Democracy in the Middle East Essay

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Over the last century, the Middle East has been the location of ethnic rivalry, political and economic instability, religious conflict, territorial dispute and war. Much of this tension in the Middle East comes from the various interpretations of Islam and how the religion should be applied to politics and society. Over the last ten years, the United States and their allies have pushed to promote democracy in the Middle East. However, they too have many obstacles they must overcome. They face problems such as the compatibility of Islamic law and democracy, the issue of women’s rights, and there is always the problem of how to go about implementing a democratic reform in these countries. Many initially would assume that it is only the…show more content…
By the end of 2005 Freedom House had recorded strong improvements in the political and civil rights of countries like Jordan, Morocco, Egypt, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. Over a year later, the democratic prospects in the Middle East did not look as prosperous as before. Struggles between the regimes, the United States, and Europe started to diminish the democratic reform. People in the Middle East wanted a change because what they had before did not serve for their best interests. Elections began in many of these Middle Eastern nations like Palestine where Hammas won, in Lebanon where Hezbollah won, in Iraq where the Islamists got the majority, and in Egypt where many members of the Muslim Brotherhood won seats in parliament. Although the electoral process began in some of these Middle Eastern states, it was not the greatest thing in the world since people were not voting based off the political platforms on which these parties stand on but rather the personalities of the leaders. There was also a lot of corruption in these elections that swayed votes to these Islamist parties. The Bush administration was hoping that Iraq would set an example that could influence the rest of the region to democratize. Instead, Islamist parties were the ones to win the elections, violence started to increase in the region, and countries surrounding Iraq now used them as an example of why democratizing is not a good option. Leaders had turned the terrible situation in Iraq as an excuse
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