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Thread: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

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    Default Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    I've moved a post from the Syria thread made yesterday here as the Qatar crisis goes way beyond Syria and encompasses all of North Africa and the Middle East. Qatar is an immensely wealthy state that provides a significant amount of liquified natural gas and has been in the hunt of a new pipeline to Turkey for some time. It is highly food dependent on imports, like most of the oil rich Middle Eastern states.
    Qatar accommodates a highly significant US air base in use currently in the Iraqi and Syrian conflicts. It has along with Saudi Arabia been a major funder of jihadist/islamicist revolt against Assad, although until 2011 friendly enough with the Assad regime. The reason why Qatar is now subject of hostility from all the surrounding states is that it has been a major supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood, now a very extensive political and military islamicist organisation and has given some support to Hamas. The MB, ousted from Egypt in a military coup, has at times been supported or steered by US interests, but now has a very large scale conservative Muslim (not Takfiri) group with a political and social base in the Middle Eastern middle class and rural poor. It is a threat to all of the various regimes that are now turning on Qatar.

    It appears that these regimes have formed a common stand with Israel and the US to knock Qatar off its perch.

    Qatari-backed and Saudi-backed militias in Syria have been fighting each other for weeks: the current crisis has been simmering for at least three years.

    Although hard to see how Qatar can resist, this crisis is a sign of the profound instability across the Middle East, with populations suffering from declining living standards, inequality,unemployment, food insecurity, and political and military fragmentation.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Saudi and Qatar have closed their borders to each other. Their proxy militias in Syria are fighting each other. But heh, nothing to see here, move on.
    The borders of Qatar with Saudi have now been closed and citizens ordered to repatriate.

    Bahrain, the UAE, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, the Maldives, Saudi Arabia have all cut diplomatic ties with Qatar and are blocking flights and shipping. It is near as dammit a declaration of war. Turkey and the US are both saying that they want 'tensions cooled'.

    Part of the dispute is allegedly about Qatar's support for the MB and other jihadists - and for its connections (as an arbitrator) with Iran. This follows hard on the heels of Trump's visit to Saudi Arabia and massive arms deal with SA. And ignores the fact that the US is aware that SA has also been funding jihadists.

    As the main US airbase for the ME is in Qatar, this is a very tangled situation that has come out of massive amounts of local and international covert influence-building.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/05/w...ates.html?_r=0

    Al Jazeera is Qatari - reporting that Iran is promising food supplies - 40% of Qatar's food comes from SA at the moment.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/0...105550769.html

    These tensions are not completely new, and to some extent were being fought out by rival proxy militias in Syria, but have erupted viciously over a period of a couple of months and now there is a major crisis piled upon the existing ME crises.

    It looks like a possible step closer to isolation of/ war with Iran, on the back of some kind of US/Trump/Saudi deal.
    Last edited by C. Flower; 06-06-2017 at 07:30 AM.
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    According to Donny, it was........im wot done it.......

    http://thehill.com/policy/defense/33...ments-on-qatar
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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Politics is the gentle art of getting votes from the poor and campaign funds from the rich, by promising to protect each from the other. ~Oscar Ameringer

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    CNN is reporting that US Int. believes Russians hacked into al-J and planted a false story about Qatar to foment FUD among neighbors. Nothing on the CNN website yet.
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Well certain allies of each other conspired in clouded ways to cause chaos in the middle east for various reasons from devilment to weakening Iran and Russia and those murky firestarters don't appear to be in any rush to put an end to it. He who pays the piper calls the tune. There is no end in sight because the securocrat fantasies of the Gulf State dictatorships are themselves impossible to control. Ye can't control a whole region, ye can only intervene and then expect blowback.

    Qatar was up its neck in destabilising Libya and its friends are now turning on it. Dominoes will fall, it will take an indeterminate time to happen but it's inevitable.

    This is what happens when nuclear Saudi, armed to the teeth with 100s of billions of dollars of the most sophisticated weaponry and diplomatic cover starts lashing out. There ain't much point in spending all that money without setting off the fireworks.

    It can't mean anything other than decades of mass death and chaos.

    Who is going to stop them, no one that's who.

    Arab Pride means that they won't back down once they've been insulted. The Saudis are also used to yanking the Yankees chain, so they feel unanswerable to even the most powerful of outsiders.
    Last edited by Shaadi; 06-06-2017 at 10:52 PM.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    • Vox, as usual, has a good digest of relevant pieces on the subject.




    • So you know how there's currently a big, growing crisis in the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia and its allies (including the United Arab Emirates and Egypt, among others) pitted against Qatar? It appears the crisis was started (in part) by the Greek gods who seem to control all aspects of our lives today. I speak, of course, of Russian hackers.




    • In a bombshell scoop, CNN is reporting that US investigators think Russian hackers planted a fake news story in Qatar's government news agency, which helped provoke the crisis. The FBI has sent a team of investigators to Doha, Qatar's capital, to investigate. The goal was to cause rifts among the US and its allies — like Qatar, where the US has 11,000 troops. [CNN / Evan Perez and Shimon Prokupecz]




    • The fake news story quoted Qatar’s leader, emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, as praising Israel and Iran and criticizing President Trump for his tough policy on the latter. That enraged Saudi Arabia, Iran’s leading rival in the region, and Saudi and its allies (UAE, Egypt, Bahrain) quickly blocked Al Jazeera, which is owned by the Qatari government but has wide readership and viewership throughout the Arab world. [CNN / Zahraa Alkhalisi]




    • Then a few days later, Tamim made matters worse by calling Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to congratulate him on winning the country’s presidential election. [Reuters]




    • That phone call underlines why the fake news was so devastating: It played into a very real sense that Qatar’s critics have, that it’s way too close to Iran and not committed to supporting other Gulf states. [Vox / Zeeshan Aleem]




    • In recent days, the tensions have totally boiled over. Saudi, Yemen, Bahrain, and the UAE have ordered their citizens to leave Qatar, and all of them (plus Egypt) have cut off land, air, and sea travel, putting the country (which imports 40 percent of its food from Saudi Arabia) in a very precarious position. [NYT / Anne Barnard and David Kirkpatrick]




    • Witnessing perhaps the worst regional diplomatic crisis since Iraq’s 1991 invasion of Kuwait, President Trump quickly took action to try to calm things down. LOL, just kidding. Instead, he issued a series of tweets praising Saudi Arabia's actions and, indeed, claiming credit for them: "During my recent trip to the Middle East I stated that there can no longer be funding of Radical Ideology. Leaders pointed to Qatar — look!" [NYT / Mark Landler]




    • (For the record, Qatar for sure funds some terror groups, notably Hamas — but so does Saudi Arabia, which makes its concern about Qatar appear somewhat less than sincere). [Brookings / Daniel Byman]




    • Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, by contrast, has positioned his country as a neutral arbiter, calling for the situation to be resolved through diplomacy. [Reuters / Vladimir Soldatkin​]




    • If the Russian government actually planned the hack and planted the fake news story that started all this, then it’s very interesting that they’re now trying to play peacemaker. It’s like a company that sells both cigarettes and smoking cessation tools: You create the crisis, and then take credit for resolving it (or at least looking like you’re trying to resolve it — maybe you just want it to boil over).
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    A lot of that was covered in real time in the Syria thread, Count Bob.

    Today's attacks on the Iran parliament are hardly unrelated.

    It looks like a possible step closer to isolation of/ war with Iran, on the back of some kind of US/Trump/Saudi deal.
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Kuwait and Oman staying mum ....
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    A lot of that was covered in real time in the Syria thread, Count Bob.

    Today's attacks on the Iran parliament are hardly unrelated.
    Hardly, and the Syria thread completely and utterly failed to pull the various moving parts into one coherent post.......

    Thus far, I know nothing of the motivations of the Iranian Parliament attackers. Might be related, might not.
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    Kuwait and Oman staying mum ....
    Believe I read that Kuwait had offered to mediate.....
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Count Bobulescu View Post
    Believe I read that Kuwait had offered to mediate.....
    Must be blotting their copybook with the House of Saud.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Count Bobulescu View Post
    CNN is reporting that US Int. believes Russians hacked into al-J and planted a false story about Qatar to foment FUD among neighbors. Nothing on the CNN website yet.
    lol !!..... if CNN said it....... it can't be true. ....Jim Acosta = FAKE NEWS
    Last edited by riposte; 07-06-2017 at 09:15 PM.
    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, misdiagnosing it, and then misapplying the wrong remedies.”

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by riposte View Post
    lol !!..... if CNN said it....... it can't be true. ....Jim Acosta = FAKE NEWS
    What has Jim Acosta ever done to you?
    Trump has singled him out for criticism. Are you a Trump supporter?
    As a general rule the most successful man in life is the man who has the best information.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    A lot of that was covered in real time in the Syria thread, Count Bob.

    Today's attacks on the Iran parliament are hardly unrelated.

    " It looks like a possible step closer to isolation of/ war with Iran, on the back of some kind of US/Trump/Saudi deal."
    Turkey government is a bit 'off-message', if so, no?
    "If you go far enough to either extreme of the political spectrum, Communist or fascist, you'll find hard-eyed men with guns who believe that anybody who doesn't think as they do should be incarcerated or exterminated. " - Jim Garrison, Former DA, New Orleans.

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    Default Re: Qatar Crisis - Where is the Middle East Going ?

    Well, our old Irish friend al Harati (and his friend Belhaj) have been sanctioned along with 57 other individuals by the anti-Qatar coalition.
    This Saudi article accused Qatar of backing the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), ISIS and the Afghan Taliban "for its own nefarious purposes". There is a veiled invitation to the Qatari population to have a go at regime change.

    http://www.thenational.ae/opinion/co...for-all-to-see
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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