The thirty-third edition of the journal Siyasat Arabiya, published by the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies, includes six scholarly studies on phenomena relating to the region's crises, in addition to a critical review of the Arab Center's book The Adnan Abou Awda Diaries and a report on "Arab Assessment of Iranian Foreign Policy" in the region.
Through his study "Sinai's Insurgency: Implications of Enhanced Guerilla Warfare", Omar Ashour investigates the reasons for the perpetuation of a relatively weak Sinai rebellion and their implications for counterinsurgency policies, and for insurgency not only persisting but also becoming more widespread. Ashour's research contrasts the military capability and resources of the militants with the Egyptian regular army's floundering counterinsurgency. In the second part of the study, Ashour goes on to discuss the insurgency's various tactics and its overall strategy. The failure of counterinsurgency efforts is attributed to the absence of national reconciliation and no monitoring of military and security policies, all factors leading, in the scholar's assessment, to consolidation of an environment enabling the Sinai insurgency to survive longer and perhaps even extend its reach.
In "The New Approach to the Kurdish Issue in Turkey", Emad Kaddorah discusses the new Turkish policy towards the Kurds, after the Turkish government finally abandoned its policy, intact since mid-2015, of political settlement through negotiation with the PKK. Its new approach consecrates the notion of an absence of serious Kurdish interlocutors in finding a solution. Secondly, it entails full-scale military confrontation against the PKK and the weakening of the Democratic Peoples' Party, and opening up to other Kurdish parties and movements that will ultimately represent the Kurds in the future and strengthen the status and influence of Kurdish conservatives.
"The Federal State Option in Yemen: Backgrounds, Justifications and the Challenges of Transition" by Adnan Yassin Al-Maktary deals with the form of the Yemeni state, focusing on the federal state option. Al-Maktary highlights the adoption of the federal system as a form of state in Yemen, referring to discussion and debates on changing the shape of the state and adoption of the federal form of state at the national dialogue conference, following the revolution of February 11, 2011. He investigates the background and reasons underlying adoption of the federal state option, justifications given for its adoption, and the challenges of moving towards it.
"The Experience of Palestinian Technocrats: The Hamdallah Governments as a Case Study" by Ihab Maharmeh presents a reading of the dilemma encountered by Palestinian technocratic governments as reflected in the five years following the assumption of Rami Hamdallah of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers in the Palestine Authority's fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth governments. Maharmeh considers that the dilemma facing the Palestinian political system since 1994 restricts Palestinian government roles and tasks, suggesting that the gradual development of this dilemma in the existence of a technocratic government has maximized the political, economic and social crisis facing the Palestinians today.
In the study "Measuring the State's Economic Power: Adopting the Delphi Technique in the Study of the Reality of the Arab Countries 2015 and Regional Comparators", Bashar A. Al-Iraqi casts light on the size and value of economic, social and political variables that together comprise the economic capacity of Arab countries. The study adopts a quantitative statistical approach drawing on methods of measuring the overall strength of the state. Discussing the philosophical and theoretical framework for measuring the economic strength of the state, Al-Iraqi assesses the results of the study according to the Delphi methodology for measuring a state's economic strength. He recommends that Arab countries re-formulate their economic, political and social policies towards development, with indicators for improving economic performance and efficiency – each according to its own capacity and need.
In "Ownership of Media and the Impact on the Independence of Journalistic Content: the Case of Sudan", Nada Amin discusses the close relationship between the media's role and media ownership, with a focus on the content of the daily newspaper press, in terms of the independence of the media's mission, its neutrality, and freedom of expression. The study also monitors the contents of the press, and links the results of the monitoring to ownership of newspapers, editorial structures, and the influence of political capital, both government and private. It focuses on presenting models of global media related to ownership and its relation to the independence of media performance and goes on to test its hypotheses according to a descriptive analysis methodology, using observation tools, content analysis, interviews, and an analysis of press property and ownership law. Amin concludes that the existence of a pluralistic press does not contradict the classic features of the authoritarian model dictated to all Sudanese newspapers to ensure their loyalty to the ruling authority.
Issue 33 of Siyasat Arabiya also presents a review of the book The Adnan Abou Awda Diaries: What was Left Unsaid by Main Al Taher, published by the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies (2017). Seeking to draw lessons from these diaries, Al Taher notes the difference, whether a diary is consulted by research scholars as a major or as a secondary source, between the practice of writing of diaries and that of writing memoirs. Al Taher analyzes some of what Adnan Abu Odeh has achieved in his diaries, holding that they stand as a source of wonder, surprise, further questioning, and desire for greater clarification – and full disclosure – of facts long considered secrets.
The Arab Opinion Index section, devoted to the annual public opinion survey conducted by the ACRPS, includes a report on "Arab Assessment of Iranian foreign policy" prepared by the opinion-polling unit at the Arab Center. Each year, the Arab Opinion Index measures the views of respondents in the Arab region on the role of regional and global powers in the Arab region, as well as changes and shifts in foreign policy and international relations, including the assessments of respondents regarding foreign policy. In this issue, the Index focuses on assessing Iran's foreign policy to gauge the extent of popular polarization on the Iranian issue, and to determine the geographical scope of this polarization.
The 33rd issue of Siyasat Arabiya closes with documentation of the Milestones in Democratic Transition in the Arab World, as well as Palestine over the two months of May and June 2018.
The journal can be purchased from the Siyasat Arabiya Website, where selected articles from previous issues are available for free download.