Search

You searched for: Political Geography Middle East Remove constraint Political Geography: Middle East Topic Development Remove constraint Topic: Development
Number of results to display per page

Search Results

  • Author: Heidi Huuhtanen
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Reforms in the Middle East have been on the agenda of almost all relevant international organizations and political actors during the recent years. This has been due to the concentration after 9/11 on the domestic conditions in the Muslim world as a source of radicalization. Concentration of domestic problems is a positive step as it has broadened the discussion of sources of security threats and questioned the current policies towards Middle East states and societies. In the public debate the security threat posed by Muslim terrorism to the international community is still largely analyzed out of the domestic context. Western policies and the Israel-Palestinian conflict are seen as the primary reason for radicalization. Muslim relations to the West as well as the issue of Israel surely have their part to play in the domestic setting of the Middle Eastern states and societies, but most analysts and even Islamists themselves agree, that American and Israeli politics – or indeed any other external factors – explain very little of the support for Islamism or radicalization. Instead the radicalization originates in specific political and socio-economic problems in the Muslim countries and the phenomena must be therefore seen as part of intra-Muslim political grievances. External reasons can only add to these already existing internal problems.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Thomas Pickering, James Schlesinger
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: This memorandum focuses on key challenges in the postwar period in Iraq. It supplements the March 12, 2003, report, Iraq: The Day After, prepared by the Independent Task Force on Post-Conflict Iraq and sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations. That report contained some 30 recommendations for U.S. postwar policy in Iraq. While some of the Task Force's recommendations addressed contingencies that did not occur (such as the use of weapons of mass destruction by Iraqi forces or large-scale refugee flight), the bulk of the recommendations remain applicable some three months after the release of the initial report. This supplement highlights a few key areas of continuing concern that we believe require attention by the administration.
  • Topic: Development, Peace Studies
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Middle East
  • Author: Catherine Boone, Henry Clement
  • Publication Date: 03-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas
  • Abstract: This study underscores the strategic role —both political and economic— of banking sector reform in the overall pursuit of economic development and democratization. It compares trajectories of banking sector reform in Middle Eastern and African countries that have remained on the margins of the new global economy. A close look shows that there governments' willingness to embrace reform has differed across contexts, as has the extent and pace of reform. Meanwhile, the effects of reform have also been very uneven. We model this variation in reform trajectories and its outcomes, propose a theoretical explanation for it, and use a set of case studies to illustrate the contrasts and causal dynamics that we have identified. Our main claim is that structural features of national political economies go far in defining actual trajectories of banking sector reform and liberalization. Structural features of national political economies that we define as key are the strength of indigenous private sector, and how it is linked to the state and foreign capital. We propose a typology of banking structure and reform trajectories and use case studies from the Middle East and Africa to illustrate variation in the politics of banking sector reform.
  • Topic: Development, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Africa, United States, Middle East, Canada, North America, Mexico
  • Author: Keith Henderson, Alvaro Herrero
  • Publication Date: 10-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: The goal of this study is to analyze the impact of judicial inefficiency on small businesses in Peru. It is based on the hypothesis that chronic problems in the region's judicial systems have negative consequences on the development of micro, small and medium - sized businesses. Our analysis focuses, first, on the relationship between Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and the legal system. Secondly, it investigates the decisions made by SMEs to mitigate the effects of bad court performance. Lastly, it identifies several ways in which judicial inefficiency is transferred to the business sector. The analysis also attempts to quantify the economic impact of judicial inefficiency.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development
  • Political Geography: Middle East, South America, Peru
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Public International Law Policy Group
  • Abstract: As the situation in Iraq continues to stabilize, the people of Iraq will turn to the task of reconstituting an Iraqi state. One of the first steps in this process will be to design, agree upon, and implement a new constitutional structure. While drafting a new constitution is a difficult and contentious process for any country, the challenges are substantially magnified for Iraq given its complex mosaic of ethnic and religious identities, the history of repression under Saddam Hussein, the necessary presence of American forces, and Iraq's complex relations with its neighboring states.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, War
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: David Johnson
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: In 2000, an overwhelming 97 percent of Afghan girls did not attend school, and today only about 20 percent are literate. Tens of thousands of Afghan girls are now attending school for the first time in years.
  • Topic: International Relations, Democratization, Development
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, Middle East
  • Author: Subodh Atal
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Despite progress in the return of refugees and the prevention of humanitarian disasters, stability in Afghanistan is threatened by ethnic tension, feuding warlords, and violence perpetrated by regrouping elements of the Taliban and their allies. The United States is being asked to increase its level of commitment to rebuilding Afghanistan as a means of stabilizing the country, even as American troops battle the resurgent Islamic extremists who operate along the Afghan-Pakistan border.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Politics
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, America, Middle East, Taliban, Arabia
  • Author: Steve H. Hanke, Matt Sekerke
  • Publication Date: 09-2003
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: The Cato Institute
  • Abstract: Following a swift military campaign to remove the Saddam Hussein government in Iraq, it has become clear that preparations for the postwar period have been inadequate and that the occupying forces lack a workable exit strategy. Specifically, the Coalition Provisional Authority has failed to anticipate the challenges that face the postwar Iraqi economy, including the introduction of sound money to facilitate exchange.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Middle East, Arabia
  • Publication Date: 06-2001
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: Russia's Foreign Policy Russian foreign policy in the coming years will be characterized by weakness; frustration--primarily with the United States as the world's preeminent power--over Russia's diminished status; generally cautious international behavior; and a drive to resubjugate, though not reintegrate, the other former Soviet states. The international situation affords Russia time to concentrate on domestic reforms because, for the first time in its history, it does not face significant external threats. But rather than use the breathing space for domestic reforms, Putin is as much--if not more--focused on restoring Russia's self-defined rightful role abroad and seeking to mold the CIS into a counterweight to NATO and the European Union. The Outside World's Views of Russia Russia does not have any genuine allies. Some countries are interested in good relations with Russia, but only as a means to another end. For example, China sees Russia as a counterweight to the United States but values more highly its ties with the United States. Some countries see Russia as a vital arms supplier but resent Russia also selling arms to their rivals (China-India, Iran-Iraq). Pro-Russia business lobbies exist in Germany, Italy, Turkey, and Israel (one-fifth of whose population now consists of Soviet émigres), but they do not single-handedly determine national policies. Europe is the only region that would like to integrate Russia into a security system, but it is divided over national priorities and institutional arrangements as well as put off by some Russian behavior. Most CIS governments do not trust their colossal neighbor, which continues to show an unsettling readiness to intervene in their internal affairs, though they know Russia well and are to a considerable degree comfortable in dealing with it. Turkey has developed an improved dialogue and an unprecedented number of economic ties with Russia during the post-Cold War period, but this more positive pattern of relations has not fully taken root, and Ankara remains suspicious of Moscow's intentions. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Moscow's role in the Middle East has been reduced, but Israel, Syria, Egypt, Libya, and Iraq all favor good relations with Russia. Mutual interests also override disagreements in Russian-Iranian relations, but Tehran is wary of Russian behavior, particularly toward Saddam Hussein. India still trusts Russia--a sentiment that is perhaps a residue of the genuine friendship of Cold War days--but clearly not in the same way it once did, and New Delhi fears that weakness will propel Russia into doing things that could drive India further away. In East Asia, the most substantial breakthrough has been the resurrected relationship between Russia and China, one that entails significant longer-term risk for Russia. Other countries in the region value their links with Moscow as a means to balance a more powerful China, or as a useful component of their larger political and economic strategies, but Russia's role in East Asia--as elsewhere--remains constrained by the decline in its political, military, and economic power over the last decade. Russia's Weakness Russia's weakness stems from long-term secular trends and from its domestic structure. In essence, the old nomenklatura and a few newcomers have transformed power into property on the basis of personal networks and created an equilibrium resting on insider dealings. These insiders may jockey for position but have a vested interest in preserving the system. The public does not like the system but is resigned to it and gives priority to the preservation of order. As for the economy, it is divided into a profitable, internationally integrated sector run by oligarchs and a much larger, insulated, low-productivity, old-style paternalistic sector that locks Russia into low growth. No solace will be forthcoming from the international business and energy worlds. They do not expect the poor commercial climate to improve greatly and will not increase investments much beyond current levels until it does. Militarily, Russia will also remain weak. Its nuclear arsenal is of little utility, and Moscow has neither the will nor the means to reform and strengthen its conventional forces. Hope for the Future? The best hope for change in Russia lies with the younger generation. Several participants reported that under-25 Russians have much more in common with their US counterparts, including use of the Internet, than with older Soviet generations. But there was some question over whether the new generation would change the system or adapt to it. Others placed some hope in international institutions, for instance the World Trade Organization, eventually forcing Russia to adapt to the modern world. Dissenting Views Some participants dissented from the overall forecast of depressing continuity. The keynote speaker, James Billington, stated that Russia would not be forever weak and that the current confusion would end in a few years either through the adoption of authoritarian nationalism or federated democracy. One scholar felt the Chechen war was feeding ethnic discord in other areas of the Federation to which Moscow would respond with increased authoritarianism, not necessarily successfully. Finally, a historian observed that the patience of Russians is legendary but not infinite, meaning that we should not be overly deterministic.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Development
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Oxford Analytica
  • Publication Date: 09-1999
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Oxford Analytica
  • Abstract: Last week's signing of an Israeli–Palestinian agreement at Sharm al-Sheikh represents an important development in the search for a lasting settlement in the Middle East. The deal illustrates that it is possible to reach an agreement from which all parties will gain, while also exposing enduring problems. The progress made at Sharm al-Sheikh represents, as Nabil Shaath of the Palestinian authority described, an 'unfreezing' of the peace process. Whether the whole process can be infused with greater warmth depends firstly on US efforts to impel the Syrian–Israeli peace negotiations; secondly, it relies on the ability of the regional leaders to make the compromises necessary to reach a peace that all can present as a victory to their domestic constituencies.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Development, Peace Studies
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Syria