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    From Revolutions to Elections: When Tribes Transform State Power

From Revolutions to Elections: When Tribes Transform State Power

by Alice Wilson

Histories of state formation in the Middle East and North Africa recount how tribes have made states, states have made tribes, and actors claiming to represent each have imagined the other as a threat or opportunity for consolidating power bases. But familiar questions about tribes and states as potential allies or rivals overlook newer questions which in […]

Tribe and State in the Contemporary Arabian Peninsula

by J. E. Peterson
This memo was presented part of a workshop organised by the LSE Middle East Centre on 13 June 2018, looking at Tribe and State in the Middle East.  

The question “what is a tribe” is certainly debatable (see Berque) but here the reference is specifically to qabilah in the Arabian Peninsula. Simply put, people are related by their own estimation and those […]

Al-Jazeera Under Siege

by Jessica Watkins

I have recently returned from a research trip to Doha. I can’t say how the current mood compares to how things were before the Saudi-led blockade against it began last summer because this was my first visit there, but on balance, it seemed more resolute than broken.

My trip coincided with a piece in The Guardian by Tim […]

Cybersecurity Expertise in the Gulf States

by James Shires

Cybersecurity is an important issue worldwide. It is relevant to governments concerned about geopolitical rivals, companies concerned about reputation, fraud and commercial secrets, and individuals concerned about privacy, data protection and surveillance.

This is especially true in the Gulf states. The immediate pretext for the Qatar crisis in June 2017 was a video of the Qatari Emir that […]

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    Book Review – Madawi Al-Rasheed’s ‘Salman’s Legacy: The Dilemmas of a New Era in Saudi Arabia’

Book Review – Madawi Al-Rasheed’s ‘Salman’s Legacy: The Dilemmas of a New Era in Saudi Arabia’

by Paul Aarts

It’s not (yet) easy to make sense of the ‘new’ Saudi Arabia. Among the ongoing flurry of commentaries one regularly reads dire headlines such as ‘The House of Saud: The beginning of the end’ and ‘Saudi Arabia: The coming civil war’. Equally, it’s not difficult to find less gloomy and even outright rosy forecasts of the Kingdom’s future […]

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