Was Democracy Just a Moment?
The democracy that America is building in many parts of the world is in a process of transforming to a totally new form. Today’s democracy is different than the one in ancient Athens. The democracy in the whole world and especially America is in a dangerous position. Kaplan said, “Democracy in the United States is at greater risk than ever before”. Kaplan likes to give lessons from mistakes that have been made in the past. It is his way to give the readers what he thinks about, and what he wants from the readers to take away from his essay. In Kaplan’s essay, “Was Democracy Just a Moment,” he compares the future government system of America to the one in ancient Athens and Sparta. The current time in America is like the golden age for Greece when it was in the beginning of its decline. Kaplan writes like he is afraid that what happened to Greece will to happen to America. Kaplan makes many assertions in his essay. However, one the most remarkable assertions that really grabbed my attention was “Of course, our post-Cold War mission to spread democracy is partly a pose. In Egypt and Saudi Arabia, America's most important allies in the energy-rich Muslim world, our worst nightmare would be free and faire elections, as it would be elsewhere in the Middle East”. Since America is a democratic nation, its goal is to extend democracy to the rest of the world. However, there are exceptions to every rule. (The exception on America’s goal to spread democracy in the world is not to spread it in some countries.) America said that it is going to look at its benefit before spreading democracy on any country in the world. Apparently, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are the exceptions for America’s mission. I chose this assertion because of several reasons. First, my country is mention in it. I am a Saudi student who has lived in Saudi Arabia for more than eighteen years. Second, I definitely agree with this Kaplan’s assertion, but I know many people do not, and especially Americans. So I thought of explaining what Kaplan is trying to say from a Saudi citizen’s prospective. Third, when I was a kid, I wondered why Saudi Arabia does not have free fair elections like some successful countries. But now I know why. So I want to enjoy explaining to the readers why I was wondering, because they might be wondering by the same reasons that confused me. Moreover, I want to explain to the readers how I got convinced that not every successful step from an expert can be follow by a beginner. In another words, I want to explain why the American democracy does not fit Saudi Arabia. Because I might be able to convince the readers using the same reasons that convinced me. Kaplan is giving an example of Saudi Arabia and Egypt showing that democracy is not for everyone. He makes the assertion that democracy in Saudi Arabia and Egypt cannot be beneficial for America. Since I am Saudi, I will talk about why democracy in Saudi Arabia cannot be good for America. Saudi Arabia is the world's most important oil producer. Saudi Arabia has high production levels, accounting for nearly 13 percent of world output and 35 percent of total OPEC output. Therefore, if there were free fair elections in our country, the petroleum will be produced for the United States on irregular basis, which will cause problems, and maybe another big depression, since the United States depends so much on the Saudi petroleum. Moreover, when I was a kid, I asked myself why Saudi does not have free fair elections like America, if that is