Contributors: Martin Indyk, Flynt Leverett, Kenneth Pollack, James Steinberg, Shibley Telhami, and Tamara Cofman Wittes, all connected with the Saban Center at the Brookings Institution.
A Saban Center Report
Inter-state cooperation, which affects domestic and foreign policies, requires some convergence of political cultures among those cooperating states. This book begins by analyzing five hotspot situations and their regional effects: the Basques in Spain, the ethnic Albanians in Macedonia, the Kurds in Turkey, the Chechens and Russia; and the Palestinians, Israel, and a future Palestinian state. These cases shed some light on how we should understand, characterize, and categorize terrorism, and they provide insights into the concepts of political legitimacy, liberal democracy, political culture, and political community. As the United States assesses its homeland defense posture, it must resist any temptation to weaken its liberal democratic values, and, as a superpower, it must encourage other states to adhere to liberal democratic values as well. Liberal democracy is a security imperative in today's global security environment.
In Unfinished Business, a team of five experts from across the political spectrum analyze the situation in Iraq. They present a well-reasoned and feasible path for U.S. policy toward Baghdad—one that would give priority to preventing Iraq from slipping into civil war or becoming an aggressive state but that would also lead to a clear American goal: a new, strong, and prosperous ally in the Middle East.
Ultimately, the United States must condition the continuation of the U.S.-Iraqi relationship on the willingness of Iraqi political leaders to guide their country in the direction of greater stability, inclusivity, and effective governance.
Getting to Pluralism: Political Actors in the Arab World explores the balance of power between the disparate political forces of the Arab world. The essays in this volume examine the characteristics of the major political actors in great detail and assess the weaknesses of the secular parties. They also illustrate the complexities of Islamist participation in the political processes of several Arab countries—pointing out both similarities and differences. Finally, the authors evaluate how incumbent Arab regimes have been able to maintain their grip on power in spite of their claims that they support political and social reform.
The Freedom Agenda traces the history of America's democratic evangelizing. James Traub, a journalist for The New York Times Magazine, describes the rise and fall of the Freedom Agenda during the Bush years, in part through interviews with key administration officials. He offers a richly detailed portrait of the administration's largely failed efforts to bolster democratic forces abroad. In the end, Traub argues that democracy matters—for human rights, for reconciliation among ethnic and religious groups, for political stability and equitable development—but the United States must exercise caution in its efforts to spread it, matching its deeds to its words, both abroad and at home.