Thursday, May 05, 2011

U.S. Silences on the Arab Spring are Deafening

The Obama administration has hardly said a peep about the need for democracy in Saudi Arabia or the other oil-rich states of the Gulf, even as those regimes are cracking down on the small but growing number of democracy activists in their midst.

Hannah Gurman By Hannah Gurman, OtherWords.org, May 2, 2011

The U.S. response to the democratic uprisings sweeping the Middle East and North Africa is as notable for its silence as for its uneven support for the Arab Spring.

It took weeks of incessant protest in Tunisia and Egypt before the Obama administration would say much or do anything to support the protesters in those countries. While Washington intervened in Libya to protect civilians from Muammar Gaddafi’s attacks, it’s responding to uprisings in Bahrain, Yemen, and Iraq with a particular quiescence. The Obama administration has hardly said a peep about the need for democracy in Saudi Arabia or the other oil-rich states of the Gulf, even as those regimes are cracking down on the small but growing number of democracy activists in their midst.

Arab Spring Forecast
In recent weeks, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has joined the list of Gulf states that, without eliciting much outrage from the United States, have silenced individuals demanding even modest steps toward democratic reform. The UAE, a federation of emirates including Dubai and Abu Dhabi, has no political parties and never holds free elections. In response to the revolutions in the region, public intellectuals, academics, and political activists in the country have advanced a democracy campaign of their own.

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3 comments:

gary said...

Excellent point. Very embarassing that my country isn't more vocal about the dictators of Saudi Arabia, China, and such. My position is that the democracy revolution must not stop until it reaches the United Nations. I made a youtube video on the subject...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HN6jeDxpt1M


I would be interested in any feedback on the concept.

gary
USA

Dr Nasir Khan said...

Thank you Gary for your thoughtful youtube video. I much appreciate what you say.

As far as the dictatorships in the Middle East in countries like Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, Egypt under Mubarak, etc. are concerned, their prime sustqainder and supporter has been the United Stqtes of America. I hope you will think on these lines and contribute to the struggle and cause of democracy and peace.

Regards

gary said...

Dr Nasir Khan,

The idea of a United Democratic Nations is just as much about improving existing democracies as it is creating new ones. So to answer your point, yes, I've definitely thought along those lines. The USA cearly has no monopoly on democracy.

gary