"From Resilience to Revolution.
How Foreign Interventions Destabilize the Middle East"
by Sean L. Yom
Publication date: December 2015
Publishing house: Columbia Universtiy Press
As colonial rule dissolved in the 1930s and 1950s, Middle Eastern autocrats constructed new political states to solidify their reigns, with varying results. Some proved durable despite economic challenges and devastating wars, such as the Sabah regime of Kuwait, which faced little opposition and enjoyed mass support. Others such as the Hashemite monarchy of Jordan barely survived the twentieth century, tested repeatedly by uprisings from within and pressures from beyond. Still others were deposed through revolutionary upheavals as popular forces mobilized to overthrow their despotic reign, as with the Pahlavi dynasty of Iran. Why did equally ambitious authoritarians meet such unequal fates?
Sean L. Yom makes a bold, singular claim: the durability of Middle Eastern regimes stems from their geopolitical origins. At the dawn of the postcolonial era, many autocratic states across the region had little support from their own societies and struggled to overcome widespread opposition. When foreign powers intervened to prop these regimes up, they unwittingly sabotaged the prospects for long-term stability by discouraging triumphant leaders from reaching out to their people and bargaining for mass support early coalitional decisions that created repressive institutions and planted the seeds for future unrest.
Only when they were secluded from larger geopolitical machinations did Middle Eastern regimes come to grips with their weaknesses and build broader coalitions. Based on comparative historical analyses of Iran, Jordan, and Kuwait, Yom examines the foreign interventions, coalitional choices, and state outcomes that characterize the modern Middle East.
A key text for foreign policy scholars, From Resilience to Revolution shows how outside interference can corrupt the most basic choices of governance: who to reward, who to punish, who to compensate, and who to manipulate.
Inaugural Conference of the Middle East and North African Studies Program, Notherwestern University (PDF) by Prince Moulay Hicham Ben Abdallah
Friday, October 23, 2015
An article by Moulay Hicham in the French publication 'Pouvoirs'
Morocco five years from now, in the aftermath of the “Cumin Revolution” : through such a projection and without any recourse to political fiction,the article draws an a posteriori balance sheet of the current stalemate by looking at the solutions proposed. Such a reversal of perspective makes it possible to raise old questions, left unanswered, in a new form. In this light, the “new Morocco” seems like a pipe dream, the confinement of the country into a waiting room following the current wait-and-see policy, a real utopia. Yet, the other Morocco – a country where life would be easy and pleasant – is within reach.
Clip from Prince Moulay Hicham’s Opening Remarks at the World Premiere of “A Whisper to a Roar” at the Directors’ Guild Theatre in Los Angeles on October 3, 2012, where he speaks to “the conflict between human nature and the human spirit.”