Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Saturday that Arab leaders can not long hold the "storm" of popular protest that they face.
At the annual conference on security in Munich, Germany, has called for rapid progress towards accountable and transparent governments in the Middle East, the only guarantee of long-term stability in the region, she said.
For the head of American diplomacy, such a development will make the Arab countries more prosperous and less vulnerable to fundamentalist ideologies. With no change, she believes, will allow governments to insecurity to gain ground.
"It's not just a matter of idealism, it is a strategic necessity. Without genuine progress towards open and accountable political systems, the gap between peoples and their governments will grow and the instability will only get worse, "said Clinton.
"The status quo is simply not sustainable," she said, referring to the revolt of the citizens in Tunisia and Egypt.
"Some leaders may believe that their country is an exception, that their people will not ask for greater political and economic opportunities or may be appeased by half-measures," she observed, while Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak clings to his seat in spite of the protest movement that continues in Egypt. "In the short term, this may be true, but in the long run it is unsustainable," she thought.
However, she warned that the march towards democracy involves risks. "This can cause chaos and instability in the short term, or worse - and we observed that in the past - the transition can cause a regression to a different regime as authoritarian," as that which the people of a country reversed, Clinton said.