The Kefaya Movement: A Case Study of a Grassroots Reform Initiative

The Kefaya Movement was a fascinating example of the kind of democratization that the U.S. was trying to encourage in the Arab world during the Bush administration. The problem with Kefaya, of course, was its rise conflicted with a host of other U.S. interests in the region, thus constraining the US from rendering assistance.

Regardless of those interests or their legitimacy, they betrayed the weakness and conditionality of the US commitment to its stated aims in the region. The team led by Natdia Oweidat at the RAND Corporation’s National Defense Research Institute takes the U.S. government to task for this problem, and calls on the U.S. government to bring its behavior and its rhetoric more closely into line in the region.

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