Annika Elena Poppe | 2017

Recalibrating the interest-values-nexus. US democracy promotion in the Middle East

in: Orient, 58: 2, 15-22.

Long considered a region where the United States only pursued ‘realist’ interests, the Middle East temporarily but notably became the center of attention for democracy promotion twice lately: under the presidency of George w. Bush and when the Arab Uprisings in 2011 forced the Obama administration to develop an adequate policy response. This article, using Egypt as the focal point, considers recent US democracy promotion policy in the Middle East, and speculates about the likely direction that President Trump will pursue. It argues that, although the overall policy record is quite mixed, the democracy promotion consensus among the US foreign policy elite is deeply entrenched and has had an impact on the available range of policy options. while significant change in this regard is unlikely, Trump certainly poses the first real challenge to this bipartisan consensus since the ending of the Cold war.

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