Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Challenges of Post-Arab Uprising Reconstruction

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Challenges of Post-Arab Uprising Reconstruction

Article excerpt

The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) held a Feb. 16 conversation at the Reserve Officers Association's Capitol Hill headquarters to discuss "The Arab Uprisings and the Challenges of Reconstruction." Ambassador William B. Taylor, State Department special coordinator for Middle East Transitions, and Ellen Laipson, president and CEO of The Stimson Center, offered their thoughts on Tunisia, Egypt and Libya. Steven Heydemann, USIP's senior adviser for Middle East Initiatives, moderated the discussion.

Referring to the recent raid on Egypt's civil society organizations, Ambassador Taylor described the country as a "complicated place" for those seeking to assist Egypt through its period of transition. While the military council has largely scoffed at U.S. assistance efforts, Taylor said that the Muslim Brotherhood, which won 47 percent of the seats in Egypt's recent parliamentary elections, is quietly pushing for greater assistance from the U.S. According to Taylor, the Brotherhood is "worried about what happens when they are in a ruling position," and the Brotherhood's electoral success has resulted in the group adopting a pragmatic approach toward domestic and international affairs. …

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