Arab writers, seeking to become more like Israel, called on their countries to to develop their judicial systems and a democratic form of government, to stop repressing citizens and to invest in education.
The hopes that the Arab Spring five years ago would lead to more opportunities for women have largely not panned out. However, there are women in all areas of life who have become leaders in their own way and are fighting for more freedom. Here are the stories of five women.
Dr. Entesar Al-Banna , a columnist for a Bahraini daily, wrote she was shocked that many young Arabs idolize Hitler- a phenomenon she says stems from the wave of violence afflicting the region and, as a result, people are looking to someone who challenged the rest of the world.
In the wake of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s positive response to Egyptian President Abdel Fatah el-Sisi’s call for peace talks, moderate Arab states have been reaching out diplomatically to Israel and showing some flexibility regarding the Arab Peace Initiative.
In a true sign of change in the Arab world, Kuwaiti media personality Yousuf 'Abd Al-Karim Al-Zinkawi called on all Arab and Muslim states to recognize Israel, openly and without delay, and stop calling it "the Zionist Entity" or "the Israeli occupation," terms which undermine Israel's legitimacy.
"Israel has developed its technologies and developed its agriculture, industry, and military, becoming an advanced and respected country, while we currently occupy the bottom slot in every field," Ahmad Al-Sarraf concedes.