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26 Nov, 2011 10:20

Revolution reality-check: West to reap fruit of Arab Spring

The epic fight for democracy which unfolded in Egypt in February has turned to major disillusionment. As the aspiring revolutionaries take a reality check, it seems a pattern is emerging among countries caught up in the Arab Spring.

Almost a year after Mubarak’s fall, Tahrir Square is again stained with blood as ordinary Egyptians struggle to oust the military junta which has been in power since February’s uprising.“It’s about the dignity of the Egyptian people. We don’t want any more humiliation," says Helmi Hassan, a protester at Tahrir Square.The situation carries echoes of Libya, whose ousted leader, Muammar Gaddafi, was killed last month. People there have been left with a country in ruins and a government they did not choose. “I think there is a reign of terror going on against those who disagree with the Libyan government,” says anti-war activist Brian Becker.“It is not presented that way in the Western media, but it is a reign of terror. If you speak up right now against the new authorities in Libya, you are likely to go to jail or be executed, or disappear.”In the meantime, Libya’s interim government – brought to power by NATO – is strengthening its grip on the country. And it now looks as if Syria might be joining the club as the demands of NATO and some Arab states for regime change grow more vocal. Some say the louder they call, the more violent the opposition becomes. Russia's FM, Sergey Lavrov, says that some Western countries and are openly recommending that the opposition to hold no talks with the Assad regime. “It looks like political provocation on an international scale,” he said.Civil war is brewing in Syria. The whole region seems to be plunging deeper into crisis. While people on the ground bear the brunt of the continuing wave of violence in the Middle East and North Africa, some observers say certain powers might be interested in keeping the trouble boiling. Political analyst William Endgdahl believes that powerful interest outside the Middle East want to bring discontent and chaos to bear to pave the way for a NATO militarisation of the region so that“the oil resources of those oil-rich countries can be put directly into private hands,” he says. It is clear to anyone with eyes to see that the so-called “transition to democracy” in the wake of the Arab Spring is faltering.More blood is being shed. We are looking at an Arab Winter, and maybe another Arab Spring around the corner. As tensions rise and as certain global powers push for regime change in more Arab countries, it looks as if the wave of revolutions is set to turn into an ocean of chaos.