Danial Anas Kaysi thinks the February protests in Iraq may be "a mere test run for a much deeper crisis of legitimacy":

Maliki has shown an increasing impatience and lack of respect for the protests. While he stressed the protesters' rights under the democratic system, his security forces continued to crack down on independent media and protest organizers, and the prime minister continues to charge political foes with instigating and steering them. There is no doubt that political foes may have may anticipate gain from coupling their resistance from within the government with support for protestor demands, but Maliki's tactics of questioning the protestors' intentions and of openly pushing the situation towards politicization may harm him above all others. 

I take the point. On the other hand, the core demands of the protesters are about delivering security and services and public goods. This is what we were once hoping for in Arab democracy. No rants against the Great Satan or Israel. Just demands for better governance. And that seems to be the case throughout these uprisings - along with a sudden rage at police brutality and economic stagnation.

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