A Solution for Bahrain? Forget About It……..

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The path to such a solution can be achieved in two steps: firstly by establishing a truce based on the ending of opposition protests, the release of all opposition leaders and activists, and the withdrawal from Bahrain of all GCC forces. Secondly, a time-bound national dialogue of two months should be possible based on the principles of enhancing political representation and accountability and the sharing of power. This dialogue should also serve as the basis for talks aimed at achieving the far-reaching goal of a “constitutional or parliamentary monarchy” in the country. It is a goal that King Hamad has previously set and which the mainstream opposition parties are demanding. It is now time to put aside sectarian concerns and deep seated existential fears and get on with the job of achieving this for the future of Bahrain, the Gulf region, and the entire Middle East.……..

A reasonable idea, but it is not gonna happen. A constitutional monarchy is exactly what the Saudis, and their Emirati sidekicks, went into Bahrain to prevent. The opposition wants this type of solution, has called for it (in spite of some noisy emotional and unrealistic minority demands that are being exploited by the regime and its Salafi allies around the Gulf). There is also a hardline wing of the al-Khalifa clan that wants a Saudi style absolute monarchy. This group is lead by the powerful and highly unpopular old prime minister Shaikh Khalia Al Khalifa (try reading it backwards) who has been in power 40 years. He is no sweetheart: maybe his mom didn’t love him enough as a child (just speculation). He is determined to die in office, in the true fashion of Arab leaders. Besides, Bahrain is unique in the world in another respect: most of the land is now in private hands, mainly al-Khalifa and their cronies (estimates range up to over 80%). This could only have happened through extra-legal means or some funny creative means that any true parliament worth its name would want to investigate. We are talking major medieval-style corruption here.
They may eventually come back to something like this proposal, but it will take some more agony and bloodshed for the people of Bahrain, and probably for the occupation forces as well. Unless the outside world, what is called the international community, gets some courage, finally decides to put its foot down and impose an solution. How about a special UN mediator?