Thursday, March 14, 2013

Not a Curse at All: Why Middle Eastern Oil States Fail and How it can be Prevented

Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding: Western scholarship has often noted that oil states in the Middle East are affected by the ‘resource curse’. Thus, such states are to eventually fail due to their plundering of resources and their neglect of the social contract with their citizens. However, this is not the case, as oil states are neither failed states, nor fully democratic. They hover in a middle ground in which they assure security through coercion, but lack representation and legitimacy. Due to the events of the Arab Spring, a pragmatic, insightful and comprehensive review of oil states in the region is necessary. Although oil states in the region thus far have remained stable, change can be expected in the future. How will oil states deal with the pressures of a more demanding society and an ever-challenging economic atmosphere? Furthermore, what can history teach us so that state failure can be averted?

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