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TitleIntroduction to Middle East Politics
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Table of Contents
                            AN INTRODUCTION TO MIDDLE EAST POLITICS- FRONT COVER
AN INTRODUCTION TO MIDDLE EAST POLITICS
COPYRIGHT
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
PREFACE
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
NOTE ON TRANSLITERATION
ABOUT THE ONLINE RESOURCES
CHAPTER 1- THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE AND ITS LEGACY IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 2- THE COLONIAL PERIOD IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 3- THE COLD WAR AND THE NEW INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS OF THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 4- NATIONALISM, ISLAMISM AND THE POLITICS OF IDEOLOGY
CHAPTER 5- ISRAEL, THE PALESTINIANS AND THE PEACE PROCESS
CHAPTER 6- OIL, ECONOMY AND DEVELOPMENT IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 7- THE MILITARY, SECURITY AND POLITICS IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 8- AUTHORITARIANISM IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 9- DEMOCRATISATION AND THE ARAB UPRISINGS
CHAPTER 10- US MILITARY INTERVENTION IN THE MIDDLE EAST
CHAPTER 11- THE SYRIAN CONFLICT AND THE SYRIAN REFUGEE CRISIS
INDEX
                        
Document Text Contents
Page 2

An Introduction to

Middle East
Politics

Page 196

OIl, EcOnOMy AnD DEvElOPMEnt In thE MIDDlE EAst 177

Estimates of the size of the informal sector vary from country to country across the
Middle East. For instance, according to the International Labour Organization, the
largest informal sectors in the world are in Bolivia (67.3% of the total economy)
and Georgia (65.9% of the total economy). Here, the informal sectors in the states
of the Middle East with the exception of the Palestinian Territories are not as large
as these, or other large informal sectors such as those in Thailand (53.3%), Chad
(48%) or the Philippines (44.8%). Indeed, many of the region’s states are close to the
average of other states such as Vietnam (15.8%), Chile (20.1%) and India (23.9%).
However, this is slightly above the rates in the United States (8.7%), Japan (11.2%)
and Australia (14.7%).

Therefore, the informal sector is a critical part of most, if not all, regional econo-
mies but also one that is not larger, if not lower, than any other comparable regions.
As shall be discussed below, international financial institutions such as the World
Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) actively seek to pressure govern-
ments into shutting down the activities of the informal economy, particularly in
terms of its role in depriving the state of tax revenue. However, such pressures con-
front a variety of impediments including the lack of government capacity as well as
the active involvement of governments themselves in the informal sector. In addi-
tion, efforts to regulate the activities of the informal economy can have detrimental
effects for the many citizens who rely on this sector for their livelihood.

Aside from the clear benefits of the informal sector for many across the region,
there are also downsides. In particular, workers within the informal sector operate
outside the regulation and protection offered by legal systems and international
organisations such as the International Labour Organization. In addition, the
measures of the informal sector also include government corruption, a factor that
has been critical in feeding into the ability of regimes to perpetuate undemo-
cratic rule as well as the discontent behind the uprisings that engulfed the region
from 2010.

Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index highlights the trou-
bling trend of corruption in the region (see Table 6.7). Here, 11 of the 21 regional
states are in the top half of states globally, with only four out of 21 regional states
scoring higher than 5 out of 10 on the index. These figures are important to under-
standing how this particular structural weakness, alongside the persistence of
political instability and conflict, as well as regional inequalities, greatly affect the
economic functionality of the region.

Alternative Economic Measurements and the Middle East
Whilst the above picture paints a reasonably clear picture of the regional economy,
there are other ways of measuring economic development. The conventional measures

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An IntrODuctIOn tO MIDDlE EAst POlItIcs178

of focusing on factors such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Gross National
Product (GNP) as well as data such as life expectancy, trade figures, income and
other factors can be supplemented by new measures. These new measures have
grown out of criticisms of particular models of development that have been seen as
representative of an imposition of a neoliberal model of development with economic
growth as the central factor. However, more recent understandings of development
seek to focus on the welfare of humans within this system.

The Human Development Index and the Millennium
Development Goals
This has been represented in a shift in focus on the part of international organi-
sations towards alternative models of understanding economic development. The
most prominent examples of this are the Human Development Index (HDI) and
the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). The United Nations have been
central here, particularly the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP),
which produces reports measuring states according to the HDI in their annual
Human Development Reports (HDRs). The HDI and HDRs employ a model of
understanding of development first articulated by Harvard Professor and Nobel
Laureate in Economics, Amartya Sen.

The original 1990 Human Development Report outlined how ‘technical con-
siderations of the means to achieve human development – and the use of statistical
aggregates to measure national income and its growth – have at times obscured

Table 6.7 Corruption Perceptions Index* (Transparency International 2016 estimates)

Rank** Score*** Rank Score Rank Score

1 UAE 24 66 8 Turkey 75 41 15 Lebanon 136 28
2 Israel 28 64 9 Kuwait 75 41 16 Iraq 166 17
3 Qatar 31 61 10 Tunisia 75 41 17 Libya 170 14
4 Jordan 57 48 11 Morocco 90 37 18 Sudan 170 14
5 Saudi

Arabia
62 46 12 Algeria 108 34 19 Yemen 170 14

6 Oman 64 45 13 Egypt 108 34 20 Syria 173 13
7 Bahrain 70 43 14 Iran 131 29 21 Palestine No data No data
* The index, developed by Transparency International, is based on the perceived corruption
of a country’s public sector.
** Rank: out of 176 states.
*** Score: out of 100, with 0/100 as most corrupt and 100/100 as least corrupt.

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Index 373

USS Cole, 315
USS Samuel Roberts, 94
Uthman, 7

Vananu, Mordechai, 212
Versailles Treaty, 41–2
vilayat-e-faqih (Governance of the Jurist), 119–20,

130, 132, 133, 134, 162, 266
vilayets (provinces), 15, 57

Wafd (‘Delegation’) Party, 32, 34, 35, 281
al-Wahhab, Muhammad Ibn ‘abd, 35, 128
Wahhabism, 35–6, 128, 250
War on Terror, 224, 226, 227, 229, 291, 313
Washington Consensus, 191, 192
wataniyya, 106–7
weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), 292, 294–7
Welfare Party, 256
West Bank, 71, 84, 112, 112fig, 113, 115, 144, 148,

149, 150, 152, 153, 156, 157, 158, 160, 161
Western Sahara dispute, 206–7, 208fig, 219
White Papers, 54–5, 56–7, 66, 67
White Revolution, Iran, 131
Wikileaks, 276

Williamson, John, 191
Wilson, Colonel Cyril, 38
Wilson, Woodrow, 53
women, 128, 181
World Bank, 174, 176, 177, 190, 191, 265, 267
World Economic Forum, 174, 175tab
World War I, 12, 17, 29, 37, 38, 183, 184
World War II, 43, 65–6, 256
The Wretched of the Earth, 218

Yahya Muhammad, Imam, 81
al-Yaziji, Nasif, 106
Yemen, 80–2, 114, 172, 175, 191, 227, 229, 242tab,

318–19, 324–6
Young Ottoman movement, 10, 11
Young Turk movement, 10–11, 12, 37, 101
youth bulge, 269

al-Zarqawi, Abu Musab, 227, 300
al-Zawahiri, Ayman, 220, 343
Zaydi, 325
Zintain militia, 324
Zionism, 39, 52–3, 54, 55, 66, 67, 69–70, 71, 101, 150,

161, 219

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