Socratic Interview on Qatar and Gulf Cooperation Council - Paper Example

5 pages
1209 words
Vanderbilt University
Type of paper: 
Critical thinking
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INTERVIEWER: You wrote an editorial one week ago where you alleged that Qatar is responsible for making the Gulf- Qatar crisis a serious issue. Could you please elaborate on what you meant by stating that Qatar has made the crisis serious?

AUTHOR: What I meant when I said that Qatar has made the crisis serious is that Qatar has failed to make changes to its foreign policy after many requests by other members of the Gulf Cooperation Council. Had Qatar made changes to its foreign policy that appear to be sympathetic to terrorist groups, we could not be speaking be here speaking about the crisis.

INTERVIEWER: Could you please elaborate on what you meant when you said that Qatars foreign policy is sympathetic to terrorist groups?

AUTHOR: Qatars foreign policy considers some organizations that have been accused of involving in terrorist activities as legitimate groups. For instance, Qatar recognizes Muslim Brotherhood, an organization that has for many years been involved in terrorist activities as a legitimate group. Qatars foreign policy deems the Muslim Brotherhood as an organization with a noble cause. As a matter of fact, may countries in the Gulf region have banned the Muslim Brotherhood yet Qatar continues to tolerate its activities. Qatar has continued to accommodate Muslim Brotherhood members who fled from Egypt after toppling of Mohamed Mursis regime in 2012 and those from Syria who fled political instability in their country. Qatar has allowed members of the Muslim Brotherhood to work as civil servants and teachers.

INTERVIEWER: Why do you think Qatar supports the Muslim Brotherhood as claimed?

AUTHOR: I think Qatar supports the Muslim Brotherhood because it wants to exert its political influence in the Gulf Religion. The Muslim Brotherhood teachings and ideologies are profound, that if embraced on a wide scale, Qatar will influence how Arabs look at life and how they go about dealing with various issues in life. Qatar also believes that to avoid being a target of terrorist activities; it needs to build cozy relationships with extremist radical groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood. Muslim Brotherhood teachings are against the influence that western values are increasingly having on Islamic culture. Given that Gulf countries are predominantly Muslim, if we allow such radical ideas to spread, there is a likelihood that revolts will emerge in the Arab world against Arab leadership because in the contemporary age Arab leadership has profoundly been influenced by western values. The revolts and uprising would eventually destabilize the Arab world. That is why ideas by the Muslim Brotherhood have to be curtailed before they spread their wings.

INTERVIEW: What do you mean when you say that Qatar has a habit of choosing its allies unwisely?

AUTHOR: Look at Qatars closest allies, Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood. What value do they bring to Qatar? Iran is ranked by the United States as the worlds leading supporter of terrorism. The Muslim Brotherhood on the other hand has a history of being involved in terrorist activities.

INTERVIEWER: Is it true that Qatar has a close relationship with Iran because they all support terrorist organizations?

AUTHOR: I do not think that the relationship between Qatar and Iran is entirely pegged on their support for terrorist groups. I think the relationship between Qatar is also based on economic activities among the two nations. The worlds largest gas field lies between Iran and Iraq and the two countries share exploration rights in the area. Other than their economic relationship, I see no other valid reason why Qatar should have a close relationship with Iran.

INTERVIEWER: Qatars charities and non-governmental organizations regulatory board has come out and said that the accusations imposed on some of their charities that they support terrorism are false. What is your take on the issue?

AUTHOR: First of all, I do not expect the regulatory board to come out in the open and accept that some charities in Qatar financially support terrorist groups. I think part of the regulatory boards role is to ensure that it protects the reputation of its members.

INTERVIEWER: Could you please elaborate on what the Gulf- Qatar crisis is all about?

AUTHOR: The Gulf- Qatar crisis is a diplomatic quagmire between Qatar and other Gulf Cooperation Council members except for Oman and Kuwait. The Gulf countries have decided to severe their relationship with Qatar because of Qatars continued support for extremist groups, the Muslim Brotherhood in particular. Qatars foreign policy is sympathetic to terrorist groups, a position that has been of major concern to other Gulf Cooperation Council members, more so Saudi Arabia. Even after being given numerous opportunities to make changes to its foreign policy, Qatar has continued to be reluctant about doing so. This is not the first time that Arab countries have shown their dislike for Qatars foreign policy. In 2014, Gulf Cooperation Council members withdrew their diplomats from Doha because of Qatars support for the Muslim Brotherhood. Qatar has continued being adamant, and it has refused to break its links with the Muslim Brotherhood.

INTERVIEWER: What did you mean when you said that the Muslim Brotherhood is actively involved in undermining government systems of all Gulf Cooperation Council member countries?

AUTHOR: Given that the Muslim Brotherhood believes that Muslims should not embrace any western values, it is clear to see that if it is allowed to assert its influence, it will bring down all Arab governments, including Qatar. In the contemporary age, it is inevitable for Arab countries not to partner with Western counties in matters of trade and other spheres. It is also inevitable for Arab countries not to embrace Western values and ideas given that there are many elements of Western ideas that are beneficial to Arab. For instance, Arab countries cannot refuse to embrace modern technology just because it has its origins in the West. I believe we should be more logical when we look at our relationship with Western countries. There is so much that Arabs gain from Western countries, and there is also much that Western countries benefit from their relationship with Arab countries.

INTERVIEWER: How profound is the crisis going to affect lives of ordinary Qatar citizens?

AUTHOR: The crisis is going to significantly affect lives of ordinary Qatar citizens. They are going to lose jobs in other Gulf countries, they are going to be separated from their loved ones, and they are also going to experience serious problems when it comes to accessing basic needs. The earlier Qatar realizes how significant the crisis is going to be, the earlier it will have to go back to the drawing board and address concerns raised by other Gulf Cooperation Council members.

INTERVIEWER: What do you suggest can be done to solve the crisis?

AUTHOR: The crisis can only be solved if Qatars amends its foreign policy so that it stops being friendly to the Muslim Brotherhood and other extremist terrorist groups.

INTERVIEWER: What do you think is going to unfold in the next coming months with regard to the crisis?

AUTHOR: It is going to be a wait and see situation. We will have to wait and see how Qatar responds to the pressure. I am confident that given the high stakes involved, Qatar will finally give in and make changes to its foreign policy.


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