Padres e hijos árabes

Las muertes de Yaser Arafat y del jeque Zayd, que durante mucho tiempo gobernó en los Emiratos Árabes Unidos, continúan el cambio generacional que se inició en 1999-2000, cuando los dirigentes de Jordania, Marruecos, Bahrein y Siria murieron en rápida sucesión. En todo el Oriente Medio la población es más joven y sus dirigentes políticos más viejos que la media mundial. La substitución gradual de una generación de minorías selectas por otra puede ser uno de los factores decisivos a la hora de determinar si se hacen o no reformas eficaces en el mundo árabe.

En la actualidad, en el mapa sociopolítico de la región coexisten cuatro generaciones políticas. La generación de los dirigentes desaparecidos –la de Arafat, del rey Husein o de Hafez al-Asad, del rey Fahd y del Presidente Mubarak- nació antes de 1935 y ha determinado los acontecimientos en el Oriente Medio desde el decenio de 1970.

Dichos dirigentes llegaron a la mayoría de edad e iniciaron sus carreras durante la época de la descolonización. Se formaron con el nacionalismo panárabe de Gamal Abdel Naser y para ellos el acontecimiento político decisivo fue la derrota árabe en la guerra árabo-israelí de 1967. Los miembros de esa generación intentaron conseguir una fuerte dirección árabe que creara un equilibrio de poder con Israel. También creyeron en ciertas formas de socialismo y estatalismo –o al menos coquetearon con ellas- y no consideraron prioridades ni la democracia ni los derechos civiles.

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