Democratization

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Snapshot,
John Delury

There is nothing inevitable about democratization China. But neither, as one former Obama administration official argued, is the students’ call for genuine democracy a mere “pipe dream.” For what history does record are long and hard-fought struggles between competing visions of political life and social order, and the students in Hong Kong have made themselves heard and their vision known.

Snapshot,
Jonah Blank

On Sunday, Ashraf Ghani was declared the victor in a contest to determine Afghanistan’s next president. The process has been infuriating. But the end result was the best possible outcome: best for Afghanistan, best for the region, and best for the United States.

Snapshot,
C. Christine Fair

There is very little that Pakistan's prime minister could do now to contain the damage that the army and its two marionettes -- Qadri and Khan -- have already inflicted with massive protests.

Snapshot,
Jonah Blank

Preliminary tallies suggest that Jokowi won Indonesia's July 9 presidential election, but his competitor, Prabowo, is not guaranteed to go quietly. The stakes could hardly be higher: Since the fall of Suharto in 1998, Indonesia has been a showpiece of democracy in Asia. The final count will either solidify this narrative, or toss it right out the window.

Snapshot,
Steve Negus

A year after Egypt's military deposed President Mohamed Morsi, a new regime is finally starting to take shape. Sisi's charisma can ease his first few years in power, his credibility ultimately hinges on whether he can deliver security, services, and jobs.

Snapshot,
Jonah Blank

If Afghanistan’s politics were a stock market, one could make easy money with an investment strategy consisting of only one word: “sell.” Bad news is the norm, and good news is often a lie. And that is why the nation’s election to decide who should replace Hamid Karzai as president was so confusing.

Snapshot,
Steven A. Cook

If Sisi uses his presidency to establish order, that will be an accomplishment. But it will be a small one, nothing compared to those of Nasser, the man he wishes to be. Indeed, rather than a giant, Sisi will more likely end up as a footnote.

Snapshot,
Andrew J. Nathan

With each new generation of leaders since Tiananmen, outside observers and many Chinese have hoped for a period of liberalizing political reform. Instead, each successive head of state -- Jiang Zemin, Hu Jintao, and now Xi Jinping -- has restricted freedom further. China will likely eventually democratize. But with every passing year, doing so gets more dangerous for the regime because the bottled-up social pressure has only increased. And so democratization is postponed again and again.

Snapshot,
Sumit Ganguly

For the first time in independent India’s history, a general election has brought a conservative party with a clear-cut parliamentary majority to office. Although scores of analysts have weighed in about what that party -- the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) -- will do next, three other questions have gone unanswered. First, why has India never had a sizeable conservative party of any consequence? Second, why has it taken the country over six decades to elect a conservative regime? Third, what are the prospects for conservatism in India in the future?

Snapshot,
Peter Martin and David Cohen

At times, Xi has appeared to be a reformer in the mold of Deng Xiaoping. At other times, he has appeared nostalgic for the revolutionary socialism of Mao Zedong. In truth, he is taking his cues from both.

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