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It was a fitting reflection on current conditions in the Arab world nearly three years after the start of what came to be known as the Arab Spring.Two-thirds of the 330 million Arabs alive today are under 35 years old. The proportion of Arab Christians throughout the Middle East has dwindled from around 20 percent of the total population to about 5 percent over the last century. As a result, for the first time in at least two centuries, Arab societies are increasingly losing their cultural and intellectual diversity. Even the strategic relationship with the United States, which has anchored the largest Arab countries' foreign policy for decades, is confronting significant challenges, owing to the political tremors triggered by the Arab Spring, as well as to America's increasing focus on Asia.While the Arab world is a huge region with real power and potential, it has been systematically weakened in the past half-century – mainly from within.If, however, the wave peters out and current conditions persist, Arab prospects will remain dismal for years to come. In that case, Arabs will understand that it really is wrong to dream of a better world – with perilous consequences for the region and its neighbors.
The Arab world’s coming challenges
The past has wreaked havoc when it comes to Egypt’s present
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