The Arab Uprising: The Unfinished Revolutions of the New Middle East by Marc Lynch

Princy Marin George was Research Assistant at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile
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  • January 2014
    Book Review

    Tunisia’s Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali was the first to fall to the thundering protests in that country in early 2010. Within a month, Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak was forced out of office by masses of protesters chanting against an authoritarian government that had closed its people off from every possible political avenue available to push for greater democratisation. The slogans Irhal [Leave!] and Al-Shaab Yureed Isqat al-Nizam [The People Want to Overthrow the Regime] reverberated from a tiny town on the periphery of the Arab world in Tunisia, to as far away as Yemen. Never before in recent memory had the world witnessed such a grand display of courageous masses unbowed before previously dreaded state security forces, demanding meaningful and sustained change in their country’s political system. To most observers and participants, the heady events that spread across the first few months of 2011 almost seemed divinely choreographed to finally place history on the side of the long abused masses of these countries. But to the unblinking eye, the uprisings in the region were hardly incidental.