How Britain’s power in the Middle East collapsed during the reign of Queen Elizabeth

Much of Britain’s traditional control of the region was rooted in monarchies that were either imposed or supported by close ties to her royal family. But by 1971, all of its protectorates in the Middle East had gained independence as the cost of running the British Empire escalated.
Said James Onley, a professor of history at the American University of Sharjah who has studied the relationship between Britain and the Gulf states. “When Britain announced in 1968 that it would withdraw its army from the Gulf, and protect it from the small Gulf states, the Gulf states asked Britain not to leave.”

After its withdrawal, Britain forged strategic partnerships with the Gulf states that include defence, security, investment and energy interests – and the royal family has played a role in protecting that relationship.

“The royal family has provided a means for Britain to establish and maintain long-term relationships with ruling elites in the region, especially in the Gulf, in ways that are difficult for elected political leaders to replicate,” Christian Ulrichsen, a fellow in the Middle East at Rice University’s Baker Institute, told CNN. “Although this did not always translate into measurable outcomes for British interests in the region.”

The Queen made two sets of state visits to the Gulf region in 1979 and 2010, and photos of her laughing alongside the ruling elite depicted a strong affinity.

Onley said that the number of exchanged visits between members of the royal family from the Arab and British Gulf countries can be compared with the royal family’s visits to the Commonwealth countries. “This is surprising considering that [Gulf] Not part of the Commonwealth, but a de facto member in many ways… Britain is more than just a strategic ally [in the Gulf]It’s family in many respects.”

Memories of British rule are not fond of in the North in the Arab world. Many in the Middle East attribute current political grievances to the colonial era. The death of Queen Elizabeth II may have prompted an outpouring of grief from the countries Britain once controlled, but the legacy of what she represented was also seen as a symbol of oppression.

Abdul Razzaq Al-Tikriti, a professor of history at Brown University, told CNN that the Queen began her reign when Britain was trying to remake its relationship with the countries it once controlled.

“In that period, the region engaged in a wide range of anti-colonial uprisings…and attempts to overthrow British domination,” he said.

Those attempts succeeded, and under Queen Elizabeth, Britain’s influence in the Middle East underwent a drastic change, with colonial structures now largely disappeared.

“The Queen’s reign can be described as overseeing the management of Britain’s decline as an imperial and world power, a period summed up by the fallout from the Suez Crisis in 1956, after only four years of her reign, and the struggle to rebuild Britain’s standing in the region in the years that followed. that “.

Al-Tikriti said it is difficult for people in the Middle East to move on from Britain’s history when its influence continues.

“The most prominent British legacy in the region, which of course was not resolved during the reign of Queen Elizabeth, is the question of Palestine. Many people in the region have never forgiven Britain,” he said.


Zelensky: Turkish drone manufacturer is building a factory in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday met the head of Turkey’s defense company Baykar and said the company would set up a factory in Ukraine to build drones, Reuters reported.
  • backgroundThe Bayraktar TB2 drone from Baykar gained great fame in Ukraine, where it helped destroy many Russian artillery systems and armored vehicles. A video posted online showed Zelensky awarding Bayraktar the Ukrainian Order of Merit. In return, Zelensky received a traditional Ukrainian shirt embroidered with a drone.
  • why does it matter: Russia had previously complained to Turkey about its sale of drones to Ukraine. Turkey did not join its NATO allies in punishing Russia for its war in Ukraine and facilitated talks between the warring parties.

Greek PM wants to keep channels with Turkey open despite ‘unacceptable’ comments

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Sunday that Athens will try to keep channels of communication with Ankara open despite recent “unacceptable” comments from Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He said he was always willing to meet Erdogan.

  • backgroundErdogan accused Greece of occupying demilitarized islands in the Aegean, saying that Turkey is ready to “do what is necessary” when the time comes. The European Union last week expressed concern about Erdogan’s comments, while Greece sent letters to NATO and the United Nations complaining about what it called “inflammatory” comments.
  • why does it matterThe two countries – NATO allies but historical foes – have been at odds for decades over a range of issues including the beginning and end of the continental shelf, overflights in the Aegean, the status of demilitarized islands, and a divided Cyprus.

Iran urges Saudi Arabia to show goodwill in talks to revive ties

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser al-Kinani said on Monday that Iran had no preconditions in its talks with Saudi Arabia, calling on Riyadh to adopt a “constructive approach” to improve relations. “Iran will respond proportionately to any constructive action by Saudi Arabia,” al-Kinani said in a televised news conference.

  • background: Last month, Tehran said that the sixth round of postponed talks between Saudi Arabia and Iran in Baghdad would be held when conditions were right in Iraq. The Saudi foreign minister had said in May that there had been some progress in Iraqi-mediated talks with Iran, but “not enough”.
  • why does it matterTehran and Riyadh, the Middle East’s two leading Shiite and Sunni powers, severed ties in 2016 with both sides supporting different sides in proxy wars across the region, from Yemen to Syria and elsewhere. The talks are taking place as erstwhile Middle Eastern adversaries move to mend the rift. Last month, the UAE returned its ambassador to Tehran.

What is common

Saudi Arabia: Nizar Bahbri insults Saudi women

A famous Saudi doctor’s research on women’s porn viewing habits has sparked controversy in the Gulf country, with many attacking the practitioner for “insulting Saudi women”.

Nizar Bahbari is the director of the Saudi Society for Infectious Diseases in Jeddah, and has gained a large number of social media during the COVID-19 pandemic, with many listening to his advice. He has more than 230 thousand followers.

However, his popularity was affected when Bahbri said, in an interview on Saturday with a Saudi TV channel, that a survey he conducted in 2019 showed that 92% of Saudi women watch pornography, up from 23% in a 2014 survey on social media. He told the TV channel that the survey included 3,000 women.

Soon, Twitter accounts run by critics of Saudi Arabia and its rulers began citing the video as evidence of the alleged negative impact of social freedoms being introduced in the kingdom. Pornography is prohibited in Saudi Arabia.

Others attacked the doctor, with the Arabic hashtag “Nizar Bahabri insulting Saudi women” spread on Twitter.

“It just sits there and it gives the world the impression that Saudi women are easy”, 1 user tweetedquestion his dignity.
“Evil, poisonous and malicious words” other user chirp.

Al-Bahbri revealed his findings in the context of the growing fears of addiction to pornography, which he said hinders sexual relations in marriage. He defended his research on social media, noting that the survey included only 3,000 women, whose porn viewing habits do not represent the entire community.

“In order to create appropriate educational content, I conduct surveys to find out the extent of the problem,” he said. In an uploaded video on Twitter on Monday.

Nizar declined CNN’s request for comment.

By Nadeen Ebrahim

today’s picture

Palestinians take part in a local canoeing championship off the coast of Gaza City, on Sunday.

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