A New Saudi Arabia to the world: We are open for business

Monday, 11 December 2017

Transformative. That is the word commonly uttered when discussing monumental events unfolding in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2017. A country that long isolated itself from the rest of the world, it consequently manifested a reputation as an ultra-conservative country detached from modernity and disconnected from the world. But the pendulum is finally swinging the other way, as Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s Vision 2030, a plan designed to transform the Saudi economy and society, is ...

In landmark move, Saudi Arabia to issue cinema licenses in early 2018

Monday, 11 December 2017

Cinemas in Saudi Arabia will get their licenses in 2018. “As the industry regulator, the General Commission for Audiovisual Media has started the process for licensing cinemas in the Kingdom,” Minister of Culture and Information Awwad bin Saleh Alawwad said in a statement. ”We expect the first cinemas to open in March 2018.” The government had promised a shake-up of the cultural scene with a set of “Vision 2030” reforms announced by Crown Prince Mohammed bin ...

Mohammad bin Salman explains why he is always in a hurry

Friday, 24 November 2017

With policies and programs set in motion in Saudi Arabia, the question for New York Times’ Thomas L. Friedman was whether Mohammed bin Salman and his team can see this through. He chose not to make predictions and even says that the Crown Prince’s circle of advisers don’t always challenge him sufficiently. But the question still remains whether he has a tendency to start too many things, and if yes, why? According to Friedman, perfect is not on the menu here. Someone had to do ...

Think again: Saudi purge soon to enter its fourth week

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Splashed across the headlines are the images of a “kingdom in chaos” and the Saudi leadership making a traditional “Arab ruler power grab,” as the Saudi anti-corruption purge enters into its fourth week. These are two myths that should be dismantled for three reasons: First, the portrayal of a Saudi Arabia in chaos does not stand up to scrutiny. I was just in the country this week, and all was quiet, routine activities were normal except for the .00001 percent of the ...

Saudi Arabia: An inflection point in destiny

Thursday, 16 November 2017

There was once an emerging power with ambitions that stretched beyond its shores. This power was a regional hegemon but a great debate raged within its ruling elite. The question was about who should participate and partake of the gains made by this society?On the one hand were those who believed that the benefits and gains were the result of the decision-making of the ruling elite, and so the benefits should also accrue to them alone.On the other hand, there was a view that such exclusive ...

Faisal Al-Shammeri

Is democracy an essential prerequisite for justice?

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Democracy can no longer be held as the only political system with the greatest potential for institutionalizing justice. This premise faces many challenges as any historical analysis would reveal that justice without falling within the purview of democracy can be institutionalized and govern all facets of relations between the individual, society and the state. Thus, it would be dangerous to present the democratic model as a moral standard and to attach no value to any other political system ...

Fahad Suleiman Shoqiran

FP: King Salman, crown prince most powerful leaders Saudi has ever seen

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Mohammed bin Salman “is trying to make people understand that this is no longer business as usual,” Bernard Haykel, a professor of Near Eastern studies at Princeton University, has said. Referring to the Saudi crown prince’s reform agenda, which includes diversifying the country’s economy and reforming the public sector, Haykel said that if it remains business as usual, “there is no way that he will ever be able to succeed with Vision 2030.” “I think ...

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