Islam and Politics

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Tunisia’s Political Crisis Reverberates Across the Region

Though Gulf states have different strategic interests and espouse contrasting ideas on how to achieve their goals, their official responses to the events in Tunisia suggest a preference for stability and security.

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The Long Game in Iraq: Shia Clerics, Activists Find Common Cause To Confront the State

A new generation of Iraqis fighting for a reimagining of their country have formed an informal alliance with Iraqi clerics – a radical departure from the trend in most Arab states.

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Saudi Ramadan Series Links Economic Development and Civic Duty

This year’s Ramadan initiatives, focused on a sense of community and contributions to development, demonstrate how the Saudi government increasingly relies on citizens to play a role in the ongoing transformation.

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Filling the Religious Void: Yoga and Self-Awareness in Saudi Arabia

The marginalization of religious figures in Saudi Arabia has prompted a rise of trends focusing on spirituality and meditation to promote self-awareness.

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Presidential Elections in Iran: Procedures, Candidates, and the Persistent Clout of Key Institutions

Most speculation about the candidates and outcome of Iran’s upcoming presidential election appears premature, and assessments about potential impact on U.S.-Iranian relations seem exaggerated.

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Clerics Support Protesters’ Call for Reforms, Walk Fine Line in Iraqi Politics

The outcome of the upcoming parliamentary elections will be a test of clerical influence in Iraq and of the hold that protesters can continue to exert over Iraqi politics.

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Saudi Arabia Champions “Moderate Islam,” Underpinning Reform Efforts

Moderate Islam can be seen as a comprehensive strategy to tackle the kingdom’s regional and domestic concerns while at the same time reshaping the religious and social scene in line with the leadership’s new sociopolitical objectives.

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The Kuala Lumpur Summit Galvanizes Stronger OIC, Gulf Stand on Muslim Causes

The contest among Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran, and Malaysia over the symbolic leadership of the Muslim world places a heavier burden on these states to appear as champions of Muslim causes.

Is an Iranian-Gulf Arab Rapprochement in the Works?

Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah Khaled al-Sabah’s visit to Tehran on January 25 was officially billed as a bilateral meeting, but also widely reported to have included a broader outreach to Iran by Kuwait’s partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council, including Iran’s major regional rival, Saudi Arabia.

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Through its careful examination of the forces shaping the evolution of Gulf societies and the new generation of emerging leaders, AGSIW facilitates a richer understanding of the role the countries in this key geostrategic region can be expected to play in the 21st century.

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