The “Arab Spring” is “too flowery and seasonal a term to describe an earthquake that threatens to bring down structures that have been standing for decades,” a former senior Israeli intelligence official said Monday.
Dr. Eran Lerman, director of the American Jewish Committee’s (AJC) Israel office and a former senior intelligence officer in Israel's Directorate of Military Intelligence made his remark at the Conference of Presidents gathering in Jerusalem.
While the unrest that began in the Arab world was initiated in the name of democracy, secularization and modernity, it soon spiraled into widespread uprisings, revolutions and resistance movements that continue to destabilize the region, at an increasing rate, and empower Islamic regimes, he said.
Professor Asher Susser, Senior Fellow at the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Tel Aviv University, then went on to say that the term “Arab Spring” is an unconscious effort to completely ignore and disregard the crucial, underlying fact that culture plays a huge part in the political environment in which we live and overriding world dynamics.
He explained that we live in a global age, one governed by instantaneous communication, embodied by Facebook and Twitter. Yet, while such universal technological advances such as social networking sites may have helped bring about and spread the Egyptian riots and, so-called “Arab Spring, “such attempts at globalizing the conflict, only serve to overlook the inherently Islamic nature of the revolts and deem culture as irrelevant in international relations that are, fundamentally, cultural. Attempts to do so, only serve to undermine and disregard factors that are critically important."