July 26 to 30, 2010

– A hot summer in the Middle East (Part IPart II) (Un Eté chaud au Proche-Orient) (28-30/7/2010) – Nouvelles d’Orient, blog du Diplo

Alain Gresh gives a analysis on current hot issues this summer in the Middle East.

In the first part he describes the situations in Afghanistan following the leak of information on Wikileaks, in Iraq, where despite the withdrawal of much of the U.S. contingent, the chaos continues to reign, and finally in Iran against which the EU has just passed harsh economic sanctions and where the future of negotiations remains more than unclear.

In the second part, Alain Gresh analyzes the situations in Israel / Palestine and Lebanon. Western pressure is exerted on Mahmoud Abbas to lead direct negotiations without preconditions with Israel. The Palestinian Authority seems to become a police state based on the Mukhabarat (Intelligence). Hamas finds nothing better to do than to strengthen the Islamic order in the Gaza Strip. In Lebanon, tensions have arisen in the South between the villagers and UNIFIL, in particular the French contingent. The Special Tribunal for Lebanon established by the UN is preparing to indict members of Hezbollah according to some sources.

– Obstacles to Arab democratization (Les obstacles à la démocratisation arabe) (29/07/2010) – La Libre Belgique

Khaled Hroub, director of the project « Arab1″at the University of Cambridge, highlights the hypocrisy of the policy of democratization by the West in Arab countries. The rise of Islamist movements, and the future of Israel in the region lead the U.S. as Europe to support the ruling regimes, to the detriment of an eventual democratization.

– Egypt police trial adjourned (27.07.2010) – Al Jazeera

The trial of two policemen accused to have brutally beaten Khaled Mohammed Said, 28, has been postponed, the complainant requesting to charge them with murder. This case takes extraordinary proportions and shows the mindset of the Egyptian people undergoing police brutality since the imposition of emergency rule in 1981.

– Why the EU, for all its problems, is still a model for the Arab World(Summer 2010) – Europe’s World

Abdulaziz Sager, Chairman of the Gulf Research Center, explains how the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is often taking the European Union as model for change, notably regarding the single currency. He also stresses the importance of relations between the EU and the GCC for each party, and the opportunity for Europe to play a greater role in the region.