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This week’s editor

Alex Sakalis, Editor

Alex Sakalis is associate editor of openDemocracy and co-edits the Can Europe Make It? page.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Chile elections: why progressives will not win

Chilean progressives have achieved great cultural victories but are politically fragmented. Their crisis is deeper than it seems. And solutions are not just around the corner. Español

Nationalism as a substitute for equality

Real equality cannot be achieved through distribution alone, but by relying on personal relationships with one another. If we are to reduce inequality, and fight populism, we must rehabilitate equality. Interview. Español

Protesting in Guatemala

Guatemala has witnessed massive social protests against President Jimmy Morales and the connivance of 107 lawmakers who enacted a law protecting the corrupt. Español

Catalonia’s drive for independence and the emergence of global cities

The pro-independence movement in Catalonia has created a singular coalition that includes the beneficiaries of globalization, the elites of a global city, and those left behind by globalization. Español

Recuperación económica de la izquierda de Portugal

Portugal está haciendo noticia por todas las razones correctas. English Português

 

The President, the General and their country

The transition in Angola is already on its way. Fortunately for Angolans– except for Mr. Dos Santos and his entourage – it is not heading to where the former President wants. Español Português

Now in English, our eBook: The ecosystem of an open democracy

<<The ecosystem of an open democracy>> is an eBook about political innovation in Latin America and Spain that democraciaAbierta has co-published along with apps4citizens in Barcelona. Español

Centrists must embrace anti-elitism or face extinction.

Instead of aping chauvinism, centrists must respond imaginatively to the anti-political sentiment behind Brexit and the rise of far right parties.

Iraq’s next parliamentary elections: the stakes

We are now completely at the mercy of our political class. Many of the same faces will return, and those who are new will have been imposed on us by the same party structures that have been running the country since 2003.

Algeria’s presidential elections: a litany of failures by the political class has wasted a golden opportunity for change

Taking place sixty years since the Algerian revolution, today’s presidential elections presented the perfect occasion for the country to turn a new leaf after decades of mismanagement and stagnation. Instead, a litany of political and moral failures by the political class has turned a golden opportunity into a wasted one.

Presidential elections: key step in Egypt’s roadmap

People who are keen on the democratic political process in Egypt share certain convictions as to who should fill the presidential role, and these convictions have become stronger than ever in favour of a military leader.

A letter from Alaa

Alaa Abdel Fattah, a prominent Egyptian blogger and activist, was arrested on 28 November 2013. This is a letter he wrote on 24 December 2013, from his prison cell to his sisters. openDemocracy is honoured to publish this letter to remind people on January 25, the anniversary of Egypt's revolution, of political prisoners everywhere.

Egypt’s spring and following autumn: the revival of the military-civil social contract

Public support for the revolution was not based on strictly rational grounds. It was an act of sympathy with utopian dreamers fighting a tyrant regime.

Egypt: church and state

Should the Coptic church be involved in Egypt's political transition? Or in politics at all?

Iran and the Arab world: a change in foreign policy

Maged Mandour

Iran has lost a significant component of its soft power in the Middle East. No longer viewed as a Muslim nation, it is regarded as a Shiite nation. This might be very costly for Iran in the long run. 

Lebanon: a year which promises little but foreboding?

The feeling of being hamstrung by international events both out of their control but with direct consequences, combined with domestic political stalemate and factionalism, is all too familiar. 

Corruption in Bahrain

The Crown Prince’s renewed anti-corruption effort faces serious threats, particularly from powerful elites with a deep vested interest in maintaining the fig leaf of impunity.

The many crises of Erdogan: have we come to an end-game?

This piece is an attempt to revisit some of the key crises afflicting the AKP and its leader, and in light of this analysis, investigate some claims that foretell the AKP’s doom. 

El Sisi: the revolutionary president?

Maged Mandour

If Sisi decides to run for president, it might provide a breath of life to a revolutionary movement that has been badly damaged and splintered since the coup of June 30.

Sisi’s men: anticipating the coming regime

The challenge Sisi will face, will be in keeping his outer circle intact, a challenge which will be the main determinant behind his policy-decisions.

Morsi is not a symbol

Maged Mandour

A reply to Islam Abdel-Rahman on whether deposed President Mohamed Morsi is a symbol.

The Tunisian revolution three years on

Tunisia has moved from a romantic story to a testing ground for transnational political Islam, the global strength of the market economy and the potential for progressive politics and a new way of being in our world.

General El Sisi and the red sword

General El Sisi sincerely believes that he is engaging in a holy war, either in the name of God or the name of the Egyptian “people”, which now does not include the Muslim Brotherhood or any person who rejects the coup.

Death of Kurdish workers in Turkey spark widespread violence

Turkish police killing two Kurdish industrial workers has led to mass demonstrations, widespread violence and the abduction of soldiers, raising serious doubts about the ongoing Turkey-Kurdish peace process.

Tunisia: security sector reform

Robert Joyce

Three years since the slogan “no fear after today” spread through Tunisia, police and security forces still operate without any meaningful accountability.

Getting transition right

Gathering in Salzburg, Austria looks at improving diversity and inclusion in the post-revolution MENA region.

The new Janissary

Maged Mandour

The Egyptian revolt was not simply a revolt against the tyranny of the crony capitalist-military alliance, it was also a revolt against the prevalent Orientalist conception; the inferiority the Egyptian feels about himself.

Lebanon in turmoil

The environment in Lebanon continues to be highly fractured, with geographical enclaves hosting increasingly entrenched conflicts which are spewing out more private groups threatening to create greater national disunity.

Political reform in Kuwait?

Some believe it will be another five years before Kuwait can approach the idea of political reform again. But until then, activists should not be discouraged. Calling for an elected government in a region governed in the purest tribal form is not going to bear fruit overnight. 

Egypt’s mythical ‘law and order’

The Egyptian authorities appear to be more concerned with how to curb their opponents than they are with the future of the country and the wellbeing of its citizens.

Comparing the Colombian and Turkish peace processes

The Colombian conflict has more factions, presenting a complex relationship between ideology, land issues and the drug industry, while the Kurdish question concerns national identity and cultural rights. So, why is the Colombian peace process more likely to succeed?

The (anti-) protest law: no more public space in Egypt?

The battle for dominance over public space in Egypt will continue, determining the future relationship between state and society.

Egypt: the police state

Peaceful protesters holding up signs and chanting are not a threat to national security. The authorities and security officials are a threat to people’s security.

Religion and politics in post-coup Egypt

How have the highest religious authorities in Egypt reacted to the conflict between Egypt's military and the Muslim Brotherhood, and what does this tell us about the part they play in Egypt's unfolding destiny and the changing roles of religion and politics?

The myth of peace in Darfur

The National Congress Party’s (NCP) peace agreements, like the DDPD, will never achieve peace as long as their signatories exclude the real actors in the conflict.

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