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Arab Spring: What Does It Really Mean?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

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This is not to deny that there have been important developments in the 20 Muslim-majority political entities in the Middle East. Yet is this as much of an earthquake as many seem to think? Is this so clearly a transition to democracy?

And by the way, where did the term “Arab Spring” come from?

The term “springtime of nations” was applied to the revolutionary upheavals in Europe in 1848. In France, the revolution against the monarchy led to free elections. Unfortunately the free elections were won by Louis Napoleon who made himself dictator, ruled for about two decades, and led his country into a disastrous war that was followed by bloody massacres. France did become a functioning democratic republic but it took almost a quarter-century.

More recently, the term was applied to the Prague Spring of 1968, crushed by Soviet tanks. The country finally became a truly independent democracy, 32 years later.

But in Middle Eastern usage it comes from the “Beirut Spring” in which hundreds of thousands of Lebanese demonstrated against the Syrian military presence and domination of the country.

In the short term the Lebanese protesters won. But because of a lack of U.S. and Western help along with the ruthlessness of Syria, Iran, and their local allies (notably Hizballah), the Beirut Spring has been defeated. Syria is back in control to a large degree and while the Syrian-backed government (including Hizballah) has been kept at bay for months by bureaucratic maneuvers, presumably it will get into power at some point.

So the term “Arab Spring” is appropriate if we remember that the Beirut Spring, a good example of what’s being faced now, turned into the Beirut Winter.

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  • Deborah

    Sad but true.

    • American with a birth certificate…

      Here in America we should stop iran from going nuclear before its way to late(ITS ALREADY VERY LATE BUT NOT TO LATE) to stop them.Why does America aid its enemy to kill us? America,it was muslims that likked thousands of Americans on 9/11 and no one else is to blame. All muslims are taught to kill all those who will not convert to islam,period. Not just radical muslims but all muslims are taught to kill all those who will not convert and there are millions of muslims already here in America so wake up..Only in America will we see muslims kill thousands of Americans on 9/11 and then vote a muslim to be our president.America,wake up or read about our once great country in the history books of 2020.

    • muslims are pigs

      American with a birth certificate,………………. no one will read anything about how great this Country once was!

      They will wash history of that for sure and change everything to be read!

    • Wimbly J Hankins

      All this that is happening in the Middle East with the support of the European Union and our government is setting the stage for the rise of Antichrist who will head the most vicious government the world has ever seen. He will make a pact with Israel and then turn against them. He will then behead every Jew and Christian that his government can apprehend saying just what the Muslims are saying today, that is, that the Jews and Christians are “the problem.” His reign will end in Armageddon when Jesus will return in great power and glory and destroy him and his armies. The seven last years of this age will begin very soon. Please be ready!

    • Randy131

      Arab Spring is a term meaning the Muslim Brotherhood is taking control of all Muslim countries, one by one, to form an Islamic coalition of countries, to be controled and ruled over by the 13th Caliphate, the Mahdi, or as the Bible refers to him, the Anti-Christ. This Arab Spring is what Gamal Nasser attempted, and for the same reason, but is now coming to fruition through the Muslim Brotherhood, with the aid and support of Barack Obama, who may be the Mahdi that is to rule this great evil coalition. Biblical Prophecy says a ‘One World Religion’ will install the Anti-Christ in power over the ‘One World Government’, and today there is only one religion which seeks world domination and destruction of all other religions, and that is Islam. Watch people, for you are seeing Biblical Prophecy unfold before your very eyes, just have the intelligence to recognize it when you see it and those who are instituting and supporting it, and then wonder why.

  • Captain PJ

    Beware of Arab Spring. Some of them are Islamists, who would usher in even worse regimes than the ones they hope to replace. True, some of them are clearly hoping for economic change.

    For those who shout “Freedom! Freedom!” like the demonstrators in Syria we deeply hope that you mean what we mean by freedom–a pluralistic, Western-style society.

    • Captain PJ

      In addition to the dishonesty about themselves, Assad, Qaddafi, and the rest have woven a skein of falsehoods about Israel, about Jews, and about the United States. The Arabs have been told that Israelis are sub-human beasts who shoot Palestinian civilians for pleasure, have no historic link to the land of israel, use human blood in religious rituals, and plot conquest of the world.

      They;ve been told that the United States is at war with Muslims, in the pocket of the Jews, bent on conquest, plotting to steal the Arab world’s oil, and guilty of war crimes against Muslims.

      As these Arabs attempt to free themselves from the tyrannies their leaders have inflicted on them for decades, perhaps they will also free their minds from the shameful poison they have purveyed.

    • Goodforall

      Sorry, but is just isn’t gonna happen! They want us dead and will not rest until we are. Wake the heck up!

    • Captain PJ

      I’m wide awake Goodforall. I understand that the rest of America does not share President obama’s fascination and curiosity over the Arab Spring. I’m not arguing that any of us are hostile to Muslims, but I am stating clearly (I thought) that appeasing them and coddling them, and making them coo is not nearly as important to any of the rest of us as it is to Obama.

      What Obama needs to understand, and understand clearly, is that we depend upon Israel’s nuclear, military, and economic vibrancy in the region to prevent the entire middle eastern region from turning into one big radical Islamic ghetto. For if israel was not there, that is exactly what the rest of the world would be facing.

    • Bree

      When the Islamists call for freedom, you and I both know it is never for a pluralistic western style society. For the Islamic countries of the middle east there is no such thing because they hate the West and all we stand for is against their beliefs (satan). I believe that this is the great misinterpretation of the freedom we as Americans think they are calling for and as our president has said. Would to God it was! But in Islam they surmise “freedom” from anything that is not islamic.

  • Jim

    Wasn’t it just the other day that the protesters in Syria were yelling to the troops they were battling that they should not be fighting them but they should be on the Golan Heights battling Israel. Kind of tells you everything doesn’t it?

  • Captain PJ

    Jim, there’s another possible repercussion of Arab Spring: one month before the invasion of Iraq, Riah Abu el-Assal a Palestinian and the Angelican Bishop of Jerusalem at the time, warned Tony Blair, “You will be responsible for emptying Iraq, the homeland of Abraham, of Christians.”

    The Bishop proved to be a prophet. Iraqi Christians now openly contemplate extinction. At least the despot Saddam Hussein protected Christians. But the U.S. liberation brought on their greatest calamity since the time of Christ.

    Scores of thousands of those Iraqi Christians have fled since the overthrow, fleeing Shia terrorism and persecution made their way to Syria, where they received sanctuary from Assad.

    Christians in the Middle East are facing extermination becuse of this Arab Spring that our president has embraced. Our president didn’t embrace the protesters in Iran, did he? he left them for the slaughter.

  • http://verizon Albert Lloyd Grounds

    Captain PJ: I was in the inner sanctum of of the intelligence community for many years and very familiar with the middle east.

    The Christians have every reason to worry about their future there. If anyone believes that democracy will ever exist in the middle east, they must consider that it does not gel with the religious beliefs of Islam. A democracy, in the true sense could never exist under this religion without major reform and I doubt it will happen.

    Also, all countries in the middle east desire the elimination of Israel. That is why the president’s recent desire to return the borders to pre 1967 is pure insanity and his reason does not hold water. The freedom these people desire is not democracy but freedom from what they have now. The result for them will likely be much worse and the entire middle east will implode.

    • Captain PJ

      President Obama’s major speech on the Middle East last week will come back to haunt him. he said nothing that will have any impact in deterring Syrian government violence against pro-democracy protestors, or threaten Iran in their quest for nuclear weapons, but the president did make pronouncements that threaten Israel, America’s strongest ally in the region.

      All the president did was pay lip service to israeli security but laid down dangerous markers for restarting peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. And as you pointed out Albert, he baceme the first president to require that Israel accept its pre-1967 borders as a starting point to negotiations with the Palestinians.

      Of course Israelis PM Netanyahu quickly rebuked such a demand and did so publicly, embarassing our naive president, who seems to favor the Muslim world rather than our great friend and ally Israel.

  • Mike Purdin

    our president can’t back Israel it goes against his muslim training when he was in Indonesia as a child.

  • Captain PJ

    I hope you all had the chance to watch and listen to netanyahu address a joint sesion of Congress. he was brilliant and steadfast and yes, polite. But he made it clear who is truly responsible for the lack of peace and the establishment of a Palestinian state.

    • Bree

      Yes he was brilliant and stedfast as always the Prime Minister of Israel is. Thank God Israel has such a tremendous and wise Leader today.Our own Leader is to our great shame. Concerning the Iraqi Christians, it is also a disgrace and to our shame. Our brothers have died there and Arab Spring is the end of all ends. Such destruction!

    • http://none Claire

      Do you think we could trade Obama for Bibi N???

      He promised this voters what he would do if elected and he’s keeping his word. How refreshing!!! He’s got “back-bone”. God Bless Israel.

    • http://Huskeron RonR

      I agree that Bibi would be a vast improvement over Obambi,but a trade? What has Israel done to deserve that? They have suffered enough.

  • Darby

    Captain PJ, I could listen to you all day. I love it when some has something to say and it is the truth. Thank you.

    • Bree

      I agree Darby! The Captain is full of wisdom and truth, maybe this is his “calling” ya think? I love to listen to him as well, a blessing!

  • buddha12

    Isn’t is interesting how, while Netanyahu is here addressing our congress, our brilliant leader is in Europe looking up his “Irish” roots. Is it really more important to be seen drinking a glass of beer than to be present when one of our closest allies is in the country? Just wondering..

    • Captain PJ

      Can you imagine what the Democrats would say if George Dubba was out convorting around the golf course or drinking a beer in Ireland (oops George doesn’t drink) while a world leader was addresisng Congress?

      Of course, that would never happen as Bush had class and respected his office of the presidency.

  • Pete Kleff

    The “Arab Spring” means Islamic fundamentalism is springing into action. It is a Pan Arabist dream come true.

    • Captain PJ

      I fear you are correct.

  • http://yahoo.com tod

    I Love the Smell of Napalm,in the morning Arab Spring!

  • ARMYOF69

    It is the remaking of their caliphate, after nearly 500 years of its collapse.
    They want the whole world to be on its knees adoring their criminal lifestyle they call islam.
    TIME TO STOP BEING SO STUPIDLY PC.

  • Captain PJ

    Before we embrace a Syrian revolution, we must consider of what happens to Christians when a long-repressed Muslim majority comes to power. Christians are 10% of Syria’s population, successful and closely allied
    to the minority Alawite regime of the Assad family. Christians fear that if the regime falls to the Sunni majority, they will be put up against the same wall as the Alawites.

    For decades the Assad regime has protected Christian interests by enforcing its strictly secular program and by curbing the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood. It’s always been in Syria’s interest to thwart the Brotherhood who wants radical Islam to rule the day.

  • Captain PJ

    Will the fall of Mubarak regime in Egypt result in the persecution of Coptic Christians? yes, it has already begun. I wonder how the Copts will fare if the Muslim Brotherhood wins the Septemeber election and writes Shariah into Egyptian law?

    History has inventoried the costs of such revolutions that so often intoxicated secular Western countires; and now intoxicates our President.

  • ONTIME

    Arab spring doesn’t mean thse folks are suddenly going to get off their duff and pay their own way..that’s a given.

    So what it must mean is we are going to have to keep springing for their screwed up ways and learn to like the hate they have for us…lib speak

  • Bree

    My best friend is a Coptic Christian in Egypt, since left the country for Italy. But she said after the removal of Mubarak, Egypt was done. I didn’t know what she meant then but I do now.Look at the middle east – it’s exploding! Pray for the Christians yet there. Can we imagine what that must be like. My friend took the last “freedom flight” out of Cairo which took her to Italy. Now she wants to go back and save others. I tell her no, am I wrong?

    • David LC David, SEAL Team One

      I wouldn’t recommend it. This whole “Arab Spring” thing is gonna blow up like PJ and other have suggested. And I agree with my dear and old friend, that our presidnet doesn’t get it. His naivete eill only embolden the extreme elements in those countries.

    • muslims are pigs

      The sorry excuse of a human POS that is in the black house is a illegal alien half-breed mulatto parasitic racist negro muslim swine dung chewing Pig! allah and mohammed are in the same company as the above mentioned!

      muslims want us dead??? I say wrap all of them in bacon and let them rot in the sun with the filthy mohammed and allah!
      P’s. O. Pig S.

  • http://aol.com sean murrey

    Arab spring means to me the countries that have been taken over by the muslim brotherhood.

  • RWT001

    Our business leaders may also be short sighted and supporting pro-immigration policies. They only see more business opportunities in the billion or so Muslims. It’s not there responsibility to worry about the longer range destruction of the US.

  • RWT001

    I meant to say not their responsibility

  • Captain PJ

    The French Revolution led to regicide, the September Massacress, the Terror, the slaughter of hundreds of thousands of Catholics in the Vendee region of France, and almost two decades of Napolenic wars.

    The abdication of Czar Nicolas II led to the dictatorship of Lenin, Trotsky and Stalin who would in effect the murder of 1,000 times more victims than did the Spanish Inquisition in 300 years. And among the Boslshevik murder victims were the Czar, his wife and his five children.

    15 years after the hated kaiser, tuler of the 2nd Reich, abdicated, a proud veteran of his army, Adolf Hitler, established the Third Reich. No alter-and-throne egime ever compiled a record of horror to match those of the French and Russian revolutions–or those of Mao Zedong, Ho Chi Minh, Fidel Castro and Pol Pot. When the Shah of iran fell, within a year we had the Ayatollah Khomeini.

    Obama has welcomed the Arab Spring. I fear what may come will rival the aforemention butchers of Western Civilization. Obama may indeed hasten a holy war, if he is not careful or naive.

    • Bree

      But Captain you know, he is – not careful, and he is – naive. Holy war is next!

    • Captain PJ

      With Obama and Amadenijad both on the world scene it sure seems like that’s what going to happen. Maybe it prophesy and it’s supposed to happen.

      Prophesy or not, I still have to try to get someoneelse in there to replace our naive incompetent president. Maybe the next guy will be the guy to fight Iran and the prophesy will be fulfilled?

  • David LC David, SEAL Team One

    Leave it to you PJ to provide us a little history to support your argument LOL! Damn good referencing I must say. You always present a damn good argument. And in this case I agree with you wholeheartedly.

    As a Jew I couldn’t agree with you more.

  • Wimbly J Hankins

    All this that is happening in the Middle East with the support of the European Union and our government is setting the stage for the rise of Antichrist who will head the most vicious government the world has ever seen. He will make a pact with Israel and then turn against them. He will then behead every Jew and Christian that his government can apprehend saying just what the Muslims are saying today, that is, that the Jews and Christians are “the problem.” His reign will end in Armageddon when Jesus will return in great power and glory and destroy him and his armies. The seven last years of this age will begin very soon. Please be ready!

    • Bree

      Yes, I do agree with you, the stage is being set and we need to be ready. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid but lift up your head, your redemption draws near. The King is coming!

  • http://Huskeron RonR

    All we need to know about “arab spring” is that BhO/bs likes it. That tells us it is bad news for the USA

  • OLLIE

    You bunch of cowards aren’t going to have any war holy or other with anyone! They already have your country, women, children and money! You don’t have the backbone to defend your own interests! If you did you would have stopped the Arabs and Mexicans and the crap that is slithering across our borders a long time ago, especially the border states! Seems they try to talk the biggest and baddest! Even Glen Beck says you’re lazy and asleep! You have squandered what our fore fathers have given us! You’ve lost your country! You’re the blame! Now do what your lazy butts do the best, take your drugs and go back to sleep!!!!