Democracy in the Middle East?

March 31, 2011, 10:47 PM GMT+0

Americans have more hope that a future stable democracy will be created in Egypt than they have for one in Libya, and much more hope than they have for stable democracies in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In this week’s Economist/YouGov Poll, when it comes to Egypt (which held a constitutional referendum less than two weeks ago), most with an opinion see a stable democracy in its future, though it will take, they say, more than a year. Just 26% say Egypt will never have a stable democracy.

But that is the majority view when it comes to Afghanistan, where the United States has been fighting for nearly ten years, and which has held several elections in that time. 59% of Americans say Afghanistan will never be a stable democracy.

Americans divide on whether Iraq will become a stable democracy, with a plurality saying it won’t: 34% expect a stable democracy, 44% say that will never happen. There is less hopefulness about Iraq’s prospects than there was just a year ago, when the public was more evenly divided.

As for Libya’s prospects, Americans are split: 33% expect a stable democracy there sometime in the future, but 38% do not.

On all these questions, Republicans are more skeptical than Democrats are, especially when it comes to future prospects for Egypt and Libya.

Photo source: flickr ( Frame Maker )

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