CRF Blog

Ripple Effects

by Bill Hayes

In Ripple Effects for the New York Times Book Review, Ian Fisher reviews The New Arab Wars: Uprisings and Anarchy in the Middle East by Marc Lynch.

In Lynch’s telling, the Middle East is a region where local forces dominate, interbreed and fester. Egypt’s struggle with democracy, Islam and military rule plays out in one corner, while the main event has become the increasingly open antagonism between Saudi Arabia and Iran, each backing allies around the region to deeper division. And Lynch recounts the important new front of social media, in all its complicated power to democratize and polarize, to render human beings numb at the repeated sight of the worst atrocities possible.

Lynch is not an optimist. [more]