Importance of the Study
In spite of the voluminous literature on the League of Arab States (LAS), to the researcher’s own knowledge there have been few specific studies (if any) made in the subject of reforming the LAS. This is one of two reasons which made the researcher thinks of undertaking this research paper focusing on the Arab Governmental and Intellectual reform initiatives of the League of Arab States (LAS). Particularly, the Arab official and non-official initiatives to reform the LAS which celebrated its 62nd anniversary in March 2006. The other reason is that the question of political, economic and administrative reform which has become a pretext to external interference in the Arab internal affairs. This latter reason then, made research in this subject, from the researcher’s point of view ever more important in need of clarification.
Objectives of the Study
The aims of this paper are:
v To discuss various Arab initiatives of reforming the League of Arab States.
v To review a number of official and non-official ideas focusing on LAS reforming.
v To show a situation in which several (internal and external) factors have been used to raise the issue of reform in the Arab Regional System, particularly the LAS.
v To examine whether the Arab reform initiatives are serious or mere slogans to satisfy/ pacify the external powers (i.e. the U.S.A.).
v To take part in documenting the LAS reform initiatives.
Statement of the Problem of the Study
Is there such a thing as a collective Arab vision? What is the role of the Arab League in attaining this vision if it exists? How should Arabs respond to US calls for reform? Is there an Arab reform agenda? On 19 May 2004, Aljazeera.net put these questions and more to Amr Moussa, the Secretary-General of the Arab League in Cairo. Such questions and more constitute the core statement of the problem of this research paper.
In 2003, Mr Amr Moussa the Secretary General of the Arab League invited a select number of Arab intellectuals representing different views to a closed meeting for the purpose of debating ways to reform the League. He pointed out the need to bring more transparency and democracy into the Arab League, ensure financial dues to the League are paid from the members and most important of all, guarantee that adopted resolutions are implemented. The paper focuses on examining the Arab official and non-official calls for reforming the LAS. The main question is How will the LAS reform and survive in the 21st century?
The researcher agues that there is no magic wand to reform the LAS, but there could be a mechanism for addressing issues.
Hypotheses of the Study
This paper examine two hypotheses:
v The first, the majority of Arab Initiatives calling on to reform the LAS were motivated by external factors more than internal obligations and commitments. Most of the Arab official initiatives were declared to satisfy and pacify the USA.
v The second, the Arab calls to reform the LAS are mostly slogans without real intentions to be applicable in reality.