By Kristian Coates Ulrichsen
Qatar and the Arab Spring bargains a frank exam of Qatar's startling upward thrust to neighborhood and overseas prominence, describing how its precise coverage stance towards the Arab Spring emerged. in just a decade, Qatari policy-makers - led through the Emir, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani, and his leading minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al-Thani - catapulted Qatar from a sleepy backwater to a nearby strength with actually overseas achieve. as well as pursuing an competitive state-branding approach with its winning bid for the 2022 FIFA international Cup, Qatar cast a name for diplomatic mediation that mixed intensely custom-made engagement with monetary backing and favorable media insurance throughout the Al-Jazeera.
These components converged in early 2011 with the outbreak of the Arab Spring revolts in North Africa, Syria, and Yemen, which Qatari leaders observed as a chance to seal their local and foreign impact, instead of as a problem to their authority, and this guided their help of the rebellions opposed to the Gaddafi and Assad regimes in Libya and Syria.
From the excessive watermark of Qatari impact after the toppling of Gaddafi in 2011, that speedily gave option to coverage overreach in Syria in 2012, Coates Ulrichsen analyses Qatari ambition and functions because the tiny emirate sought to form the transitions within the Arab global.
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They included the physical and ideational danger posed by the ten-year Marxist rebellion in the Omani province of Dhofar (1965–75), supported by the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen as well as Soviet and Chinese sponsors. Their material and ideological assistance to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Oman and the Arabian Gulf (PFLOAG) as it sought to spread its revolutionary objectives unnerved Gulf rulers and heightened their sense of vulnerability. 25 â•… Toward the end of the 1970s, regional threats escalated dramatically.
As a producer country heavily 25 QATAR AND THE ARAB SPRING reliant on the export of oil for the great majority of its government revenues, the falls hit Qatar hard. 41 Although not as sharp as the downturn in neighbouring Saudi Arabia which witnessed seventeen consecutive years of budget deficit, including one of 19 per cent of GDP in 1991,42 the slump caused a prolonged economic decline, and placed great strain on the social contract that underpinned the redistribution of wealth and the provision of jobs to Qatari nationals in return for political quiescence and social stability.
One very Â€ 40 POWER AND INFLUENCE significant factor was the lesson undoubtedly assimilated from the international response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, and the multi-national coalition that rapidly assembled to restore its sovereignty and the position of its Al-Sabah ruling family. Kuwait (and the Gulf ’s) importance to the international economy and its energy ties to major external powers essentially acted as a security guarantor of last resort, as the United States invested enormous financial and military resources in its liberation.