Kuwait

The Al-Sabah family has ruled since returning to power in 1991 and reestablished an elected legislature. The country witnessed the historic election in May 2009 of four women to its National Assembly. Amid the 2010-11 uprisings and protests across the Arab world, stateless Arabs, known as bidun, staged small protests in February and March 2011 demanding citizenship, jobs, and other benefits available to Kuwaiti nationals. Youth activist groups - supported by opposition legislators and the prime minister's rivals within the ruling family - rallied repeatedly in 2011 for an end to corruption and the ouster of the prime minister and his cabinet. Opposition legislators forced the prime minister to resign in late 2011. In October-December 2012, Kuwait witnessed protests in response to the Amir's changes to the electoral law by decree reducing the number of votes per person from four to one. The opposition, led by a coalition of Sunni Islamists, tribalists, some liberals, and myriad youth groups, boycotted the December 2012 legislative election, resulting in a historic number of Shia candidates winning seats. Since 2006, the Amir has dissolved the National Assembly on five occasions (the Constitutional Court annulled the Assembly once in June 2012) and reshuffled the cabinet 12 times, usually citing political stagnation and gridlock between the legislature and the government.

USIP Examines Security Sector Transformation in North Africa, Middle East

The U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) held its third annual conference on security sector governance on May 10, drawing in activists from North Africa and the Middle East as well as former U.S. ambassadors to the region to assess the political and security-sector challenges arising from the “Arab Awakening.”

The U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) held its third annual conference on security sector governance on May 10, drawing in activists from North Africa and the Middle East as well as former U.S. ambassadors to the region to assess the political and security-sector challenges arising from the “Arab Awakening.”

USIP Staff
Thu, 05/10/2012 - 16:47
Type of Article: 

Security Sector Transformation in North Africa and the Middle East

International efforts to help Arab transition countries with security reform must be driven by country requests, involve many partners, and be tied to broader aims for justice, stability, and economic development.

Summary

Mark Sedra
Fri, 11/18/2011 - 16:23
Type of Article: 

Iraq, Its Neighbors, and the United States

Iraq, Its Neighbors, and the United States examines how Iraq's evolving political order affects its complex relationships with its neighbors and the United States. The book depicts a region unbalanced, shaped by new and old tensions, struggling with a classic collective action dilemma, and anxious about Iraq's political future, as well as America's role in the region, all of which suggest trouble ahead absent concerted efforts to promote regional cooperation. In the volume's case studies, acclaimed scholars and experts review Iraq's bilateral relationships with Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Arab States, Syria, and Jordan and explore how Iraq's neighbors could advance the country's transition to security and stability.

Henri J. Barkey, Scott B. Lasensky, and Phebe Marr, editors

Foreword by James A. Baker, III and Lee H. Hamilton

Thu, 09/15/2011 - 12:37
Type of Article: 

Muslim World Initiative

Building trust and dialogue between political, social and religious leaders

This initiative, which drew to a close in 2009, was designed to help to mobilize moderates, marginalize militants, and bridge the U.S./Muslim-world divide.

Topics: 

U.S.Relations with the Muslim World

Wed, 04/28/2010 - 08:00
Wed, 04/28/2010 - 18:30
Public Event

USIP, CSID, George Mason and ISESCO co-hosted this day-long conference examining America's relations with the Muslim world one year after President Obama's Cairo speech. 

Preliminary Program

8:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Registration
8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Welcoming Remarks

  • Peter Mandaville
    Chair, Program Committee
  • Radwan Masmoudi
    CSID President

9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Panel 1: Plenary Session Roundtable: Perspectives on Muslim Engagement featuring Farah Pandith

  • Peter Mandaville, Chair
    George Mason University
  • Farah Pandith
    Special Representative to Muslim Communities, U.S. Department of State
  • Marc Lynch, respondent
    George Washington University
  • Emile Nakhleh, respondent
    Independent scholar
  • Brian Katulis, respondent
    The Center for American Progress
  • Daniel Brumberg, Respondent
    U.S. Institute of Peace

10:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. Coffee Break

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Parallel Session 1: Muslim Perceptions & Public Opinion

  • Abiodun Williams, Chair
    Vice President, Conflict Prevention and Analysis, U.S. Institute of Peace
  • “Views of the U.S. in Post-Jihadist Thought”
    Omar Ashour, University of Exeter
  • “Muslim publics' views of the U.S.”
    Steven Kull, Worldpublicopinion.org
  • “A Nigerian Perspective on the Cairo Speech”
    Chloe Berwind-Dart, Cherish Foundation
  • “New Approaches to Public Diplomacy in the Muslim World”
    Kristin Lord, Center for a New American Security

11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Parallel Session 2: Islam, Human Rights, and Development

  • Mona Yacoubian, Chair
    U.S. Institute of Peace
  • “The Obama Administration and Islamic Human Rights”
    Satoshi Ikeuchi, University of Tokyo
  • “Arab Youth Development in U.S.-Muslim Engagement”
    Oliver Wilcox & Chris Carneal, U.S. Agency for International Development, Middle East Bureau
  • “Political Islam and U.S. Foreign Policy in the Obama Era”
    Halim Rane, Griffith University
  • “Constructing Political Islam as the New Other”
    Corinna Mullin, School of Oriental & African Studies

12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. Keynote Luncheon: Prospects for Improved Relations and Understanding Between the U.S. and the Muslim World

  • Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN)
  • Tariq Ramadan
    Oxford University
  • Reza Aslan
    University of California, Riverside

2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Plenary Session Amphitheater: Dialogue with Political Islamists

  • Daniel Brumberg, Moderator
    United States Institute of Peace
  • Mustapha Khalfi
    Justice & Development Party, Morocco
  • Zineddine Tebbal,
    Movement for the Society of Peace, Algeria
  • Salah Ali Abdulrahman
    Islah Movement, Bahrain
  • Quinn Mecham, Respondent
    Professor, Middlebury College
    Professor, George Washington University
    Franklin Fellow, Policy Planning, U.S. Department of State

3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Coffee Break

4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Parallel Session 3: Voices from the Middle East

  • Emad El-Din Shahin, Chair
    University of Notre Dame
  • “Civil Society Organizations as Actors of Change in the MENA Region: Potentialities and Challenges”
    Nabila Hamza, Foundation for the Future, Amman, Jordan
  • “The U.S. Image among Arab’s New Generation: Finding and Recommendations from Experimental Research”
    Moataz A. Fattah, Cairo University & Central Michigan University
  • “Back to the Spirit of the Cairo Speech: From Marshall Plan to Obama Plan”
    Alaya Allani, University of Tunis
  • "Taliban’s Islamic State, Obama’s Olive Branch and Democracy in the Muslim World: An Examination of Governance in Contemporary Pakistan"
    Abdullah Al-Ahsan, International Islamic University, Malaysia

4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Parallel Session 4: Democracy & Democracy Promotion

  • Asma Afsaruddin, Chair
    Indiana University
  • “Evaluating Obama’s Contributions to Iran’s Democratic Opposition”
    Laila Taraghi, University of Arkansas
  • “The Role of the U.S. in Encouraging Pro-Democracy Movements”
    Stephen Zunes, University of San Francisco
  • “Applying Sustainable Democracy Promotion to the Muslim World”
    Eric Patterson, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs
  • "Challenges to Integrating Democracy Promotion in U.S. Policy in Afghanistan and Pakistan"
    Brian Katulis, The Center for American Progress

5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Concluding Keynote: Building Bridges of Understanding Between America and Muslim Majority States

  • Rashad Hussain
    U. S. Special Envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference

 

This USIP co-sponsored event examined U.S. relations with the Muslim world one year after President Obama's pivotal speech at Cairo University.  Speakers included Oxford professor Tariq Ramadan, Special Representative to Muslim Communities Farah Pandith, and U. S.  Special Envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference Rashad Hussain.  USIP specialists Abiodun Williams, Daniel Brumberg and Mona Yacoubian also participated in the event.

 

Ronald Reagan Building Amphitheater
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20004

Muslim World Initiative logoCSID logoGeorge Mason University logoISESCO logo

Type of Event or Course: 

Pursuing Safety and Freedom

Fri, 01/22/2010 - 10:00
Fri, 01/22/2010 - 12:00
Public Event

This USIP event examined the complex nexus between democratic change and U.S. security interests, with a principal focus on Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and Yemen.

U.S. Institute of Peace
1200 17th St, NW
Washington, D.C. 20036


 

Please contact Leslie Thompson for questions regarding this event (202-429-3896).

Can the Obama administration simultaneously pursue democracy and security in the Middle East? Can the U.S. engage autocratic regimes and push for human rights at the same time? The U.S. can and it should, according to a new USIP Study Group Report on Political Reform and Security in the Greater Middle East.

Type of Event or Course: 

Assessing "A New Way Forward": One Year of the Obama Administration in the Middle East

Wed, 01/20/2010 - 08:30
Wed, 01/20/2010 - 11:30
Public Event

On the one-year anniversary of President Obama's inauguration, USIP and POMED invited a public audience to assess the Obama administration's first year and to examine the administration's oppurtunities to implement its vision of a new beginning with the Arab and Muslim world.

       

8:30-9:00

 

Registration, Coffee

9:00-9:15

 

Welcome, Andrew Albertson, Project on Middle East Democracy Keynote Remarks: Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr (D-PA)

9:15-10:15

 

Panel Discussion I: Emerging Leaders on Translating President Obama's Vision of Human Dignity into Action
Mohammad Azraq, 2010 Leaders for Democracy Fellow, Jordan Karim Bayoud, Lebanese Association for Democratic Elections Cole Bockenfeld, International Foundation for Electoral Systems David Linfield, Fulbright Fellow in Jordan Bassem Samir, Egyptian Democratic Academy Jessica O'Higgins, International Student Exchange Programs
*Moderated by Daniel Brumberg, United States Institute of Peace

10:15-11:15

 

Panel Discussion II: Assessing the Obama Administration's "New Way Forward" in the Middle East
Adel Abdellatif, Arab States Bureau, UN Development Programme Michele Dunne, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Steven Kull, Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA)
*Moderated by Andrew Albertson, POMED

11:15-11:30

 

Closing Remarks: Congressman Tom Perriello (D-VA)

In his inaugural address on January 20, 2009, President Barack Obama declared, "To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect." This vision of a "new way forward" became a theme of the Obama administration's interactions with the Arab and Muslim world during its first year. President Obama further articulated this vision in his major speech in Cairo, in which he identified seven major challenges that the U.S.

United States Capitol
Visitor's Center, Room SVC 203

Please contact Leslie Thompson for questions regarding this event (202-429-3896).

Experts: 

The Project on Middle East Democracy (POMED),
the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), and Georgetown
University's Center for Democracy and Civil Society

Type of Event or Course: 

Peace Media Clearinghouse

The Peace Media Clearinghouse provides a central site where educators, students, organizations, and the community of practitioners working in the conflict management field can access multimedia materials that support conflict analysis and prevention, conflict resolution, and post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation.

The Peace Media Clearinghouse provides a central site where educators, students, organizations, and the community of practitioners working in the conflict management field can access multimedia materials that support conflict analysis and prevention, conflict resolution, and post-conflict reconstruction and reconciliation.

Fri, 01/08/2010 - 11:17
Type of Article: 
Countries: 

Iraq and the Gulf States: The Balance of Fear

Iraq’s Persian Gulf neighbors supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq in order to preserve the status quo--a weak and self-absorbed Iraq--rather than to impose a new one. However, the overthrow of Saddam Hussein and its aftermath have not brought stability to the Gulf States as much as they have shifted the most serious challenges from external threats (of a hostile Baghdad) to internal threats (the threat of conflict spillover from Iraq).

Jon B. Alterman

This report is a part of the Iraq and Its Neighbors series.

Wed, 08/01/2007 - 11:19
Type of Article: 

Online Discourse in the Arab World

A new USIP report examines online discourse in the Arab world and emerging trends of the blogosphere.

Joel Whitaker and Anand Varghese

Summary

Mon, 12/07/2009 - 13:53
Type of Article: 

Articles & Analysis

May 10, 2012

The U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) held its third annual conference on security sector governance on May 10, drawing in activists from North Africa and the Middle East as well as former U.S. ambassadors to the region to assess the political and security-sector challenges arising from the “Arab Awakening.”

Learn More

Publications

The U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) held its third annual conference on security sector governance on May 10, drawing in activists from North Africa and the Middle East as well as former U.S. ambassadors to the region to assess the political and security-sector challenges arising from the “Arab Awakening.”
By:
Mark Sedra
International efforts to help Arab transition countries with security reform must be driven by country requests, involve many partners, and be tied to broader aims for justice, stability, and economic development.