Since the advent of the Arab Spring nearly five years ago, the Arab region has been plagued by a set of localised conflicts that flared up into full scale wars in Syria, Yemen and Libya. The people of the countries involved suffered the horrible consequences of war,: human casualties, refugees and displaced persons in the millions. The refugee and displaced persons population in the Arab region became the largest relative to all the world regions, far in excess of its share of the world's population. As to be expected, the burden of war was borne disproportionately by children, women and the aged.

The wars have been waged essentially by the Gulf oil-rich monarchies, in illicit consort with major western powers, as a counterrevolution against the ALT popular uprisings in a vain attempt to preserve their authoritarian rule style of governance throughout the region. The West, led by the USA has been a party to these wars and their potential expansion, if only by the sale of arms to whoever could pay for them, France has become a close competitor, not hiding new imperialist ambitions in the MENA region. The most devastating consequence of these region–wide conflicts has been the creation of the barbaric entity ISIS

Ideological cover for the western involvement was provided by a new wave of the war on "Islamic" terrorism. On the Arab level, ideological cover took the repugnant sectarian form of curbing Shiite expansion claimed to be masterminded by Iran in Arab countries. This claim took credence from the fact that the ill-advised and destructive USA invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003 ended up with Iran becoming the undisputed force in Iraqi politics as well as the support of Iran for the embattled Syrian despot Assad and the Lebanese Shiite anti –Israeli Hizbollah, also actively involved in supporting the Assad regime. Iran has also been accused of fomenting unrest in the Gulf emirates of Bahrain, Kuwait and eastern Saudi Arabia.

The first such conflict, centred on Syria, escalated into a potential global conflict with the direct participation of the Russian federation in the war and a political settlement proposal that calls for stationing Russian forces in Syria In addition, to its existing naval base in Tartous, tantamount to Russian occupation of the beleaguered country .

A fierce oil price war started in 2014, engineered by Saudi Arabia in consort with the USA, aimed to harm the economies of the Russian federation and Iran, cut the price of barrel to less than half its original value at present causing gigantic budget deficits in the gulf monarchies. In the richest, Saudi Arabia, it was estimated at the end of 2014 that the price of oil needed to balance the Saudi budget was $ 102, more than double the current price. And oil market analysts do not exclude prices as low as 20-30 dollars in the near future. Not to mention that at present rates, oil deposits are expected to be totally depleted in less than a couple of decades. Due to recent developments including in shale oil extraction, the centre of gravity of fossil fuels is also expected to shift to the western hemisphere.

Worse still, global warming is expected to place a harsh ecological cap on the Gulf monarchies. Excessive heat and humidity are forecast to render these parts of the Arab world strictly uninhabitable within only a few decades. In particular, having lost the financial edge of huge oil revenues, Saudi Arabia stands to lose out on its traditional source of income, much smaller than oil revenues, the annual Hajj, as a result, of the expected harsh climate changes.

At the hands of corrupt authoritarian rule in the Arab region, massive deposits of fossil fuels and the huge financial revenues accrued, indeed turned into a curse, and a historic opportunity for human progress in this part of the world appears to have been lost.