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University of Bahrain- don't touch it
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gulfedout



Joined: 22 Jun 2008
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 1:48 pm    Post subject: University of Bahrain- don't touch it Reply with quote

Since the recent unrest in Bahrain, the national university there has been using it as an excuse to get rid of failing students and to get rid of staff who don't toe the line or want to sign loyalty pledges.

The expatriate contract has more holes in it than swiss cheese. While there is no mention of 'civil unrest' and how the expatriate professor is protected at such times, there is plenty of mention of 'not respecting local customs' which could be interpreted any way they wish. This clause gives them the right not to pay any end of service gratuity or even flight tickets home. There are reports of former BTC staff even being told they owe money to the college because they left during the uprising in March on British Embassy advice. A professor who was caught up in the University riot there returned to the UK as was diagnosed with PTSD. The University refused to accept his NHS sick certificate and held him in breach of contract.

If you really must work for them, tread carefully. Leave any morals or sense of service to your students at the airport. The contract you will sign is not worth the paper it is written on and all the cards are in their hands. Do you really want to go out and work in a country with such instability with the chance to having to leave pennyless or even falling foul of laws such as the 'travel ban' or even arrest on suspicion of being sympathic to anti regime protesters?
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12305
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Those with any morality at all will avoid Bahrain as a place to work or a place to visit. As vile as was Franco's Spain.
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desertdawg



Joined: 14 Jun 2010
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How does one who's worked in KSU (as I have myself) feel able to make such a hypocritical statement?
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Middle East Beast



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 836
Location: Up a tree

PostPosted: Wed Jul 06, 2011 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

desertdawg wrote:
How does one who's worked in KSU (as I have myself) feel able to make such a hypocritical statement?


No offense, scot47, but I've got to second desertdawg's question...isn't this a "pot/kettle" kind of deal? Wink

MEB Cool
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16066
Location: USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think Scot is referring to the present situation of killing demonstrators and holding trials for doctors and nurses who treated some of those wounded. Thus far the Saudi authorities have been a bit more... subtle? Though they haven't had large groups of anti-government demonstrations. (that we've heard of anyway)

VS
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Middle East Beast



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 836
Location: Up a tree

PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, VS, but the Saudis sent troops to Bahrain to commit some of those atrocities.


MEB Cool
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16066
Location: USA

PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True... an ugly business all around. But I think it was the trial of the doctors and nurses that I found so bizarre and over the top. Let's face it... killing demonstrators is a sadly widespread practice in much of the world.

I just wonder if things would have played out differently if Sheikh Issa were still alive. I must admit that I am not really familiar with current Bahraini politics.

VS
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desertdawg



Joined: 14 Jun 2010
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 2:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very "funny" watching telly recently. A Qatari being interviewed was very keen to talk up his country's contribution of jets and pilots to the NATO effort in Libya. He didn't see any problem when asked about the march of democracy in his own country.

The politics of the whole Arabian Gulf are questionable to say the very least.

People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. I for one am not proud of having sold my soul. But I don't cast aspersions on others. Even when I was in the ivory towers of Arabian "academia".

The reality of the Arabian Gulf is you goes for the money. Any claims to moral or educational high ground are false. Real job satisfaction is a rare commodity

I took my blood money from BAE. I've been in touch with some of my original trainees. A few are working internationally after having gained externally accredited professional qualifications, including those in English.

Working for the Ministry of Higher Education in Oman, I was lucky to have had some great students. A very small percentage of whom I believe will have gone on to make a go of their lives in the open job market.

But these are exceptions to the rule. Where I work now, the Government basically runs a welfare system (as another poster said elsewhere). Maggie would be proud as you have to clock into "work" to qualify. Once the oil money is gone, well... So many grand schemes have been curtailed or abondoned.

The Arabs are very canny characters and can see the error of their kid in the sweet shop ways of the past. Real, directed investment is now needed especially in the geographical areas which have so far been neglected. Channelled to the least fortunate groups of people and actually doing some good. Not just creating a facade of shiny buildings, grass and trees. Unsustainable in the long term in what is a desert.

To single out the despots in one place is pure ignorance. I don't mean to diminish what has occured, but repression behind closed doors/high walls with silent victims is even more frightening. Don't even get me started on Syria. Another fine export of the milk snatcher's Britain.

Sorry for the off topic rant. I welcome the Arab spring and hope it bears fruit in the continuing years to come. But it is an economic and human rights movement rather than democracy. Perfectly illustrated in Qatar. Why should they complain when they have everything? Why change illegal laws when they are given international recognition such as the World Cup?
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 166

PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2011 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Verily, a decade in the Middle East, various unis tasted, decent judgement skill of my own and verily Bahrain stands next to anything enountered.

No idea why Bahrain and its uni so stand out in the Middle East. Probably due to the shia element that this island pretty and anxious as a secret kiss belongs to.
As a sunni Palestinian professor I worked with once remarked to me, shia - unlike sunni - mean it.
Verily, Bahrain!

Greetings from old Dhakhilia oases
balqis
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desertdawg



Joined: 14 Jun 2010
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know nothing about Bahrain Uni.

I do know people who live/work in Bahrain. Nothing will change. Steps have been taken. The scariest things are not what you see in the media, but the vast undercurrent of the Regime in quashing unrest.

I was in KSA during and for a long period of the aftermath of 9/11. Thousands of people disappeared. The Regimes in this area are not naive. They receive the brightest and best in training, manpower and equipment from the west to keep the population under control.

I apload the brave people of countries such as Egypt, Tunisia, Syria and Libya. But as I said it is primarily an economic phenominum. The momentum will be lost in areas where the leaders have the ability to quash rebellion with hard cash.

Suttle brutality? Yeah right. Especially when we're involved economically and politically.
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posh



Joined: 22 Oct 2010
Posts: 430

PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

balqis wrote:

As a sunni Palestinian professor I worked with once remarked to me, shia - unlike sunni - mean it.


Mean what?
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johnslat



Joined: 21 Jan 2003
Posts: 12742
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dear desertdawg,

"The momentum will be lost in areas where the leaders have the ability to quash rebellion with hard cash."

Call me cynical, call me realistic, but I agree. You don't have revolutions in a country (KSA) where most of the (male) citizens drive Toyotas (or better.)

As another cynical realist once succinctly summed it up" "It's the economy, stupid."

Regards,
John
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12305
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

KSA and Bahrain are not the same. What we are seeing in Bahrain is the violent repression of the Shia majority. Admitttedly Saudi Arabia has sent forces to prop up their Sunni cousins but internally within KSA ( KSU ????) things are very different.
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balqis



Joined: 30 Jul 2006
Posts: 166

PostPosted: Fri Jul 08, 2011 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To posh,

They mean what shia islam is about, unlike the sunni majority.
That's why they are so politically dangerous and persecuted by all, the West as well as the sunni; with respect to the shia issue forget their divisions and go against shia hand in hand and with similar hatred.

I spent in Bahrain a few years and the shia students were brave and serious. There is an archetypal streak of martyrdom in their personality ['' Every day is a Kerbala''] that makes them incomprehensible to noisy but rather shallow sunni Arabs [ vide: Egypt, and Tunisia as of today]. This streak is present and tangible on a daily basis, not only during the month of Muharram and the Aza of Ashoora.

If one cares to study shia ideas, they are fordmidable and interesting to read and reflect on with regards to their profound religious meaning.
You can read shia scholars, but amognst the western writers Mircea Eliade has made valid recognition of their major tenets, well nach meiner meinung at least.

Bahrain is a beatiful island and striking culture, but the source of their real life is shrouded and flows on the capilary level of the island.

At face value Bahrain nowadays stands for a BBC/CNN business/banking coastscape image. But the true Bahrain has an ontological status of ''larvatus prodeo''. So grave misrepresentation and distortion.

balqis
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desertdawg



Joined: 14 Jun 2010
Posts: 137

PostPosted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 3:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Kingdom of Bahrain.

They aint the same? I think there may be a clue in the names.

Remember what happened on the Eastern Area Corniche a few years ago? The demographic and economic realities will come home to roost sooner rather than later.

How soon will the newly aquired German Leopards be trundling along to fix the next crack. KSA didn't go into Bahrain for mate's rates. The Regime is terrified of what's going on around its artificial and tenuous borders.

If you want brutal repression, look at what is happening down south. The systematic destruction of villages and peoples thousands of years old. Daily air attacks are the norm. Just don't look for confirmation in the DM or NOTW (ha)

I was down there in relatively peaceful times. You can see the history in the terraced vineyards and magnificant architecture.

I'm not a learned dawg. All this sect business I have no understanding of. But I despair of the base tribal instincts of mankind illustrated so commonly throughout the globe every day.
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