The Invisible Arab: The Promise and Peril of the Arab Revolutions

Marwan Bishara. Nation, $26 (272p) ISBN 978-1-56858-708-0
Bishara, chief policy analyst for Al-Jazeera, provides a compelling and spirited history of the modern Arab nation, from colonial liberation to the recent revolutions. Painting an image of a past tainted by militaries that did not fulfill their anticipated goals, dictators that ruled through fear, and exploitation by more powerful nations, Bishara devotes most of his attention to the new youth movement: "[P]eople, especially the younger generation, couldn't see why they had a choice among…television sets, but not textbooks; news networks, but not political leaders." Despite the significant changes brought about by the revolutions that swept through Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Yemen, and Syria, Bishara does not see an easy road ahead; he advises emphasis needs to be placed on protecting the future—as opposed to punishing for the past—noting that this will involve a reassessment of international relationships: "No longer will rogue regimes be defined according to their proximity to Western powers." Bishara (Palestine/Israel: Peace or Apartheid) concludes with a gentle warning that the unrest that set the stage for the Arab Spring is showing signs around the world, with the same root causes: unemployment, inequality, and corruption. Fast-paced, impassioned, and eloquent, Bishara's newest will interest activists, politicians, and others concerned with foreign affairs and current events. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/2012
Release date: 01/01/2012
Paperback - 284 pages - 978-1-56858-974-9
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