Showing posts with label GCC. Show all posts
Showing posts with label GCC. Show all posts

January 15, 2013

News Analysis: French intervention in Mali and the paradox of foe-ally militant Salafism

    Tuesday, January 15, 2013   No comments

Based on recent events, observers might be mystified by the seemingly unprincipled French involvement in regional and world crises. When the Tunisian uprising that jump-started the Arab Spring began, French leaders sided with the regime and prominent French politicians fell from grace after the revolution succeeded in removing Ben Ali. Then, France did not take any public role in the Egyptian uprising. 

When the Arab Spring reached Libya, France was the most enthusiastic western country for starting military action that resulted in the killing of Qaddafi and the establishment of the new regime. At that time, most observers thought that the Libyan oil was the primary motive that pushed France to take the lead in NATO’s operations in Libya. Former French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, admitted that much when he said, after the fall of Qaddafi, that France should have the lions’ share in the oil business in Libya. However, despite his success overseas, the French people were not happy and fired Sarkozy.

When the new president, Francois Hollande, took over, many expected a more measured response to world crises. His first test was Syria. He initially kept his distance from the opposition that was represented in the Syrian National Council. That might have been a cautious move to keep Turkey’s influence under control since that group was seen as being too close to Turkey. When the U.S. and Qatar engineered the dismantling of the Syrian National Council and replacing it with the Syrian National Coalition, France was the first country in the world to recognize it as “the sole and legitimate representative of the Syrian people.” Whatever strategy they have had in mind, it does not seem that it worked since the Syrian Coalition is just as incompetent as its predecessor in terms of having real influence inside Syria.

December 21, 2011

Holding on to the past and the status quo, Gulf States seek political unity

    Wednesday, December 21, 2011   No comments
by Ahmed E. Souaiaia*

The Arab world is fundamentally changing, and many Arab leaders are racing to adapt. Showing increased signs of nervousness, the leaders of the Gulf States have adopted the Saudi King’s recommendation to move the Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) towards “unity.” The meeting of the rulers of the GCC member states that concluded on Tuesday December 20, 2011 also issued an unusually portentous declaration. The rulers expressed their fears of “attempts by foreign entities trying to export their internal crises through the effects of discord and division, and inciting sectarianism.” Therefore, they outlined a strategy “to fortify the home front” to counter these attempts through their “determination to achieve the highest degree of economic integration and development of defense cooperation and security.” Let’s attempt to decipher these seemingly cryptic sentences.

June 1, 2011

Realignment of the Arab world in the light of the Arab revolutions

    Wednesday, June 01, 2011   No comments

In another sign of nervousness resulting from the mounting pressure put by the Arab revolts on authoritarian rulers, members of the GCC (Cooperative Council for the Arab States of the Gulf) unexpectedly opened the door for considering the admission of Jordan and Morocco to this intergovernmental organization. In doing so, what used to be a geographical cooperative is worriedly attempting to transform itself into a political paradigm.

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