Why the Arab Spring Never Came to the U.A.E.

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July 18th, 2011

ABU DHABI – To understand why the Arab Spring has largely passed by the United Arab Emirates, take a moment to listen to Naser Al Hammadi. “What more do we need?” says the 30-year-old electrical engineer. “Here, everything is taken care of. Our education. Our health care. We have free housing.” Hammadi’s sentiment was echoed by [...]

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Bahrain’s Violent Crackdown Hardens Opposition

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February 17th, 2011

Mohamed Ali went to the Lulu roundabout Wednesday evening with his wife to join fellow Shi’ite Muslim Bahrainis in a peaceful demonstration calling for political reform. But the overnight raid by Bahraini police to disperse the protesters that left at least three dead and hundreds injured left him outraged, and more determined to press on. [...]

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Egypt’s New Hero: Can Geek-Activist Wael Ghonim Overthrow Mubarak?

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February 8th, 2011

Wael Ghonim is talkative and confident, just like many in the new generation of Arabs out to change their world — and prosper in it — by way of technology. He has pointed out that Norway, so much smaller than the Mideast in population, had more indigenous language content on the web. There was so [...]

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Behind the Latest Gulf Real Estate Crisis

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January 25th, 2011

ABU DHABI — With banks reluctant to lend and a pervasively weak property market, a major real estate developer in the United Arab Emirates said it needed a cash lifeline to keep operations going. Oh no, is Dubai in more trouble? Not exactly. The developer is not in Dubai, the emirate that has attracted as [...]

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The Tunisia Effect: Will Its “Hunger Revolution” Spread?

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January 16th, 2011

No group is watching the events unfold in Tunisia more closely than fellow Arabs, most of whom live under autocratic governments and are feeling the same economic pinches of bleak job prospects and high food prices. Ali Dahmash, an activist who runs a social media agency in Amman, called it a “hunger revolution.” Says Dahmash, [...]

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Terror Plot Foiled: But is the Threat in Yemen Growing?

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October 31st, 2010

By Oliver Holmes / Sana’a and Angela Shah / Dubai … Apparently acting on a tip from a Saudi Arabian source, the U.S. is searching for more suspicious packages after interdicting two cargo flights at East Midlands Airport in England and Dubai on Friday and finding shipments allegedly from Yemen that contained improvised bombs. The [...]

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The Rent Too Damn High in Dubai? Not So Much

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October 22nd, 2010

DUBAI – There’s a half-off sale in the world’s tallest building. Even with an address at the iconic Burj Khalifa, rents for residences in the tower are not immune from Dubai’s real estate crash. Indeed, nearly a year after it was inaugurated with a massive water-and-fireworks display, about 825 of the tower’s 900 ultra-luxury apartments [...]

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Where Ramadan Becomes a Season to Make Money

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August 24th, 2010

DUBAI – When Ademir Husagic, the executive chef and food and beverage director at the Monarch Dubai hotel, first arrived in Dubai 11 years ago, Ramadan was a quiet affair. It was meant to be austere. During the holy month, which began this year at the sighting of the crescent moon on Aug. 11, Muslims [...]

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Can Dubai Business Survive Without the BlackBerry?

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August 4th, 2010

DUBAI – Dubai has built a global name as an easy place to do business. Consider its international airport, one of the world’s largest: more than 40 million passengers traveled through the hub last year, and, like business travelers everywhere, most can be seen checking their BlackBerrys or other PDAs during layovers. “It’s six hours–plus [...]

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