The risks and uncertainties in the Arab Spring uprisings have led some U.S. leaders to argue that we might be better off supporting authoritarian rulers in order to maintain stability in the Middle East. "But in the long run, this foreign policy approach is not realistic," former President George W. Bush wrote in a Wall Street Journal commentary. "It is not within the power of America to indefinitely preserve the old order, which is inherently unstable." Bush added: "America does not get to choose if a freedom revolution should begin or end in the Middle East or elsewhere. It only gets to choose what side it is on."
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