Special Reports


Number:
Author: Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat
When a former furniture store owner and mayor of the small city of Surakarta, Joko “Jokowi” Widodo, was elected as Indonesia’s seventh president in 2014, his limited experience in foreign affairs left many observers thinking his ‘presidency would see few significant breakthroughs in the country’s foreign policy.  However, despite these presumptions, Jokowi has succeeded in strengthening Indonesia’s relationship with various Middle Eastern partners, including Saudi Arabia. As a result, over the past decade, ties between Jakarta and Riyadh have solidified and become more multifaceted, with the scope of cooperation expanding from the diploma
Read more
Number:
Author: Hamad Sulaiman Othman Alturki
This publication is available in Arabic only.
Read more
Number:
Author: John P. Burns
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leads and manages governance in China, a rising geopolitical and economic superpower. The party is organized territorially throughout the country, including in local jurisdictions like the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. However, because of Hong Kong’s recent past as a British colony, the party operates differently there than on the mainland. Understanding these differences sheds light on the operation of the CCP as the leading institution in the world’s largest country. The paper drills down into the history, organization, and functions of the local party in Hong Kong and its relationship to the central party and government
Read more
Number:
Author: Abdullah Hamidaddin
Previous experiences of post-war reconstruction (PWR) inform us that it will always fall short of the expectations of donors and recipients alike. There is not one experience of such reconstruction where things went according to plan. Experts and writers have to go all the way back to post-WWII reconstruction in Europe and Japan to find successful examples, only to discover that their contexts were fundamentally different from any subsequent post-war scenarios. This report is available in Arabic only. Its English version has been published in “The Cairo Review of Global Affairs.&rd
Read more
Number:
Author: Joshua Craze
Rather than preventing conflict, internationally backed peace agreements in South Sudan, Sudan, and elsewhere have established a system of incentives that structure elite compacts in the capital that actually intensify the political economy of war. Such peace agreements rely on a normative vision of the state that is at odds with how states have actually come to function in many conflict zones in the world since the 1980s. This normative vision enables peace agreements to be easily instrumentalized by elites and is a major reason why such agreements fail to prevent conflict. Such failures are not contingent but are structural properties of peace agreements that at best aim for r
Read more
Number:
Author: Makki Hamid
This paper will shed light on the Official Development Assistance (ODA) provided by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) to developing countries worldwide. The KSA has contributed significantly to the well-being of many developing countries. However, for quite some time, such valuable assistance was not publicized enough in the media nor reflected in international aid platforms. This paper discusses KSA’s aid in detail, outlining the various categories of aid, where it is dispersed (by country and region), to which sectors, and how it has evolved over time. Moreover, it covers KSA’s assistance to developing countries in their quest to reach the Susta
Read more
Number:
Author: Mohamed Al-Sbitli
This publication is available in Arabic only. 
Read more
Number:
Author: Abdullah Hamidaddin
This paper considers the various risks to a sustained peace in Yemen and the possibilities of a continuation of the conflict by other means, focusing on factors that may be unintentionally generated by the peace process itself. These factors include the quest for inclusiveness and transitional justice, both of which have the potential to legitimate and institutionalize conflict-generated fault lines and identities, creating new obstacles to stability and expanding the field for contentious politics amongst the powerful, incubating new militant expressions of grievances. The paper also focuses on a risk that is not given sufficient attention, namely dehumanization, which has inte
Read more
Number:
Author: Faris Al-Sulayman
As the global economy transitions away from fossil fuels, the six oil producing rentier states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) have sought to diversify their dependent economies away from this resource and develop industrialized and knowledge based economies. Though much attention has focused on neoliberal pathways of development, beneath the surface new state capitalist modes of development have been deployed, sometimes resembling models deployed in other state capitalist economies, and sometimes in different and novel ways. In the UAE and Saudi Arabia in particular, new modes of state capitalism have emerged, with the state increasingly assuming a role as an investor of
Read more
Number:
Author: Kameal Al-Ahmad
Afghanistan became the spotlight of almost every news outlet as the world looked in bewilderment at the disorderly American withdrawal. Despite all its political and military might, the United States largely left empty-handed, as tangible results are hard to find on the ground in Afghanistan. The war that, after over $2 trillion spent during 20 years of occupation, many believed “endless” has indeed come to a stop, leaving a disastrous predicament poised to worsen in the near future. The swift fall of the Afghan government and the Taliban’s shocking return to power signals looming catastrophe, chaos, instability, and a humanitarian crisis with implications far
Read more