The Middle East has long been fraught with tension and volatility. However, the recent Arab uprisings have intensified instability, turning this 'hot-spot' into a veritable tinderbox whose potential for implosion has far-reaching regional and global consequences. In this short book, leading Middle East scholar Mohammed Ayoob argues that the Arab Spring has both changed and charged some of the region’s thorniest problems - from the rise of political Islam to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, the Israel-Palestine conflict to rivalries between key regional powers. Exploring the sources of conflict in the Middle East and their various linkages, Ayoob offers a thoughtful and balanced assessment of whether the region is indeed destined for implosion or whether political sagacity and diplomatic creativity can bring it back from the brink.
Acknowledgements x 1 After the Arab Spring 1 2 The Islamist Challenge 12 3 Deadlock over Palestine 46 4 Regional and Global Rivalries 73 5 Iran and “the Bomb” 113 6 Will the Middle East Implode? 144 Afterword 164 Further Reading 177 Notes 182
"Mohammed Ayoob's new volume is nothing less than momentous. Intellectually gripping and insightful, Will the Middle East Implode? is the book on the current conflagration convulsing this critical region"Danny Postel, Center for Middle East Studies, University of Denver"Mohammed Ayoob is our most informed, judicious, perceptive, and insightful commentator on recent developments in the Middle East. He has now written an indispensable book that surveys the region as a whole while providing penetrating accounts of what is unfolding in each country, and how the play of forces from within and without is generating a crisis of potentially global proportions."Richard Falk, Princeton University, and UN Special Rapporteur on Occupied Palestine"Mohammed Ayoob's short book is a brilliant analysis of Middle East politics. It makes for sobering, yet essential, reading."Patrick Seale, author of The Struggle for Arab Independence: Riad el-Solh and The Makers of the Modern Middle East"A trenchant and clear-eyed analysis of the turbulent forces now buffeting the Middle East. No one knows exactly where these societies are headed, but this book is a sure guide to the rival forces that are now contending in the region and a timely warning of the dangers ahead. It is more than a tour d'horizon; it is a tour de force."Stephen Walt, Harvard Kennedy School"This incisive book gets to heart of the issues threatening the stability of the Middle East today. Erudite and timely, it will be essential reading for anyone concerned about the future of contentious politics in the region and its global repercussions."Fawaz Gerges, London School of Economics, and author of the The New Middle East: Protest and Revolution in the Arab World
Mohammed Ayoob is Michigan State University Distinguished Professor Emeritus of International Relations. He has published 13 books and over 90 papers and articles in leading journals such as World Politics, International Studies Quarterly, International Studies Review, Foreign Policy and International Affairs amongst others.
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