Alongside Saudi Arabia and some other Gulf states govt 5 June cut diplomatic relations and air and sea links with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism and cosying up to Iran. Govt 8 June criminalised showing “sympathy” for Qatar, arrested human rights lawyer Issa al-Burshaid for filing lawsuit against authorities over Qatar blockade mid-June. Unclaimed bombing 18 June killed policeman in Diraz, home village of prominent Shiite cleric Ayatollah Isa Qassim, after security forces deployed there late May to “enforce general order”.
Unless all sides to the conflict agree to an inclusive dialogue in order to reach meaningful reform, Bahrain is heading for prolonged and costly political stalemate.
Bahrain’s crackdown and Saudi Arabia’s 14 March military intervention could turn a mass movement for democratic reform into an armed conflict while regionalising a genuinely internal political struggle.
Scheduled for 15 August 2005, Israel's disengagement from Gaza and parts of the northern West Bank has already begun. How Israel for the first time evacuates settlements in the Palestinian Occupied Territories will have profound implications for Israeli-Palestinian relations, but also for Israeli society.
A little over four years after Sheikh Hamad bin ’Isa al-Khalifa announced a sweeping reform plan, Bahrain’s fragile liberal experiment is poised to stall, or, worse, unravel. The overlap of political and social conflict with sectarian tensions makes a combustible mix.
It's not the attacks that are surprising. It's that Iran has been able to avoid one for so long. The attacks were a wake-up call for Iran's security apparatus.
Originally published in Alquds
Originally published in Le Figaro
Originally published in The New York Review of Books
Originally published in Al-Quds Al-Arabi