Western media, especially American media, are full of talk, analysis, anguish, and punditry about the regional impact of the Lausanne nuclear deal made by Iran and the six world powers. I am speaking about the alleged Arab reaction. It is all based on a vast media campaign, whispered leaks to select American columnists, and private complaints by highly-placed “Arab” officials to unnamed bureaucrats. This campaign has utilized the vast media owned by some Arab kings, princes, potentates and their fronts in some Arab capitals and in the West. Thus it has created an urban legend about “Arab” anger and disappointment about a deal that will lift the economic blockade from Iran.
It is obvious that the sources of this alleged “anger” come from some of the GCC states of the Gulf and not from most other Arab states. That is why President Obama has invited the GCC leaders exclusively to Camp David in order to calm their alleged fears. And no other Arab leaders.
Now the members of the GCC whose regimes have leaked or expressed their dissatisfaction are almost certainly only four members: Saudi Arabia (including Bahrain), Qatar, and the UAE. These four countries have, with a total population of about 30+ million represent maybe some 12% of the total Arabs. I am not even counting the fact that almost half the ‘total’ population are imported temporary expatriate laborers who couldn’t care less about the issue. Can we say that these princes and potentates speak for the Arab world? Can we say these entitlement “born” leaders speak for other countries that “elect” their leaders? Now what about the others: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Tunisia, Algeria, etc, etc?
So, forget the reports about “Arab” anger. It is mostly an urban legend created and encouraged by the dominating vast media of Saudi Arabia and Qatar who have created so many news outlets and gobbled up so many other Arab media.
So, show me the figures, the reliable polls……..
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
In the Gulf GCC countries that are bombing Yemen, you get arrested and imprisoned if you publicly criticize this war being waged by air against the poorest Arab country outside Africa. The war is done in alliance with Sudan, Somalia, Egypt, Morocco, Jordan and at least two Western powers who supply the weapons and provide the logistics and intelligence. Pakistan and Malaysia are being coy, but it is almost certain the former ia supplying some personnel.
As I said, one goes to prison for publicly opposing this war that probably was imposed on the GCC by the Saudis. The doubters have been right so far. Decisive Storm has not been decisive yet, has not decided anything except to visit misery, death, injury, and homelessness on the people of Yemen. While the escaped former president, the weakling AbdRAbuh Hadi, and his ministers egg on the attackers from luxury accommodations in Saudi Arabia.
So far the war has not achieved any strategic success. Since it started a week ago, the Houthis and their military allies have completed their takeover of Aden and Bab El Mandab Strait on the Red Sea. Perhaps the idea is to weaken them enough with bombardment for an easy ground attack or to force them to accept Hadi. Neither is realistic. Hadi is out and for good. He was never popular inside Yemen. Any leader that invites a foreign attack on his country and people does not usually return to power, as per my last fatwa.
The whole concept of Decisive Storm is based on the Desert Storm campaign that freed Kuwait from Iraqi occupation in 1991. Softening with bombardment, and then……….what? Can you imagine a Saudi and Egyptian expeditionary force slugging it in the rugged Yemeni landscape? And what would the other side do?
That is why I prefer to call it Stupid Storm. Unless they can prove otherwise……..
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
New Arab media sprout almost every day. Both online and offline. I am only listing some with the word “Arab” in them. Otherwise there are more, many many more. Briefly, here are some that exist now, some that will exist, some that should exist, and some that should not exist:
Al-Quds Al-Arabi (=Arab Jerusalem):London-based. Used to be Qatari-funded but pro-Palestinian. Now totally Qatari-owned and nicely sectarian.
New Arab: sounds like Qatari or Emirati-funded propaganda website. I would guess more Qatari, tentatively.
Free Arabs: Not really ‘free’, me thinks. U.S. based, a bit cutesy. Seems more like it should be renamed AIPAC Arab or some other pro-Likud or Mujahideen Khalq or Neoconservative funded group.
AlArabiya: owned by an in-law of the Saudi royal family. Has close ties with Asharq Alawsat which is owned by Saudi King Salman.
AlArab:news network owned by Prince Al-Waleed Bin Talal (he sued Forbes for underestimating his wealth). Now looking for a home base after being kicked out of Bahrain on its first and last day of broadcasting.
Angry Arab: I don’t know who the hell funds this one. Almost certainly self-funded from the sale of non-Israeli hummus.
Mad Arab: partly owned by Alfred E. Neuman and his wife.
Arab Garlic: partly owned by The Onion but based in Gilroy, California.
Humorless Arab: you’d think it is a Jordanian outlet, but t goes deeper than tat……
Pissed off Arab: just about anybody between Bahrain and Casablanca who is not a ruler, relative of a ruler, or minion of a ruler.
Stoned Arab: almost certainly headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Dumb Arab: probably based and operated by the League of Arab Nations (Arab League).
Smart or Thinking Arab: in exile, in prison, dead, or ruling the rest of them.
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum