Thinking Through Liberation

For the past year a four-letter word has emerged as the key to the future of the Middle East.

Issue: Summer 2004

For the past year a four-letter word has emerged as the key to the future of the Middle East. This word--Iraq--is being presented in some Western media outlets as a code word for chaos and "another Vietnam", but it has a different resonance in the region itself.

To Arab and Iranian despots, Iraq is a code word for reforms that could end their monopoly on power. To radical Islamists fighting for power in a dozen Muslim countries, Iraq is seen as the "the final battleground" between Islam and democracy. And to the people of the region, Iraq is a code word for change.

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