Egyptians hold candles at a vigil Mohamed El-Shahed/Getty Images

How Can the Arab World Avoid the Abyss?

The Middle East owes many of its current problems to a long history of foreign invasions, from the Crusades and European colonialism to the proxy wars of the Cold-War era. But Arab leaders who genuinely want to create a brighter future for the region's citizens must recognize that blaming others for the region's malaise will solve nothing.

CAIRO – A series of startling events in November revealed the abysmal state of affairs in the Arab world. The Lebanese prime minister announced his resignation abroad, but reversed the statement later. A missile was launched from Yemen toward Saudi Arabia’s capital, Riyadh. Saudi Arabia’s leadership carried out a major anti-corruption campaign that affected dozens of high-profile personalities. Egypt, meanwhile, experienced its worst terrorist attack in living memory, with more than 300 civilians killed and injured. Video footage of alleged slave auctions in Libya underscored the continuing chaos there amid the complete breakdown of the Libyan state.