BENJAMIN BARRETT WRITES – The FIFA 2022 World Cup hosted by Qatar begins in late November and history is already being made. This year, Asia is boasting a record six teams that have qualified for the tournament: Australia, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, South Korea, and Qatar. Only second to Europe,…Full Article SPORTS: ASIA’S WORLD CUP POTENTIAL
NAWAF ALSABAH WRITES — The new Arab uprisings of 2018-2020 have demonstrated that instability in the Middle East can result from regional states’ domestic turmoil. A case in point: threats posed to the national security of the tiny Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries as a result of these recent Arab Spring…Full Article The GCC: TINY STATES NEED BIG HELP FENDING OFF BIG ENEMIES
NICHOLAS WILCOX WRITES – Since FIFA, the international governing body of football, awarded the 2022 World Cup to Qatar, more than a few eyebrows were raised as to just how the Persian Gulf nation secured the games. Rumors of bribery and corruption surfaced. So did stories about the exceptionally poor…Full Article QATAR: FIFA WORLD CUP 2020 MIGRANT WORKER RED CARDS
Asia Media warmly congratulates Roula Khalaf on her ascension to the premier Editorship of the Financial Times, one of the world’s great newspapers. She becomes the first woman editor of the FT in its 131-year history. Khalaf was born in Beirut, Lebanon, and grew up there during the civil war. She…Full Article LONDON: BEIRUT-BORN KHALAF ASCENDS TO EDITORSHIP OF FINANCIAL TIMES – FIRST WOMAN TOP EDITOR IN 131-YEAR HISTORY
SENAY EMMANUEL WRITES — Last month, Arab leaders held an emergency summit in Mecca to address threats presented by Iran, following attacks on oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates. While Saudi Arabia described the attacks as “naked aggression,” Iran denied having anything to do with them.…Full Article GULF GEOPOLITICS: WILL THE LACK OF UNITY ENTICE THE U.S. TO GO IT ALONE?
ABDULMOHSAN ALMUTAIRI WRITES– What do football and a sociopolitical blockade in the Middle East have in common? Many of us would say, “not much.” Tensions between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar were apparent during the 2019 Asia Cup, held between January 5 and February 1, when the UAE…Full Article QATAR: Asia Cup Reveals Just How Deep the Political Crisis runs in the Gulf
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – In just four years, Qatar will become the center of the sports world as host country of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the world’s premiere sports event. Hence, when this year’s World Cup in Russia concludes, Qatar is anticipated to become the focus of massive media…Full Article QATAR: ITS CUP RUNNETH OVER WITH THE OBVIOUS AND THE LESS SO
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – More than 100 days of diplomatic crisis have taken their toll on Qatar. While fighting has yet to break out, proxy shots have most certainly been fired in the press and on the airwaves between Qatar and the quartet of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab…Full Article QATAR: BATTLE OF THE PRESSES
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – From its creation, Al Jazeera was bound to incite controversy. Though state-funded, it was the first allegedly independent news network in a region tightly regulated by the government. Contentious coverage of neighboring countries brought the network plenty of threats, but none lasted. Still, the threats to…Full Article QATAR: ISRAEL JOINS THE FIGHT AGAINST AL JAZEERA
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – In 1996, Qatar laid the foundation to become a regional power when it created the news network, Al Jazeera. Qatar’s growing influence even granted the Middle Eastern underdog the FIFA 2022 World Cup. Now, the same source that won Qatar’s recognition is threatening Qatar’s diplomatic relationships…Full Article QATAR: WHAT TO DO WITH AL JAZEERA?
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – There’s one story in Qatar that has seen little coverage, despite the fact that it affects the country’s news media. A Qatari ministry introduced new reforms in the start of 2017 that mandate new permits for anyone working in the “press and publication,” according to an…Full Article QATAR: Media Permits No Big Deal?
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – October in a U.S. election year often unveils some scandal. This year is no different, except the scandals have gotten weirder and this time Qatar is in on the mischief. According to emails leaked by Wikileaks, in 2012 Qatari representatives sought a 5-minute meeting with Bill…Full Article QATAR: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Money
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – Six years have passed since FIFA awarded Qatar the right to host the 2022 World Cup, and there are now six years left until the first kickoff. The first half dozen years saw allegations of corruption, bribery, and human rights abuses flowing in a seemingly endless…Full Article QATAR: HALFWAY TO THE GOAL OF THE WORLD CUP
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – Here we go again – another dilemma of foreign journalists arrested for trying to report on migrant workers. This time, police arrest Danish journalist Niels Borchert Holm and his crew who planned to film a documentary about the country’s preparations for the 2022 World Cup. Police…Full Article QATAR: YET ANOTHER JOURNALIST FEELS THE HEAT
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES- Qatar has been fairly confident about keeping the 2022 World Cup. The country has passed some labor reforms and FIFA still backs them, but the country’s officials might have to be more cautious. Harvard professor John Ruggie wrote a FIFA-commissioned report on the organization’s human rights responsibilities…Full Article QATAR: Will the World Cup Bubble Burst?
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES- Immune to accusations of bribery, human rights abuses, and having really hot weather, Qatar intends to host the 2022 World Cup as planned, come what may. Such immunity can make anyone cocky, and at a New York Times art conference in Doha, the Emir’s sister Sheikha Al…Full Article QATAR: Bring It On, Critics