The Arab Gulf States: Old Approaches and New Realities

Author/s: Abdulkhaleq Abdulla
1st Edition Year: 2000
Edition: First edition
Language: English
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The six Arab Gulf States (AGS) comprising Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are universally recognized as a distinct group of states. These states have developed their own distinct socio-economic features, regional concerns and political priorities that are relatively independent of the rest of the Arab World. More important, these states have acquired over the last 30 years, a unique international prominence. However, despite their global significance, the AGS are either little understood or even grossly misunderstood by the outside world.The central purpose of this analysis is to provide answers to some key questions such as: Why is it important to study the AGS? How do we best approach and analyze them? What are their unique characteristics? How did they acquire such an imposing strategic value? The author discusses among other aspects, three compelling reasons and three different approaches to assess the AGS. The study examines the changing national, regional and international developments affecting these states and the rationale behind their strategic and economic importance, concluding that the conventional oil-dominated approaches to the AGS do not adequately reflect their individual complexities and current realities.

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