Qatar is the most politically liberal of the Gulf states (admittedly a low bar). It hosts Al Jazeera TV and the Doha Debates. You can drink in its hotels and women can walk around uncovered, drive cars, and associate comparatively freely. Its universities are western in feel and appearance. There are of course many things to criticise, above all the treatment, conditions and lack of rights of migrant workers, lack of women’s and LGBT rights and freedom of speech, and the absence of meaningful democracy. But Saudi Arabia it isn’t.
While former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was burnishing his credentials as a master of the corporate turnaround during the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, US intelligence agencies were testing out their capabilities for mass electronic surveillance according to a recent Associated Press report. Ex-NSA spy Thomas Drake has alleged as much in a statement filed in support of a lawsuit brought by former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson.
Trump lied to say that Obama had a fake birth certificate, but Trump never attacked Obama for what were Obama’s real crimes. America’s press let him get away with it (of course, they pointed out Trump’s lie, but they protected Obama, just as Trump did, against exposure on that President’s real crimes); so, here are some of the facts that the U.S. press (and Trump) still hide about Obama (because hiding them is essential to the U.S. aristocracy’s agenda — shared by both its Republicans and its Democrats):