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This week’s front page editor

Claire Provost

Claire Provost is editor of 50.50 covering gender, sexuality and social justice.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Did the US and Britain collude in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi?

With Khashoggi’s murder, many secrets that both the Kingdom and its western allies wanted buried, will stay that way.

How Britain is a bad influence on the Gulf states – an interview with David Wearing

 Could Britain ever promote democracy in the Gulf? Only if it turns its own foreign policy away from neoliberalism and militarism, David Wearing argues in a new book.

Politics “as if” in Riyadh

Saudi Arabia first denied the Khashoggi murder and then blamed it on rogue security agents. Neither version has enjoyed much credibility but the ability to make the population repeat incredible claims is itself a form of power for Arab autocrats.

Famine in Yemen: long announced, now on our screens

What are world leaders doing? Where is the ‘international community’ Yemenis so often appeal to?

The Natural History Museum has been used by the Saudi regime

At a time when the Saudis are intensifying their crackdown on human rights, yesterday’s reception gave all the wrong messages.

The West’s approach to Saudi Arabia: ‘one step forward, two steps back’

Western powers are actively enabling the very human rights violations they seek to expose.

Britain’s warfare state

Britain needs an industrial strategy. At the same time, Britain needs to move away from its imperial pretensions to police the world's oceans. The two factors are ever more interlinked.

Arrests of women’s rights activists put Saudi Arabia on the wrong side of history

From Indonesia to Saudi Arabia, Muslim women’s movements for equality are increasingly interconnected – and unstoppable.

Gassing and selective applications of a ‘Red Line’: lest we forget

The gassing of people is considered exceptionally inhumane, officially a categorical “red line” dividing good from evil. This belief now threatens to trigger an escalation with unpredictable consequences.

Wretched third anniversary of international intervention in Yemen: the Saudi-led coalition and humanitarian disaster. Part 2

Trump’s recent senior appointments suggest an increasingly virulent anti-Iranian strategy which certainly coincides with that of the current Saudi regime. Things could hardly be worse.

Fear of forgetting – heroines who changed history

Simone De Beauvoir and Gisele Halimi were indefatigable. They wrote to every responsible official in the judiciary, military and government – up to General de Gaulle. Lest we forget.

The Middle East’s new donors: rogues or team players?

Turkey and the Gulf monarchies in their savvy, if reactionary, use of aid have become important players in the international donors club.

You've kept your power, Arab rulers, but at what cost?

Let us never forget that those who make peaceful uprisings impossible will eventually make violent revolution irresistible. 

Not a Saudi ‘Arab spring’: Mohammad Bin Salman, a threat not a reformer [Part 2]

Mohammad bin Salman is now MENA’s main threat to peace, stability, and hope for democratization in the Arab world.

Western complicity is fuelling Yemen’s humanitarian crisis

A besieged and starved population has been pushed to the brink of famine. The UK, US and France need to re-evaluate their relationship with Saudi Arabia.

Not a Saudi ‘Arab spring’: Mohammad Bin Salman, a threat not a reformer [Part 1]

Putting “Mohammad bin Salman” next to “Arab Spring” is either an oxymoron or an antithesis.

Will Iraq’s PM embrace a Trump-inspired Saudi-sponsored drive to curb Iranian influence?

Trump-MBS strategy has not made significant headway. Will they succeed in escalating anti-Shia confrontation against Iran and its allies?

The return of authoritarianism is priming the Middle East for more conflict

How is the Saudi-Iranian rivalry overwriting the Arab Spring’s key messages?

Kurds’ choices: heed history or the US?

Who controls Syria’s borders? The US and Israel are encouraging Syrian Kurds to fight the regime and its allies for border control. The ensuing mayhem might unravel the Mideast and far beyond.

Safe spaces, bagpipes and houmous

“This is the safe space I was talking about… a totally open space people can feel safe in, because stories are shared, barriers are broken and everyone is welcome.”

All ‘hail’ the real king

The Saudi Monarch’s 4 November purge threatens the kingdom’s longstanding policy on dynastic rule, and paves the way for Salman’s abdication of power to his son Mohammed.

Contagion effect and the Saudi grand game in the Middle East

The willingness of Mohammed bin Salman to embark on a series of moves against Iranian power in the Middle East already shows evidence of severe miscalculation.

The Prince: on how many fronts can Mohammad bin Salman act simultaneously?

The Saudi crown prince moves towards concentrating absolute power in his own hands, while escalating tensions on several fronts.

The anti-Islamist campaign and Arab democracy

Egyptians, Libyans, Tunisians, and other Arabs deserve better than to be told that they must choose between extremism and chaos or autocracy.

Families of 9/11 victims to sue the Saudi government

Declassified evidence about the 9/11 attacks point to Saudi Arabia. But will justice be served?

Britain’s foreign policy: it's time for reform

With its prominent position in the arms trade, and the impunity it grants countries like Saudi Arabia, Britain is playing with fire.

Saudi women between online resistance and new physical realities

What role did collective action, and social media play in Saudi Arabia’s decision to lift its ban on women driving?

Human Rights Council condemns reprisals amidst unprecedented rate of cases in MENA region

One can only wonder how the HRC can maintain its credibility while its member states are actively working against the council’s very raison d’être of protecting human rights.

Turning weapons on a toddler

In Awamiya, a Shia-majority town in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province, a three-year-old boy has been shot and killed amid demolition and the shooting of civilians. Here, his mother speaks.

Time to rethink UK’s engagement with Saudi Arabia

The UK has long been criticised for its close relationship with Saudi Arabia but it is time to rethink it.

Race to the sea: Qatar and the balance of power in the Middle East

If the Qatari crisis is not managed rationally, then it is likely to compound the present risks in the regional balance of power, with consequences for all states in the region.

Qatar crisis: a broader consolidation of power

Despite the real tension and rivalries, there is far more that unites Qatar and surrounding countries than what separates them.

A Corbyn-led government should start by scrapping the Prevent Strategy

Corbyn wants to talk about and address the causes of terrorist violence? This will require scrapping the Prevent Strategy.

Behind The Saudi-Qatari spat and the fragmentation of the GCC

The sanctions on Qatar aim to force the government of Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to alter its foreign policy – particularly regarding its warming relations with Iran.

Lebanon in the eye of the regional storm

Hizbollah’s proven armed capability in Syria, Israel’s perceived political defeat in 2006, coupled with a possible US and Saudi green light, may make confrontation inevitable.

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