A discussion with Ibrahim Fraihat, Senior Fellow in Foreign Policy, Brookings Institution Doha Center and Affiliate Scholar, Georgetown University in Qatar, on his most recent book Unfinished Revolutions from Yale University Press.

About Unfinished Revolutions:

Post-revolution states often find that once a transition process begins, challenges can arise, such as political polarization and the threat of civil war. A respected commentator on Middle Eastern politics, Ibrahim Fraihat compares three countries grappling with political transitions in the wake of the Arab Spring: Yemen, Libya, and Tunisia. Fraihat argues that to attain enduring peace and stability, post-revolution states must engage in inclusive national reconciliation processes which include a national dialogue, a truth seeking effort, the reparation of victims’ past injuries, dealing with the former regime, and institutional reform. Women, civil society, and tribes, among other social forces, can support the transition process. Fraihat’s research shows how some aspects of transitions have been politicized and that each country has taken a specific approach, raising or diminishing the chances of civil war or a healthy transition.

This book is based on the original field research Fraihat conducted over three years in Yemen, Libya, and Tunisia. It is the result of over 200 interviews with key figures including senior government officials, heads of political parties, revolutionary youth activists, former regime loyalists, representatives of women’s and civil society organizations, military and militia commanders, tribal leaders, and members of displaced communities.

Advance Praise for the book:

"Based on rigorous, on-the-ground research and conversations with hundreds of political actors, Ibrahim Fraihat has produced a unique political guidebook to the critical processes that will preoccupy Arab countries for decades—reconciliations, new social contracts, and transitions to democracy—on their elusive path towards stable and legitimate statehood."
—Rami G. Khouri, Senior Fellow, Issam Fares Institute, American University of Beirut, and Middle East Initiative, Harvard University

"Ibrahim Fraihat's treatise on reconciliation provides a unique and timely addition to our growing literature. Few scholars have attempted this level of quality research on reconciliation in the context of the Middle East and North Africa with such capacity to combine strong theoretical framing linked to grounded, longitudinal, and realistic lens. This book provides a brilliant addition that addresses significant gaps in our knowledge and understanding. I highly recommend this book for regional specialists, scholars of peace and reconciliation studies, and practitioners engaged in seeking sustainable social change in one of the most challenging regions across our globe."
—John Paul Lederach, author of Building Peace: Sustainable Reconciliation in Divided Societies

Read more reviews here.

About the author:

Ibrahim Fraihat is a senior fellow in foreign policy at the Brookings Institution's Doha Center and an affiliate scholar at Georgetown University in Qatar. He has published extensively on Middle East politics, with articles appearing in Foregin Affairs, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Financial Times, and the Christina Science Monitor, as well as on the CNN and Al Jazeera websites, and elsewhere. He is the recipient of the george Mason University's Distinguished Alumni Award (2014) for his achievements in the field of conflict resolution. Dr. Fraihat received a Ph.D. in conflict analysis and resolution from George Mason University in 2006.