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Soviet Cultural Diplomacy in the Middle East: a Case Study of USSR'S Cultural Relations with Egypt and Syria, 1955-1971

Description: This study examines the nature and patterns of Soviet cultural activities in Egypt and Syria, the motivations behind those activities, and the contribution of the Soviet cultural effort toward the attainment of overall Soviet Middle East policies. Chapter I provides background information on Soviet-Arab relations, and in Chapter II Soviet objectives in the Middle East are examined. Chapter III identifies the important components of the Soviet cultural instrument in Egypt and Syria. Chapter IV assesses the contribution made by the cultural tool toward the attainment of Soviet objectives in Egypt and Syria. Finally, Chapter V demonstrates that the Soviet cultural enterprise exerted little impact on overall Soviet policy in the Middle East.
Date: May 1987
Creator: Aka, Philip Chukwuma

The State of Democracy in the Arab World

Description: This comparative study assesses the state of democracy and examines the process of democratization in the Arab World between the years 1980-1993. It addresses shortcomings in the mainstream democracy literature that excluded the Arab World from the global democratic revolution on political cultural grounds. To fulfil the objectives of this study, I employ both the qualitative and quantitative research approaches to test a number of hypothesized relationships. I hypothesize that transition to democracy is negatively associated with economic development, militarism, U.S. foreign policy, the political economy of oil, and dependency. I contend that emerging civil society institutions so far have had no significant effect on democratization in the Arab World. Finally, I hypothesize that the level of democracy in the Arab World is influenced greatly by the issue of civil rights. In order to investigate the hypothesized relationships, the following data sets have been used: Gastil's Freedom House Data set, "Repression and Freedom in the 1980s" data set, and Vanhanen's 1990 data set. The findings of this study support the aforementioned hypothesized relationships. I find that Arab countries, in general have made modest progress toward democracy, making the Arab World part of the global revolution.
Date: December 1995
Creator: Al-Olimat, Muhamad S. (Muhamad Salim)