DREAMS AND SHADOWS: The Future of the Middle East

DREAMS AND SHADOWS: The Future of the Middle East
by Haj Seyd Mammad

In Dreams and Shadows, Robin Wright takes an in-depth look at countries in the Middle East that are going through major transformation today - both good and bad - to assess what a future Middle East might look like.  She discusses her book with Anthony Cordesman of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Robin Wright, currently with the Washington Post, has reported for the Los Angeles Times, The New Yorker, and CBS News. She has covered more than 140 countries. Ms. Wright is the author of The Last Great Revolution; Sacred Rage: The Wrath of Militant Islam; and, In the Name of God: The Khomeini Decade.

Anthony Cordesman, Arleigh A. Burke Chair in Strategy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, is a national security analyst for ABC News. Mr. Cordesman formerly served as national security assistant to Senator John McCain on the Senate Armed Services Committee. 

An interesting interview. Hope you enjoy it:



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by Michael_Manley (not verified) on

Let's not forget that IRAN did have a form of democracy under Dr. Mossadeq. However, since his agenda for IRAN did not match U.S.'s and Britain's Agenda for IRAN, he was then subsequently toppled.

Robin Wright is presenting a 'Realistic' view of things as they are in the Middle East. You can bash her all you want, but that's not really going to change anything.

She is just a reporter explaining things as they truly are. It's not that she doesn't want to be more positive, but that's just how it is.

Read some of the reviews below. They are pretty much saying the same thing. There is no point critcizing her for being a 'Messenger'.



Just trying to sell her book and pocket money

by Opportunist (not verified) on

Give her a break ... she has expenses you know.



by Daryush on

She would probably answer: Javaab e ablahaan khamushist


She's A Real Joke!!!

by Killjoy (not verified) on

Haj Seyd Mammad,

How come a bunch of criminals and man-eaters could bring democracy to the U.S about two hundred and thirty years ago and Australia much later, but when it comes to Iranians and other Middle Easterners she, self-assuredly, claims:

"Again, it's a long way, it's a long process?"

How long? Another century? Iranians have already waited for a century, you know.

How dumb can she be when she thinks it's either a long process or "if we rush" we'll get what the Iraqis have been through for the past five years. Are these the only two options for other countries?

Haj Seyd Mammd, if you happen to run into her somewhere, could you ask her this simple question for me?

How is it the regimes in the Middle East use the police force, the military and in case of Iran, Baseejis and members of the Revolutionary Guard and hooligans to perpetuate their rule, but they cannot enforce democratic rules and the rule of law using the same forces?

Also ask her, with the reluctance of such regimes to budge an inch to make room for democratic freedoms, how could democracy ever prevail in the Middle East?


Thanks For Feauturing A Great Woman Reporter ...

by Shaeen.Bar-#J (not verified) on

I have always had GREAT RESPECT for, and ADMIRED Robin Wright. In this male-dominated profession, it is good to see her rise to the top.

Merci :)

Haj Seyd Mammad

Some 'Reviews' Of This Book

by Haj Seyd Mammad on

The New York Times Book Review - Patrick Cockburn:
Wright has long been one of the best-informed American journalists covering the Middle East, and her reputation is borne out here. She is refreshingly skeptical of conventional wisdom about what is happening in the region, and her book will be essential reading for anybody who wants to know where it is heading.

The Washington Post - Geoffrey Wheatcroft:
She describes the way many brave and decent people are struggling to free their countries from autocracy or worse, and she seeks out "a budding culture of change." But she is an honest reporter, and the story that emerges from this book is not quite the one she would like to tell. She cannot conceal the truth that change is slow to come when it comes at all…Robin Wright's book ought to teach our rulers a thing or two, but they often seem quite unteachable.


“Insightful and passionate. Wright is well aware of the dilemmas facing the Middle East. But she also reminds us that we need not resort to military force and violence or resign ourselves to compromise with extremism and tyranny. Since tyranny and extremism as well as democracy and freedom are not defined by geographical, national, religious, or ethnic boundaries, hope lies in the aspirations of those (our true allies) in the region who against all odds are fighting for pluralism, openness, and human rights.”
—Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran

Dreams and Shadows is a lucid and comprehensive look at tumultuous events that have shaped the Middle East and will continue to chart its future. Relying on thirty five years of reporting Robin Wright provides a rich tapestry of information and insight that is enjoyable to read and will also go a long way in providing understanding of the Middle East and the challenges that it presents U.S. foreign policy."
—Vali Nasr, author of The Shia Revival: How Conflicts within Islam will Shape the Future



Robin Wright is a Very Capable Reporter

by mahin LA (not verified) on

And I have seen her over the years on a number of interviews on the 'Middle East' in general, and 'IRAN' in particular.

Thank you for this post. Very Informative