Qatar's 2022 World Cup is promising to be a rare example of a mega sporting event that leaves a legacy of social, political and economic change - but not in the way the Gulf state's ruling family had imagined.
Widely viewed as a shrewd financial investor, Qatar's return on investment in soft power designed to position it as a progressive ally of world powers in the hope that they will come to the aid of the wealthy Gulf state in times of emergency is proving to be abysmal.
The Al Jazeera TV news organization that began in Qatar missed a great opportunity when it started Al Jazeera America (AJAM), using the cable channel it bought from ex-Vice President Al Gore's Current TV.
After four years of engagement with its critics in a so far failed bid to turn its hosting of the World Cup into a successful soft power tool, Qatar appears to have decided that the region's tendency to intimidate those who don't fall into line may be a more effective strategy.
The world's richest country per capita, lying on the north-eastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula, has traditionally been an unlikely place for a holiday.
You'd think that more than 40 years of fixation on the Middle East, often to the exclusion of more important areas of the world, would at least enable sophisticated media coverage of Middle Eastern politics as it impacts American politics. But no.
The prospect of a final nuclear deal has prompted a race among several countries to benefit from the easing of UN Security Council sanctions against Iran. A competition to secure trade with Iran has already been initiated. And Russia, a long-term strategic ally of the Islamic Republic, would not desire to fall behind.
The founding head of Al Jazeera America has been unceremoniously demoted, and a trusted face from the older Al Jazeera English put in his stead. Yet this is not the main issue. As it happens, we all have a stake in a stronger, better, trusted Al Jazeera service.
A promise by Qatari labour and social affairs minister Abdullah Saleh Mubarak al-Khulaifi to reform the Gulf state's controversial kafala or labour sponsorship system by the end of this year is likely to cut little ice with human rights and trade union activists who four years after Qatar won the right to host the 2022 World Cup are demanding deeds rather than words.
Giving human rights the "ignorance treatment" is far from a new approach for policymakers when it comes to taking a position against the perpetrating regimes. It actually follows a pattern that has occurred in relations with Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Russia, just to name a few examples.
Anthony "Tony" Podesta began lobbying in late 2013 on behalf of a company co-owned by ExxonMobil and Qatar Petroleum aiming to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the global market.
It's often said that you can't get economists to agree on anything. Well, oil economists certainly can't agree on future prices, with commentators suggesting anything from $20 to $200. Seldom has there been such a discrepancy in forecasting, though the median forecasts seem to be somewhere between $60 and $70.
The Billings Gazette has revealed that coal mining company Cloudpeak Energy ghost wrote protest letters to the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI) on behalf of allied policymakers and business groups.
A planned anti-Qatari protest ahead of a match between Chelsea and Manchester United, the first major fan demonstration against the 2022 World Cup hos...
This week's power failure in parts of Washington, D.C. are a reminder, as if one were needed, about the deplorable state of infrastructure more generally in the United States.
The failure of last year's election to achieve political unity in Libya was most evident when Fajr Libya, or "Libya Dawn" -- a diverse coalition of armed groups that includes an array of Islamist militias -- rejected the election's outcome and seized control of Tripoli.