When democracies’ most basic features lose their distinctive edge, differentiating regime types becomes a problem for scholars of democracy and autocracy alike. Hager Ali wants to redraw demarcations between regimes across the political spectrum. To do so, she argues that civilian control over militaries is just as fundamental as suffrage
The study of regime types, Hager Ali argues, is imbalanced. Theories and concepts of democracy have received attention for decades. But amid the resurgence of autocracies, scholars of authoritarianism still do not have the luxury of nuanced typologies to dissect the broad spectrum of non-democratic regimes
Years of austerity has stifled Germany’s army, the Bundeswehr, but Hager Ali argues that money is the least of it. Salvaging the Bundeswehr means reconfiguring German military professionalism – and fixing its relations with the public
A military coup on 25 October put an abrupt end to Sudan’s fragile democratic transition. Hager Ali argues that although the coup pre-empted a foreseeable power-transfer, the military also created a much bigger problem for itself. The same socio-political conditions that kept al-Bashir in power for decades now threaten the military’s capacity to govern
Just days after the US military withdrawal from Afghanistan, the Taliban seized power. Hager Ali argues that the US army and its allies foundered because they couldn't resolve two simple questions: What was Resolute Support’s end state actually supposed to look like? And was it ever attainable through military involvement?
Over recent weeks, Western pundits have been quick to claim recent events in Tunisia are evidence of a ‘failed democracy experiment’. But Hager Ali and Ameni Mehrez argue that the protests are more a testament to democratic resilience than failure
Only a few months remain before elections in Libya. But Western policymakers are focusing on election preparations and the withdrawal of foreign mercenaries, to the neglect of other pressing matters. Hager Ali argues that unless Libya tackles its political and military problems, elections may prove little more than a sticking plaster on a bullet wound
Research Fellow and Doctoral Student, GIGA Institute for Middle East Studies, Hamburg
Hager's research focuses on civil-military relations, regime stability, and authoritarian politics across the Middle East and North Africa.
She received her MA from Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, where she specialised in comparative political science, and her BA in Political Science and Sociology from Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, Germany.