Tuesday, April 19, 2005

US-Islamic World Forum - Hitchens at Slate

On one small peninsula on the forbidding coast of Saudi Arabia, a tiny emirate plays host to Al Jazeera and to the key U.S. base in the region. Both the network and the base used to be on Saudi soil until they were, in different ways, asked to move. Qatar itself is also a hereditary Wahabbist monarchy, but several years ago the current emir decided to depose his autocratic father, to abolish censorship, to allow women to drive and to vote and to run for office, and to invite critical Arab intellectuals to come and call upon him.
Could Qatar be serving as a laboratory for liberalization in Saudi Arabia?

Thanks to JP of The Eclectic Econoclast for the pointing out this article.



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