"The people want - " So began the slogan chanted by millions of protesters across the Arab world in 2011, as their long-suppressed craving for democracy revealed itself. But huge social and economic problems were also laid bare by the protestors' demands. In this landmark work, noted Middle East analyst Gilbert Achcar draws up a balance sheet of the uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya and Syria, and analyses the specific socio-economic features that hinder the region's development. Achcar also sheds light on the nature and role of the movements that use Islam as a political banner and the oil monarchies that sponsor them. With incisive and invaluable insight, Achcar outlines the requirements for a lasting solution to the social crisis and the contours of a progressive political alternative. What we have witnessed to date is only the beginning of a revolutionary process that is likely to extend for many more years to come.