What is really happening in Bahrain and why it matters

Gregory White
Business Insider

First, what’s happening right now:

Protesters in Bahrain are being killed by police officers in street conflicts, in what appears to be a campaign of fear by the country’s authorities to thwart the sort of political revolution that was staged in Egypt. Saudi Arabian, UAE, and Qatari troops are also participating in the crackdown.

But these protesters are not just anti-government revolutionaries

The Islamic rift:

In Bahrain, the muslim population is estimated to be 33% Sunni and 66% Shia by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (via Wikipedia). The country’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, however, is Sunni, the minority Islamic religion.

Those protesting against the regime, calling for reforms, are mostly Shia, according to the BBC. A Shia government minister has resigned in the wake of the government’s response to the protests and Shia judges are now resigning too.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar have all sent support troops to provide aid to Bahrain’s effort. They are all members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, and are all Sunni majority countries.

But there’s another power in the region that isn’t Sunni majority.

Why Iran matters:

Iran is the chief Shia power in the Middle East…

The red dot is Bahrain. Image: Google Maps. Click on the image to enlarge.

The article continues at Business Insider

Update: How to Live in a World with Declining Oil Production, at Business Insider

Comments are closed.