Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about the annual report from Freedom House, an organization that annually reports on freedom around the world. The recently released report explains how the results were obtained, discusses trends and provides current rankings for all countries around the world.
Key global findings:
The number of electoral democracies stood at 117, the same as for 2011. Two countries, Georgia and Libya, achieved electoral democracy status, while two were dropped from the category, Mali and the Maldives.
Four countries moved from Partly Free to Free: Lesotho, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Tonga. Three countries rose from Not Free to Partly Free: Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, and Libya. Mali fell two tiers, from Free to Not Free, and Guinea-Bissau dropped from Partly Free to Not Free.
Some notable trends highlighted in the report include increased Muslim-on-Muslim violence, which reaching horrifying levels in Pakistan and remained a serious problem in Iraq and elsewhere; a serious decline in civil liberties in Turkey; and among the Persian Gulf states, a steady and disturbing decline in democratic institutions and an increase in repressive policies.
Worst of the Worst: Of the 47 countries designated as Not Free, nine have been given the survey’s lowest possible rating of 7 for both political rights and civil liberties: Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Two territories, Tibet and Western Sahara, were also ranked among the worst of the worst.
An additional 5 countries and 1 territory received scores that were slightly above those of the worst-ranked countries, with ratings of 6,7 or 7,6 for political rights and civil liberties: Belarus, Chad, China, Cuba, Laos, and South Ossetia.
Let’s look at this summary for a minute. Many leaders in America claim that Sharia Law is compatible with American democracy. Saudi Arabia operates under Sharia Law–please note that they are listed as one of the worst or the worst. Note also that many of the countries listed in that category have Muslim governments.
The article at Power Line notes:
…The report notes some positive trends in the Middle East, yet Israel remains the region’s sole country ranked Free in Freedom House’s evaluation.
Today Israelis go to the polls to elect their government. Israel’s Arab citizens will vote and Arabs will be elected to Israel’s Knesset. Given the neighborhood, not to mention other factors, it’s a remarkable story.