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International Reports 4/2006

Strengthen Europe's Role on the Gulf!; Parliamentary Elections in Azerbaijan in 2005; The Friday Sermons (hutbe) of the Presidium for Religious Affairs in Turkey; Stability in Instability; American Neoconservatism

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  • Parliamentary Elections in Azerbaijan in 2005

    A Test of Democracy for the People and the Political Elite as well as for the West

    The parliamentary elections held in Azerbaijan last November were the political highlight of the year 2005 in the former Soviet republic. The event was observed by the West with some interest, Azerbaijan being generally regarded as that post-communist country whose path to democracy appears particularly rocky, a country where the president, who is elected every five years, possesses enormous power, while parliament is extremely weak.

  • American Neoconservatism

    When George W. Bush was re-elected president, if not earlier, neoconservatism took over in the United States. This, at least, is the impression you are bound to get from reading some German papers. Aggressiveness in American foreign policy and ,cowboy‘ capitalism are two characteristics of the ,neocons‘, facets that are symbolic of what ,we Europeans‘ reject.

  • Stability in Instability

    The Situation in Poland Six Months after the Parliamentary Elections

    As expected, the government of the left was voted out of office in the elections of September 2005. The performance of the PiS, the strongest party at 27 percent, came as a surprise, while the liberal-conservative Civic Platform (PO) obtained no more than 24 percent. The PiS now holds 155 of the 460 seats in the Polish parliament, the Sam party holds 56, the LPR 34, and the PSL 25. The election result supported a strong social-paternalist state as well as the ongoing struggle against post-communism.

  • The Friday Sermons (hutbe) of the Presidium for Religious Affairs in Turkey

    Spiritual Care, Religious Service, or an Instrumentalisation of Religion?

    The interest of the world increasingly focuses on Islam, a process often dominated by wholesale mutual recriminations and suspicions that occasionally culminate in the inference that Islam and terrorism are one and the same thing. In the Federal Republic of Germany, a certain sensitivity towards Islam has evolved by now, although the dialogue is not yet quite free of prejudices and clichés.

  • Strengthen Europe's Role on the Gulf!

    Security-policy Developments and Economic Interests Cry out for Action

    The European Union is far from arriving at a common policy on the Gulf. This is as sobering as it is alarming, particularly in view of the open question of Iran’s use of nuclear power, the need to secure Europe’s energy supply, and the economic boom on the Gulf. Europe has a vital interest in political stability based on regional integration, and its active engagement is theoretically more than overdue.

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About this series

International Reports (IR) is the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung's periodical on international politics. It offers political analyses by our experts in Berlin and from more than 100 offices across all regions of the world. Contributions by named authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editorial team.

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Dr. Gerhard Wahlers



Benjamin Gaul

Benjamin Gaul

Head of the Department International Reports and Communication +49 30 26996 3584

Dr. Sören Soika


Editor-in-Chief International Reports (Ai) +49 30 26996 3388