Then, in the span of just three days this week, governments in Iraq and Lebanon have agreed to resign.
Among the main hurdles is the political system that both countries have in common.
In Lebanon, Hezbollah initially acknowledged the protests, which began in mid-October, as legitimate, but later tried to discredit the movement, saying parts of it were driven by a conspiracy against the group.
While not itself notorious for economic corruption, Hezbollah has positioned itself, at this critical moment, as the guardian of Lebanon's self-serving establishment.
In Lebanon, Hezbollah could retreat from the political landscape in attempt to preserve their arms.