The Challenges of the Arab Spring


Guy Sorman: “The Arab World with a few exceptions from some specific sectors of society has been estranged from economic development for many centuries due to the ‘long divergence’ separating it from the Western world because it sought to maintain its old economic institutions without adapting them to the new economic models”

“The leaders of Egypt were unable to understand that the secret to Western progress was neither science nor technology, but the respect for the law and the Rule of Law”

“Democracy in the Arab and Muslim World is possible because it is not a new experience but the restoration of an old model. But it will only be lasting if ‘crony capitalism’ is ended, promoting economic growth and the creation of jobs”

“Europe can help the Arab and Muslim World because the European Union is not only defined by its geography but also by its values”

Jan Surotchak: “We have learnt that the causes of the revolts in the Arab World have been mainly economic, particularly the low income and high unemployment rates. Therefore, the success or failure of the protests will depend on the future model of their economies”

“Many criticise the high expectations of the Egyptians after the revolts: the challenge of democracy is very difficult to attain and there are too many parties lacking any previous experience. It is significant that during the first free elections in Spain, 69 parties stood for them, and, in Egypt, there are currently more than 70 parties which, without the burden posed by the regime, feel finally free to express their opinions”

“The Arab World has a huge necessity for experiences: in this sense, the Partido Popular could be an exceptional model in helping conservative forces to defend values, family and individual rights”

Assia Bensalah Alaoui: “The new Moroccan Constitution represents a new democratisation period after a process of reforms that has been going on for ten years”

“Many political committees are now blooming in Morocco, demonstrating that governance and participatory democracy are an essential concern. The true challenge of the new Moroccan Constitution is to guarantee the emergence of a credible Parliament that manages to energise political life”

“The EU must be a catalyst for reforms: Morocco has the instruments and stability necessary to face future uncertainties”

Tarek El-Malt: “All the people gathering at Tahrir Square could feel change at the tip of their fingers; they all agreed that they wanted a Civil State, not a military or theocratic one; they all shared the dream of making Egypt a blooming nation again”

“The main reason of the Egyptians to demonstrate on the streets and take part in the revolution has been the yearning for freedom, rights and social justice. It is not true that revolts irrupted only because of poverty and hunger: thousands of wealthy people have also been seen defending those very some values”

“For the future we dream of a different Egypt as a member of the G20. It is a dream with foundations because we feel that Egypt also belongs to us and not only to the regime”