Arab Fractures – Citizens, States and Social Contracts - 4th Nahda Forum Session
with Dr. Marwan Muasher
Arab states tend to struggle with the application of inclusive governance, in addition socioeconomic deficiencies, polarization, and repression leading to state disintegration as witnessed in Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen; each crisis offsetting mass displacement and geopolitical power plays. At the fourth edition of the “Arab Renaissance Forum” (“Nahda Forum”), ARDD hosted H.E. Dr. Marwan Muasher, former State Minister of Foreign Affairs for Jordan, and Vice-President for Studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Dr. Muasher mentioned that to build a successful civic state, political decision-making processes should become inclusive; no political party should monopolize the political space; there should be a legal framework that protects freedom of speech and no religion or school of thought should be enforced by a state.
These factors are all instrumental for the empowerment of vulnerable people, which is a critical component of ARDD’s mandate to actively contribute to a just and stable society, free of inequity and conflict. As a renowned expert on the Arab world, Dr. Muasher’s presentation was a special opportunity to learn about the merging of international and domestic politics, and political science theory in the context of the current Middle East.
A key outcome from the event was the need to build a civic state through the realization of pluralism and inclusiveness; politically, religiously, culturally, and socially. By including these values in the decision-making process of a state, a new social contract can be built in the Arab world, in the true spirit of the Arab awakening; where access to justice is reachable for all, regardless of status.