Arab Development Denied
Dynamics of Accumulation by Wars of Encroachment
About This Book
‘Kadri offers a new window into the Arab street. […] His class-based narrative shows how war—or the desire for power—over oil is the main culprit behind the heart-rending grief in the region.’ —Aqdas Afzal, ‘Heterodox Economics Newsletter’
‘ “Arab Development Denied” is an exciting and dynamic examination of how and why countries of the Arab League have been impoverished and underdeveloped.’ —Ray Bush, University of Leeds
‘Ali Kadri has written a book that is essential reading for anyone wishing to understand the economics of the Arab world, combining a provocative political economy analysis with careful attention to detail. I strongly recommend it.’ —John Weeks, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Ali Kadri examines how over the last three decades the Arab world has undergone a process of developmental descent, or de-development. He defines de-development as the purposeful deconstruction of developing entities. The Arab world has lost its wars and its society restructured to absorb the terms of defeat masquerading as development policies under neoliberalism. Foremost in this process of de-development are the policies of de-industrialisation that have laid to waste the production of knowledge, created a fully compradorial ruling class that relies on commerce and international finance for its reproduction, as opposed to nationally based production, and halted the primary engine of job creation. The Arab mode of accumulation has come to be based on commerce in a manner similar to that of the pre-capitalist age along with its cultural decay. Kadri attributes the Arab world’s developmental failure not only to imperialist hegemony over oil, but also to the rising role of financialisation, which goes hand in hand with the wars of encroachment that were already stripping the Arab world of its resources. War for war’s sake has become a tributary to the world economy, argues Kadri, and like oil, there is neither a shortage of war nor a shortage of the conditions to make new war in the Arab world.
Ali Kadri is a senior research fellow at the National University of Singapore, and was visiting fellow at the London School of Economics (LSE) and head of the Economic Analysis Section at the United Nations regional office for western Asia.
Table of Contents
Introduction; Chapter 1: Stocktaking and Assessment; Chapter 2: De-development and Conventional Policies; Chapter 3: Class Politics Masquerading as Democracy; Chapter 4: The Stillborn and Decomposing Arab State; Chapter 5: War and Oil Control; Chapter 6: Dislocation under Imperialist Assault; Chapter 7: Arab Disintegration and the Rising Power of Imperialism; Chapter 8: Commodification of Labour Coming to Conclusion in Times of Socialist Ideological Retreat