Volume 3, No. 3 September 1999
MIDDLE EAST ECONOMIES: A SURVEY OF CURRENT PROBLEMS AND ISSUES
Editor’s Summary: This article examines broad trends in Middle Eastern economies and development strategy, finding many problems and shortcomings. The author points to the lack of structural reform as well as effects in global economic developments as prime problems here. Despite the continued (though reduced) influx of oil money, regional development remains surprisingly weak.
The globalization of international commerce and the technological revolution of the 1990s have posed serious challenges for developing countries, including those in the Middle East.
International markets are now harsher and more competitive while political reform and democratization have become indispensable for the long-term successful integration of developing countries into the global political economy. Stabilization and adjustment programs demand substantial administrative capacity and political skill. In this regard, the primary problem with governments in the Middle East remains the persistence of traditional political structures. Political elites and entrenched interests continue to resist political reforms and economic adjustment policies that they perceive as threatening the status quo.
At the same time, the powerful distributive conflicts unleashed by economic change threaten the legitimacy and stability of incumbent regimes. In light of fiscal constraints and growing opposition to the existing state systems by Islamic groups, intellectuals, professionals, and the growing middle class, though in varying degrees in different countries, Middle Eastern regimes have tried a number of different ways to introduce political reforms without seriously jeopardizing the political status quo.
John Waterbury has noted that heavily statist economies give rise to similar forms of property rights and interest group coalitions, underlining the importance of technocratic “change teams” within the state to implement reforms. (1) Middle Eastern countries either enter “the democratic-technological-scientific race, invests [sic] heavily in R&D, and `endure the information economy’ metamorphosis or [they] become unimportant, unexploited and unexploitable.” (2)
Political reforms at home are necessary for progress in this area. The emergence of a vibrant and effective civil society, capable of checking the authoritarian tendencies of the state, can help free the economic activities of individuals, groups and associations from their political constraints, and facilitate the long-term socioeconomic and political development and eventual integration of these states into the global economy.
The persistence of authoritarian rule and the marginality of popular politics in the majority of Middle Eastern countries have largely been a product of the domestic socioeconomic and political environment, not external manipulation. Ultimately, the state monopoly over resources and the decision-making process, outside of the purview of civil society, hinders popular participation in fostering the long-term economic success of the country.
THE GLOBAL CONTEXT
Despite the primacy of internal factors, the impact of a spreading global political economy has already been felt by individual countries in the Middle East. The region has continuously attracted foreign intervention, in one shape or another. External influences, however, have for the most part helped bolster the state in the region: the Western powers have in the past 50 years promoted the political status quo in the Middle East through support for conservative oil-producing authoritarian states, arms sales to friendly but autocratic regimes, and direct and indirect intervention. The long term impact of globalization on the state in the Middle East, and elsewhere in the developing countries, through a whole range of economic, cultural and political (including human rights or democracy) interactions may have a reverse effect. Globalization may actually help the cause of civil society and democracy by weakening the state’s control of the economy and society on the whole. However, the state in the Middle East hitherto remains dominant in politics and the economy.
After more than four decades of development efforts, the majority of the Middle East’s population still lives in poverty, and the political system remains for the most part authoritarian. Professor Howard Wiarda recently described the Middle East in the following terms: “In the political realm all these regimes remain authoritarian. Economically, they have done reasonably well lately not because they are efficient or self-sufficient but because of oil, foreign subsidies, or proximity to wealth that rubs off on them.” (3)
Maintaining the status quo costs the state and society more in the 1990s than it did previously. Political instability, radical Islamic fundamentalism, and external threats to the state have helped justify arms purchases by the governments in the region. But as a consequence of their high defense spending, Middle Eastern governments have made fewer investments in the economic and social development (e.g., education, health) of their countries. (4)
External support has also fallen. With the threat of Communism evaporated, the United States and Europe are less interested in addressing the long-term development concerns of the region, even if they are involved in the Arab-Israeli peace process. Sanctions against Iraq or Iran have regional economic costs. Low oil prices also inhibit Middle Eastern development while the abundant supply of cheap oil helps fuel European and American economies. The level of economic protectionism, through tariffs, quotas, and other such mechanisms, vis-a-vis the West remains relatively low. This is especially true in the Gulf States. (5)
Ghassan Salame has observed that the Middle East and North Africa “are viewed in Europe primarily as geo-strategic rather than economic or political issues, while pan-European institutions are far from being equipped, let alone ready, to devise a strategic approach.” (6) Even while Europe shows more independence from U.S. policy in setting its positions on the region-including opposition to sanctions against Iran, Iraq, and Libya-European concerns focus on regime stability in Saudi Arabia and the oil-rich Gulf states, regardless of their political system and orientation, the containment of “rogue” states like Iran, Iraq, the Sudan and Libya, and an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict. Fundamental democratic reform is of lesser importance. Important questions such as whether European countries will coordinate Middle Eastern policy as a bloc or will compete with one another for influence in the region remain unanswered.
NEW WORLD, OLD TRENDS
Despite a wave of coups bringing radical regimes to power in the 1950s and 1960s, and despite the success of efforts to preserve regimes in other countries, the political structure in most Middle East states remains underdeveloped, with a high degree of traditionalism and a low level of political institutionalism. Family ties and kinship, informal decision making and social cleavages, for example, are as important, if not more important, as institutional and formal avenues to power and decision making.
Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States are primary examples of Arab societies, where patrimonial sources of social and political prestige and power still coexist with modern institutional and formal avenues to power. Opposition political parties are either nonexistent (e.g., Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, Iraq, Syria and Libya) or are used by governments to legitimate elite domination (e.g., the Sudan, Egypt, and Morocco). Only governments in Israel and Turkey have allowed competitive political contests by opposition parties.
Similarly, labor unions are either non-existent or remain largely ineffective in their bargaining position vis-a-vis the state and business interests, with the notable exceptions of Israel and, to a lesser degree, Turkey, Egypt and Tunisia. (7) Although on the surface political institutions give the appearance of being modern, where they exist they are organizationally weak. (8) With the exception of Israel and to some degree Turkey, viable opposition political parties are rare in the Middle East. Political parties, where they exist (e.g., Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Tunisia), are dominated by powerful individuals, lack a strong organizational base at local and provincial levels, and do not have viable party platforms to unite their members and to address the economic and social needs of the population at large. In other words, they are organizationally weak and parochial. Governments themselves are bloated with large bureaucracies where nepotism and favoritism play as much of a role as merit in hiring and promotion. As Nazih Ayubi puts it, in the Middle East, “most Arab rulers find in the machine bureaucracy a useful control device, and most executives find it a means of acquiring authority and exercising influence. Most Arab rulers and executives want to see their bureaucracies play a part in developing their countries, but in their real order of priorities, power often comes before development.” (9)
Public officials have become rent-seekers, and “state-owned enterprises have become a net drain on public finances.” Government bureaucrats and their allies, including public sector managers, civil servants and their ministers, and labor and business representatives with ties to the government, prefer to preserve their own interests rather than cooperate with the opposition to benefit the country on the whole. John Waterbury, for example, observes in the cases of Egypt and Turkey that “coalitions of interests dependent on public enterprise can create arduous obstacles to reform. But, these same coalitions are often weak and fragmented, unable to resist the fundamental restructuring through privatization in which governments have attempted to remove public enterprise from the reach of politics.” (10) While Turkey and Egypt have had limited success in crushing old coalitions, prospects for success in other Middle Eastern countries, given the entrenched interest coalitions of a diverse range of groups in the public sector, and weak civil societies, are not promising.
Waterbury has suggested that economic crises could serve as catalysts for reform. That is, if economic “crisis itself is of sufficient severity, it provides the element of discontinuity that allows incumbents to restructure their power bases.” (11) Governments in the region have so far repeatedly demonstrated their resistance to reforms that threaten themselves and their constituencies. However, an economic crisis, if accompanied by a severe political crisis (e.g., loss of legitimacy, factionalism within government), could lead to structural reform.
In Iran, for example, the ideological and political factionalism within the state and the government’s inability to fight the persistent economic crisis has put the state on the defensive. Now, the Islamic republic must either tolerate increasing political participation and to eventually democratize, or face increasing social unrest. (12) In Algeria, the failure of successive governments to resolve severe economic problems and the lack of representative political institutions helped the electoral victory of the Islamic National Salvation Front (FIS). However, the Algerian elites, headed by the military decided to unite to crush the opposition, despite disagreements over the course of privatization the country had embarked upon since the 1980s. The Algerian government has thus far resisted giving concessions to the Islamic opposition, with the open conflict costing close to 100,000 lives since 1992.
THE MISSING LINK
The economic performance of both oil producers and non-producers has been unimpressive in recent years. This was partly due to the Middle East’s parochial and underdeveloped political systems and processes. Though the region as a whole enjoyed relatively high levels of economic growth in comparison with the rest of the world in the 1960s and up to the mid-1970s, recent economic performance tells a different story. The annual average growth rate of the Middle East in the 1962-1975 period was 4.91 percent, well above the average world growth of 3.15 percent. However, in the years between 1975-1990, when average world growth registered at a low .58 percent, Middle East economies grew at (-.75) percent, the lowest in the world. The percentage economic growth for Africa (-.57), the Western hemisphere(-.29), Asia (1.95), the developed world (1.95), and East Asia/Pacific (3.43) were all higher. The average economic growth for the 1962-1990 period for the region stood at 2.14 percent. The world growth for this period registered at 1.8. (13)
The economic growth of the region is even less impressive once population growth is considered. The population of the Middle East grew 2.33 percent between 1962-1975 and 3.08 percent in the 1975-1990 period. Thus, the rate of population growth for 1962-1990 stood at 2.61 percent, higher than the economic growth of 2.14 percent for the same time period. So, a partial explanation for the overall poor regional performance between 1962 and 1990 is the high rate of population growth, especially in the post-1975 period. Table 1 summarizes the percentage rates of the gross national product (GNP) and population growth for the world and different regions, as well as the percentage difference between the two (Percentage GNP growth – Percentage population growth) for the 1962-1990 period. (14) Although economies around the world experienced slower economic growth after the 1973 oil price hikes, the Middle East’s economic performance was exceptionally poor, lagging behind all other regions of the world, except Africa.
Regional economic performance and the level of population growth in the 1990s remained similar to the 1980s. The percentage of gross national product per capita (GNP/PC) average annual growth for the region in 1985-1995 stood at -.03, as compared to Asia’s 5.05, Latin America and the Caribbean’s 0.3, high-income countries’ 1.9, and Sub-Saharan Africa’s -1.1. Again, Middle East economic performance lagged behind all other regions of the world, except Africa. Furthermore, the percentage of average annual population growth for 1990-1995 for the Middle East was 2.7, as compared to Asia’s 1.6, Latin America and Caribbean’s 1.7, high income-countries’ 0.7, and Sub-Saharan Africa’s 2.6. Thus, the Middle East surpassed all other regions in population growth, effectively meaning that the region’s meager economic performance was even worse than the negative growth of -.03. (15)
Comparison of Economic Performance of Six Regions (1962-1990) Minus (-)
|% GNP Growth||% Pop. Growth||% Pop. Growth|
Although external forces have played a big role in generating or exacerbating conflicts and instability, stagnant regional regimes bear the burden of responsibility for the Middle East’s dismal economic performance. Governments in the region, regardless of their size, are faced with a tremendous challenge: either make the necessary political and economic adjustments in order to compete with other regions, or continue with the status quo and be undermined by growing markets in East Asia, Latin America and Europe.
The decline in economic growth, partially because of lower oil and gas prices and foreign aid-particularly for Egypt and Jordan-has forced some states in the Middle East to “liberalize” their economies and withdraw from such sectors of the economy as education, health, and welfare. However, the state’s control of the national economy (e.g., government’s high level share of the total expenditures in the economy as a percentage of Gross National Product) remains largely intact. The present private sector’s marginal share in the national economies of most countries in the region will not expand without the blessings of the state, given its overwhelming control of the market. Furthermore, the state’s dominant presence in all aspects of the social and political lives of citizens makes it very resistant to sharing political power with the opposition. For, example, as Emmanuel Sivan points out, the “powerful interventionist state” remains the “structural factor” responsible for the absence of democracy in the Arab World. (16)
The record shows that fundamental structural reforms cannot be achieved without the emergence of civil society. Professors Muhammad Muslih and Augustus Richard Norton have pointed out that civil society exists where “clubs, organizations, and groups act as a buffer between state power and the life of the citizen.” (17) In the absence of such groups and associations, the state dominates socioeconomic and private affairs, and authoritarian tendencies intensify. The Iranian revolution, the rise of Islamic movements in the 1980s, and declining oil prices led to increased optimism for the creation of civil society in the Middle East in the 1980s and 1990s. The consensus is that, “Today most scholars confidently affirm that both intermediate powers and autonomous social groups exist in the Middle East.” (18)
But such expectations, especially in the post-Cold War era, must be viewed with caution. The civil society debate in the Middle East has focused on changes in formal procedures of governance rather than substantive change in state-society relations. The emergence of state-controlled, quasi-pluralism in countries like Egypt or Jordan is seen as a shift from one-party rule to pluralism (ta’addudiya), involving the rise of numerous political parties and associations. (19) Despite the proliferation of some interest groups like lawyers, teachers and womens’ associations, and the rise of Islamic political opposition since the early 1970s, the state’s monopoly in politics continues. Therefore, political participation by pro-government parties or individuals in national elections should not be considered as a serious move toward pluralism, but as an attempt by the ruling elites to maintain the status quo.
For example, in the November 1995 elections in Egypt, the government’s National Democratic Party and its allies, the Independents, won 431 of 444 available seats. The opposition, including, the Wafd party, the leftist Tagammu party, the Nasserite party and Ahrar party were left with no real power in the Majlis. In Jordan, at least 12 political parties competed for political office in the November 1997 elections, but the independent candidates won 75 of the 80-seat in the Majlis. The Jordanian Democratic Union Party, Arab Land Party, the Jordanian Arab Ba’ath Socialist Party and the National Constitutional Party (NCP) together mustered 5 seats. The political opposition in Jordan is thus neutralized by divisions among Jordanian candidates for political office, and the absence of an effective political party, capable of unifying individual candidates around a party platform. And yet in another example, while 16 political parties participated in the November 1997 parliamentary elections in Morocco, electoral blocs, reflecting three major pro-government political tendencies, captured all but 26 of the 325-seat House.
The augmentation of political parties in the region may thus be more a result of states adjusting to pressure from Islamic groups and their allies than a genuine political opening. Political parties in the Middle East remain for the most part ineffective and play mostly a ceremonial role that serves to legitimate state policies, without change in the composition of the ruling elites. For example, in all national elections in the Middle East since 1980, only in Iran (1989, 1997), Turkey (1991, 1995) and Israel (1992, 1996 and 1999) did a change in the government actually occur. In all other cases, the ruling government political parties maintained their control over the state. (21)
There are mechanisms for maintaining a political monopoly that include “restrictions on voter and candidate eligibility, gerrymandering, choice of electoral system and legal constraints on political parties. Many governments [in the Middle East] adopt or change laws between elections in order to produce different results.” (22) Moreover, embryonic associations, although they exist, are poorly organized and remain dependent on patrons within the state. As Carrie Rosefsky Wickham of Emory University puts it, regarding Egypt: “The emergence of independent sites of social and political expressions within an authoritarian setting is not the same as the emergence of civil society, at least not in its liberal conception.” (23) In the final analysis, the emergence of an effective civil society in most countries of the region in the foreseeable future is not very promising.
The inadequacies of viable and productive capitalism in the region remain largely due to inefficient rent-seeking and the monopolistic nature of the state, exacerbated by foreign influence and control. The state’s domination of the economy has led over the years to bloated governments with inefficient bureaucracies. The state, unwilling or unable to initiate political reforms to free itself from tribal, landed, religious and merchant/commercial elites, has proven incapable of dealing with the intricacies of privatization and the open market. This, combined with external financial and political pressure for expansion of free trade and democracy, has left the state with incentives to continue resorting to oppression rather than cooperation to resolve political and economic problems. The ruling elites have a great deal to lose in the long run. With the cost of labor higher, and the ratio of skilled to semi-skilled to unskilled labor lower, than in other regions, prospects for foreign capital investments in the near future are not promising. As Waterbury tells us: “If exploitative private economic behavior, both indigenous and foreign, could be throttled or eliminated, if the proliferation of middlemen with their attendant usury, speculation, monopolies, and short-term horizons could be halted, then a dynamic, carefully and rationally planned state enterprise sector could, as farsighted helmsman of the economy, mobilize scarce resources, stimulate markets, adopt new technologies, and rapidly lift the entire economy to a level of self-sustaining industrial growth. (24)
Governments in the region can either become efficient in the management of their economies and societies or face stronger opposition from the populace and Islamic groups. Failure to enact political reforms today can result in severe economic crises that in all probability will exacerbate political instability in the region tomorrow. This will deter foreign investments, further weakening the economic status of the region in the international political economy.
The post-Cold War international political economy has intensified economic competition among developed countries. But for developing countries, the new economic and political arrangements are far bleaker. With the threat of Communism and a world war weakened, most developing countries have found themselves outside of global political economy.
In the Middle East, oil revenues, expanded militaries, and the emergence of a sub-class of state bureaucrats, technocrats and professionals had increased the capability of the state. On the other hand, declining oil revenues in the 1980s and the 1990s forced the oil-producing states in the region to attempt some structural economic adjustments without serious attempts at political reform.
These economic adjustments have come through some limited privatization, as in Jordan and Syria, reduction in government subsidies in the cases of Iran and Iraq, and/or increased reliance on international actors for borrowing or aid, as is evidenced in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and Iran. Nonetheless, the state’s financial and coercive power in the region remains strong and far superior to the resources available to its rival social, economic and political opposition. (25) The challenge to the state by the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Jordan, and Syria, and the National Salvation Front in Algeria, for example, has failed to force serious changes in the domestic and foreign policies of the state.
The Middle East is second only to Africa as the least developed region in the world. It has already lost much of its strategic importance since the Soviet Union’s demise and with the price of oil at its lowest level in recent memory, prospects for continued sustained development do not look promising.
Most Middle Eastern states might, and probably do, possess the necessary technocratic and professional personnel to run state affairs in an efficient and modern manner. What is not present is the willingness or ability of the elites in charge to disengage the old coalitional interests that dominate governments in these countries. Whatever the new international order is, it is surely more competitive, and it punishes political rhetoric and stagnation. Those interested in serious reform and regional stability must recognize that reality and adopt their policies accordingly.
See Stephen Haggard and Robert R. Kaufman, eds., The Politics of Economic Adjustment (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1992). See also John Waterbury, Exposed to Innumerable Delusions: Public enterprise and state power in Egypt, India, Mexico, and Turkey (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993).
See Martin Carnoy, Manuel Castells, Stephen S. Cohen, and Fernando Henrique Cardoso, The New Global Economy in the Information Age: Reflections on our Changing World (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1993), p. 156.
See Howard Wiarda, Introduction to Comparative Politics: Concepts and Processes (Belmont, California: Wadsworth Publishing, 1993), p. 135.
In the 1990-91 fiscal year, for example, countries of the region, including Israel, imported more than $24 billion worth of arms from the United States alone. This figure did not include the $800.8 million spent in military construction sales by the US to the Middle East. See Congressional Record (January 24, 1992), pp. E67-E69. This list includes a country-by-country breakdown. Arms sales to both Iran and Iraq during the 1980s, and Saudi Arabia’s commitment after the Gulf War to purchase $20 billion worth of arms point to the significance of external pressure for arms sales to the region. In 1995, military expenditure as percentage of GDP were: Iran (3.9), Iraq (14.8), Saudi Arabia (10.6), Kuwait (11.8), Bahrain (5.2), Qatar (4.4), United Arab Emirates (4.8), Oman (15.1). These are significant levels of expenditures given the low population in many of these countries.
It was estimated for example that OECD countries were spending about $185 billion annually in the early 1990s subsidizing their agriculture. Quotas, dumping, safety requirements and other forms of protectionism are widely practiced in the West while principles of open market are preached to the South. See John T. Rourke, International Politics on the World Stage, 4th edition (Gilford, Connecticut: Dushkin Publishing, 1993).
Ghassan Salame, “Torn Between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean: Europe and the Middle East in the Post-Cold War Era.” Middle East Journal, Vol. 48, 2 (Spring 1994): p. 248.
Ali R. Abootalebi, Civil Society, Democracy, and the Middle East, Middle East Review of International Affairs, vol. 3, 1 (March 1998).
Samuel Huntington for instance, discusses the significance of organization within political institutions in his classical work on politics in developing countries. See S. P. Huntington, Political Order in Changing Societies ( New Haven: Yale University Press, 1968).
See Nazih Ayubi, “Arab Bureaucracies: Expanding Size, Changing Roles,” p. 147, in Giacomo Luciani, ed., The Arab State (Berkeley, Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1990).
The discussion here follows John Waterbury’s closely. He makes similar arguments about Mexico and India. See J. Waterbury, 1993, p. 266.
Waterbury, p. 266.
The ruling elite in Iran seems to gradually opening the system to wider political participation. The election of Muhammad Khatami as President in May 1997 and the ideological division within the state have helped the expansion of political and civil rights in Iran. The suppression of the University students’ demonstration in July 1999 is a temporary setback, and it already has begun a new series of debates and counter-debates in Iran that can only help the cause of democracy in the long run.
The regional divisions are those used in IMF publications, 1984. These figures are reported in Mitchell Seligson and John Passe Smith, eds., Development Underdevelopment: The Political Economy of Inequality ( Boulder & London: Lynne Rienner Publisher, 1994), P. 17, table 3.1. These figures are calculated from the World Bank and International Financial Statistics: Supplement on Output Statistics, International Monetary Fund, 8 (1984).
For original sources see the World Bank: World Development Report, 1992. See also Mitchell A. Seligson and John Passe-Smith, 1994.
For GNP and Population date cited here see World Bank, World Development Report, 1997.
Emmanuel Sivan, “Constraints and Opportunities in the Arab World,” Journal of Democracy, Vol. 8, 2 (April 1997): 102-13. See particularly pp. 10-11.
Muhammad Muslih and Augustus Richard Norton, “Political Tides in the Arab World,” Foreign Policy Association, no. 296 (Summer 1991), p. 11.
Sadowski, Yahya. “The New Orientalism and the Democracy Debate.” Middle East Report 14-21 (July-August 1993), p. 17.
Hudson, “After the Gulf War,” Summer 1991.
National elections results are readily available on the Net. See also, “Election Watch,” Journal of Democracy, 7, 1 (January 1996): 180-84, and “election Watch,” Journal of Democracy 9, 1 (January 1998): pp.179-80.
National elections were held since 1980 in Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Saudi Arabia, the Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, Yemen, as well as in the Palestinian territories. For a discussion of elections and electoral laws in the Arab World, see Marsha Pripstein Posusney, “Behind the Ballot Box: Electoral Engineering in the Arab World,” Middle East Report, 209 (Winter 1998): pp. 12-16.
Jillian Schwedler, “A Paradox of Democracy? Islamic Participation in Elections,” Middle East Report, 209 (Winter 1998): 25-29, p. 27.
See Carrie Rosefsky Wickham’s analysis of the case of Egypt, “Beyond Democratization: Political Change in the Arab World,” PS: Political Science and Politics, 27, 3 (September 1994): 507-09, p. 507.
See John Waterbury, 1993, p. 260.
The state, and the state-society relations in the Middle East has become subject of much debate in recent years. See, for example, Joel S. Migdal, “Strong States, Weak States,” in Myron Weiner and Samuel P. Huntington, eds., Understanding Political Development (Boston: Little, Brown and company, 1987); Giacomo Luciani, ed., The Arab State. (Berkeley & Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1990); Roger Owen, State, Power and Politics in the Making of the Modern Middle East (New York: Routledge, 1992); Sami Zubaida, Islam, The People and the State: Political Ideas and Movements in the Middle East. London: Tauris, 1993); Abootalebi, “Democratization in Developing Countries, Journal of Developing Areas, 29 (July1995): 507-30;” Augustus Richard Norton and Farhad Kazemi, eds., Civil Society in the Middle East, 2 Vols (New York: Brill, 1994, 1996).
*Ali R. Abootalebi has taught at the University of Arizona and Union College. He is currently assistant professor of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. He is author of “Democratization in Developing Countries: 1980-1989,” The Journal of Developing Areas 29 (July 1995): 507-530; “Elections Matter,” Center for Iranian Research and Analysis, CIRA14 (March 1998): 30-33; “Civil Society, Democracy, and the Middle East,” Middle East Review of International Affairs, Vol. 2, no. 3, August 1998; “Islam, Islamists, and Democracy,” Middle East Review of International Affairs, Vol. 3, no. 1, March 1999; “Ideological Currents in Islam” Center for Iranian Research and Analysis, CIRA, forthcoming. His book, Islam and democracy: State-Society Relations in the Developing Countries, 1980-1994 by Garland Publishing is forthcoming.