Arab Winter

The Arab Winter[1][2][3][4][5] is a term for the rise of authoritarianism and religious extremism[6] evolving in the aftermath of the Arab Spring protests in Arab countries.[7] According to scholars of the University of Warsaw, the Arab Spring fully devolved into Arab Winter four years since its onset.[8] The Arab Winter is characterized by the emergence of multiple regional civil wars, mounting regional instability,[9] economic and demographic decline of Arab countries,[10] and ethno-religious sectarian strife.[11] According to a study by the American University of Beirut, as of summer 2014 the Arab Winter resulted in nearly a quarter of a million deaths and millions of refugees.[12]

The term Arab Winter refers to the events across the Arab League, including the Syrian Civil War,[13][14] the Iraqi insurgency and the following civil war,[15] the Egyptian Crisis,[16] the Libyan Crisis and the Crisis in Yemen.[17] Events referred as Arab Winter have taken place in Egypt that led to the removal of Mohamed Morsi and the seizure of power by General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in an anti-Muslim Brotherhood campaign.[18] Political developments, particularly the restoration of authoritarianism and suppression of civil liberties in Egypt since July 3, 2013 have been described as constituting a "military winter" that functioned in opposition to the goals of the Arab Spring.[19][20] Various militias and tribes have started fighting in Libya after a breakdown in negotiations.[21] The arenas of Lebanon and Bahrain were also identified as areas of the Arab Winter.[10] Libya was put as a scene of the Arab Winter, together with Syria, by Professor Sean Yom.[21] The Northern Mali conflict was often described as part of the "Islamist Winter".[22] Political changes which occurred in Tunisia, involving a change in government, as well as an ISIL insurgency were also indicated by some as a possible "heading towards Arab Winter".[18]

According to the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies, as of January 2014, the cost of Arab Winter upheaval across the Arab World was some 800 billion USD.[10] Some 16 million people in Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon were expected to require humanitarian assistance in 2014.[10]

According to The Economist, Malta has "benefited" from the Arab Winter, as tourists who might otherwise be in Egypt or Tunisia opt for a safer alternative.[23]

The political turmoil and violence in the Middle East and North Africa resulted in massive population displacement in the region.[24] As a result, “boat-people”, including internally displaced persons and asylum-seekers and refugees who had previously been residing in Libya, have headed towards the European Union.[25] The attempts by some Libyans and Tunisians to seek safety from the violence by crossing the Mediterranean sea triggered fears among European politicians and populations of arrivals that might “flood” their shores. This spurred on a flurry of legislative activity and patrolling of the waters to manage arrivals.[25]

See also


  1. "Middle East review of 2012: the Arab Winter". The Telegraph. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
  2. "Analysis: Arab Winter is coming to Baghdad". The Telegraph. The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved October 8, 2014.
  3. "Expert Warns of America's Coming 'Arab Winter'". CBN. Retrieved October 8, 2014.
  4. "The Arab Winter". The New Yorker. Retrieved October 8, 2014.
  5. "Arab Spring or Arab Winter?". The New Yorker. Retrieved October 8, 2014.
  6. Ahmed H Adam and Ashley D Robinson. Will the Arab Winter spring again in Sudan?. Al-Jazeera. 11 June 2016. "The Arab Spring that swept across the Middle East and succeeded in overthrowing three dictatorships in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya in 2011 was a pivotal point in the history of nations. Despite the subsequent descent into the "Arab Winter", the peaceful protests of young people were heroic..."
  7. Radoslaw Fiedler, Przemyslaw Osiewicz. Transformation processes in Egypt after 2011. 2015. p182.
  8. "From Egypt to Syria, this could be the start of the Arab Winter". The Conversation. April 17, 2014. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  9. 1 2 3 4 Rivlin, P (Jan 2014), Iqtisadi (PDF), Dayan Research Center.
  10. Malmvig, Lassen (2013), Arab uprisings: regional implication (PDF), IEMED.
  11. "Displacement in the Middle East and North Africa – between the Arab Winter and the Arab Spring" (PDF), International Affairs, LB: AUB, August 28, 2013.
  12. Fear and Faith in Paradise. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  13. "Arab Winter". America Staging. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  14. "Analysis: Arab Winter is coming to Baghdad". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  15. "Egypt and Tunisia's new 'Arab winter'". Euro news. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  16. "Yemen's Arab winter". Middle East Eye. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  17. 1 2 "Egypt & Tunisia's new Arab winter", Euro news, February 8, 2013.
  18. "The Coup in Egypt: An Arab Winter?". The Nation. July 5, 2013. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  19. "In Egypt, Arab Spring Gives Way To Military Winter". The World Post. The Huffington Post. January 21, 2014. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  20. 1 2 "Lecture Explores Past and Future Arab Spring". The Daily Gazette. October 10, 2014. Retrieved October 19, 2014.
  21. "In Mali AQ achieved to infiltrate and take over Tuareg insurgency. If AQ succeeds to keep the Arab Spring countries destabilized, this will lead to a viral reproduction of Azawad scenario. AQ is the "Islamic Winter"."
  22. High Wall, Narrow Sea.
  23. “Displacement in the Middle East and North Africa: Between an Arab Winter and the Arab Spring”. "In the midst of ongoing uprisings, violence, and political turmoil, widespread population displacement took place as a result of the conflict in Libya, the violence in Syria and upheaval in Yemen. In each of these contexts, the new waves of displacement took place in or to areas already struggling with previous waves, leading to multi-layered and complex crises."
  24. 1 2

External links

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