Roses cartoon 390.
(photo credit: Avi Katz)
When the “Arab Spring” erupted a year ago, many in the West hailed the
development as a breakthrough for democracy in the Middle East and made upbeat
comparisons with the fall of communism in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989 and
the collapse of the Soviet Union two years later.But those making these
buoyant assessments ignored the unwelcome fact that the majority of people who
became “free” as a result of the events in 1989 and 1991 continue to live under
totalitarian or authoritarian regimes. Moreover, those countries that
successfully made the transition to democracy did so because they were able to
link themselves politically to NATO and/or the European Union and because of the
influx of trillions of dollars of Western economic aid.
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