The wave of popular uprisings that toppled dictators in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya is still roiling the Arab world, but other governments have held on by cracking down on protests or instituting modest reforms. Meanwhile, Syria is engulfed in a bloody civil war that many experts predict will force President Bashar Assad from office but leave the country devastated and politically unstable. Some experts say the events have transformed political attitudes in Arab nations. Others stress that a majority of those countries still have authoritarian regimes. The political dramas are playing out against the backdrop of pressing economic problems, including high unemployment among Arab youths. In addition, the growing power of Islamist parties and groups is raising concerns among advocates of secular government and creating risks of sectarian disputes among different Muslim sects.