Wednesday, June 03, 2009

The Tragic Waste of Human Minds In The Middle East

MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKTOUM has an interesting article at WSJ where he talks about the rising tide of young people under the age of 25 in the Middle East-no wonder there are so many young men willing to take up arms against the evil west when they can't find jobs or feed their families. Their corrupt governments should be forced out and a democratic non-religious government instituted where individual rights are upheld for both men and women.

Arabs appreciate the fact that President Barack Obama has decided to deliver a major speech in an Islamic country (Egypt) about relations between the United States and Muslims, many of whom were alienated by American foreign policy in recent years.
More than half of the 300 million residents of the Middle East are people under 25 years of age. The region has the fastest growing labor force in the world.

With an already high unemployment rate of 15%, the Middle East must create 80 million new jobs in the next five years just to keep apace of our demographics. Unemployment is a problem afflicting all 22 member states of the Arab League, but it is most conspicuously a youth issue. Fifty percent of the jobless are under the age of 25, roughly double the world average. Women have an especially difficult time finding jobs.

These increasingly restive youths are particularly vulnerable to those who would preach radicalism and hostility toward the West, especially the U.S.

Why did Arabs fail to make deep structural reforms in education and in stimulating employment opportunities? The Arab world's track record on education, particularly girls' education, is discouraging. Sixty-five million adult Arabs are illiterate and two-thirds of them are women. More than 10 million Arab children between the ages of 6 and 15 are still not enrolled in any schooling, and on current trends this number will increase by 40% over the next decade. This is a monumental waste of human capacity...(READ)

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