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19 June 2017

Why Saudis fighting in Yemen?

Saudi Arabia has drawn a lot of criticism lately for its leading role in the war against Houthi rebels in Yemen. Some deride the Kingdom, the richest Arab state, for taking action against the poorest. Others have claimed that the fight against the Houthis – a Zaidi Shia-led religious-political movement – is just one element in a broader war on the Shia that Saudi Arabia has supposedly been waging. These are simplistic claims, reflecting a fundamental misunderstanding about the Kingdom’s role in Yemen – and, indeed, in the entire Arab world.
Saudi Arabia is not out to get the Zaidis. In fact, it actively supported the Zaidi royal family in Yemen’s civil war in the 1960s. What the Kingdom has reacted to in Yemen is Iran’s cynical efforts to take advantage of Yemen’s internal conflict to build a military alliance with the Houthi rebels – an alliance with only one conceivable target: Saudi Arabia.
Yet when Saudi officials tried to warn the international community about Iran’s activities in Yemen, it was met with denial. Western commentators, in particular, have twisted themselves into knots to avoid recognizing any Iranian involvement in the conflict, even as evidence to the contrary has mounted.

In the last 18 months, the US Navy has intercepted four arms shipments from Iran to Yemen. Iran itself has claimed numerous times that it controls four Arab capitals, including Sana’a, and the Houthis have become closely tied with Hezbollah, Iran’s Lebanese political and military proxy.
By Ali Al Shihabi, The executive director of the Arabia Foundation, a new think tank that will focus on the geopolitics of the Arabian Peninsula. He is the author of The Saudi Kingdom: Between the Jihadi Hammer and the Iranian Anvil and Arabian War Games.
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The Treaty of Taif which had to be renewed after every twenty years stipulated “a state of perpetual peace, firm friendship and everlasting Islamic Arab brotherhood” between the two states and the relationship actually blossomed for many years only to be broken in 1948 by a coup in Yemen in which the coup makers killed the Yemeni ruler Imam Yahya, his prime minister, several dignitaries and promised to usher in a constitutional government

Yemeni Civil War.svg

  Controlled by Houthi (Ansar Allah) and Saleh loyalists
  Controlled by Hadi loyalists
  Controlled by Al-Qaeda/Ansar al-Sharia forces



The bystanders look upon the ongoing war in Yemen as an unnecessary stupid conflict among Muslim states as it has caused over ten thousand deaths in the last two years and in which precious treasure is being frittered away not to save but kill more lives with sophisticated weaponry supplied by the most ‘civilised’ nations of the world. For the onlookers, the Yemen conflagration is nothing more than a saga of colossal human tragedy in which innocent people have been uprooted from their hearths, women widowed, children orphaned and food and medical supplies are becoming extinct, however, to the main players of this war i.e. Saudi Arabia, Iran and the US, their “national interest” is more important than human lives, particularly of Saudi Arabia, which looks upon any political crisis in Yemen as an existential threat to her territorial integrity. That is why Saudis will fight to the last man or till the time they successfully neutralise the existential threat.

What is this existential threat to Saudi Arabia? It is the region of Asir bordering Yemen that has been the Saudi underbelly because even before the formation of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), the tribal Emir of Asir and the ruler of Yemen hobnobbed to resist the authority of King Abd al-Aziz. In mid-1920s, when the ruler of Yemen, Imam Yahya and his son Ahmad threatened the main centres of Asir, the Emir of Asir went running for help to Abd al-Aziz and consented to the establishment of Saudi protectorate over his state in 1926, however, when Abd al-Aziz reduced the Emir of Asir to a mere figurehead under a new treaty in 1930, the latter intrigued with Imam Yahya which crystallised in a revolt in 1932 against Abd al-Aziz that was successfully crushed by the Saudis, forcing the Emir of Asir to flee to the sanctuary of Yemen.


Before the “Asir headache” could turn into a “migraine,” the Saudi King Faisal tried to settle the issue, once and for all, when the Treaty of Taif was due for renewal in 1974. He told the Yemeni leadership that though the treaty recognised Saudi sovereignty over over Asir, Najran and Jizan, it was essential that the existing border was recognised as final and permanent


The crisis lingered on because Imam Yahya was in possession of territories of Najran, Harad and a part of Asir-Tihama which the Saudi king regarded as his own and for which he eventually went to war with Yemen, that too, resulted in Saudi victory under the Treaty of Taif in 1934 in which Yemen ceded the disputed territories to Saudi Arabia. Prince (later King) Faisal who headed the Saudi military campaign wanted to conquer the whole of Yemen but his father King Abd al-Aziz ordered him to withdraw. Faisal was flabbergasted and questioned the sagacity of theorder, to which the King replied, “Yemen is not a country that can easily be conquered… If conquering Yemen were a simple undertaking that guaranteed success, Britain, which is stronger than us, in pursuit of its selfish interests, would have tried to conquer Yemen. You should be convinced by the fact that it did not do this.” The Yemenis could not forget the wounds of defeat and the very next year, during the course of Hajj, three of their pilgrims tried to stab Abd al-Aziz, who was saved by his sonEmir Saud.

The Treaty of Taif which had to be renewed after every twenty years stipulated “a state of perpetual peace, firm friendship and everlasting Islamic Arab brotherhood” between the two states and the relationship actually blossomed for many years only to be broken in 1948 by a coup in Yemen in which the coup makers killed the Yemeni ruler Imam Yahya, his prime minister, several dignitaries and promised to usher in a constitutional government which was anathema to the Saudi monarch, who, despite his aversion to Imam Ahmad, the successor of the dead Imam Yahya, supported his claim to the headship of Yemen and helped him to recapture Sanaa to establish his authority and ensured that the coup makers were publicly executed.

After a peaceful stint of fourteen years, there was yet another coup in Yemen in September 1962. Abdallah al-Sallal, the leader of the coup makers was an army officer, who was a republican nationalist by political conviction as well as a strong admirer of the Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser, who was leading the popular pan-Arab wave in the Middle East. The successful coup turned out to be a big headache for the Saudi king because the Yemeni republicans demanded that the Saudi province of Asir be returned to Yemen as it had been forcibly snatched from them by Al-Saud in the 1930s. This claim was anexistential threat to the territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia and so it had to fight a costly protracted war in Yemen for about six years to nullify the Yemini claims against Saudi Arabia.

Before the “Asir headache” could turn into a “migraine,” the Saudi King Faisal tried to settle the issue, once and for all, when the Treaty of Taif was due for renewal in 1974. He told the Yemeni leadership that though the treaty recognised Saudi sovereignty over over Asir, Najran and Jizan, it was essential that the existing border was recognised as final and permanent. Consequently, on 17 March 1973, a joint Saudi-Yemeni communique was issued to this effect but there was a severe backlash against it from the Yemeni nationalists as well as the angry Yemeni students, who seized the Yemeni embassy in Cairo. It was due to such Yemeni claims on Asir in the past and possibly in future that the Saudis built the first modern military base for their defence forces in 1971 at Khamis Mushayt which is close to the Yemeni border.

The ongoing war in Yemen can bring such people in power, who can again stake claims on the Saudi territories bordering Yemen. Saudi Arabia does not want such a situation to arise again and that is why it has gone full throttle in Yemen and is likely to remain engaged till a friendly government is ensconced in power.

Till the last man in Yemen
By Basharat Hussain Qizilbash, www.pakistantoday.com.pk


Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen - Wikipedia

A military intervention was launched by Saudi Arabia in 2015, leading a coalition of nine .... A conflictover a draft constitution resulted in the Houthis consolidating control over the Yemeni capital in January 2015. After resigning from his post ...

Yemeni Civil War (2015–present) - Wikipedia

Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi (from 2015) Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar (from 2016) Khaled Bahah .... The YemeniCivil War is an ongoing conflict that began in 2015 between two factions ... The Saudi intervention, which has included widespread bombing of civilian areas, has been sharply condemned by the international community.
Smoke rises above Sanaa, Yemen following a Saudi-led coalition air strike targeting a ... The conflicthas its roots in the failure of the political transition that was ..

Middle East Conflict: Why Is Saudi Arabia Attacking Yemen? Important ...

Tribesmen attend a tribal gathering to show support to the Houthi rebel movement in Sanaa, Yemen, Nov. 10, 2016. Photo: Reuters.

Why Saudi Arabia is Hammering Yemen | The National Interest

When Saudi Arabia began bombing Yemen last year, many .... paint this as a religiousconflict the truth is that a regional power is rising from the ...

Why Saudi Arabia Is Continuing Its War In Yemen | HuffPost

Since the start of the Saudi military intervention in Yemen in March 2015 ... the strategic dimensions of the Yemen conflict to the public, insisting ...

Why is Saudi Arabia at War in Yemen? by Ali Al Shihabi - Project ...

Criticism of Saudi Arabia's role in the war against Yemen's Houthi rebels ... What drewSaudi Arabia into the conflict was Iran's effort to build a ...
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18 June 2017

Iran linked to every Middle East war




Iran frequently accuses other nations of being behind tensions and terrorism in the Middle East. This is part of its classic strategy to divert attention from actual issues and to buttress its four-decade-old argument that it has enemies. Maintaining these enemies help Iranian leaders survive politically and advance their regional hegemonic ambitions. If we examine every conflict, war or terrorist act in the region, Iran is either directly or indirectly a contributor.


Image result for middle east war iran

If it was not for its support of the Alawite-dominated state of Bashar Assad, the Syrian government would have likely been altered a few months after the uprising began in 2011.
Hundreds of thousands of lives would have been saved. More than a thousand militia groups would not have emerged in Syria. Groups such as Daesh would not have found a safe haven to expand and recruit. And the Shiite-Sunni sectarian war would not have escalated.
Iran deployed its Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and Quds Force (the IRGC’s elite branch that operates in foreign countries) to assist Assad’s forces. It also provides significant financial, intelligence and advisory assistance to Assad’s apparatuses.

Tehran has long used proxies to influence Lebanese affairs and advance its revolutionary, religious and geopolitical interests. Iran created Hezbollah, and continues to train, arm and finance it and other Shiite fighters in Lebanon. To help Iran achieve its regional ambitions, these fighters are being deployed in conflicts and wars in foreign nations such as Syria.
Tehran has deeply infiltrated Iraq’s political and security infrastructures. Not only is Iran intervening directly via the IRGC and Quds Force, it is also employing proxies and militia groups, some of them designated as terrorist organizations, to influence and dominate Iraq.
We cannot resolve crises and conflicts in the region by targeting the symptoms; the disease should be tackled. Tehran is part of the problem, not the solution.

Iran is intervening in Yemen by delivering weapons to the Houthis and providing advisory and financial assistance. Tehran has also escalated sending arms to militias and terrorists in Bahrain. In last month’s sanctions announcement, the US State Department said Iran has undoubtedly “provided weapons, funding and training” to Bahraini militants.
As former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual conference in March, “if you had a benign regime in Iran, all of the problems in the Middle East would be resolvable.”

We cannot resolve Middle East crises and conflicts by targeting the symptoms; the disease should be tackled. Almost every ongoing war, conflict and crisis in the region is traceable to Tehran. It is part of the problem, not the solution.

Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is a Harvard-educated, Iranian-American political scientist. He is a leading expert on Iran and US foreign policy, a businessman and president of the International American Council. He serves on the boards of the Harvard International Review, the Harvard International Relations Council and the US-Middle East Chamber for Commerce and Business. He can be reached on Twitter @Dr_Rafizadeh.

10 free online courses you can take to learn to be more productive


Invest some time in one or more of these courses to help increase your productivity.WOCinTech Chat/flickr

Increasing your productivity is a goal that many busy professionals, parents, students, and entrepreneurs share.
Finding enough hours in the day to accomplish all of your tasks or goals can be difficult.
Sometimes the day has slipped away and you have accomplished little, and you don’t know why.
It is also frustrating when you know that part of the reason you cannot get everything done is because you are not organized enough or because you cannot manage your time well.
Invest some time in one or more of these courses to help increase your productivity.

1. Create a Perfect Morning Routine

Screenshot
Platform: SkillShare
Course Duration: 12 lectures
Time: 1–3 min/lecture
Everyone’s mornings can be crazy, but they don’t have to be. Having a less stressful morning can make you more productive throughout the day. Waking up earlier to focus on things that you really enjoy can also help your personal growth and overall mental health. Creating the perfect morning routine can give you the tools to get started on the right foot every morning.
Find it here.

2. The Science of Everyday Thinking

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Platform: edX
Course Duration: 12 weeks
Time: 2 hours/week
Your “self-talk” has a lot of influence on your daily life. If you train yourself with methods to improve your everyday thinking, then you can increase your productivity. This edX course will also cover tricks and techniques to help you retain information longer. It also goes through the basic psychology of changing people’s minds and recognizing reality from falsehoods. All of these can be great tools for increase overall productivity.
Find it here. 

3. How to Create a Productivity System

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Platform: Highbrow
Course Duration: 10 days
Time: 5 minutes/day
Having a productivity system that works for you is perhaps your best tool to increase productivity. Once you have a system, you can spend less time organizing and planning and more time doing. Your system can also reduce your overall stress levels and those feelings over being overworked as well.
Highbrow’s course is tailored to those who do not have much free time — each portion of the course is delivered in small chunks directly to your e-mail.
Find it here. 

4. Journey into Minimalism

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Platform: Highbrow
Course Duration: 10 days
Time: 5 minutes/day
Minimalism is a way to escape the excesses of the world around us — the excesses of consumerism, material possessions, clutter, having too much to do, too much debt, too many distractions, too much noise. But too little meaning. It is a way of eschewing the non-essential in order to focus on what’s truly important, what gives our lives meaning, what gives us joy and value. Subscribe to this email course and learn how to become a minimalist, day by day.
Find it here.

5. How to Make Better Decisions with the Matrix

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Platform: Highbrow
Course Duration: 10 days
Time: 5 minutes/day
Prioritization is a huge challenge for busy individuals. With so many things demanding your attention, it can be difficult to decide which tasks should be tackled first and which one can sit on the backburner.
In this Highbrow class, a fun emoji helps you learn strategies to help you prioritize faster and smarter, so you can save valuable time.
Find it here.

6. Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects

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Platform: Coursera
Course Duration: 4 weeks
Time: 1 hour/week
Learning information faster can help you be more productive. Memory techniques, illusions of learning, and learning best practices are all covered in this course. It even provides techniques to deal with procrastination.
This course from Coursera offers practical techniques that you can use at work, school, or anywhere where you need to learn a new subject or task.

7. Sit Less, Get Active

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Platform: Coursera
Course Duration: 3 weeks
Time: 1.5 hour/week
Your mental alertness and focus are affected by your activity level throughout the day. Sitting in one spot too long saps energy and creativity, and can have a negative effect on your overall mood. Once you learn how to sit less and be more active, you will have more energy to be your most productive self throughout the day. This course helps you monitor your current movement and set healthy goals for yourself.
Find it here.

8. Introduction to Time Management

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Platform: Alison
Course Duration: 1–2 hours
At the end of the day, do you ever sit and wonder what you did all day? You were working, but it seemed like you didn’t get anything done. Perhaps you need to focus more on time management to increase your productivity. This online course focuses on prioritization, distractions, interruptions, and working efficiently.
Find it here.

9. Effective Time Management — Get 10X More Done in Less Time

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Platform: Udemy
Course Duration: 9 lectures
Time: 5–7 min/lecture
Time management is especially difficult for small business owners and entrepreneurs. Perhaps that is why there is a course specifically tailored to this audience. Instead of managing time, this Udemy course is focused on deciding which tasks are “high value” tasks, so you get more of a return for the time that you have invested.
Find it here.

10. Achieve More in Less Time Using SMART Goals

Screenshot
Platform: Udemy
Course Duration: 10 lectures
Time: 3 min/lecture
This Udemy course focuses on goal setting as a means to be more productive. Having your own goals helps keep you attentive and motivated to get more done in the limited time that you have. It also helps you learn to evaluate yourself when compared to the goals that you have set for yourself.
This course may also be helpful for those who want to teach others about the importance of goal setting and productivity.
Find it here.
Artem Zavyalov is the co-founder of Highbrow – a learning platform that sends people quick little email lessons and helps them develop daily learning habits.
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15 June 2017

Trump Doctrine for Middle East

Trump doctrine must be driven by US core vital interests, which are:

• Eliminating ISIS as a functioning entity.

• Preventing Iran from achieving a nuclear weapon capability.

• Preventing Iranian hegemony throughout the Middle East.

• Removing the Iranian theocracy from power.

• Re-establishing and strengthening our relations with our traditional allies.

• Ensuring the survival of Israel.

• Establishing a sovereign Kurdistan.

• Maintaining freedom of navigation throughout the Persian Gulf and Red Sea, including strategic choke points, e.g., the Suez Canal, the Bab el-Mandeb Strait and the Strait of Hormuz.
..............
Trump’s Middle East doctrine
by James A. Lyons, washingtontimes.com

President Trump’s historic visit last month to Saudi Arabia, where he met with the heads of more than 50 mostly Sunni heads of state, dramatically marked the end of eight years of Barack Obama’s appeasement of Iran. It signaled to all the Muslim leaders that the United States as the “strong horse” is back. There was no doubt in any of the Muslim leaders’ minds that Mr. Trump is a man of action and a leader who will keep his word.

Mr. Trump’s goal of establishing a coalition of nations that share the objective of defeating terrorist groups and providing for a stable and hopeful future made it clear that the assembled nations cannot be indifferent to the presence of evil. That evil is represented not only by the Islamic State (ISIS), al Qaeda et al., but also by Iran, the recognized world leader of state-sponsored terrorism. In that sense, one of the key objectives of the summit was to isolate Iran, a goal embraced by the coalition, as well as their shared disdain for the Obama administration’s atrocious failed nuclear agreement with Iran.

Mr. Trump also made it clear that this coalition of nations must adopt a policy of “sovereign responsibility,” which means that they cannot wait for American power to defeat the enemy for them. They must be directly involved, with our assistance.

Nonetheless, the Trump doctrine must be driven by our core vital interests, which are:

• Eliminating ISIS as a functioning entity.

• Preventing Iran from achieving a nuclear weapon capability.

• Preventing Iranian hegemony throughout the Middle East.

• Removing the Iranian theocracy from power.

• Re-establishing and strengthening our relations with our traditional allies.

• Ensuring the survival of Israel.

• Establishing a sovereign Kurdistan.

• Maintaining freedom of navigation throughout the Persian Gulf and Red Sea, including strategic choke points, e.g., the Suez Canal, the Bab el-Mandeb Strait and the Strait of Hormuz.

The establishment of a Global Terrorism Center for Combating Extremism in Riyadh was a manifestation of the shared objective of defeating terrorist groups and isolating Iran, but its effectiveness will depend on results. The same can be said for the establishment of the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center, co-chaired by the United States and Saudi Arabia, as well as the United States-United Arab Emirates Center to Counter the Online Spread of Hate. It was clear to all the attendees that a peaceful, stable future can only be achieved by defeating the ideology that drives terrorism. Carrying this out will require some very fundamental and painful changes. For example, mosques and imams that preach hate and urge all Muslims to conduct violent jihad should be closed and the imams removed.

Concrete steps must be taken to stop funds from going to radical mosques and front groups that promote terrorism. Targeting funds being sent to various terrorists groups, e.g., ISIS and al Qaeda, must receive immediate priority. The source of these funds, be it from individuals or states like Qatar, must be identified and interdicted.

Qatar has been a particular problem because of its support of the Muslim Brotherhood and its cozy relationship with Iran. This came to a head on June 5, when Saudi Arabia broke diplomatic and some commercial relations with Qatar over its terrorist financing and its links to the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, Hamas and the Houthi rebels in Yemen. Qatar’s relationship with Iran was a decisive factor in causing the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bahrain to quickly join with Saudi Arabia in breaking relations. Most land, sea and air routes to Qatar have been closed. Qatar is an isthmus whose only land route is through Saudi Arabia by which it receives 40 percent of its food. This is a major problem for Qatar, despite Turkey’s offer of food and water delivered by sea.

Another issue that must be addressed is the U.S. Central Command’s forward air base in Qatar, which has been an essential element of our air campaign in the region. As of today, there has been no impact on U.S. air operations, but contingency plans should be made ready for an alternative air base if regional relationships further deteriorate.

An underlying element of the Trump doctrine that cannot be overstated is recognition that 65 percent of the population of the Middle East is under the age of 30, and that those youths must be provided with opportunities for a satisfying life as an attractive option to the lure of terrorist groups. While this is a worthy objective, Muslims don’t commit to jihad because they don’t have jobs. They commit to jihad because they are devout Muslims, many with university degrees. The only way they can be dissuaded from jihad is to see a crushing defeat of jihadis on the battlefield. Once they understand they cannot win, they are obligated by their own doctrine to back off.

Saudi Prince Mohammad bin Salman is taking the lead for economic and cultural reform in Saudi Arabia, and other members of the coalition should follow. Nevertheless, the indispensable principle for achieving the objectives of the Riyadh summit is the isolation of Iran, the prime mover of instability throughout the region. As a start, sanctions on the mullahs’ ballistic missile programs must be imposed. Further, until the unsigned nuclear weapons deal with Iran is formally canceled, real inspections by the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency must be conducted on all the sites in their nuclear weapon infrastructure.

Finally, an aggressive plan must be developed with the objective of removing the regime of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei from power. That is the first principle of any plan to return stability and peace to the Middle East.

• James A. Lyons, a retired U.S. Navy admiral, was commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet and senior U.S. military representative to the United Nations.

Source: http://m.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/jun/13/donald-trumps-middle-east-doctrine/

Wilayat-e-Faqih:
Wilayat-e-Faqih doctrine, a fifth column strategy, has propagated sectarianism in the Muslim world

11 June 2017

Crisis in Qatar and Saudi Arabia, Real Story


       Image result for qatar saudi arabia conflict

THE Qatar crisis proves two things: the continued infantilisation of the Arab states, and the total collapse of the Sunni Muslim unity supposedly created by Donald Trump`s preposterous attendance at the Saudi summit two weeks ago.

After promising to fight to the death against Shia Iranian `terror,` Saudi Arabia and its closest chums have now ganged up on one of the wealthiest of their neighbours, Qatar, for being a fountainhead of `terror`. Only Shakespeare`s plays could come close to describing such treachery. Shakespeare`s comedies, of course.
Image result for qatar saudi arabia conflict

For, truly, there is something vastly fantastical about this charade. Qatar`s citizens have certainly contributed to IS. But so have Saudi Arabia`s citizens. No Qataris flew the 9/11 planes into New York and Washington. All but four of the 19 killers were Saudi. Bin L aden was not a Qatari. He was a Saudi.

But Bin Laden favoured Qatar`s Al Jazeera channel with his personal broadcasts, and it was Al Jazeera who tried to give spurious morality to the Al Qaeda/Jabhat al-Nusrah desperadoes of Syria by allowing their leader hours of free airtime to explain what a moderate, peace-loving group they all were.

First, let`s just get rid of the hysterically funny bits of this story. I see that Yemen is breaking air links with Qatar. Quite a shock for the poor Qatari emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, since Yemen under constant bombardment by his former Saudi and Emirati chums doesn`t have a single service-able airliner lef t with which to create, let alone break, an air link.

The Maldives have also broken relations with Qatar. To be sure, this has nothing to do with the recent promise of a Saudi five-year loan facility of $300m to the Maldives, the proposal of a Saudi property company to invest $100m in a family resort in the Maldives and a promise by Saudi Islamic scholars to spend $100,000 on 10 `world class` mosques in theMaldives. And let us not mention the rather large number of IS and other Islamist cultists who arrived to fight for IS in Iraq and Syria from well, the Maldives.

Now the Qatari Emir hasn`t enough troops to defend his little country should the Saudis decide to request that he ask their army to enter Qatar to restore stability as the Saudis persuaded the King of Bahrain to do back in 2011. But Sheikh Tamim no doubt hopes that the massive US military air base in Qatar will deter such Saudi generosity.

When I asked his father, Sheikh Hamad (later uncharitably deposed by Tamim) why he didn`t kick the Americans out of Qatar, he replied: `Because if I did, my Arab brothers would invade me.` Like father, like son, I suppose. God Bless America.

All this started so we are supposed to believe with an alleged hacking of the Qatar News Agency, which produced some uncomplimentary but distressingly truthful remarks by Qatar`s emir about the need to maintain a rela-tionship with Iran.

Qatar denied the veracity of the story. The Saudis decided it was true and broadcast the contents on their own normally staid (and immensely boring) state television network.The upstart emir, so went the message, had gone too far this time. The Saudis decided policy in the Gulf, not miniscule Qatar. Wasn`t that what Trump`s visit proved? But the Saudis had other problems to worry about. Kuwait, far from cutting relations with Qatar, is now acting as a peacemaker between Qatar and the Saudis and Emiratis. The emirate of Dubai is quite close to Iran, has tens of thousandsof Iranianexpatriates,andishardlyfollowing Abu Dhabi`s example of anti-Qatari wrath.

Oman was even staging joint naval manoeuvres with Iran a couple of months ago. Pakistan long ago declined to send its army to help the Saudis in Yemen, because the Saudis asked for only Sunni and no Shia soldiers; the Pakistani army was understandably outraged to realise that Saudi Arabia was trying to sectarianise its military personnel. Pakistan`s former army commander, General Raheel Sharif, is rumoured to be on the brink of resigning as head of the Saudi-sponsored Muslim alliance to fight `terror`.

President-Pield Marshal Abdel Fatah al-Sisi of Egypt has been roaring against Qatar for its support of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar does indeed support the nowbanned group which Sisi falsely claims is part of IS but significantly Egypt, though the recipient of Saudi millions, also does not intend to supply its own troops to bolster the Saudis in its catastrophic Yemen war. Besides, Sisi needs his Egyptian soldiers at home to fight off IS attacks and maintain, along with Israel, the siege of the Palestinian Gaza Strip.

But if we look a bit further down the road, it`s not difficult to see what really worries the Saudis. Qatar also maintains quiet links withthe Asad regime. It helped secure the release of Syrian Christian nuns in Jabhat al-Nusrah hands and has helped release Lebanese soldiers from IS hands in western Syria. When the nuns emerged from captivity, they thanked both Bashar al-Asad and Qatar.

And there are growing suspicions in the Gulf that Qatar has much larger ambitions: to fund the rebuilding of post-war Syria. Even if Asad remained as president, Syria`s debt to Qatar would place the nation under Qatari economic control.

And this would give tiny Qatar two golden rewards. It would give it a land empire to match its Al Jazeera media empire. Andit would extend its largesse to the Syrian territories, which many oil companies would like to use as a pipeline route from the Gulf to Europe via Turkey, or via tankers from the Syrian port of Lattakia.

For Europeans, such a route would reduce the chances of Russian oil blackmail, and make sea-going oil routes less vulnerable if vessels did not have to move through the Gulf of Hormuz.

So rich pickings for Qatar or for Saudi Arabia, of course, if the assumptions about US power of the two emirs, Hamad and Tamim, prove worthless. A Saudi military force in Qatar would allow Riyadh to gobble up all the liquid gas in the emirate. But surely the peaceloving `anti-terror` Saudis let`s forget the head-chopping for a moment would never contemplate such a fate for an Arab brother.


So let`s hope that for the moment, the routes of Qatar Airways are the only parts of the Qatari body politics to get chopped off.

By Robert Fisk:
http://epaper.dawn.com/?page=11_06_2017_013
https://www.vox.com/world/2017/6/6/15739606/saudi-arabia-ties-qatar-trump
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انسانیت ، علم ، اسلام ،معاشرہ ، برداشت ، سلامتی 
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بلاگز، ویب سائٹس،سوشل میڈیا، میگزین، ویڈیوز,کتب
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