Transitions

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, September 21, 2012

Jared Bissinger explains why Burma's opening isn't necessarily the great economic opportunity it's chalked up to be.

Fadil Aliriza tracks the institutional reasons for the disillusionment of Tunisia's revolutionaries.

Cenk Sidar takes a critical look at the progress of economic reform in Turkey.

Christian Caryl examines the tension between democratic ideals and nationalist sentiment in China and Japan's fight over disputed islands in the East China Sea.

Jeffrey Tayler offers an inside view from Moscow's latest mass protest against Vladimir Putin.

Former Tahrir Square protestor Sarah Naguib writes an emotional open letter lamenting the failures of Egypt's revolution.

Endy Bayuni takes a look at the uniquely Indonesian response to the controversial film Innocence of Muslims.

Jackee Batanda compares the two sides of Uganda's eventful summer.

And in this week's historical case study from Princeton's Innovations for Successful Societies, Richard Bennet lays out a community approach to challenging gangs in South Africa. 

And here are this week's recommended reads:

The latest Freedom House Countries at the Crossroads report finds declines in governance around the world. Freedom House analyst Vanessa Tucker gives a close reading of the results.

GlobalPost reports on the life and death of three Syrian rebels. The Economist provides a situation report on the war. And Nir Rosen covers a rare inside look at the pro-Assad Alawites of Syria. (The image above shows pro-government forces outside the damaged citadel in the city of Aleppo.)

Writing in Foreign Affairs, Will McCants presents an insightful look into the thinking behind the new ultraconservative Salafi movements in the Middle East.

Activist Dai Quing explains the limits of public protest in China. 

The Henry Jackson Society unveils a new project to promote awareness of pro-democracy activism in Russia.

The Guardian reports an intriguing comparison of data on the role of women in peace treaties. The paper also reports on Peruvian farmers who are using innovative "fog catchers" to combat the country's water scarcity.

JOSEPH EID/AFP/GettyImages

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