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Middle East in the Media January 21 - 27 2013

Weekly reading list


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  • BBC: The complicated legacy of Egypt's Hosni Mubarak (Yolande Knell, January 25)
  • "In the later years of his presidency, Mubarak was given credit for economic reforms that successfully raised overall growth and investment. However they failed to alleviate poverty; some 40% of the Egyptian population continued to live on $2 a day or less."

  • Reuters: Five die in Egypt violence on anniversary of uprising (Tom Perry & Yousri Mohamed, January 25)
  • "The January 25 anniversary laid bare the divide between the Islamists and their secular rivals. This schism is hindering the efforts of Mursi, elected in June, to revive an economy in crisis and reverse a plunge in Egypt's currency by enticing back investors and tourists."


  • BBC: Netanyahu dealt weak hand by voters (Kevin Connolly, January 26)
  • "The election victory may be his, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emerges with a dented reputation and a weak hand as he tries to form a stable government."


  • Al Monitor: Qatar's Brotherhood ties alienate fellow Gulf states (Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, January 23)
  • "The Arab Gulf States may not admit it publically, but a schism is slowly emerging between these countries in the wake of the rise of Islamist powers in the region. Qatar, on the one hand, has wholeheartedly endorsed the new Islamist powers of the Arab world in the form of the Muslim Brotherhood, while the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia have been skeptical at best."


  • The Observer: Even in Assad's coastal retreat, the war has come and the bombs are dropping (Martin Chulov, January 27)
  • "The shells that crunch most hours into the nearby countryside have not yet arrived. But the fear that pervades the communities on the fringes of Latakia is now spreading around the city known throughout the country as the government's stronghold, and possibly its last redoubt."

  • The Independent: Assad's Lionesses: the female last line in the battle for Syria (Loveday Morris, January 22)
  • "Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has recruited a brigade of women to man checkpoints and carry out security operations as he attempts to free up soldiers in his beleaguered army to fight the rebels."

  • CNN: Rebel court fills void amid Syrian civil war (Ivan Watson & Raja Razek, January 26)
  • "The United Courts Council operates without the authority or recognition of any central government. It stands on the opposition-held side of the front lines that divide this city."

Saudi Arabia

  • Foreign Policy: America's Saudi Problem (Marc Lynch, January 24)
  • "Saudi Arabia's hostility toward the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, and its coordinated efforts to block change in the Gulf and in allied monarchies across the region, works directly against the stated American goal of promoting reform."

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