Friday, September 7, 2012

Book review: The Arab Revolutions

I saw this German collective volume shortly after it was published and was tempted to buy it immediately, interested to read the ideas about the new situation in the Middle East from a German perspective. The Germans were always very interested in the area and they have a lot of well trained specialists that travel often in the area, for academic and economic purposes.

However, I did not expect too much to find so many data and only few evaluations, if any, of the current situation. The overall tone of the book - analysing the 'revolutions' (a term whose opportunity is not discussed at all) in Egypt, Syria, Tunisia, Jordan, UAE, Libya - is naively optimistic, as most cases are seen as a fight of 'good' vs. 'evil'. I did not identified any critical perspective of the situation and even less the seeds of the current Islamist debacle in almost the entire area.

For someone with a fresh mind, the book will offer a lot of details and historical information about the 'revolutionary' moment and thus, could be easily used as a basic source for documenting the situation in the Middle East. 

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