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Qatar’s Brilliant Geopolitical Maneuver

Roughly a year and half ago, US President Donald Trump has called on Qatar to stop the funding of terrorism and the spread of its “extremist ideology”, claiming that the nation of Qatar “has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level”. This came about while Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies initiated a joint campaign to isolate Qatar, which eventually proved completely ineffective. Not even six months later, Qatari Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al Thani was once again sitting next to the US President, who labelled him a “friend of his” and a helpful force in fighting terrorism. In a densely interwoven development of events, Qatar did in fact manage to find an elegant way out of a situation which once seemed insolvable.

Now fast-forward into present-day America, which abounds in Qatari investment in oil and gas projects – some of them are already known, some will emerge with time. First the Qatari Sheikh promises investments into US oil and gas, both conventional and unconventional, then the contours of Qatar operating an LNG terminal in Texas emerges and Doha pledging to invest to the order of $20 billion in US energy. The drift towards the United States serves a double purpose – it changes attitudes towards Qatar, easing the international pressure on the Middle Eastern nation (just as Rex Tillerson would have urged), whilst also diversifying Qatar away from Europe and the Middle East and making sure the impending…




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