CIAO DATE: 06/05
Volume XXXIX, No. 4 (October - December 2004)
The EU Constitutional Treaty: How to Deal with the Ratification Bottleneck (PDF, 18 pages, 184.0 KB), by Gian Luigi Tosato and Ettore Greco
Ratification of the Constitutional Treaty by all EU members will take at least two years and there is the concrete risk that one or more member states could fail to ratify. The anticipated application of some parts of the Constitutional Treaty before it enters into force could facilitate some of the reforms so badly needed by a Europe of 25 and anticipated enactment of some of these reforms could actually facilitate ratification of the Treaty itself. The article considers various scenarios in case of non ratification.
Peace-building and democracy promotion in the Middle East
A Sisyphean Task. Putting the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process Back on Track, by Yezid Sayigh
The death of President Yaser Arafat offers an opportunity for a positive change in Palestinian politics, but this could be missed if not matched by a similar shift in Israel. Nevertheless, key international and regional players are reluctant to take firm action because this requires open divergence from US policy. Israel and Palestine face a long-term prospect of no-peace with attendant violence so long as the international community remains unwilling to undertake interventions of a scope and scale that might alter the negative incentive structure of the conflict, to which it has itself contributed.
The Future of Iraq: Uncertainty, Disenchantment and Despair, by Peter Sluglett
The situation in Iraq has been degenerating rapidly over the last year and will almost certainly degenerate further before there is any significant improvement. The most urgent task facing the coalition is the restoration of civic order, without which it will be difficult to hold significant elections in January. In its second term the Bush administration should admit some of its mistakes and reformulate the policy on the ground, but with the voice of moderation having left the State Department it is not clear from where any such sober reconsideration might come.
Addressing the Iranian Nuclear Option (PDF, 11 pages, 111.4 KB), by Maurizio Martellini and Riccardo Redaelli
In order to bring about a positive change in the direction of Iran's nuclear policy - the object of much doubt since 2002 - the international community needs to address Iran's political, economic and security concerns. Moreover, the US administration should realize that a policy that excludes engagement with the country cannot represent a realistic solution to the problem. What is needed is a "grand bargain" with Iran, and the EU could play a role in achieving it.
Weathering the Storm: Saudi Arabia and the United States, by Giacomo Luciani
The Saudi regime's ambiguous linkages with the funding of global terrorist activities prompted the Bush administration to seek to lessen US dependence on Saudi oil after 9/11. The war on Iraq has to be interpreted as an attempt to build a more solid base for American interests in the Middle East and to open up the Iraqi oil sector to investment by major US companies. But as a result of the huge difficulties encountered in Iraq and the increasing global demand for oil, Saudi Arabia will continue to be a major actor in the area for at least the next two decades.
Promoting Democracy in the Arab World: The Challenge of Joint Action, by Tamara Cofman Wittes
The three transatlantic summits of June 2004 produced some agreement on democracy promotion in the Middle East. A number of issues have to be tackled before shared US and European objectives can be implemented: regimes have to be offered effective economic incentives to undertake gradual political change; democracy assistance to Arab civil society must be maximised, focusing on liberals and mainstream Islamists willing to accept democratic rules; and, finally, effective joint diplomatic action must be taken toward Arab regimes to press for greater political rights and freedom.
Democratisation in the Arab World Revisited, by Laura Guazzone and Daniela Pioppi
The 'inevitable democratisation' paradigm prevailing since 1990 has contributed to promoting a procedural view of democracy that does not overcome the main obstacles to real democratisation in the Arab world. These derive from a power distribution that is unfavourable to democratisation both internally and internationally. Domestically, only a bottom-up politicisation process can break the neo-patrimonial mechanisms on which regimes are based. Internationally, real democratisation calls for a less elitist concept of democracy that integrates defence of social and economic freedoms with that of human and political rights.
NATO's Role in Defence Cooperation and Democratisation in the Middle East, by Fred Tanner
How can NATO's rich experience with democratic security governance in Eastern Europe be used in the framework of NATO's Mediterranean Partnership - despite the problematic US-European relations regarding the Middle East and particularly Iraq. Promotion of defence reform and democratisation in the Middle East requires a common alliance strategy. Moreover, NATO will have to work with the EU on Mediterranean partnership building because cooperative defence reform can only be achieved in a sound environment of sustainable development and political reform.
Italian foreign policy survey
The Shift in Italy's Euro-Atlantic Policy. Partisan or Bipartisan?, by James Walston
The victory of a centre-right coalition in 2001 has changed the relationship between the two basic pillars of Italian postwar foreign policy: support for European integration and alliance with the United States. The government's foreign policy moves in 2004, especially those relating to Italy's presence in Iraq and its role in the EU, show that the transatlantic relation has coloured almost every sphere of Italian foreign policy. While not challenging the essentiality of the two traditional pillars, this preference has substantially changed the relationship between them.
Book Reviews and Notes
What Future for Political Islam? (PDF, 3 pages, 64.5 KB) , by Daniela Pioppi
IAI Library Notes , by Maritza Cricorian