Donald Trump visited Saudi Arabia over the weekend on his first official foreign trip, signing a $100 billion arms deal and offering support for a new regional order in the Middle East. Meanwhile, the press focused on the First Lady and Daughter’s decision not to wear a headscarf. Ivanka and Melania Trump's decision to forgo … Continue reading Trump in Saudi Arabia: What you missed while the media were obsessing over Melania’s wardrobe
Two people have been killed in the Shia-majority Eastern province of Saudi Arabia, sparking violence between citizens and the state and a sectarian war of words online. A two-year-old boy and a Pakistani expatriate were shot dead on Friday during clashes between gunmen and security services in Qatif in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. … Continue reading Saudi Arabia, sectarianism and the battle for the Twittersphere
International eyes have, for once, been on Yemen in recent weeks, as the catastrophic humanitarian situation has brought the country to the brink of famine. The men, women and children who have survived the brutal conflict thus far are currently facing starvation, as military blockades prevent aid from reaching those in dire need. One such … Continue reading Yemeni town awaits an offensive that could turn the tide of the war – but at a cost
“Aren’t the Saudis your friends?” the Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, once asked President Obama. “It’s complicated”, Obama replied. At present the House of Saud has adopted a zero-sum perspective in its relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran. The Kingdom has positioned itself on a path of perpetual antagonism with Tehran and the chances … Continue reading Saudi Arabia and Iran: Playing with Fire in Petroland
Earlier this month, National Geographic released an article entitled ‘The Changing Face of Saudi Women’, celebrating the achievements of young Saudi women who are increasingly entering the work force and “redefining the boundaries of public life”. The idea of women’s empowerment in such a deeply conservative country is surely cause for celebration, but it cannot … Continue reading The Changing Face of Saudi Women?
The death of one man in Saudi Arabia last Saturday has poured petrol on the sectarian fire currently engulfing the Middle East. The Saudi Interior Ministry announced last weekend that it had executed 47 people on charges of terrorism and incitement. Among them was Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, a prominent Shia cleric from the restive Eastern … Continue reading Fire in the Desert: Nimr al-Nimr and the Future of Saudi Arabia
A country is on its deathbed and the world is doing nothing. Yemen is falling apart. Last September, northern Houthi forces seized control of the capital, Sanaa, prompting a Saudi-led alliance to launch deadly and seemingly endless airstrikes on the country with the aim of restoring the government. In the last year, Yemen has witnessed nothing but … Continue reading Meanwhile, in Yemen…
The people of Saada have suffered enough. Yet after six bloody wars between the Houthis and the Yemeni regime, Saudi Arabia has begun the next phase of the northern Yemeni province’s destruction. The Saudi campaign recently declared the province a direct target in their fight against the Houthis, endangering the lives of thousands of innocent … Continue reading Operation Restoring Hope: A Dangerous Game for Saudi Arabia