Sultan Sooud Al-Qassemi
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Based in the United Arab Emirates, Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi is a columnist on Arab affairs and an MIT Media Labs Director’s Fellow. Rising in prominence during the Arab Spring, Sultan’s tweets became a major news source, and Time magazine listed him in the 140 Best Twitter Feeds of 2011. In 2014, Arabian Business placed Sultan in its list of World’s 100 Most Powerful Arabs under the Thinkers category.

Sultan is also the founder of the Barjeel Art Foundation, an independent initiative established to contribute to the intellectual development of the art scene in the Arab region by providing a prominent and publicly accessible art collection in the UAE.

Entries by Sultan Sooud Al-Qassemi

이란과 사우디의 종파 싸움 부채질을 막지 못하면 IS를 무찌를 수 없다

(0) Comments | Posted July 24, 2015 | 3:06 AM

수니파 대 시아파의 종파간 긴장과 폭력이 극심하고, 수니파 테러 집단 ISIS가 그걸 이용해먹고 있다. 우리는 양측, 특히 이란과 사우디 아라비아가 종파주의를 부추기는 걸 막지 못하면 ISIS를 무찌를 수 없다.

폭력적인 지하드 수니파 과격주의자 단체인 알 카에다와 ISIS에 의해 고통 받은 여러 종파들로는 시아파, 크리스천, 알라위파, 수니파, 쿠르드, 수피교도,...

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We Cannot Defeat ISIS Until We Stop Iran and Saudi From Pouring Fuel on the Sectarian Fire

(65) Comments | Posted July 22, 2015 | 11:06 AM

SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates -- Sunni vs. Shia sectarian tension and violence is raging, and ISIS -- a Sunni terrorist group -- is taking advantage of it. We cannot defeat ISIS unless parties on both sides -- particularly Iran and Saudi Arabia -- stop fueling sectarianism.


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The Women Trailblazers of Gulf Arab Art

(0) Comments | Posted April 4, 2013 | 3:54 PM

The 20th century witnessed a string of influential women who have impacted the world of Western art from Isabella Stewart Gardner and Gertrude Stein to Peggy Guggenheim and Elizabeth A. Sackler. Perhaps unknown to some even in the arts field, a mixture of native and expatriate women across the Arab...

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Kuwait Art Museum Succeeds Where Others Have Failed

(0) Comments | Posted April 2, 2013 | 5:18 PM

As the art world descends on the Gulf cities of Dubai, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Doha, each March visitors would well to keep in mind another Gulf city that was in every sense an art and culture pioneer. Kuwait City hosted its very first public art exhibition back in 1958...

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Political Islamists Arouse Suspicion in the UAE

(3) Comments | Posted May 21, 2012 | 12:22 PM

In the business world it is said that there is no such thing as a merger, there is only a takeover: the stronger party amongst the two ultimately ends up in power. The same can be applied to the world of politics. Islamists, traditionally the most organized group in the...

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Iran Picks Awkward Time to Escalate Gulf Tensions

(47) Comments | Posted April 18, 2012 | 5:46 PM

Another crisis is brewing in the Middle East, this time between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the United Arab Emirates. Iranian president Ahmadinejad took the unprecedented step of visiting the disputed Gulf island of Abu Musa that both countries claim along with two other islands of Lesser and Greater...

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Mayor of Rotterdam: Ahmed Aboutaleb on a Mission to Regenerate

(1) Comments | Posted December 20, 2011 | 12:25 PM

Making my way down the corridor of the magnificent Stadhuis, Rotterdam's city hall, a pre-First World War architectural landmark, towards the office of the mayor, I was greeted with the familiar words, "As Salaam Alaikum." The Stadhuis, office of the mayor of Rotterdam, is, sadly, one of a very few...

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Arab Monarchies: Surviving the Revolts

(8) Comments | Posted November 8, 2011 | 9:42 AM

In the mid 20th century a majority of Arabs lived in monarchical states, some dating as far back as several centuries. However, by the 1960s, the monarchies of Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Iraq and Yemen had transformed into republics. Today, eight Arab monarchies remain, namely, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan, Kuwait, Bahrain,...

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How Urbanisation Is Changing Emirati Identity

(0) Comments | Posted October 19, 2011 | 5:07 PM

A video taken in the late 1990s shows Sheikh Zayed standing in his majlis talking to Mohammed Khalifa Al Habtoor, the speaker of the Federal National Council who served from 1997 to 2003. I vividly recall watching that video when I was a teenage student in Paris. Sheikh...

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Gulf Students in U.S. Show the Way Forward

(3) Comments | Posted October 6, 2011 | 5:32 PM

Something special is happening in Boston, a good omen for things to come. Young men and women from across the Arab Gulf states started holding regular meetings over a year ago. Every fortnight like clockwork they gather with a set agenda and discuss pressing topics affecting their region.

Three pillars...

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Turkey and Saudi Arabia: The Buildup to Syria

(3) Comments | Posted August 19, 2011 | 1:57 PM

Turkey and Saudi Arabia sit on opposite sides of the spectrum, the first a Sunni state defined by its secularism, the latter a Sunni state defined by its sect, and yet the countries have never been closer. This closeness is due to a series of steps that both states have...

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Gosaibi Served the Public With Far More Than His Pen

(1) Comments | Posted August 16, 2011 | 4:50 PM

Several dozen obituaries were written about Ghazi al Gosaibi in the week following his death on August 15th 2010. The Khaleeji literary giant had passed away in Riyadh at 70 years of age after decades spent in public service.

He held a number of posts: as Saudi Arabia's Minister of...

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A Window on Federal National Council Political Scenarios

(0) Comments | Posted August 9, 2011 | 10:41 AM

"May you live in interesting times" goes a Chinese saying that usually has negative connotations. The emerging UAE political scene is nothing if not interesting, though.

I will attempt to shed some light on this emerging political scene by highlighting a number of "champions" who have both expressed their willingness...

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The UAE Stands Out for Its Civil Liberties

(1) Comments | Posted July 20, 2011 | 2:29 PM

Last week, the United Arab Emirates government announced the names of citizens who would be eligible to participate in parliamentary elections to be held on Sept. 24. The announcement was generally met with enthusiasm, given the fact that the pool of voters has been increased from around 6,000 to almost...

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Gulf Arab States: Hunker Down or Seize the Opportunity?

(0) Comments | Posted June 27, 2011 | 11:07 AM

The relative quiet we are witnessing in the Arab Gulf streets today can be attributed to both natural and governmental causes. After all, the soaring summer heat makes it impractical for large groups of people to protest for long hours. A severe government crackdown may have caused others to reconsider.


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Gulf Governments Take to Social Media

(0) Comments | Posted May 31, 2011 | 11:48 AM

In the past few months, the potential of social media outreach in the Gulf hasn't only been noticed and exploited by marketing firms but also by regional governments and officials. After all, there were a staggering 7.4 million Facebook users in the Gulf as of May this year, according to...

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A State of the Union Address for the UAE

(4) Comments | Posted May 23, 2011 | 4:18 PM

In countries the world over, from the US to Russia, and from the Philippines to South Africa, citizens look forward to an annual statement that outlines the state of the nation in the past year and highlights plans for the coming 12 months.

This custom started in the US, although...

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An Expanded GCC: Challenges and Opportunities

(6) Comments | Posted May 12, 2011 | 10:25 AM

The news of the Kingdoms of Jordan and Morocco possibly joining the Gulf Cooperation Council states was met with shock and awe amongst users of social media networks within minutes of its announcement. The new Secretary General of the GCC, Abdul Latif Al Zayani, barely a few weeks into his...

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Muslim Brotherhood in the Gulf: An Attempt To Steal the Show

(0) Comments | Posted May 10, 2011 | 12:06 PM

The governments of the Arab Gulf states have been skeptical of the Arab Spring. For many political observers this skepticism stemmed from the fact that most of these states enjoyed strong personal and political relations with the presidents of Egypt, Yemen and Syria.

Others contend that commercial ties and...

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Osama Bin Laden: He Had It Coming

(15) Comments | Posted May 5, 2011 | 5:05 PM

For ten years millions of Arabs were held hostage due to the acts of a minority. During this time tens of thousands of lives were lost in senseless violence that only a megalomaniac would be able to justify.

Even for Arabs who had not lived in the West, essential movement...

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