Sunday, March 27, 2011

Qatar lowest on the shoe throwing index

Unlike its neighbors, the tiny, oil-rich Gulf nation of Qatar has shown no signs of tumult, ranking last in the Economist's "shoe-thrower's index" of Arab unrest. Why has Qatar remained completely peaceful?

Money, and a small population. The revolutions in nearby countries, like Egypt, Yemen, and Oman, have been fueled largely by economic grievances like unemployment and rising food prices. Qatar, which has a population of around 1.5 million, approximately 200,000 of whom are Qatari citizens, has an unemployment rate of half a percent. Its GDP per capita of $145,300 is the highest in the world and its 2010 growth rate was 19.4 percent, also ranking it No. 1 in 2010.
About the UAE, Slate says,
Qatar can be most aptly compared to the United Arab Emirates, which is also majority Sunni and flush with oil money. But Qatar's population is less diverse and much smaller than that of the UAE, which has recently seen some unrest: There were small protests from migrant laborers in January, and a Facebook page promises protests in the regionon March 25. A cadre of intellectuals has also petitioned the government to hold open elections.
Facebook pages can come from anywhere. If you follow the link that one looks quite inactive. Did a March 25 protest happen? If it did it didn't make a blip on the news radar.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think any momentum for change in the UAE has passed and fizzled out.

There have been 2 false starts now. A 3rd will just be embarrassing.

12:50 PM  

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