"One of the more significant developments following the 9/11 attacks is the growing realization in the United States and elsewhere that domestic conditions throughout the Middle East are a major cause of radicalization. More specifically this view sees radicalization and the growing terrorist threat in the region as stemming from a failed modernization process that has created weak states. In turn, these states have failed to provide for the needs of their populations, either economically through improved standards of living and opportunity or politically though increased voice and participation. In this regard, the adoption of the United States sponsored Broader Middle East and North African Initiative -BMEI (a later version of the Greater Middle East and North African Initiative-GMEI) by the Group of Eight Industrialized Nations (G-8) at their June 8-10 summit in Sea Island, Georgia, is seen by the Bush Administration as representing a milestone in the war on terrorism. The initiative has two key elements. The first is the launching of a "Partnership for Progress and a Common Future with the Region of the Broader Middle East and North Africa." The second is a plan for the G-8 countries to support reform in Arab countries. The purpose of this Strategic Insights article is to examine several of the operational issues raised by the Initiative. What are realistic goals for success? The key areas of reform needed to achieve these goals? The difficulties in implementation? In addressing these issues, several lessons from the transition economies of Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union are found to be highly relevant."
Naval Postgraduate School, Center for Contemporary Conflict: http://www.ccc.nps.navy.mil
Strategic Insights (August 2004), v.3 no.8