Smoke & Mirrors in the Gulf

 

The new Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud

The new Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud

The discord in the GCC region continues. Thirteen demands have recently been issued by Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, including taking the Qatari television network off air, in order for the boycott to be lifted. Qatar has said there can be no negotiations until repatriation of nationals is halted.

Meanwhile, families are being split by the banishing order put in place on nationals of the feuding states. Governments squabble as real people, with real lives; jobs and homes are being shuffled around  like so many pawns on a chessboard.

While the governments of these rich and privileged states argue and bicker like children, it is – as ever – those with the fewest connections to any form of real power, who suffer the most.

And only 48 hours ago, in the very midst of all of this, we discover that a new Crown Prince has been appointed in Saudi Arabia. Who saw that coming? Not many, but then most of us were busy looking elsewhere.

Pat Lancaster

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