The Need for Pluralism in the Arab World. By Thomas L. Friedman. NJBR, January 8, 2014.
When a Tunisian peddler set himself on fire in December 2010, launching the Second Arab Awakening, many were taken by surprise. While I cannot claim prescience, I did have a powerful sense that we had been there before – and that if we did not learn the lessons of the past, we would fail this time as well.
Comment by musicmaster (Wim Roffel):
I don’t share the author optimistic view of the Islamists. I see them as a direct product of both propaganda (subsidized) from the Gulf States and their example. These Islamists have an ideology that is fundamentally different from democracy. While democracy assumes freedom that allows everyone what he considers best, Islamism assumes that prosperity comes from being pious and following their rules. The presence of those Islamists has blocked the arrival of democracy and when with the Arab Spring democracy seemed to arrive anyway it has sabotaged it.