Over the past decade, the whole possible range of issues — social, political, economic, administrative and others — has led to the fact that the middle East is now in a state of chaos, comparable to the Europe of the Thirty years war. However, the chance for stabilization and modernization has not yet lost, and focused integrated action by regional and global players are able to establish in the region a working system of collective security.
To such conclusions analysts “Valdai club” in his study “the middle East in the age of tests: the trauma of the past and the challenges of the future”, published on Monday. The team of authors is composed of experts of the Institute of Oriental studies, which analyzed the causes of the Arab spring, the issue of new terrorist organizations and the possible solution to current problems.
Held the failure
The fact that the region of the Middle East (in the broadest sense — including the Arab countries of North Africa) is now in a state of chaos, and analysts believe a fact. To blame a variety of reasons ranging from the consequences of the colonial division of territories, ending political instability modes. The trigger was the events of the “Arab spring” that started the process of transforming society. This process, according to experts of the Valdai club, none of the cases cannot be regarded as completed, moreover, in some countries it led to the destruction of the very fabric of society.
The authors distinguish four groups of countries according to their degree of flexibility and sustainability. The only fully stable Arab country, experts have called Morocco. Theoretically vulnerable are Algeria and the Gulf monarchies. The threat of instability looms over Egypt, Tunisia (where there have been revolutions and government efficiency is low), as well as Jordan and Lebanon, which is threatened by the influx of refugees from neighbouring countries). Finally, the situation in Libya, Yemen, Syria and Iraq can be called a full-fledged civil war.
The “Arab spring” has exacerbated many of the problems of the Middle East, which together accelerated the process of socio-political degradation. With the weakening of the government is strengthening non-state actors”, which assume part of the administrative functions. As the cornerstone for these “players” often is violence, the authorities have to stoop to this level in the struggle for influence.
Speaking of “non-state players” in the first place, mean the terrorist group that experts “Valdai” compared with “start-UPS: new projects based on the development of technologies, designed for rapid growth and capitalization (akin to “financial pyramids”). The leading of them is banned in Russia organization “Islamic state” (ISIL), an idea that is changing the world through violence, analysts compare with the phenomenon of Che Guevara, only Islamist option.
ISIS represents a new kind of terrorism, wishing to offer his bloody way to solve world problems with use of achievements of modern society. At the same time, the authors of the report, the process of building heterogeneous Caliphate for ISIS more important than the actual result — the creation of a supranational Empire with-in Mesopotamia.
The report also provides a schematic map, which argue that Turkey and the Gulf monarchies “unofficially” provide financial, logistical and sometimes military support to terrorist groups in Syria.
Generator of tension
Destructive degradation processes in the middle East have a negative impact not only on companies in these countries, not only the stability of neighboring States, but also in the global policy, experts state. This property is related to the middle East region is constantly to produce tension” that threatens the security of regional and global powers (not to mention the spread of international terrorism).
In these circumstances, the authors of the report, you need a comprehensive, single solution to the problems of the Arab world (not phased). But this raises a number of difficulties. First: past attempts of external influence on processes in the region, according to experts, a failure, but now without the participation of global players to solve problems impossible. Second: the Arab society is ripe for change, but socio-political imbalances have played a role in reducing the willingness of the masses to participate in politics. Third: economic recovery in the region is vital and cannot take place without the help of regional and global players, though the activity of non-Arab powers have always been viewed negatively by local elites.
The problems are compounded by the fact that regional powers (i.e. Turkey, Iran and the Gulf monarchies) were more savvy to the middle East game, but use knowledge of the situation in the narrow national interests, while global players (USA, Russia, Europe) such knowledge is not enough.
New security system
Summarizing their calculations, the experts “Valdai” urge to create a complex system of mutual obligations, which would eliminate the possibility of unilateral action in the region and to restrain the country from the use of force — in fact, the middle Eastern equivalent of the OSCE.
“The countries of the region have for too long been left out from solving their own problems, as stated in the report. — Is now the only way to resolve the contradictions — to be actively involved in the creation of a new security system which will ensure a balance between internal and external policies, between respect for international law and the desire of individual States to leadership”.
Responsible for the creation and implementation of the collective security system must take all the global players — primarily the US and Russia, who have already shown an example of productive cooperation in Syria, experts say. On the one hand, the authors welcome the withdrawal of the US from its previous policy of intervention with the aim of overthrowing dictatorships. On the other, they claim that Russia is perceived in the region as the most consistent fighter against ISIS”.
According to experts “Valdai”, Moscow pursues in Syria two goals. The first is the fight against the spread of terrorism. The second assertion of its influence as an independent global player. Opinion about Russian air strikes in Syria as an attempt to divert public attention from the Ukrainian crisis, analysts say “naive”. On the contrary, in the difficult situation in the middle East for at least the beginning of the political process can be considered a major achievement, after which it became possible to collapse the main part of the operation of videoconferencing, experts believe.