Images from the not so distant past... It's been 10 years since the Arab Spring swept through parts of the Middle East, unleashing destructive forces that are still felt to this day. A new version of the Spring will, however, be quite different. Image Credit: Reuters

US President Biden assumed power in conjunction with the 10th anniversary of the Arab Spring, which inevitably sparked thoughts about whether yet another Arab Spring. The predicted second one is being promoted at more than one level, and in many ways by US, European and Arab media.

Astoundingly, some former Gulf ministers have joined in promoting a new version of the Arab Spring. All of which means that the ‘snakes’ are coming out of the holes where they had confined themselves to after the monumental failure of the first Spring, which led to $833 billion in economic losses, 1.4 million casualties, and rendered 15 million homeless, according to estimates by Arab Strategic Forum.

However, a new version of the Arab Spring will involve a mass of contradictions, made up of parties from the right, such as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Khomeinists, in addition to those from the left. Lessons learned from the past one clearly show the extent of the economic and social devastation that could hit these unfortunate countries, where millions have lost their jobs.

The service sector has gone into a tailspin, the infrastructure necessary for development destroyed amidst political and sectarian conflicts and which has led to the flight of capital. All of this comes in the absence of security caused by the spread of corruption and private militias.

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No appetite for destruction

A question to be asked here is ‘Does this economic and social catastrophe drive any sane person to think of another destructive Arab Spring in countries that provide safety and basic living necessities for citizens?’ The first time, people were easily deceived, but it would be difficult to deceive people a second time using the same techniques. A believer should not be stung twice from the same hole.

It is a fact that there would be another Spring, but would be completely different this time. It will be a corrective one after the earlier tragedy, meaning that it will be a developmental version led by the Gulf alliance and Egypt.

It will include economic and social programmes in various Arab countries, which will lead to improved living conditions and jobs through pumping investments, especially as this edition of the Arab Spring will be supported by the people of countries that saw hopes dashed by the first one. I am talking about those in Tunisia, Lebanon, Libya, Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

This does not mean that states and forces supporting another sabotage spring will stand idly by, but will double efforts to avoid a new failure. They have already started their mission by creating fabricated local crises in some Arab countries, including in the Gulf, through the Muslim Brotherhood and their allies.

Altered ground realities

Their plans will definitely not succeed, due to the huge economic destruction and the decline of the ‘Obama ideology’ in the Arab world after the joining of hands with the Velayat-e Faqih regime in Iran, as well as the significant deterioration in the popularity of the Muslim Brotherhood.

On the other hand, a ‘corrective’ Arab Spring offers a chance at ambitious development programmes to revive economic conditions, fight corruption, provide jobs, attract investments, develop legislation, fight extremism, and enhance the stability necessary for development.

This is the nature of the upcoming conflict in the region between the two springs, one of which is destructive, led by non-Arab countries with local proxies, and the other one holding out promise of prospects led by influential Arab economies. It will also bring with it the basic requirements for the Arab people so that they can contribute to the development of their homeland away from external interference.

The choice is between destruction with outdated slogans and development that carries with it stability. It is the choice between displacement and loss of hope and painstaking efforts to overcome difficulties and preserve life.

The first approach – of destruction - has indeed lost its momentum. As for the other option – of development - will face real challenges due to the economic difficulties that some Arab countries are suffering from. However, it is an approach that can be built on for a promising future.