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Police Clash With Protesters – In Oman

From a joyous Associated Press:

Oman clashes widen protest rumblings in Gulf

By Brian Murphy, Associated Press Sun Feb 27, 2011

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Protests against the tight grip of Gulf rulers widened Sunday as riot police in Oman battled pro-democracy demonstrators in a deadly clash that sharply raised tensions in the region.

Tiny Bahrain is already in turmoil and giant Saudi Arabia is seeking to hold back calls for reforms.

Since Bahrain is a vitally important ally for the US, it is only natural for the AP to castigate them this way. In fact, the ‘uprising’ in Bahrain are primarily based on religious and ethnic complaints. Since the Sunnis rulers there reign over a Shiite majority. (A detail the AP does mention near the end of this article.)

The Gulf protests have shaken the once-comfortable command of various monarchs and sheiks. An ever deeper and sustained political revolt would thrust the Arab world’s uprising into the heart of the region’s oil riches and Washington’s front-line allies against Iran.

The U.S. has long counted on the Gulf’s rulers as reliable partners — particularly their common ground over concerns about Iran’s efforts to expand its influence. No ruling system has given way, but cracks are evident

And these "cracks," of course, the AP applauds.

Opposition forces, meanwhile, are showing resolve to challenge the absolute rule of dynasties in Saudi Arabia and now Oman, which shares with Iran control of the strategic oil tanker route through the Strait of Hormouz and is a mediator between Iran and the West

Oman and Saudi Arabia are both non-Shiite regimes. (Omanis are actually neither Shiite nor Sunni but ‘Ibadi.’ And they practice a surprisingly tolerant brand of Islam.)

In the Omani town of Sohar, security forces fired tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters demanding a greater voice in the country’s affairs. At least one person was killed, police officials said, but other reports cited Omani media sources saying at least two died.

Oman’s state-run news agency said protesters set cars and houses on fire, burned down a police station and set the governor’s residence ablaze in the seaside town, about 120 miles (200 kilometers) northwest of the capital of Muscat.

It marked the first serious confrontation against protesters seeking to open up the ruling system of Sultan Qaboos bin Said, whose nation straddles the southeast corner of the Arabian peninsula and is co-guardian of the Strait of Hormuz…

The sultan has already take bold steps to try to quell the unrest. On Saturday, he replaced six Cabinet members and last week boosted the minimum wage by more than 40 percent

For the record, Qaboos bin Said Al Said rose to power after overthrowing his father, Sa‘id ibn Taymur, in a palace coup in 1970. So we suspect he is not much of a sentimentalist.

Protesters streamed through Bahrain’s diplomatic area and other sites Sunday, chanting slogans against the country’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and rejecting his appeals for talks to end the political crisis

"No dialogue until the regime is gone," marchers chanted as they moved through the highly protected zone of embassies and diplomatic compounds. No violence was reported.

Bahrain is among the most politically volatile nations in the Gulf — with majority Shiites claiming widespread discrimination by the Sunni rulers — and was the first in the region to be hit by the demands for reform sweeping the Arab world

Shiites, who account for about 70 percent of the country’s 525,000 people, have long complained of discrimination and other abuses by the Sunni dynasty that has ruled for more than two centuries.

Bahrain’s leaders, meanwhile, face pressure from other Gulf leaders to stand firm. Many Sunnis across the region fear that conceding significant power to Bahrain’s Shiites could open the door for greater influence by Shiite powerhouse Iran…

More and more these ‘uprisings’ across the Middle East are shaping up to be a showdown between the Shiites and the Sunnis.

It’s only a shame they both can’t lose.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, February 28th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Police Clash With Protesters – In Oman”

  1. Tater Salad says:

    Police also clash with a lone American at a public forum in Florida.

    Police in Wisconsin will NOT give the he-ho to protestors but in Florida, they throw out a common citizen, on public, taxpayer funded property when asking questions that are to “sensitive” to the barbarian Muslim cleric:

    Islamic Forums across the United States. If you ask the wrong question about Islam you will get thrown out of the forums. Pathetic!

  2. canary says:

    Tator Salad, Tator Salad. I posted a response to your Agenda 21 links. http://sweetness-light.com/archive/clinton-ethanol-could-spark-food-riots to give you idea to the what’s going on in my town. I have tons of information, and some states are making headway. My town keeps canceling meetings, holding secret meetings, and calls the police, even though it’s the tree huggers. I’m so glad you posted so others don’t think I’m crazy like Glenn Beck, tough Glenn Beck has not touched this.

    The newest rule my town has passed is that parking spaces are limited to 1 car per bedroom. This is a hardship on students, married couple, etc. And even an apartment who got an attorney, was asked by a council member… ready…
    If the apartment had made attempted to rent to 1 car per bedroom. The owner had even told they would plant more shrubs. It is already a law that if you lose a tree to storm etc., you must replace it. The worst is our liberal media heading that “xxxxx” was losing “trees”. And ready for this? Are the renters trying to take the transit bus. Which by the way federal stimulus money (your tax dollars) are building our fleet, and converting engines. And the paper mentioned
    Please understand we are a rural area town. Though there are some 2 bedrooms the only thing with a few more floors are the hospital & and a medical center, one 3 stories, one 5 stories. There are other states fighting this, and making progress. Through the freedom of information you can ask questions. I worked on this, and was told all requests were given, but haven’t had time. 1st question. How much federal stimulus money have we received. (It’s on going by the way) There appears to be some nepotism, and other great conflicts of interest. I will pass the links you posted. AS I posted on in response to your post this is all about “Land grabbing, rationing food like in Cuba, medicine. Do you want to stand in a government line just to get asprin? .

    Watch out for words such as
    “Smart & Start & Star.
    Start reading the bulletins that come with your utility bill, and your news.
    Get an org together because you will have the government in your home, as I wrote on the other Sweetness and Light link in response. Most of the following I posted has made the news as far as the threat on farmers, rationing fuel and electricity and the land grabbing.
    environmental justice
    socialism like “social justice,” “collective,” “equity,” and “redistribution,” are used throughout Agenda 21 texts.
    non-profit orgs popping up
    Habitats for humanity

    The worst is our media’s dishonest in reporting it. The reporter did the Losing trees headline ) trees are not shrubs, and he refuses to tell the truth.

    Agenda 21 Part III: Maryland County Abolishes Agenda 21 – Now it’s Your Turn
    Posted By James M. Simpson On February 26, 2011 (12:03 pm) In Economics, Environment, Featured Story, Immigration, energy.

    Even FOX reported & believed EPA saying they weren’t involved.
    Even O’Rielly made fun of Glenn Book, saying Van Jones is a threat.
    And today Glenn Beck mentioned telling Americans where to live and he’s on track.

    Sorry for getting off topic, but word needs to get out.

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