Looking around the Middle East you can find turmoil and conflict almost everywhere you turn. Morocco, Tunisia, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, Jordan, Syria, Oman and Egypt have all been caught up in a fire storm of anti-government protests. Some appear to be mostly peaceful, such as the pro-democracy movement in Egypt; and some are descending into bloody civil conflict, such as Libya. The multiple revolutions unfolding in the Middle East are really just getting started. Even in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the smell of revolution is in the air and on the Internet. Organizers in the Kingdom are calling for “DAY OF RAGE.” Saudi King Abdullah is so worried he recently announced $37 billion dollars in subsidies and giveaways. That’s enough to pay everybody in Saudi Arabia around $1,500 each. Some look at it as a bribe to encourage citizens not to protest. (Click here to read more.) If Saudi Arabia falls, war will surely follow.
This changing of the guard across the Middle East will be much more impactful to the rest of the world than the fall of the Berlin Wall.The main reason is oil.The Middle East produces most of the world’s petroleum.If supplies are curtailed and shipping lanes are cut, the world could plunge into economic ruin.
It took a little more than 2 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall to collapse the Soviet Union. I look for the same pace of change in the Middle East.The first domino to fall was tiny Tunisia, followed by mighty Egypt with a population of more than 80 million.Egypt has an up-to-date army outfitted with the latest U.S. made weapons.After Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak stepped down, the military took control of the country. A writer at Foreignpolicy.com recently described the fall of Mubarak this way, “I wish I could be there today, in solidarity with the thousands of young and old Egyptians, to celebrate the demise of his dreadful regime. But what we are witnessing is more than the end of a government — it is nothing less than the birth of a new liberal order in Egypt. And that’s not only good news for the beleaguered citizens of Egypt, but also the United States and Israel.”(Click here to read the complete Foreignpolicy.com post.)
History tells us consistently that big revolutions do not directly lead to democracy.After the French Revolution in 1789, there was mostly crisis and conflict.Napoleon took control 10 years later (1799), and eventually became emperor.His reign was bloody, and he took France to war many times until his last battle in 1815—Waterloo. The Russian Revolution of 1917 was another one of history’s grand upheavals; it produced Communism and Vladimir Lenin.Russia is still without a bona fide democracy today. (The American Revolution is one of the few that directly went to democracy.)
Earlier this month, Harvard history professor Niall Ferguson, wrote a stinging Op-Ed cover story in Newsweek dismantling President Obama’s foreign policy in Egypt.Here’s part of what Ferguson said recently on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program, “. . . I want to emphasize the risks being run in the region. If you look at history, and I am a historian, most revolutions lead not to happy, clappy democracies but to periods of internal turmoil and also periods of terror.And they also lead to external aggression, because the simplest way to mobilize people who are not very well educated like Egypt is to point to the alleged enemy within and then of course the enemy abroad.The scenarios the Israelis are looking at involve a transition not to some kind of peaceful and amicable democracy but to a Muslim Brotherhood dominated regime which then peruses an aggressive policy towards Israel.This is not a zero possibility scenario.This is a high probability scenario, and as far as I can see the President is not considering it.”
Ferguson also points out Mr. Obama is one of the least experienced Presidents in history, when it comes to foreign policy.Ferguson characterized Obama’s handling of the Egyptian revolution as a “flip followed by flop followed by flip.”The “Morning Joe” crew tried to counter Professor Ferguson but was totally out-gunned and out-classed.Please watch the entire video below:
Greg is the producer and creator of USAWatchdog.com. The site’s slogan is “analyzing the news to give you a clear picture of what’s really going on.” The site will keep an eye on the government, your financial interests and cut through the media spin. USAWatchdog.com is neither Democrat nor Republican, Liberal or Conservative. Before creating and producing the site, Greg spent nearly 9 years as a network and investigative correspondent. He worked for ABC News and Good Morning America for nearly 6 years. Most recently, Greg worked for CNN for shows such as Paula Zahn Now, American Morning and various CNN business shows.