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  • Author: Frédéric Grare
  • Publication Date: 07-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The year 2007 will be crucial for the future of democracy in Pakistan. If the election schedule announced by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Sher Afghan Niazi is followed, presidential elections will be held in the fall and the general and provincial elections will be held on January 30, 2008. All these elections will be carefully scrutinized by many in the United States and elsewhere, not least because they will include, among other political forces, a coalition of religious political parties, the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA). Many commentators in the West believe that the Pakistani regime will portray the elections as a contest between Islamists represented by the MMA and the enlightened moderation of President Pervez Musharraf and the Pakistan Army. However, the reality is that the Islamic forces will not be a defining factor. They are a dependent variable whose power is largely determined by the army. The only real questions are whether the army's tactics for manipulating the 2007–2008 elections will differ from those used in 2002 and what role the Islamic parties will play in the process.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Islam, Politics, Religion
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, United States, Asia
  • Publication Date: 07-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The issue of political reform in Syria straddles the line between reform of political institutions and removal from power of a particular regime and entails both domestic and external actors. The regime of Bashar al-Asad is under pressure from Syrian citizens who want a different political system and different leadership. He is also under pressure from the United States, which wants Syria to change its regional policy: stop intruding in Lebanese affairs, reduce support of Palestinian groups, and make a bigger effort to prevent infiltration of radical Islamists into Iraq. As a result, it is impossible to separate completely a domestic process of political reform from the external pressures. The two are entangled to a much greater extent than in any other country in the region except Iraq, and the analysis that follows reflects this entanglement.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Regime Change
  • Political Geography: China, Iraq, Middle East, Asia, Syria
  • Author: George Perkovich
  • Publication Date: 05-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The debate over the nuclear deal negotiated by the Bush Administration and the government of India is too narrow. This is ironic in as much as the best argument for the deal is that it advances big strategic goals. Some administration officials admit privately that the purported nonproliferation benefits of the deal are thinner than the paper it's not yet written on, and they hope to convince Congress that even if there are no nonproliferation gains, the grand strategic benefits still make the deal worth supporting. Strangely, nevertheless, the debate focuses on the nonproliferation aspects of the deal and leaves larger strategic questions relatively unexamined.
  • Topic: International Relations, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Government
  • Political Geography: India, Asia
  • Author: Amr Hamzawy
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Recent years have witnessed unprecedented political dynamism in Saudi Arabia. Since 2002, the government has pursued various reform policies. Its most relevant measures have included reforming the Shura Council, holding municipal elections, legalizing civil society actors, implementing educational reform plans, and institutionalizing national dialogue conferences. Although these measures appear less significant when compared with political developments in other Arab countries, such as Lebanon and Egypt, they constitute elements of a meaningful opening in Saudi authoritarian politics.</p
  • Topic: Civil Society, Development, Politics
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt
  • Author: Nathan J. Brown, Amr Hamzawy, Marina S. Ottaway
  • Publication Date: 03-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: In today's Arab world, Islamists have assumed the role once played by national liberation movements and leftist parties. They are the mass movements of the twenty-first century. They are well embedded in the social fabric, understand the importance of good organization, and are thus able to mobilize considerable constituencies. Their ideology prescribes a simple solution to the persistent crises of contemporary Arab societies—a return to the fundamentals, or true spirit, of Islam. Indeed, “Islam is the solution” has been the longtime slogan of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood. Like all successful movements, Islamists have been able to distill a long, complex philosophical tradition into simple slogans that have quickly supplanted the Pan-Arabism and socialism that dominated the region until the 1970s. As a result, in most countries Islamists represent the only viable opposition forces to existing undemocratic regimes.
  • Topic: Government, Human Rights, Islam, Religion
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia, Arab Countries
  • Author: Michele Dunne
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The political opening that began in late 2004 in Egypt has been unlike any seen in the country in at least twenty years, perhaps in a half century. It has resulted so far in Egypt holding its first-ever presidential election as well as parliamentary elections that were significantly fairer and more transparent than in the past, although marred by violence. Political dissidents are making bolder demands, most of the taboos on criticizing the regime have been swept away, and there is now more opposition representation in Parliament than at any time since the 1952 Free Officers' coup. The Muslim Brotherhood, an illegal organization but also the only effective opposition party, made dramatic gains in the fall 2005 elections. Yet many observers inside and outside Egypt view the political reform steps made in 2004 and 2005 as no more than cosmetic measures taken to preserve rather than change an essentially authoritarian order. Has Egypt entered an era of irreversible momentum toward democratization, or is it merely undergoing a brief liberal episode that will not fundamentally change the way political power is exercised?
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Politics
  • Political Geography: Africa, Egypt
  • Author: Frédéric Grare
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Thirty years after a bloody conflict that official sources estimate caused more than five thousand deaths among the rebels and almost three thousand among the Pakistan Army, Baluchistan seems to be heading toward another armed insurrection. During the summer of 2004, there were numerous attacks against the army and the paramilitary forces as well as repeated sabotage of oil pipelines. Since the rape of a female doctor by a group of soldiers on January 2, 2005, in the hospital in Sui, the principal gas-producing center in Baluchistan, assaults have multiplied, culminating in a pitched battle between the Frontier Corps, a paramilitary unit, and the local Bugtis, one of the largest Baluch tribes. According to the Pakistani daily, The Nation, approximately 1,568 “terrorist” attacks occurred through April 3, 2005. These attacks have not been confined only to tribal areas but have targeted Pakistani armed forces and Chinese nationals working on major regional projects all over the province.
  • Topic: Nationalism, Religion, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, China, Middle East
  • Author: Julia Choucair
  • Publication Date: 01-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Lebanon is arguably the most democratic Arab state. Under parliamentary rule since becoming independent in 1943, it has regular elections, numerous political parties, and relatively free and lively news media. Lebanon also has one of the most complex political systems in the Middle East, based on the premise that a careful balance in all aspects of political life must be maintained among the seventeen recognized religious communities. While this confessional system has spared Lebanon the authoritarianism experienced by many Arab regimes in the twentieth century, paradoxically it has also prevented the transition to a truly democratic state. Nor has the confessional system eliminated the factional strife it was designed to avoid.
  • Topic: International Relations, Democratization, Development
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Arabia, Lebanon
  • Author: Bassma Kodmani
  • Publication Date: 10-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: MUCH HAS BEEN WRITTEN in recent years about Islam and politics, Islam and democracy, and Islam's compatibility with the requirements of modernity. These debates cannot be settled conclusively by referring to the holy texts, because such texts lend themselves to conflicting interpretations. This paper, therefore, takes a different approach. Using Egypt as a case study, it focuses not on the relationship between Islam and politics in the abstract, but on the relationship between religious authority and political authority as it unfolds in practice. It outlines the motivations, interests, strategies, and agendas of the institutions that represent and speak for Islam and those that represent the state and act in its name. The interaction between them is a mix of complicity and rivalry that has profound effects on Egyptian society, the Egyptian state, and its relationship with the outside world.
  • Topic: Islam, Politics, Religion, Sovereignty
  • Political Geography: Africa, Egypt
  • Author: Branko Milanovic
  • Publication Date: 10-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: DURING THE PAST TWENTY YEARS, THE POOREST COUNTRIES of the world have fallen further behind the middle-income and rich countries. The median per capita growth of the poorest countries was zero. This is an unexpected outcome because, from the perspective of economic theory, both globalization and economic-policy convergence imply that poor countries should grow faster than the rich. The main reasons why this has not happened lie in poor countries' much greater likelihood of being involved in wars and civil conflicts. This factor alone accounts for an income loss of about 40 percent over twenty years. Slower reforms in poor countries compared with faster reforms in middle-income countries played some, albeit a minimal, role. Increased flows from multilateral lenders did not help either because the net effect of the flows on growth rates is estimated to have been zero. Finally, neither democratization nor better educational attainment of the population can be shown to have had any notable positive impact on poor countries' growth. Reducing the prevalence of conflict seems to be the first and most important step toward restoring growth.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Globalization, Poverty, Third World
  • Author: David M. Mednicoff
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: THE PROBLEM OF KNOWLEDGE IN RULE-OF-LAW PROMOTION, above all the basic question of whether Western rule-of-law aid programs are on the right track to help build the rule of law in recipient countries, is especially acute in the Arab world. Arab states generally share two features that render external rule-of-law aid particularly difficult—long-standing nondemocratic governments, and legal systems that graft Ottoman, European, and contemporary sources onto Islamic norms. We cannot presume that U.S. common-law practitioners can build the rule of law by transporting or transplanting their technocratic techniques into such different legal soil. Indeed, the very idea that people in Arab societies would be receptive to American guidance in legal reform is dubious in the current climate of broad, popular mistrust of the United States.
  • Topic: International Relations, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Europe, Arabia, Arab Countries
  • Author: Sandra Polaski
  • Publication Date: 09-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: A UNIQUE AND SUCCESSFUL INTERNATIONAL POLICY EXPERIMENT has been under way in Cambodia for the last six years. In the country's export apparel factories, working conditions and labor rights are monitored by inspectors from the International Labor Organization (ILO), an international public organization. The results of the inspections are published in credible, highly transparent reports that describe in detail whether the factories are in compliance with national labor laws and internationally agreed basic labor rights. These reports are published on the Internet, and a range of Cambodian and international actors use them. The U.S. government uses the reports as a key input for decisions under an innovative scheme that allows Cambodian firms to sell more apparel in the U.S. market if they improve working conditions and respect workers' rights. Private retail apparel firms that buy from Cambodian factories also use the reports. These buyers, conscious of their brand reputations, use the reliable information they find in the reports to steer orders toward compliant factories and away from noncompliant ones.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development, Economics, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, Cambodia, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Matthew J. Spence
  • Publication Date: 07-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: MIXED RESULTS FROM THE PROLIFERATION OF WESTERN RULE OF LAW assistance over the past twenty years has taught us much about what efforts do not work. Criminal justice reform in Russia offers a different type of lesson; it is a rare success story of rule of law promotion. In the 1990s, the U.S. government sought to promote the rule of law in many parts of the former Soviet Union and beyond, but few of these efforts outside Russia produced concrete results. Instead, lawlessness became a primary symptom of the apparent failure of many attempted rule of law reforms in the former Soviet Union.
  • Topic: International Relations, Government
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe
  • Author: Nathan J. Brown
  • Publication Date: 05-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: IN PALESTINE, CITIZENS HAVE RIGHTS OF FREE SPEECH and free assembly. The most independent judiciary in the Arab world adjudicates their disputes. Palestinians select their leaders freely in competitive elections overseen by an independent electoral commission. A representative assembly monitors the executive, granting and withholding confidence from ministers and reviewing the state budget in detailed public discussions. Elected councils manage local governments that are fiscally autonomous of the center.
  • Topic: Development, Government, Peace Studies, Politics
  • Political Geography: Middle East, Palestine, Arabia
  • Author: Wade Channell
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: THE FALL OF THE BERLIN WALL IN 1989 and the subsequent breakup of the Soviet Union presented an unparalleled opportunity for fundamental political and economic change in more than two dozen countries. As postcommunist countries sought to attain the economic development of their Western neighbors, it became clear that the existing framework of laws and institutions would not support the desired growth. Reformers and development experts soon identified a panoply of gaps and shortcomings in financial resources, human resources, and organizational capacity, all of which appeared ripe for outside assistance.
  • Topic: Democratization, Development, Economics, International Political Economy
  • Author: Veron Mei-Ying Hung
  • Publication Date: 04-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The George W. Bush administration in September 2002 laid out in the “National Security Strategy of the United States” its strategy toward China: “We welcome the emergence of a strong, peaceful, and prosperous China.” During a trip to Asia in March 2005, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice adopted a similar phrase to welcome “the rise of a confident, peaceful, and prosperous China.”
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Government
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Shanghai, Asia
  • Author: Marina S. Ottaway
  • Publication Date: 02-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: This short paper launches the second set of studies in the Carnegie Papers Middle East Series. The first set, now also published as a book under the title Uncharted Journey: Promoting Democracy in the Middle East, examined the most important issues concerning democracy promotion and democratic change in the Middle East. One of the conclusions that emerged from those studies is that the Middle East still offers a rather discouraging political picture. There are some liberalized autocracies but no democratic countries in the region. The link between economic and political reform remains weak. Democratic reformers have failed to build strong constituencies, and the organizations with strong constituencies are Islamist rather than democratic. The integration of Islamists in the reform process remains poor. And the United States, now championing democracy in the region, has little credibility in Arab eyes, and still has not consistently integrated democracy promotion in its policy toward the area. Yet, despite all these problems, it is becoming increasingly clear that there is a ferment of reform in the Middle East. But how significant is it?
  • Topic: Development, Peace Studies, Politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Middle East, Arabia
  • Author: Martha Brill Olcott
  • Publication Date: 02-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: The honeymoon between the Western oil industry and Russian President Vladimir Putin ended in mid-2003 when the Russian procurator's office began arresting Yukos executives. The Kremlin's seemingly sudden attack on private industry surprised the international business community that was expecting investment-friendly behavior from the Russian leadership. After assuming power in late 1999, Putin quickly signaled interest in developing a strong energy partnership with the United States, including increased opportunities for Western firms to invest in Russia's oil and gas industry.
  • Topic: Development, Energy Policy, Industrial Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Rachel Kleinfeld Belton
  • Publication Date: 01-2005
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Definitions of the rule of law fall into two categories: (1) those that emphasize the ends that the rule of law is intended to serve within society (such as upholding law and order, or providing predictable and efficient judgments), and (2) those that highlight the institutional attributes believed necessary to actuate the rule of law (such as comprehensive laws, well-functioning courts, and trained law enforcement agencies). For practical and historical reasons, legal scholars and philosophers have favored the first type of definition. Practitioners of rule-of-law development programs tend to use the second type of definition. This paper analyzes the challenge of effectively defining the rule of law, through an examination of both types of definitions, the historical background of each, and the implications of each for rule-of-law development efforts.
  • Topic: Development, Government, International Law, Politics
  • Author: Ashley J. Tellis
  • Publication Date: 12-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: During the 1990s the United States and its allies enjoyed a much sought-after period of prosperity and tranquility following the end of the Cold War. In hindsight, however, it is now apparent that Al Qaeda, a fiercely anti-American global terrorist network, was taking root in over sixty countries during this period, culminating in the devastating September 11 attacks on New York and Washington, D.C. The Bush administration, which had entered office determined to secure U.S. primacy amid the emergence of major power centers in Asia, such as China, soon found itself forced to confront a worldwide Islamist insurgency. This study analyzes the relevance of terrorist groups as substatal actors in international politics, their influence on deeper dynamics of the international system, and the challenges facing the United States posed by transnational terrorist organizations. It argues that international terrorism, although currently salient, does not necessarily replace or even alter the traditional concerns of international politics, but rather subsists among them. On balance, the United States has managed these interlocking challenges with partial success, and needs to pay greater attention to pursuing the legitimacy and protecting the economic foundations of its power. Failing to do so, or waging a poorly defined “war against all,” carries the risk of far-reaching economic and political reverberations that may, in the not-too-distant future, enervate the United States, undermine its legitimacy as the sole superpower, and gradually erode continued American dominance in the world order.
  • Topic: Terrorism, War
  • Political Geography: United States, China, New York, Washington, Middle East, Asia