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Commentaries


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Author: Mohamed Al-Sbitli
This publication is available in Arabic only.
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Author: Joseph A. Kéchichian
This Commentary asks whether Turkish and Iranian officials’ aspirations to lead the Muslim world are realistic. The author states that Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Turkey, claiming to represent Sunnis, challenges Egypt and Saudi Arabia in the Arab world while ‘Ali Khamenei’s Iran seeks revenge on the Arab successors to the ‘Umayyad Empire, to avenge the “martyred” family of the Caliph ‘Ali, especially his son Hussein. The Commentary argues that such goals are unrealistic to implement.
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Author: Mark C. Thompson and Hanaa Almoaibed
Multiple estimates suggest that Saudi Arabia may have one of the highest rates of wasted food globally. Key contributors to waste include culture, food valuation, policy, and industry factors, as well as societal awareness and concern. However, the Saudi National Transformation Program aims to transform healthcare and avoid health risks, a goal that involves improved food preparation and better food consumption practices. Hence, this commentary highlights key issues related to food and sustainability in the Kingdom. Considering Saudi Arabia’s limited arable land and scarce water resources, the commentary discusses the local dimensions of environmental and socioeconomic imp
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Author: Rasheed Al-Khayoun
Statements were recently issued by Iranian jurists of the Qom Seminary repudiating Grand Ayatollah Kamal al-Haydari. Born and raised in Iraq to a “fervent and pious” Arab family, al-Haydari studied in Karbala, Najaf, and then in Qom, according to his official website. He rose to prominence through his lectures, which were broadcast on the Iranian public television channel Al-Kawthar TV. The channel stopped broadcasting his lectures, however, due to concerns over dubious research and messaging that was inconsistent with widely held public and private legal knowledge, including legal precedents that serve as a foundation for many major issues of law. Reinterpretin
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Author: Maha Fallatah
While tourism has been one of the economic sectors hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic, this period of patience provides ample opportunities for the sector to enhance its competitiveness and prepare itself for receiving large numbers of international visitors again. The Saudi tourism sector can convert this crisis into a chance by upgrading itself with the goal to harness human capital and form a key part of the Kingdom’s knowledge-based economy. There are multiple pathways to establishing what we may call knowledge-based tourism. One way – on which this Commentary focuses – is to enhance the knowledge of the tourism sector’s workforces about their local
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Author: By Makio Yamada
The first five years of the Saudi Vision 2030 period will be over soon. As of the first quarter of 2020, the Saudization rate of the private sector had improved to 20%. Saudi Arabia’s endeavor to create jobs for its young citizens will now continue over the second five-year period. There are two methods of job creation in the Saudi labor market: one is by localizing the existing jobs which are currently occupied by expat workers; the other is by creating new job opportunities. Given that the second method is currently not highly available due to the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, the first one is likely to be central to the country’s job creation policy for
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The military coup in Mali has provoked strong international and regional reactions. At home, however, he received a great public welcome.  This comment takes into account local, regional and international implications, stated [declared] positions, insults and parties involved in the process of change.
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Author: Hasan Razi
The commentary deals with fires and explosions in Iran that have expanded in recent times. It highlights serious and unprecedented events in Iran's recent history, exposing economic and political damage, as well as trying to understand what is happening in Iran and those entities that are behind these events and their future repercussions on Tehran's regional and international relationship, on one hand, and the future of the Iranian regime in light of the domestic and foreign crises and the policy of pressures and containment that Washington is exerting against it on the other hand.
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Author: Dr.Mark C Thompson
Based on a survey of more than 300 Saudi youths, this Commentary provides a ‘snapshot’ of current viewpoints and concerns of Saudi youth on their personal future, and specifically, their perceptions of the effect of the pandemic on their education.
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Author: Dr.Rasheed Al-Khayoun
This paper provides a detailed analysis of the motivations and ramifications of the assassination of the Hisham al-Hashemy, the expert on militant organizations. It reveals the importance of al-Hashemy’s work in exposing the activities of Iran’s allies in Iraq, which ultimately led them to silence him. It shows how his report on al-Hashd exposed the activities of the leadership of that organization towards undermining the Hashd factions loyal to Sistani, making al-Hashemy a threat to their existence. It elaborates on the response of the Iraqi government and show how their actions against the perpetrators will test the will and determination of the Iraqi Prime Ministe
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