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Education City’s graduation arena 3, December 2009

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Qatar.
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This is, theoretically, the place where all Education City graduates will gather for their graduation ceremony. I’m sure that this is taken fairly directly from some film or other…the 5th element?

Thanks to this blog for the picture.

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The history of the price of oil 3, December 2009

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Random.
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Graph taken from WTRG Economics.

Rory Stewart on advice 3, December 2009

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Random.
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Rory Stewart, the British academic, walker, sage and genius on being asked to give advice to, amongst others, Hilary Clinton.

“It’s like they’re coming in and saying to you, ‘I’m going to drive my car off a cliff. Should I or should I not wear a seatbelt?’ And you say, ‘I don’t think you should drive your car off the cliff.’ And they say, ‘No, no, that bit’s already been decided – the question is whether to wear a seatbelt.’ And you say, ‘Well, you might as well wear a seatbelt.’ And then they say, ‘We’ve consulted with policy expert Rory Stewart and he says …’”

Uday Hussein: worse than a psychopath 3, December 2009

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Iraq.
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This link leads to an excerpt of an interview with a former army body double of Uday Hussein, one of Saddam Hussein’s sons. Latif Yahia, the solider in question, describes Uday as far worse than a psychopath, for example, turning a beautiful woman into little more than a ‘barely breathing hunk of meat’.

I am sure and believe 100% that Uday Hussein was a vicious and sadistic killer. However, I am not overly sure how much I believe  this man’s testimony. Firstly, it is obviously in his best  financial interest to make the stories as gory and over the top as possible. The worse the stories, the more sensationalist media (and the BBC…) will be interested in interviewing him and, perhaps, the better his book sales. Secondly, he claims that he escaped Iraq with the help from the CIA. This is either a part of the first reason, the CIA being quite a buzz-word for editors, or it could be suggested that he must make his stories interesting and gruesome for them too: he needs to prove worthy after they expended so much energy and money getting him out. Thirdly, Yahia just comes across, to me at least, as not totally believable. This isn’t based on too much, just a gut reaction when watching the clip. Feel free to comment if you feel I’m being unfair…