Zahar: Syria is on the brink of civil war. Democracy is being undermined in Egypt. Is the Arab Spring over?
Professor of political science, Université de Montréal
It is not. The Arab Spring was the beginning not the end point of the transition to democracy. Further, the road to democracy is not a straight path. Countries that have gone down this path are bound to experience upheavals. How deep these are and how they end will depend both on internal and external factors. It will take the engagement and maturity of citizens and political forces in the Arab world for formerly repressed groups not to become the new oppressors as they come to power. It will also take maturity and responsibility on the part of the West to allow changes to be determined internally but accompany them and help steer them in the right direction.