplomacy can still make a difference. While they are reluctant to formally proclaim it, there is evidence that some senior Hamas leaders accept the reality of Israel within its pre-1967 borders. En outre, on the question of violence Hamas has largely maintained a unilateral truce (tahdi’a) for the past year. Extending this truce, and working for a comprehensive Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire, should be the immediate focus of international diplomacy towards Hamas, if necessary through third-party intermediaries.
The other critical international objective should be to avoid the collapse of the Palestinian Authority. Fatah’s mismanagement and the disastrous consequences of Israeli occupation and closures have left the PA in a desperate state and entirely dependent on donor funding to stay afloat. In 2005, the EU provided £338 million, while the US contributed £225 million. Cutting that assistance overnight would plunge tens of thousands of Palestinians into acute poverty, triggering social implosion and anarchy. But donors are rightly worried about transferring resources to a government dominated by Hamas.
One possibility would be to press for a government of Palestinian technocrats, without senior Hamas figures in key ministerial positions, and to rely on Mahmoud Abbas, the directly elected Palestinian president, as the main interlocutor for the international community. Something along these lines appears to command support amongst the Quartet. If the immediate economic situation can be stabilised, then there is at least a possibility of encouraging Hamas to move in a political direction through a policy of gradual, conditional engagement. Pressure on Israel to live up to its obligations under international law, for example by ending illegal settlement activity, would also help: persuading a sceptical Palestinian public that the world does care about their plight and is committed to a two-state solution.
The regional prospect
While Hamas’s victory has focused attention on the immediate crisis in the Palestinian territories, it raises wider questions about the process of political reform and democratisation in the broader middle east, a process advocated so publicly by the Bush administration. It is ironic, to say the least, that Hamas – a group with which the United States refuses to deal – should be the beneficiary of a free and fair election encouraged by US policy. Some will draw from this the conclusion that democratic reform in the middle east is a hopelessly misguided enterprise and one that should be abandoned forthwith. Smallcconservatives, on all sides of the political spectrum, will feel vindicated in highlighting the risks of rapid political change and in pointing out the virtues of stability.
It is true that political change carries risks, including the risk that radical Islamists like Hamas will be the major beneficiaries of political liberalisation. While this is a reasonable concern, those who highlight it tend to overlook the diversity of political Islamists in the region, the special circumstances that account for the rise of Hamas, and the extent to which some Islamists have moderated their positions in recent years. Unlike Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the Islamic Action Front in Jordan and the Justice & Development Party in Morocco all reject violence and have committed themselves to pluralistic politics.
Nor do the critics suggest a better alternative for addressing the phenomenon of political Islamism across the region than the attempted engagement of Islamists in the political process. Repression of Islamists and their systematic exclusion from political institutions has been a recipe for instability and extremism, not moderation.
There is obviously a strong critique to be made of the Bush administration’s attempts to promote political change in the middle east, not least the multiple failings of its policy in Iraq. More broadly, the US lacks credibility in the region as a force for democracy and human rights because of its largely uncritical support for Israel, and its military, diplomatic and often financial backing for many of the more authoritarian regimes in the region. Even when it is particularly outspoken on the need for greater democracy, for example in its recent dealings with President Mubarak of Egypt, the administration’s anti-terrorism agenda consistently trumps its political reform objectives.
But exposing the folly and ineffectiveness of US policy is one thing; ditching the commitment to political reform in the middle east is quite another. The international community needs to strengthen not weaken its commitment to accountable government and human rights in the region. In thinking about political change in the middle east – where the concept of a democratic culture is often very weak – international actors need to give as much emphasis toconstitutionalismas to elections, important though elections are. In this context, constitutionalism means a balance of powers, including checks on the executive, a fair and independent legal process, a free press and media, and the protection of the rights of minorities.
It is important too for international actors to be realistic about what can be achieved in particular countries and over particular timescales. In some cases, support for political reform might involve pushing hard now for genuinely free elections. In other cases, a higher short-term priority for political reform might be encouraging an enlarged space in which opposition groups or civil society can function, greater freedom for the press, support for educational reforms and cultural exchanges, and promoting more inclusive economic development.
It is also vital to think more imaginatively about creating incentives for political reform in the middle east. There is a particular role for the European Union here. The experience of political change in other parts of the world suggests that countries can be persuaded to undertake very significant political and economic reforms if this is part of a process that yields real benefits to the ruling elite and the wider society. The way in which the prospect of EU membership has been used to bring about far-reaching change in eastern and central Europe is a good example of this. The process of Turkey’s accession to the EU can be seen in a similar vein.
A critical question is whether such a process might be used more broadly to stimulate political reform across the middle east, through initiatives like the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP). The ENP will provide participating middle-eastern states with a stake in EU institutions, in particular the single market, providing a powerful incentive for reform. It also allows for the EU to reward countries that make faster progress against agreed benchmarks for political reform.
There are no simple answers to the current problems besetting the middle east. But the lesson to be drawn from the Hamas result is emphatically not that the international community should give up on the cause of political reform in the region. Rather it should become more serious and sophisticated about helping to support it.

Les Frères musulmans en Egypte

William Thomasson

L'islam est une religion de violence? Is the widely applied stereotype that all Muslims are violently opposed to “infidel” Western cultures accurate? Today’s world is confronted with two opposing faces of Islam; l'un étant un règlement pacifique, adaptative, modernisé l'islam, and the other strictly fundamentalist and against all things un-Islamic or that may corrupt Islamic culture. Both specimens, mais apparemment opposés, se mêlent et sont reliées entre elles, and are the roots of the confusion over modern Islam’s true identity. Islam’s vastness makes it difficult to analyze, but one can focus on a particular Islamic region and learn much about Islam as a whole. En effet, On peut le faire avec l'Egypte, particularly the relationship between the Fundamentalist society known as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Egyptian government and population. The two opposing faces of Islam are presented in Egypt in a manageable portion, offering a smaller model of the general multi-national struggle of today’s Islam. In an effort to exemplify the role of Islamic Fundamentalists, et leur relation avec la société islamique dans son ensemble dans le débat actuel sur ce qu'est l'islam, cet essai offrira une histoire de la Société des Frères musulmans, une description de la façon dont l'organisation a été, fonctionné, et a été organisée, and a summary of the Brother’s activities and influences on Egyptian culture. Certainly, ce faisant,, on peut acquérir une meilleure compréhension de la façon dont les fondamentalistes islamiques interpréter l'islam


L'évolution politique des Frères musulmans en Egypte

Stephen Bennett

«Allah est notre objectif. Le Prophète est notre chef. Coran est notre loi. Le djihad est notre chemin. Mourir dans le chemin d'Allah est notre plus grand espoir. "

Depuis ses débuts en Egypte des Frères musulmans a suscité beaucoup de controverse, comme certains l'affirment que l'organisation prônant la violence au nom de l'islam. Selon le Dr. Mamoun Fandy, de l'A James. Baker III Institute of Public Policy, "djihadisme et l'activation des points de vue du monde de la maison de l'islam et la maison de la guerre sont les idées qui ont émergé dans les écrits et les enseignements des Frères musulmans " (Livesy, 2005). La principale preuve de cet argument est remarquable membre de la Fraternité, Sayeed Qutb, qui est crédité de développement du révisionnisme et controversé de l'interprétation jihad qui a fourni des justifications religieuse de la violence commise par des organisations émanation de la Fraternité comme Al-Jihad, Al-Takfir wa al-Hijra, Hamas, et Al-Qaïda.

Pourtant, c'est encore une position discutable, parce que même s'il est le parent idéologique de ces organisations violentes, la Fraternité musulmane elle-même a toujours maintenu une position officielle contre la violence et a plutôt favorisé l'action islamique civile et sociale au niveau local. Dans les vingt premières années de son existence, la Confrérie musulmane a obtenu le statut comme le plus influent de tous les grands groupes au Moyen-Orient grâce à son activisme populaire. Il a également la propagation de l'Egypte vers les autres nations à travers la région et a servi de catalyseur pour de nombreux mouvements de libération succès populaire contre le colonialisme occidental au Moyen-Orient.

Si elle a conservé la plupart de ses principes fondateurs depuis sa création, les Frères musulmans ont procédé à une transformation spectaculaire dans certains aspects fondamentaux de son idéologie politique. Autrefois, dénoncé par beaucoup comme une organisation terroriste, À la fin de la Fraternité musulmane a été étiquetée par la plupart des spécialistes actuels du Moyen-Orient comme politiquement «modérés», «Politiquement centriste", et "accommodationist" aux structures politiques et gouvernementales de l'Égypte (Abed-Kotob, 1995, p. 321-322). Sana Abed-Kotob nous dit aussi que des groupes d'opposition courant islamiste qui existent aujourd'hui », plus« radicale »ou des militants de ces groupes d'insister sur un changement révolutionnaire qui doit être imposée sur les masses et le système polit, Attendu que ... la nouvelle Frères musulmans d'Egypte, appel au changement graduel qui doit être entrepris au sein du système politique et avec l'enrôlement des masses musulmanes "

Parting the Veil

shadi hamid

America’s post-September 11 project to promote democracy in the Middle East has proven a spectacular failure. Today,Arab autocrats are as emboldened as ever. Egypte, Jordanie, Tunisie, and others are backsliding on reform. Opposition forces are being crushed. Three of the most democratic polities in the region, Liban, Irak, and the Palestinian territories,are being torn apart by violence and sectarian conflict.Not long ago, it seemed an entirely different outcome was in the offing. Asrecently as late 2005, observers were hailing the “Arab spring,” an “autumn forautocrats,” and other seasonal formulations. They had cause for such optimism.On January 31, 2005, the world stood in collective awe as Iraqis braved terroristthreats to cast their ballots for the first time. That February, Egyptian PresidentHosni Mubarak announced multi-candidate presidential elections, another first.And that same month, after former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri wasshadi hamid is director of research at the Project on Middle East Democracyand an associate of the Truman National Security Project.Parting the Veil Now is no time to give up supporting democracy in the Muslim world.But to do so, the United States must embrace Islamist moderates.shadi hamiddemocracyjournal.org 39killed, Lebanon erupted in grief and then anger as nearly one million Lebanesetook to the streets of their war-torn capital, demanding self-determination. Notlong afterward, 50,000 Bahrainis—one-eighth of the country’s population—ralliedfor constitutional reform. The opposition was finally coming alive.But when the Arab spring really did come, the American response provide dample evidence that while Arabs were ready for democracy, the United States most certainly was not. Looking back, the failure of the Bush Administration’s efforts should not have been so surprising. Since the early 1990s, États-Unis. policymakershave had two dueling and ultimately incompatible objectives in the Middle East: promoting Arab democracy on one hand, and curbing the power and appealof Islamist groups on the other. In his second inaugural address, President George W. Bush declared that in supporting Arab democracy, our “vital interests and our deepest beliefs” were now one. The reality was more complicated.When Islamist groups throughout the region began making impressive gains at the ballot box, particularly in Egypt and in the Palestinian territories, the Bush Administration stumbled. With Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza high on the agendaand a deteriorating situation in Iraq, American priorities began to shift. Friendly dictators once again became an invaluable resource for an administration that found itself increasingly embattled both at home and abroad.The reason for this divergence in policy revolves around a critical question:What should the United States do when Islamists come to power through free elections? In a region where Islamist parties represent the only viable oppositionto secular dictatorships, this is the crux of the matter. In the MiddleEastern context, the question of democracy and the question of political Islamare inseparable. Without a well-defined policy of engagement toward politicalIslam, the United States will fall victim to the same pitfalls of the past. In many ways, it already has.

How to Promote Human Rights in Egypt

Human Rights First

The United States’ relationship with Egypt is central toseveral policy challenges facing the new administration inthe Middle East. As the most populous Arab state, Egyptis a major regional power. Since signing a peace treatywith Israel in 1979, it has played a key role in negotiationsfor an Israeli-Palestinian and a broader Israeli-Arab peaceagreement. Egypt helped to mediate a tense ceasefirebetween Israel and Hamas that broke down with theoutbreak of conflict in the Gaza Strip at the end ofDecember 2008, and continues to serve as anintermediary between the warring parties in the Gazaconflict. Egypt is again at the center of renewed peacemaking efforts in the region launched by the Obamaadministration with the appointment of former SenatorGeorge Mitchell as Special Envoy in January 2009.In a part of the world where so many vital U.S. interestsare at stake, Egypt is a key partner for any U.S.administration. The Egyptian government can greatlyassist the United States in legitimizing and supporting thenew government in Iraq, for example, et, as the owner ofthe Suez Canal and as an oil producer, Egypt is vital tothe security of energy supplies from the region.Egypt is also a testing ground for U.S. human rightspromotion in the region, and was frequently the target ofexhortations to move forward with political reform anddemocratization during the Bush administration.Successive administrations have been encouraging theEgyptian government to reform for decades, but after the9/11 attacks, with the prominent involvement of Egyptianslike Mohamed Atta and Ayman al-Zawahiri, calls forreform took on greater centrality—and a new urgency—inU.S. policy. Human rights and democracy were no longerjust desirable; they became national security concernsand the subject of a new “Freedom Agenda.

Politique Démocratisation et islamique:

YOKOTA Takayuki�

The aim of this article is to explore the often contradictory correlation between democratizationand Islamic politics in Egypt, focusing on a new Islamic political party, the Wasat Party (Ḥizbal-Wasaṭ).Theoretically, democratization and Islamic politics are not incompatible if Islamic politicalorganizations can and do operate within a legal and democratic framework. D'autre part,this requires democratic tolerance by governments for Islamic politics, as long as they continueto act within a legal framework. In the Middle East, cependant, Islamic political parties are oftensuspected of having undemocratic agendas, and governments have often used this suspicion as ajustification to curb democratization. This is also the case with the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood(Jam‘īya al-Ikhwān al-Muslimīn) under the Ḥusnī Mubārak regime. Although the Brotherhood is amainstream Islamic movement in Egypt, operating publicly and enjoying considerable popularity,successive governments have never changed its illegal status for more than half a century. Someof the Brotherhood members decided to form the Wasat Party as its legal political organ in order tobreak this stalemate.There have been some studies on the Wasat Party. Stacher [2002] analyzes the “Platformof the Egyptian Wasat Party” [Ḥizb al-Wasaṭ al-Miṣrī 1998] and explains the basic principlesof the Wasat Party as follows: la démocratie, sharī‘a (loi islamique), rights of women, and Muslim-Christian relations. Baker [2003] regards the Wasat Party as one of the new Islamist groups thathave appeared in contemporary Egypt, and analyzes its ideology accordingly. Wickham [2004]discusses the moderation of Islamic movements in Egypt and the attempt to form the WasatParty from the perspective of comparative politics. Norton [2005] examines the ideology andactivities of the Wasat Party in connection with the Brotherhood’s political activities. As theseearlier studies are mainly concerned with the Wasat Party during the 1990s and the early 2000s,I will examine the ideology and activities of the Wasat Party till the rise of the democratizationmovement in Egypt in around 2005. I will do so on the basis of the Wasat Party’s documents, suchas the “Platform of the New Wasat Party” [Ḥizb al-Wasaṭ al-Jadīd 2004]1), and my interviews withits members.