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Was The Arab Spring 2011’s Most Important Event? Foreign Policy Magazine Thinks So
November 28, 2011
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Foreign Policy has released its third annual 100 Global Thinkers list, the U.S. magazine's 2011 survey of the people whose ideas are shaping the world we live in. If there is any doubt what the publication considers to be among the most important developments of the last 12 months, it won't be for lack of evidence: There are 14 people tied for first place on the list, all of them included for their roles in the Arab Spring revolutions across the Middle East.

From Egyptian author Alaa Al Aswany, to Syrian political cartoonist Ali Ferzat, to Yemeni mother of three Tawakkol Karman, to Gene Sharp, the U.S. academic who developed the organizational blueprint for protest organizers, FP's 14-way tie for first includes thinkers from all aspects of the Arab Spring upheavals that continue to rock the Middle East.

Not content with a 14-strong argument for parity off the top, the next position on the list (inexplicably No. 10, rather than 2 or 15) is also a tie, this time between three people: Ben Bernanke, Jean-Claude Trichet, Zhou Xiaochuan, the central bankers for the U.S., France and China, respectively.

And just to really seal the deal on FP's commitment to inclusion, the next two thinkers represent highly opposing sides of the political discussion in the United States: Barack Obama comes in at No. 11 for validating the concept of "leading from behind" on matters of foreign policy, while Dick Cheney (remember HIM?) is at No. 12 for creating "the world we live in." Hmmm.

Also of note is the man pegged as the 44th most notable global thinker, Luis Moreno-Ocampo. The prosecutor for the International Criminal Court also finds himself in a tie -with U.S. human rights scholar David Scheffer - in this case for "demanding that war criminals be held accountable." Moreno-Ocampo will be in the red chair tonight, so tune in to watch his discussion with George about the effectiveness of international human rights law and how dictators can be held to account.

For the complete FP 2011 100 Global Thinkers list, click here.


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