The Magazine

New Democrats

Seeds of change in unfertile ground.

Sep 7, 2009, Vol. 14, No. 47 • By JAMES KIRCHICK
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With these seven profiles of Muslim reformers, Sunni and Shia alike, Muravchik shows that the longing to be free is something fundamental to the human condition, and a sentiment that extends across the Middle East. It is also a real cause to which brave souls are willing to risk their lives. Given this fact, the question for Americans-whose sympathies naturally lie with unarmed Iranians shot dead in the streets by a fascist clerical regime, imprisoned Egyptian democracy activists, and Kuwaiti and Saudi women campaigning for equality-is what are we willing to do to help them succeed?

James Kirchick, assistant editor at the New Republic, is a Phillips Foundation journalism fellow.