Argument

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, March 16, 2015

To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Daniel Lansberg-Rodriguez explains why Venezuelans are growing weary of President Maduro’s incessant coup paranoia. Berivan Orucoglu spells out how Turkey’s President Erdogan is using a fabricated anti-Muslim incident to smear his political opponents. Min Zin explains what Burma’s latest crackdown on student protesters ...

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To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Daniel Lansberg-Rodriguez explains why Venezuelans are growing weary of President Maduro’s incessant coup paranoia.

Berivan Orucoglu spells out how Turkey’s President Erdogan is using a fabricated anti-Muslim incident to smear his political opponents.

Min Zin explains what Burma’s latest crackdown on student protesters means for the country’s democratic transition.

Allison Corkery and Heba Khalil predict that Egypt’s promised economic reforms will — once again — do little for the country’s citizens.

Dalibor Rohac reports on a proliferation of strange central European web sites that are parroting Russian propaganda.

Michael Cecire warns that pro-Russian sentiment is growing in Georgia.

Democracy Lab’s Ilya Lozovsky profiles the United States’ best soft power tool: a democracy promotion program with an uncertain future.

And now for this week’s recommended reads:

Writing for Time, Anne-Marie Slaughter and Libby Liu look at the role of female activists in Asia’s political transitions.

In the Monkey Cage, Monica Marks contrasts the overreach of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood during its time in power with the much more conciliatory — and successful — approach of Tunisia’s Islamist party, Ennahda.

Also writing for the Monkey Cage, A. Kadir Yildirim lays bare Turkish President Erdogan’s patronage network, which underpins his increasingly authoritarian rule. Esra Sardag at the Center for American Progress explains why the Turkish government’s failure to help the Kurds of Kobani has become a political flashpoint.

The Atlantic Council’s Mohsin Khan and Karim Mezran assess Morocco’s efforts at political and economic reform in a new report. (In the photo, Moroccan women call for gender equality on International Women’s Day.)

The International Crisis Group’s new briefing on Sudan explains why President al-Bashir’s professed claim to peace is hard to take at face value.

Democracy International publishes key findings from a public opinion survey that show growing optimism among Afghanistan’s citizens about the country’s elections.

The Economist sees signs of hope in growing anti-corruption protests in Latin America.

In the Irish Independent, Dan O’Brien asks whether Europe should take a harder line against Viktor Orban, President of Hungary and proponent of “illiberal democracy.”

The Electoral Integrity Project presents its annual election quality report. The worst offenders in 2014 were Egypt, Mozambique, Afghanistan, Syria, and Bahrain. The United States scored the lowest among all Western nations.

And finally: If you’re in Washington, check out a Freedom House event this Wednesday examining growing harassment of independent civil society in Turkey and Azerbaijan.

Photo credit: FADEL SENNA/AFP/Getty Images

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