By Ala’a Shehabi, Marc Owen Jones
portray an image of a kingdom outlined via oil wealth and deep inequality, Bahrain Uprising offers a voice for the standard citizen, telling the tale of the rebellion and taking readers into the dynamic tradition of highway protests that proceed to place strain at the slowly altering monarchy. Bahrain Uprising will be a useful contribution to our figuring out not only of Bahrain, yet of the Arab Spring and grass-roots democratic hobbies in general.
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Extra resources for Bahrain’s Uprising: Resistance and Repression in the Gulf
Ahmed Al Fatih was the founder of the Al Khalifa state and led the conquest of the island in 30 introduction the eighteenth century. This conquest was always shrouded in the language of ‘enlightenment’ and ‘renaissance’, and at the expense of the history of the indigenous Baharna Shiʿa population. This divisive war of symbols took place between Al Fateh, the defender of the status quo, and al-Luʾluʾ, the ‘pearl’ of freedom and democracy. At the height of the protests, this counter-mobilisation, though much smaller in size than that at al-dawaˉ r appeared genuine, but it quickly became clear that the mobilisation took place as a result of fear-mongering against the opposition rather than blind or sectarian loyalty to the regime.
All of these are seen as a reward for loyalty rather than a right. The final section of the book (Part III) takes us on a journey through the history of repression and its development. In Chapter 7, Zoe Holman addresses Britain’s special and unique relationship with Bahrain, documenting the historical and contemporary political milieus that have determined Britain’s foreign policy towards Bahrain. Using archival resources and interviews with Bahraini activists, as well as press releases and news copy, Holman examines the dichotomous position of the Bahraini opposition in London, which lobbies for political change from within a country which has a relationship with Bahrain that they see as being inimical to the objectives of democratisation.
39 Much of this has been gained through lands bestowed upon the King, by the King himself – acquiring at least 65 square kilometres of reclaimed land and destroying beautiful palm groves and natural coastlines that were a feature of the island. Indeed, in 2002, ‘the king issued a law giving himself the sole authority to grant state land rights’. V. 41 What has emerged in Bahrain is essentially a kleptocratic ethnocracy, where one ethnic group, the Sunni Al Khalifa, has captured the instruments of state in order to protect their position of material and political privilege.