In Qatar, SFS Subject to Brutal Regime

Michelle Xu

MICHELLE XU/THE HOYA

Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service operates a satellite campus in an oppressive Middle Eastern dictatorship.

Funded by oil money and corrupt sheikhs, Georgetown University effectively condones and promotes the human rights abuses of our host country. Why does no one talk about this?

Georgetown is not alone; we’re one of a growing number of American universities to give a free pass to our Middle Eastern donors. NYU Abu Dhabi, anyone? Cornell in Doha? It’s no mystery — when wealthy princes offer you hundreds of millions of dollars to build a campus in their country, it’s hard to say no.

But we should still be honest with ourselves about the motives and consequences of that decision. As Georgetown students, as members of a Jesuit community and as global citizens, examining the status quo is not just important, it’s our moral obligation.

Where to begin? Freedom House has consistently ranked Qatar “not free” for over 20 years. Consensual gay sex is a crime in Qatar, punishable by up to five years in prison, but marital rape is fully legal.

Article 134 of Qatar’s penal code mandates prison time for anyone who is convicted of criticizing the emir, and a few months ago, according to Amnesty International, the Cabinet approved a draft of a cybercrimes law that would grant the government extensive powers “to punish anyone who posts or shares content that officials consider harmful to Qatar’s social values or national interests.”

Israel has even alleged that Qatar is tied financially to Hamas, the militant group in the Gaza Strip that was involved a month-long war with Israel this summer.

And perhaps most alarmingly, Qatar uses forced labor and travel restrictions to limit the rights of migrant workers, who make up 90 percent of its population.

“Workers typically pay exorbitant recruitment fees and employers regularly take control of their passports when they arrive in Qatar,” explains Human Rights Watch in a description of the kafala system, which ties a migrant worker’s citizenship to his or her employer. “Migrant workers commonly complain that employers fail to pay their wages on time if at all, but are barred from changing jobs without their sponsoring employer’s consent.” Despite making up 99 percent of the private sector workforce in

Qatar, migrant workers are also prohibited from unionizing or striking.

If a worker decides to leave the country to escape these poor working conditions, he can’t do so without the explicit consent of his employer. This is all part of a clear pattern of rights denial for migrant workers, many of whom are ethnic or religious minorities.

Qatar is certainly more progressive than many of its neighbors, but that doesn’t say much in a neighborhood where women can’t drive and gays are stoned to death. Who is to say that Georgetown’s SFS-Q campus wasn’t built by migrant workers chained by the kafala system? What about protections for SFS-Q’s gay and lesbian students? Female students? Jewish students? What about student media at SFS-Q, which lacks freedom of the press? To ignore these questions in the face of all reason and reality is either negligent, deceptive or both.

These questions must be asked, if not to find answers then at least to start a dialogue around our campus in Qatar and the application of Georgetown’s stated principles that promote equity. It was the Jesuits who coined the term “social justice,” it’s the Jesuits who stress values in our daily lives and it’s now our responsibility as a Jesuit university to examine those values in the context of our own institution. We cannot continue to fulfill our mission while ignoring egregious human rights violations in our own backyard.

Speak up, Georgetown. It’s time to publicly acknowledge the harsh reality of our partnership with Qatar.

Ari Goldstein is a freshman in the College.

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148 Comments

  1. a concerned arab says:

    I don’t know what you are smoking but where can I get some, because you have obviously never been to the region.

    • Not really an intelligent response.

      Turns out, the author has done his homework.

      • Done his homework. Ha. This whole article needs revising starting with the first sentance. You know Qatar doesn’t have much oil, compared to gas money. Ps QF and these universities motly get their endowments from companies. Foreigners who know nothing about QF just assume its government paid when its not.

        • Bill O'Rights says:

          Sorry, but you’re dead wrong.

          And, while Qatar has the third largest LNG reserves on the planet, it is also active in oil exploration, to a lesser degree.

          And I’d LOVE to have a conversation about university endowments, as it relates to the Qataris. Be careful what you wish for…you may find that that’s not a conversation that you want to have.

          : )

          • I’m dead wrong? You’re saying baseless claims. Endowments, yes are large but as a Qatari and one who went to Education city and has been privy to where the money comes from. I know for a fact the money comes from companies! And not a state, which you seem to assume, avi.

    • Theros SFS '63 says:

      Figures from a frosh at the College; fifty years on they still know nothing but act like they do.

  2. Another concerned arab says:

    So are you implying a solution to Qatar’s problems is to withdraw Georgetown’s education from its people? Terminate all partnership? Believing that if change in status quo cannot be made today, that it never will?

    • The only thing that *COULD* change things is regime change.

      Once you get involved in drug trafficking, there is no turning it off.

      Drug trafficking?

      Yes. Learn about Qatar’s vast connections with Sinaloa and Dawood Ibrihim’s D-Company.

      What do you think the Islamic State is…an ideological group?

      They’re a CORPORATION.

      It’s weaponized money…same business model as their creators, the Qataris and D-Company.

      • “…vast connections with Sinaloa and Dawood Ibrihim’s D-Company”? provide one authoritative source to substantiate this claim.

  3. a third concerned arab says:

    you’re an idiot

  4. This post is ignorant on so many levels, I find it astonishing that it was even published without the writer actually double-checking many of the things he has written. Did he actually talk to a SFS-Q to double-check whether women could actually not drive in the region? Are gay individuals actually “stoned”?
    This article seems to say that Georgetown shouldn’t be in a place which is known to have done questionable things. I am not denying Qatar’s track record, I am simply saying that that does not mean SFSQ’s establishment in the area mean it supports the activities, as you seem to hint. Infact, you may be surprised to know that our undergraduates and graduates have done much work to throw light to the kafala problem, as well as study and work for other human rights causes in the region and around the world. Secondly, by this same argument, should Georgetown relocate to the ever-neutral Switzerland?
    There is a difference between the freedom of speech to express your opinion, and writing something with multiple errors, only to provoke and polemicize.

    • I think you have a few things to learn about Qatar.

      They are Boko Haram’s, AQ’s, Ansar al-Sharia’s, Hamas’ and the Islamic States’ hedgefund. Arguably, they are these groups’ creators.

      • There must be a more appropriate platform for an article like this. You have somehow managed to touch upon every hateful stereotype in the book. What a disgrace to our school newspaper (and ironically, the Jesuit values you reference).

        • Which hateful stereotype?

          I happen to know a great deal about Qatar, and everything I have mentioned is absolutely correct.

          Are you familiar with Qatar’s partnership with Sinaloa and Dawood Ibrihim’s D-Company?

    • Please re-read the section of the article where you think he’s saying that Qatar bans women from driving and stones gays. He explicitly said that Qatar does NOT do these things (and he even stated what they *do* do to gays, which is imprison them for up to five years), but that its neighbors in the Middle East do. That much is clearly accurate, unless you dispute that it is punishable by death to be gay in much of the Middle East or that women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.

      “There is a difference between the freedom of speech to express your opinion, and writing something with multiple errors, only to provoke and polemicize.”

      By distinguishing “freedom of speech” from what you imply the author has done, I hope you don’t mean to suggest that he shouldn’t be free to express his views on this subject. At least a few of the “multiple errors” you see are only with your interpretation of his article and not with his article itself, and even if he were wrong (which does not appear to be the case, at least as far as your objections go), it would still be absolutely okay for him to express himself and inspire a conversation.

      • Alex, you’re right about the neighbourhood part. Apologies, I misread that section. It is true that it is punishable by death. The problem is that Ari says “that doesn’t say much in a neighbourhood where… “, it seems as if he is almost discrediting Qatar simply for being in this neighbourhood.
        However, there’s another problem here now. It is obvious that Ari is a supporter of gay rights, and that since SA and its neighbours, including Qatar, do not support gay and lesbian rights, Ari assumes there is something wrong or inhumane. This is his subjectivity shining through now. The religion of Islam prohibits homosexuality providing logic, which makes prohibiting gay rights the “right thing” for Saudi Arabia to do, because you cannot “impose uniculturality that runs counter to religious and cultural practices of some countries” (quote from SA’s representative during the UN debate about LGBT rights last month).
        It does not mean Muslims in the Middle East are uncivilised. It does not mean they are barbaric because they do not believe in gay rights. It simply means they are following their religion. (Of course the problem occurs when people are persecuted for their beliefs and activities, something else that Islam explicitly prohibits, but is taken out of context by unstudied individuals. I agree that they should not be maltreated.)

        Btw, I am most certainly not homophobic. I am all for humanity. Im just explaining the argument about gay rights from Saudi Arabia and Qatar’s view point. For more on this, read : http://www.hrc.org/resources/entry/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-islam

        No, I am not saying he shouldn’t be free to express his views on the subject. I am saying he should not write something with multiple factual errors.

        Here are some of the factual errors, as pointed out by other commenters:

        1. GU is funded by “corrupt sheikhs..” (Is this a fact or his opinion?)
        Also, “Georgetown isn’t partnered with the Qatari Government, it is a partner of Qatar Foundation: “a private, non-profit organization that serves the people of Qatar by supporting and operating programs in [the areas of] education, science and research, and community development.” ” (Fatima Ramadan Sanz)

        2. It is frankly disappointing to hear you make the same point again and again. And because individuals support these organizations it makes the whole country corrupt. It is not like we, in the United States, do not have home grown militias that are supported by the people to protect our borders from aliens.
        That being said the Emir of Qatar has said again and again that Qatar has not supported the creation of IS and is in fact fighting alongside the US and other countries to defeat the threat of IS in their neighbourhood. (John Mason)

        3. “.. Qatar is a monarchy, never a dictatorship. The newly appointed Emir, as did his father before him, has been bettering the laws year by year. Qatar, by the way, is about as liberal as Arab countries get. “(J)
        This, is a fact! Yes, Qatar has many things to not be proud of. (Which country does not?- but it is trying! It is working towards it and that’s what counts. Yes, the cyberlaw is very vague in some aspects, but it IS being criticised at home and abroad.
        This does not mean SFS-Q should not exist in a country which has made mistakes or some questionable rules. Qatar is not SFS-Q. SFS-Q is not Qatar. By the same fact, Georgetown should not be in the US either because the US has often not been on the side of human rights. One ex- Drone attacks in Pakistan? Stance on Palestine? (I can give you more direct sources of information about US foreign policy that has served to further its own interests on the expense of others.)

        Ari says that Georgetown “promotes” human rights abuses in Qatar by simply being in the country. Where’s the argument in this? That way, the US Embassy and any US company should not operate here because by simply being in the country they are “promoting” the abuses. SFS-Q students have worked- and no one has gotten into trouble for it- to help solve some of the issues in the migrant sector. (See Alex Silberman’s post about who exactly) Georgetown supports migrant abuses by being in Qatar is not a logical argument. If Ari has specific sources about GU promoting abuses, then he should bring them forward. Only then, yes, GU would be supporting abuses.

        By the way, you may be interested to know that a couple of weeks ago, I learned that GU is actually establishing a hotline through which any service providers, guards, etc can call and report any abuses they may be under while they are here in Qatar. Anonymously.

        4. What links to terrorists? Did the author state any sources? Primary documents? “J” has brought this up in his comment, below, as well.
        How can somebody claim something is a fact when they have absolutely no citations? “Israel’s allegation” is an allegation. Countries allege all the time. Have links been proven?

        Alex, Do you know of Meryl Dorey? She is known for her very famous anti-vaccine campaign in Australia. She is not a doctor, she knows nothing about medicine, she denies scientific facts.. she started to be seen as credible by media outlets when they discovered that many people followed her campaign. What started happening was that she would get as much air-time on television as doctors who KNEW what they were talking about, and relentlessly tried to convince people to not listen to her claims as all have been medically disproven. You can imagine the number of people who actually did not vaccinate their kids during that time (I shudder to think about this disaster, you can read more about Dorey online…)

        She is entitled to her opinion- the same way Ari is- but if The Hoya publishes an article which equates somebody’s opinions to facts, as being unarguable- then this is a reflection of underlying bigotry. It does not perpetuate good discussion, but encourages beliefs that are highly disrespectful to everyone and hate-filled. Allowing somebody to say or think whatever they want “feeds into the false equivalence between experts and non-experts that is an increasingly pernicious feature of our public discourse.” (direct quote from this article, highly recommended! http://theconversation.com/no-youre-not-entitled-to-your-opinion-9978)

        • I said, “If Ari has specific sources about GU promoting abuses, then he should bring them forward. Only then, yes, GU would be supporting abuses.” Let me rephrase:

          If there are credible sources about SFS-Q being involved in these abuses, then Ari should bring them forward. Accusing somebody/an institution of human rights abuses is a very serious matter, postulating is probably not the best way to go about here.

          Also, “2.” is a direct quote from John Mason. I missed putting in the quotation marks on that.

  5. What you people need to learn is that societies have been living the way they do for centuries. But ooh no the “seeds of democracy” have to planted in the region. The US has already messed the region up. If Bush never declared war on Iraq we wouldn’t have to deal with organization like the ISIS. Know the facts before you write, boy!

    • Bush?

      Are you joking?

      The only mistake Bush made was not recognizing just who the Qataris actually are. There’s no excuse for it to continue, now that we understand the scale of Qatar’s involvement.

      • alarmed at the ignorance says:

        you make it seem like Qatar isn’t home to the largest US base in the middle east, like this tiny desert peninsula that has long ago declared it’s support for the US and the world bank and current financial institutions that ARE actually governing this planet managed to actually directly fund these groups without anyone noticing? You’re argument is flawed on multiple levels, these. If you think Qatar could actually jeapordize it’s position that much by directly funding enemies of its closest ally in this manner then you are naive. Shallow inconsistent double standards is what you’re thriving on.

  6. A Former SFSQ Study Abroader. says:

    Have you even been to SFSQ? As a former study abroad student at SFSQ, I’m offended that The Hoya would allow someone who’s NEVER actually been there to write nor has any experience in Qatar at all to write this. Honestly, The Hoya get it together. I’m not saying Qatar is perfect– honestly no country is– but SFSQ is doing phenomenal stuff as well as the other schools in Education City.

  7. A concerned non-arab says:

    A freshman at Georgetown, true, but you should already be aware how important its values are for the university image. Do you really think that GU would risk its reputation for money by creating for its students an oppressive atmosphere? Thank you for caring, really. I would attribute your tone to the lack of personal insight into how SFS-Q works. As a student there I can think, say and write whatever I want to and Georgetown creates that space in the country. However, if by this article you are calling for the change in Qatari system, then I would advice to find another more effective and appropriate platform.
    Bringing higher education as good as Georgetown, Cornell, Northwestern or Carnegie Mellon, is one of the best things this country has initiated for its people.
    As to lessen your worries, don’t lose your sleep, minorities are feeling perfectly fine in Georgetown and are not “subjects to brutal regime” for being either women or homosexuals (some may be better than in DC? who knows…)
    And just another small detail, we currently do not have a Jewish student. But before you get agitated, it’s not because of the discrimination during application process. Most Jews just don’t choose to settle in Middle East I guess, due to their personal concerns. And yes, we have had a Jewish staff member, and trust me he was dearly loved (and is dearly missed)
    Don’t rush into judgments :)
    Hoya Saxa

    • “Do you really think that GU would risk its reputation for money by creating for its students an oppressive atmosphere?”

      THEY HAVE! Doha covers ALL associated campus development costs. The Qatar Foundation, which is linked directly to terrorism ALL OVER THE PLACE pays Georgetown to be in Qatar. And they train American diplomatic minds…
      The Muslim Brotherhood, a subversive political organization that came to maturity alongside and WITH the Nazi Party in Germany in the 1930s, trains America’s diplomats… or at least pays the bills!
      No one sees a MAJOR problem here?

    • Not only would Georgetown risk their reputation, so would Northwestern, Cornell, Carnegie-Mellon, Texas A&M, Virginia Commonwealth, Harvard, Exxon-Mobil, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrup-Grumman, Disney, over half the board members of Google and Apple, Harvey Weinstein and Miramax, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Brookings Institute, the Rand Corporation, Bloomberg, half of Silicon Valley and most mainstream media organizations in the U.S.

      The al-Thanis discovered that all this entrenchment allowed them to dictate policy in the U.S.

      “And we have to confer with the Qataris, who have told me over and over again that Hamas is a humanitarian organization…”

      — Nancy Pelosi

      I think the author understands the Qataris VERY WELL.

  8. Another concerned arab says:

    I was infuriated after reading this article. As an Arab, resident of Qatar, student at SFS-Q and woman. This article is the epitome of a ignorance!
    Regarding migrant labor issues, this has been delved into by the world’s leading NGOs and Human Rights Organization, in addition to local authorities. Additionally, the SFS-Q students, faculty and staff have been in the past and continue to be active advocates of migrant labor rights in Qatar and the neighboring region.
    Regarding your argument on ‘social justice’, it is unrealistic to imply that this high ideal is applied anywhere around the world. Although it is an ideal that we all should strive to achieve, we here at SFS-Q have not forgotten it and live by these Jesuit Values that transcend all religions and faiths in our everyday lives.

  9. “Why does no one talk about this?”
    You are liable for the work that you present. Not only have you not provided any citation or reference to the sources of the bluntly wrong data that you have reported, your knowledge of the topic is understandably limited, and have made a mockery of The Hoya. You make an appreciative effort at making a take on a topic that, as you say, ‘no one talks about’, though you would do better to understand that in your less than two months at the Hilltop, you are absolutely nowhere near equipped with the basic skills you would need to provide an argument wherein you charge a sovereign nation of state crimes and of having sponsored terrorism. I am safely assuming that you have not interviewed a student or staff member from SFS-Q before turning your thoughts into words. Do you enjoy making a joke of yourself and of an issue that has existed since you were in primary school? Make an effort to not portray the fact that you have treated this article mockingly, and do make a personal investment by enrolling in proof-reading lessons.

  10. Well, as a SFSQ student, I would say that what you say about Qatar is more or less true. However, SFSQ is not that bad, yet not that great. I understand that you are asking questions, and not accusing anyone of anything here–I hope. No one will harm you in GUQ if you are gay or lesbian. No one will protect you from the legal system in the country either, as american universities have proved in Doha before. No one will harm you if you are jewish–american media is strong with you. We have many other problems in GUQ such as corruption in the institution it self, the way the place is designed where the system is to benefit every one in GUQ except for the students, and many other things that you will know about if you spend four years in Education City in Qatar. I say you are asking some good questions, but, in my opinion, many are the wrong ones. So dig up a bit more about the place. Maybe do a semester abroad to know how things are? Never make a thesis statement before you do some research.

  11. And to the rest of my angry sfsq fellows, take it easy, Ari is a freshman…. so chill every body.

  12. Washingtonian says:

    Fellow Hoyas, instead of calling the author an idiot, let’s look at the claims he makes one by one. Is Freedom House classifying Qatar as “Not Free”? Yes. Is Qatar a non-democratic, authoritarian state? Yes. Is gay sex a crime in Qatar? Yes. Is Article 134 of Qatar’s penal code used to silence critics of the Emir? Yes (al-Ajami in 2012 got a life sentence, for example). Does Qatar use migrant labor as slave labor? Yes. Does Qatar have links to Hamas? Yes (they harbor Khaled Meshaal – and sponsor ISIS – not as a state, but as rich individuals). Is it correct that women are not allowed to drive in Qatars neighborhood (Saudi)? Yes.

    Is there a vibrant debate at Georgetown in D.C. on how problematic it is to have a satellite campus in Qatar given the current conditions there? No. There is no such debate.

    Thus, this article raises a number of important questions. Thank you Hoya for publishing!

  13. Alex Silberman says:

    As a Jewish main campus Georgetown alumnus (COL 11) who worked at SFS-Q for several years, I find this opinion piece to be factually inaccurate and a complete misrepresentation of the realities of life in Qatar. During my time in Doha, I found Qatar to be incredibly hospitable and welcoming to an American expatriate ignorant of local customs. In particular, I found Georgetown School of Foreign Service in Qatar to be one of the most close-knit and dynamic communities that I have had the privilege of getting to know.

    Like all societies, Qatar is a complex country that has experienced rapid social and economic change over the last 20 years. It is not a perfect country, but its leadership in the Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani and the current Emir Sheikh Tamil bin Hamad Al-Thani have consistently demonstrated a willingness to engage with the global community. For example, it has signalled a potentially decisive shift in its migrant labor policy in recent years through the formation of the Qatar Foundation Migrant Worker Welfare Initiative.

    Education City, home to Georgetown’s campus in Qatar, is another example of Qatar’s commitment to change. The students at SFS-Q and other EC schools hail from all over the world; many would not have the opportunity to receive a world-class education without the resources that the Qatar Foundation offers. During my time in Qatar, these same students (using the resources that the article labels as “oil money”) were able to travel to Sri Lanka and America to study Disaster Management; they were able to meet Dikembe Mutombo and Alonzo Mourning at basketball practices; they were able to study World War II and the Holocaust and travel to Germany and Poland to put their learning into action; they were able to present their unique research at conferences around the world; and perhaps most importantly, their curriculum was imbued with the Jesuit Values and a commitment to social change that is the hallmark of a Georgetown education. In other words, SFS-Q is building Women and Men for Others, just like our beloved main campus.

    In their eagerness to tear down Qatar, some people do not take the time to really get to know the realities of the country itself. To those critics of Georgetown’s branch campus in Doha, I would simply highlight a few of the accomplishments of SFS-Q students. Aakash Jayaprakash (SFS-Q ’11) has worked tirelessly for 7 years on migrant labor issues in Asia. Kimberly Fernandez (SFS-Q ’11) has worked for Teach for India and studied education policy at Harvard; Malik Habayeb (SFS-Q ’13), winner of the Landegger service award; Jibin Koshy (SFS-Q ’12), who founded a unique dance fusion group in Doha; Dima Wahbeh (SFS-Q ’15), a Palestinian student who participated in the Seeds of Peace program as a student and later as a staff member; and all of the students who have worked for their country’s foreign service or an international organization (there are too many to list in this space).

    SFS-Q was my home and community for three years, and I will never forget the wonderful students, staff, and faculty that worked together to build the institution that has graduated over 150 dynamic and intelligent students. I would strongly encourage The Hoya to visit SFS-Q first-hand before publishing unfair and inaccurate opinions about one of Georgetown’s finest accomplishments.

    • I was waiting to see you reply to this Alex! You are missed!

    • ‘Qatar is not perfect…’

      A vast understatement for the nation who, beyond all others, is responsible for the creation, funding and/or arming of groups like the Islamic State, Boko Haram and Ansar al-Sharia.

      • John the Mason says:

        It is frankly disappointing to hear you make the same point again and again. And because individuals support these organizations it makes the whole country corrupt. It is not like we, in the United States, do not have home grown militias that are supported by the people to protect our borders from aliens.
        That being said the Emir of Qatar has said again and again that Qatar has not supported the creation of IS and is in fact fighting alongside the US and other countries to defeat the threat of IS in their neighborhood.
        At the end of the day, “Nations have no permanent friends or allies, they only have permanent interests.”

        • Money Talks says:

          ” fighting alongside the US and other countries to defeat the threat of IS in their neighborhood”. So Qatar will be supping the ground troops?

          • John the Mason says:

            The US nor anyother country has put boots on the ground yet but I am sure that when a coalition of the willing does, it will include troops from the Gulf. Like in the First Gulf War, the countries of the region will field troops alongside the US.

    • Finest accomplishments??!!…to join the Qatarsnipes of Qatar…who fund terrorism…who released the Taliban 5 terrorists who the United Nations deemed war criminals guilty of crimes against humanity…to release the Taliban 5 to join ISIS where they rape, behead and murder Christians?…check the 100,000 murdered Christians by Qatar supported terrorists…and the I dare you to come back here and take another bow for your support of Qatar and their Christian holocaust?

      Have you no conscience man? Has Georgetown no conscience?

  14. I Will Never Name My Kid Ari says:

    I am not sure whether The Hoya decided to publish this article for the sake of factual information, or for the sake of stirring up debate within the community. Either way, I would not call this article quite successful.
    The author definitely makes some point by referring to the legal system of Qatar. It is true that homosexuality is prohibited, and speaking against the Emir is a crime. However, that does not mean that Qatar is completely “not free” (And after all, out of all the quotes an author can choose, he – or she – because I don’t even know if Ari is a name for a boy or a girl – chooses “not free”? So professional). As countries have their own understandings of their virtue and value, it must be respected that some countries may have different nature of constitution than the United States (oh, the free free state of the world. Psh). It is important to recognize the background and the belief system of the state of Qatar before making any judgment.
    The author also points to the possible relationship between the Hamas and Qatar, according to Israel. Of course we all know that Israel is a completely good state that did not account for hundreds of Palestinian deaths, right? Of course Israel’s words can be trusted because it never failed to follow up with international agreements in terms of its relation with Palestine, right? At this point, the author is being entirely biased. And his last name (Goldstein) is not really helping, either. Israel and Qatar do not have a good relationship, and it is true that any passports with Israeli stamp on it cannot enter Qatar. Before this “war” that the author swears was only “month-long”, Qatar maintained an economic relationship with Palestine by exporting building materials. Israel accused Qatar of helping the Hamas build bunkers for their “terrorist acts”, and that is how the story goes.
    It is true that as an international student studying in Qatar, I have restrictions in terms of traveling. I must obtain an exit permit before leaving the country. However, also as someone who lived as an international student for about 5 years in the United States, it is the same. Before leaving the states for vacation, I had to bring my I-95 document to the deans and get it approved. Without the signature, I could not travel. So restrictions are not just in Qatar. It is also in the United States.
    In Qatar, women actually can drive, and women’s rights in Qatar is much better than those of other nations. I have never seen a gay or lesbian student being discriminated in SFS-Q. The SFS-Q community is one of the closest and friendliest community that I have ever been a part of. And unlike the author who is simply new to college and wanting some attention, I have experienced different college communities before. Out of all of them, SFS-Q was the most welcoming, no matter who you are.
    Also, “gays are stoned to death”? Did the author smoke too much weed and is actually about to be “stoned to death”? I am afraid that the author will cite some passages from the Bible to support his statement. No one is stoned to death in Qatar. That is quite a lot of years ago.

    At this point, it is quite clear that the author has not done proper research to even write a single article. Hopefully he will survive his freshman writing course.

    Speak up, Georgetown. It is time to publicly acknowledge the harsh reality of the partnership between Ari Goldstein and The Hoya.

    • “And his last name (Goldstein) is not really helping, either.” Really? You deny him the right to an opinion because of his Jewish name? Whoever you are, you are a racist.

      • I Will Never Name My Kid Ari says:

        I deny anyone’s rights to present bullshit as factual information. And please don’t deny. Everyone is racist within themselves. Am I a racist? Maybe at some point. Is the author a racist? Oh yes, definitely. All middle eastern regimes are oppressive? So Georgetown SFS should not operate in Qatar? If anyone in SFS goes to study abroad in China, I believe Ari will flip shit.

        • So you deny him the right to an opinion because of his Jewish name. You are a racist. There’s no point in talking to you or even listening to you. Wherever you are from, whatever religion you may have, you don’t belong here, racist. You should be ashamed.

  15. Fatima Ramadan Sanz says:

    My reaction to this article as sent to the editor:

    It pains me to read such a shortsighted perspective as is the one portrayed by Ari Goldstein in his article In Qatar, SFS Subject to Brutal Regime. This article falsely accuses Georgetown of ‘condoning and promoting the human rights abuses’ of Qatar. To the contrary, Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in Qatar is a vibrant hub for young leaders who uphold the same ethos as our fellow Hoya peers do in the Main Campus. Ethos Goldstein blatantly violates through its narrow-minded tone, and his obvious lack of first hand experience in the Middle East.

    After condemning Georgetown of condoning and promoting human rights abuse, Goldstein claims, that “as Georgetown students, […] as global citizens, examining the status quo is […] our moral obligation.” As a Georgetown Alumni within the GCC region, I feel alienated by this statement. Moreover, I find this statement hypocritical. After denominating himself a global citizen, Goldstein completely neglects Georgetown’s role in the Middle East as a pioneer in building bridges across cultures and fostering global citizenship. His unambiguous demand to question Georgetown’s presence in the Middle East is, an outrageous denial of the right to excellent education to the residents of the region. Goldstein assumes that Georgetown students are in an unsafe environment and lack freedom of the press, assumptions which portray his lack of knowledge about the region and its vibrant Georgetown community.

    Finally, Goldstein states that “it’s time to publicly acknowledge the harsh reality of our partnership with Qatar.” Thus, ending his article statement based on ignorance of Georgetown’s positioning in the region. Georgetown isn’t partnered with the Qatari Government, it is a partner of Qatar Foundation: “a private, non-profit organization that serves the people of Qatar by supporting and operating programs in [the areas of] education, science and research, and community development.”

  16. The article was SPOT ON. It’s a moral indignity to deal with these snakes in Qatar. They’re QATARSNIPES!

    Terrorist financiers and friends of the 9/11 Mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Georgetown has taken blood money, and vacate ASAP!

    See: http://www.stopqatarnow.com

    • I Will Never Name My Kid Ari says:

      That’s your source? “Stopqatarnow.com”? How many times does your professor need to remind you that you cannot use websites like Wikipedia to support your argument?

  17. Ari has done Georgetown a service. The ignorance attacking him in the comments is disgraceful. Qatar made ISIS — a mass murdering, psychotic criminal syndicate. GOT THAT???

  18. Qatar wants a fig leaf for its murderous regime, and the academic left is all too ready to provide one in exchange for cash. Look around– other big universities (Northwestern is where I encountered this) are doing the same thing.

    God bless the author of this piece, and shame on the apologists who allow it.

  19. While I do not agree with the argument this article makes, I do not think people should be attacking the author (ie: I Will Never Name My Kid Ari). If you have serious concerns, why not send him a personal message and ask to chat with him? You will teach him a lot — and you may even learn a bit from him. Keep it classy, Hoyas and stay away from the personal attacks. Using heated language doesn’t do much for helping convey your ideas. It just makes people angry and stifles meaningful conversation……………..

    • perhaps the author should have reached out directly to SFSQ students were he truly concerned about the university environment over there. If he had “serious concerns”, he should have been the first among us to keep it classy. maybe we should ask him how terms like “regime change”, “Qatarsnipes”, and “Islam is evil” found their way into this discussion.

      • I don’t think you can blame him for any of those terms being brought up by others in the same way I don’t think you’re to blame for the anti-Semitism expressed by “I Will Never Name My Kid Ari” in his comment above. We can each be responsible for our own words, but not for those of others.

        • just to clarify, the “regime change” rhetoric came directly from the author. the “Qatarsnipes”, “Islam is evil”, etc. talk were all inspired by this piece, thereby rendering the author at least in part responsible. I’m not sure how any of this plays a constructive role in this conversation.

          • What would be constructive would be the publication of the sources I have included in my (yet unpublished) comments…linking Qatar to global terrorism and drug trafficking.

  20. What should one expect of Georgetown…

    They have gone beyond political correctness. Georgetown sold its soul when they covered their Christian Seal and removed the crucifixes when Barack Obama came to speak…Georgetown is not about the Jesuit imperative of being “men and women for others”…not about Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam… But blood money …for shame…

    Sandusky scandal was about the abuse by one man…this is institutional amorality–and we who support Georgetown are horrified.

  21. Embarrassed GU Alum says:

    The arguments in the comments here make me continued to be embarrassed to be an alumnus of this pathetic institution and wish I could strip it off my CV.

    1. All the “concerned arabs” continue speaking in vague generalities saying the author “doesn’t understand the region” or whatever. Please state which facts give above are false. Just because you don’t like someone attacking your culture doesn’t make any of the facts less accurate. I’m sorry your not used to criticism and introspection.

    2. All you special people who talk about how open and wonderful GU Qatar is and how none of this is true – THIS IS THE POINT. the GU campus exists in a bubble where people enjoy freedoms not allowed normal citizens (or slave labor migrants) in the country. This was obviously a precondition for all of these universities to operate there. the universities get free money. the goverment can claim to be progressive with actually expanding rights in a tangible way for regular people. EVERYONE WINS YAAAAAAAAAAAAY.

    Sure the campus does promote discussion in the region and who knows, maybe it will be a force for good and change in the long run. However this article raises the valid point that this campus is founded on blood money which is used to finance terrorist organizations as well.

    The overt antisemitism in many of these comments are also alarming. If the author has no credibility on this subject because he’s jewish and has some sort innate beef with Qatar, then any arab opinion is even more invalid as there is no way it could be considered impartial.

    Regardless of opinion here, you people are pathetic and embarrassing just based on your inability to make a cohesive argument that isn’t based only on your feelings being hurt. I hope none of you intend to apply to law school, unless maybe its georgetown since its probably as mediocre as the undergraduate education and has equally low standards.

  22. The author ahould not have been admitted to georgetown. aint no hoya saxa in him.

  23. Qatar is evil…and when the entire truth of Benghazi comes out in Congressional hearings..the horrific truth of Benghazi will be revealed as it is in several publications…including the Seals new book– 13 hours…
    Ambassador Stevens and Marine Sean Smith were murdered by the September 17th Brigade…the terrorist whose pay checks were tracked directly to Qatar..

    Qatar arms and funds ISIS, Hamas, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, the Muslim Brotherhood and the September 17th Brigade…

    Qatar is funding murder and mayhem, rape, slavery, torture ..and Georgetown among others, is providing them the mask of decency. No amount of money is worth the price Georgetown is paying in loss of reputation. Presumably Georgetown and the Jesuit educated Hoya’s still embrace the Jesuit precept of being soldiers of Christ. That notion does not include giving a pass to Muslims waging Jihad against innocent Christians. The next time one considers Georgetown’s Doha campus–remember is was built on the bodies of innocently slaughtered Christians–and ask yourselves–Can you bear to even look at it?

  24. Qatar is a state sponsor of terror…and should be treated as such….that belongs with the likes of Iran and North Korea.

    Nice company you keep Georgetown….birds of a feather???

  25. This opinion piece seems pretty grounded in facts. Did the author get any of the facts about Qatar wrong?

    If Washington D.C. had these rules, the students would be going crazy. And just about the harshest thing the author says about Georgetown’s Qatar campus is that we should be talking about these things.

  26. seeeee
    u dunno even lol

  27. I hope you later see otherwise ... says:

    As an SFS-Q graduate, I can only hope that my trust in the GU curriculum might be able to expose your very narrow-minded, and freshman-esque perspective. I’m interested to see if the intensity of your opinion might change if you wrote a follow up article in your senior year.
    Even if these are opinions that you continue to hold, why not look at it as an opportunity to educate a new generation in an education that you deemed fit for yourself to become better leaders for the region. “Why does no one talk about this?” We do! … and SFS-Q allowed us to speak freely, criticize and ultimately have intelligent discussions and debates rather than your approach in this article. Also, don’t forget Washington is also corrupt and has been in bed with organizations you might not be too proud of. I can easily picture someone from the region with an equally misguided perspective as your own writing an article condemning this partnership for some of the same reasons you cited actually but directed towards the US. Neither is appropriate..
    Finally, I would highly encourage you to come to SFS-Q for one of your semesters’ abroad. If you are still hellbent on your perspective, at least you’ll have it from the source.

    • If you are allowed to speak freely, please feel free to show me evidence of any SFS-Q students that – in Qatar – have openly criticized the Emir for running what Freedom House calls a Not Free State.

      • actually, a professor at SFSQ has published an article doing exactly that – and has suffered no consequences…
        Mehran Kamrava. “Royal Factionalism and Political Liberalization in Qatar.” The Middle East Journal 63.3 (2009): 401-420.

  28. you just don t have it; its NOT THERE

  29. you are completely right… Americans are money whores and this is a great way to make money… really shows you where Georgetown, a “Jesuit” university, places it’s values.

    • It was Georgetown’s choice to do this… I recommend Ari to drop out of Georgetown in protest… that would be the right thing to do

  30. Here we go.
    From the way you’ve written about Qatar, you seem to have been completely misinformed. You seem to have your facts wrong about the working conditions here. Recently, the Emir has spoken out against these alligations and has bettered the conditions since then. The “kafala” system has also been changed to allow workers to travel freely without anyone’s permission.
    You also seem to think that we are subject to the same laws as in Saudi Arabia. There aren’t any cases of stoning of gays. There also aren’t any women prohibited from driving. We do not fund ISIS, Boko Haram or any of the other terrorist groups you’ve so graciously mentioned. The only group Qatar has openly funded is Hamas. Now, this may seem mind-boggling to you being a Jewish man (by the looks of it), but this money was given to Hamas to retaliate to the unwarranted attacks on Gaza this past summer. Money was also given to the Palestinian government to help the rebuilding process (which will take just about 10 years).
    As for Islam being “evil” and Qatar being a dictatorship, I’ll just leave it up to you to revise your facts. Qatar is a monarchy, never a dictatorship. The newly appointed Emir, as did his father before him, has been bettering the laws year by year. Qatar, by the way, is about as liberal as Arab countries get. But I wouldn’t expect you to know that all the way back in DC having never visited Qatar.
    If you aren’t convinced by the responses above, I’d suggest speaking to some of the students. You’ll quickly see that the “oppression” you speak of is non-existent.

  31. For a student at georgetown to be so ignorant to write a piece like this without a primary source is astonishing.

    1) if Hamas is a terrorist group, then Israel (majorly funded by US) is a greater terrorist group.

    2) the women (myself included) here are NOT oppressed!

    For god’s sake leave this nation alone were happy the way we are

    Also the average GPA of georgetown Qatar is higher than that of US. Let us study and stop the hate

    • 1.) Did Israel build cement tunnels into and under Gaza for 12 years to use as a venue for murderous terrorism? Did the United States support Israel in such an evil scheme? Did Israel employ it’s children to do such things and leave 150 of its children to die in the process….NO

      2.). The women of Qatar are not oppressed but don’t mind living off the blood money from the cartels that support Qatar in trafficking of women and children into sex slavery…Just typing those words sickens me–yet the women of Qatar are fine living off those dividends??!

      So you’re just fine living off of blood money? I presume you’re not bothered by slavery? How about women’s rights–for Infidels? Do you support the Muslim Brotherhood? Are you in favor of denying Christians basic human rights? Are Shiites dogs worthy of beheading to you?
      Do you too support Sharia law and the Caliphate?

      Is your idea of peace only when you have religious, financial and human rights? …and others are not extended those rights? Do you too believe in destroying all Christian history, all Christian Churches across the Middle East? Do you have the right to decide who is free and who is a slave? Is freedom of the press only what you deem it to be? Do you too wish to destroy the law of the land in our Republic…in the United States of America–The Constitution–where all men are accorded equal rights? Where life is scared? Where our Judeo-Christian beliefs inform and compel our citizenry since our founding?

      Yes, there have been serious missteps in our history but though those dark chapters we came out more vigilant and more determined never to stand with evil again. Never!

      Support of Qatar is support of evil

  32. Qatar is evil…and when the entire truth of Benghazi comes out in Congressional hearings..the horrific truth of Benghazi will be revealed as it is in several publications…including the Seals new book– 13 hours…
    Ambassador Stevens and Marine Sean Smith were murdered by the September 17th Brigade…the terrorist whose pay checks were tracked directly to Qatar..

    Qatar arms and funds ISIS, Hamas, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, the Muslim Brotherhood and the September 17th Brigade…

    Qatar is funding murder and mayhem, rape, slavery, torture ..and Georgetown among others, is providing them the mask of decency. No amount of money is worth the price Georgetown is paying in loss of reputation. Presumably Georgetown and the Jesuit educated Hoya’s still embrace the Jesuit precept of being soldiers of Christ. That notion does not include giving a pass to Muslims waging Jihad against innocent Christians. The next time one considers Georgetown’s Doha campus–remember is was built on the bodies of innocently slaughtered Christians–and ask yourselves–Can you bear to even look at it?

    • umm if you’re going to pull the “innocent” card then do remember that your country (not just uni) was built under the killing of thousands of innocent people (native americans, slaves etc..)

      and get your facts straight no GCC country funds ISIS.
      so go back to your little stereotypical box and read about it from a reliable source may I add not from a freshman in uni :)

      • Wrong.

        Qatar funds and armed ISIS…AlThani is running the caliphate…funded by Dahwood and the Sinola cartel monies from, drugs, human trafficking and terrorism.

        Further, re the American Indians– they mostly died as a result of disease brought from Europe–90% of American Indians perished due to exposure to disease for which they had no immunity.

        …Though any barbarianism of two centuries ago is no excuse for Qatar to support and engage in such barbarianism today.

        • “…they mostly died as a result of disease brought from Europe–90% of American Indians perished due to exposure to disease for which they had no immunity”

          LOL. I would LOVE to hear a Native American’s Point of view on that one haha.

  33. Can facts be checked before publishing such a stereotypical article about Qatar and Georgetown in Qatar? First of all, women are allowed to drive and no they are not stoned for this NORMAL human right which believe it or not, is legal in Qatar. Secondly, a freshman should not be able to publish such an article without having it checked, at least by editors. It is obvious that personal bias and opinions are written in this article.
    Also, the university is functioning relatively well in Qatar, with multi-cultural and diverse students, the depth of interaction and spread of knowledge breaks stereotypes and allows the students, both Qatari and non-Qatari to connect.
    The Qatari monarchy and government does not have to follow the constitution of the United States, nor does it have to agree with every political move that the United States makes in order to have this campus.
    In terms of the relationship between Qatar and Hamas or Israel and the United States, firstly, what is the connection of that to allowing Georgetown to have a campus in Qatar. Secondly, Qatar will not act as a shadow behind the United States, and make peace with Israel while ignoring Hamas and the priority that is our Muslim brothers and sisters in Palestine. Qatar will support Hamas because it does not see it as a terrorist group. Yes I said it. It is not a terrorist group. However, of course, this does not allow for generalizations because there are terrorist groups in the world, in which Qatar does not support. Finally, I suggest that the writer connect with some fellow Georgetown students from the Qatari campus and consider their perspectives before submitting such an article. In the end, students from both cap uses graduate with the same certificate, so do not create a divide where there shouldn’t be one.

  34. You’re ignorant enough to give this much credit to a small state claiming that it basically controls the world? Seriously dear, wait until the end of freshman year atleast before you make accusations like that. Learn a bit about the outside world. And if what you’re saying is true then props to my little state *claps*. Oh and be careful what you say cause according to you my dear we have control over you, the institution that you study at, and your government with our large some of ‘blood money’.

  35. alarmed at the ignorance says:

    It’s like covering a wall in exciment then pointing at the smallest splat on that wall and blaming it for the stench. You people are rediculous.

  36. so basically this article is telling the sfs students to go with the status quo of the main campus… isn’t that a double standard when you believe in freedom of speech and freedom of choice? if so then this whole article is irrelevant.

    oh and most of the things you stated here aren’t 100% facts… ok you might have touched bas about the kafala system and might be somewhat correct (not 100% again) but we are changing it here and is in process to remove the kafala system even though it has its more good than bad in my opinion.

    other than that all the other things you stated are biased point of views..

    so go tile the sea since you have nothing better to do or if you like come to Qatar see with your own eyes, find out reaaal facts then go and write up an article… you’re just a freshman now so I hope you’ll learn something over the four year course and get your facts straight.

  37. “Migrant workers, who make up 90 percent of its population.” Where does this guy get his sources from?!And he is quoting Israel when he is talking about an Arab Muslim nation, thats like quoting Frazier, when you are talking about Ali. 1 He is either a freshman or 2 He just wants attention which we are all giving him. Such a downgrade to this website.

  38. So many of these comments defending Georgetown MISS THE POINT.
    And the point is that Georgetown and Hamas have the same Sugar Daddy – Qatar.
    Add to that list Boko Haram, al Qaeda, and yes, ISIS.

    No one cares about cultural understanding and diversity and all that feel good crap when your country is being occupied by psychopathic mass murderers who kidnap little girls, rape them, and sell them into slavery;
    or when your local downtown is painted red with blood following a suicide bombing;
    or when your husband is tapped in Doha building FIFA soccer stadiums, because his passport has been seized by some terrorist-loving local Sheikh.

    Is any of this sinking in? Or are we all going to play stupid, sticking our heads in the proverbial sand, as the camels walk by in this terrorist haven?

    GET REAL.

  39. Finest accomplishments??!!…to join the Qatarsnipes of Qatar…who fund terrorism…who released the Taliban 5 terrorists, who the United Nations deemed as war criminals guilty of crimes against humanity…to release the Taliban 5 to join ISIS where they rape, behead and murder Christians?…check the 100,000 murdered Christians by Qatar supported terrorists…and then I dare you to come back here and take another bow for your support of Qatar…and their Christian holocaust?

    Have you no conscience man? Has Georgetown no conscience?

    Dr. DeGoia, I thought you were about elevating Georetown? Free campuses provided by terrorists is dirty business indeed.

  40. Dr. DeGoia, I thought you were about elevating Georgetown? I had hoped your interests were in creating an atmosphere where global growth brought peace and understanding–not in supporting terrorism and a culture of death.
    My God man, if we’re educating the future leaders of the world, the Doha Campus is the perfect example of when you’re wrong..admit it and change course.
    Free campuses provided by terrorists with their blood money is dirty business indeed. A contamination at the very least…

  41. We could say the same about the US. You guys are contradicting yourself! The US was a main participant of the the transatlantic slave trade. It had it’s share of attacks that are considered as terrorism but you guys are too ignorant to realize: Hiroshima, Vietnam war, war on Afghanistan, war on Iraq .. The list goes on. And just so you know georgetown was founded back in the late 1700s so claiming that such Jesuit institutions shouldn’t be on ‘terroristic soil’ is just hilarious, news flash it already is!
    In addition to your accusations I would really like to know what sources you’re using when you keep stating that Qatar and Qatar Foundation is closely linked to terrorist groups. Please do share :) I’m begging all the ignorant obviously uneducated people that are supporting his claims to open the internet and take a few minutes to research. It seems like the only georgetown students that are remotely educated are the ones from sfsq.

  42. For those who are defending Qatar, QF, and SFSQ thank you, but don’t give him the attention that’s he’s obviously calling for.

    اذا خاطبك الجاهلون قل سلاما

  43. THE PRECEDENT SET WITH QATARI FUNDED AMERICAN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS IS HOW THEIR MORAL AND CULTURAL STANDARDS CAN AND WILL BE COMPROMISED BY A SULTANATE THAT IS A FASCIST IMPERIALIST COLONIALIST CRIMINAL STATE. THEIR OBSESSIVE RELIGIOSITY OF OMNIPOTENT POWER, WHETHER FROM A FINANCIAL, IDEOLOGICAL OR EDUCATIONAL IT IS BASED ON A RELIGION WHOSE BASIS IS THE ISLAMIISM OF TOTAL SUBJUGATION; THIS IS A DANGEROUS TERRITORY TO NEGOTIATE IRRESPECTIVE OF THE MORAL TRANSGRESSIONS WITHIN THIS REICH KHILAFA.
    THE RESPONSIBILITY BE IT WRITTEN OR IMPLIED PLACE SUCH AN ARRANGEMENT AT A DISADVANTAGE, THE SHARIAH STATE DOES NOT ALLOW FOR Q’RANIC DEVIATION; FORCING THE INSTITUTIONS PRESENT TO COMPROMISE STANDARDS THAT MAY CHALLENGE THE SENSIBILITIES OF A SOCIETY THAT IS UNABLE TO ASCEND TO MODERNITY AND OR ADMIT TO THE VERY BEGINNINGS OF CIVILIZED SOCIETY BEING THE JUDEO CHRISTIAN TEN COMMANDMENTS THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS, CONSIDERED INFIDEL; PLACES A MORAL DILEMMA. DEPENDENT ON THE ECONOMIC SUPPORT FOR ITS OPERATION THESE INSTITUTIONS ARE SLAVES BOUND TO THE WHIM OF THE SLAVE MASTERS OF QATAR’S MULLAHS AND THEIR MOHAMMEDAN FASCISM.
    THE DIVERSITY AND TOLERANCE NARRATIVE STOPS AT THE ENTRANCE TO THE CARNIVAL OF RELIGIOUS TYRANNY OF THE SHARIAH STATE OF QATAR, THE TERROR HIGH COMMAND FOR ALL MOSLEM BROTHERHOOD JIHADI GENOCIDES. THIS NOTWITHSTANDING IT IS A REALITY OF SURREAL DISBELIEF.
    OBAMA’S EMIRATE HAS MOVED THE U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE TO QATAR THE SINGLE MOST PROLIFIC SPONSOR OF TERRORISM, RACIAL HYGIENE AND ETHNIC CLEANSING IN THEIR INTERNATIONAL TOTAL CIVILIZATION JIHAD “THE FINAL SOLUTION” FOR THE INFIDELS WHOSE ONLY CRIME IS RELIGIOUS, IDEOLOGICAL OR POLITICAL DIFFERENCES OVER THE TOTAL STATE, ALL THIS CONTROLLED FROM AND BY QATARI INFLUENCE. THE QUESTION IS, HOW WELL WILL AN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION FUNCTION UNDER THE SHARIA OF THE TERROR/SLAVE/NARCO STATE OF QATAR WHEN THE FUNDING HEARINGS BEGIN?

  44. Oh you mean the article that’s funded by governments. https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/09/25/uae-qatar-camstoll-group/. There’s a problem in the west its called not knowing a language and culture. You assume jihad is bad, you assume all Islamists are terrorists.

    You think jihad means a war or struggle against unbelievers to fight with violence but in fact it means a process of fighting to overcome hardship. Education is considered a type of jihad,

  45. As an Atheist expat SFS-Q grad, I know that the claims about social freedom are not entirely true. Some of my best friends are gay, and one of them is Qatari. I also spend my weekends exactly the same way I did when I was an exchange student in DC – either clubbing or watching reality TV with friends. One of my roommates in DC was actually a senior in the College who lived in Dubai as a child and had a much better idea about the region than Ari does. I’m more interested about the political debates on this thread, though. As someone who is doing research on ME politics for a living, I would really like to know who do you honestly think calls the shots when it comes to what groups should be financed or otherwise? Qatar is a tiny state and its foreign policy has basically been to attempt the propagation of Islamic principles through soft and proxy hard power WITHIN LIMITS. Qatar cannot even afford to be belligerent towards the Islamic World’s foremost ideological and political enemy, Israel or its ideological rival, Iran, in the same way that Saudi does because of its size. Its strong support for the MB, which was strong only because it thought it could get away with promoting its beliefs in a country as insignificant as Egypt, soon waned and they literally kicked them out last month when pressure got stronger from UAE, Saudi and the rest of the GCC. Qatar survives on ally suport and in international relations, it only acts on behalf of US and other powers who lend it their military support. Believe it or not Qatari leadership is trembling with fear of a regional war because of its size and its nonexistent and borrowed military power. In DC, I attended a very honest presentation by the ambassador to the US and he admitted that appeasing all sides, literally all sides, is the reason Qatar is still on the map. A couple of months ago when Qatar’s Internal Security Forces sent aid to Gaza, they gave part of it to Isreal so that they are able to pass on to Gaza safely. This is from a friend who works in their search and rescue taskforce. They literally had Isreal’s blessing to do that. They are not enemies with ANYONE and they can never afford to be. If you read US State Department reports or see Obama’s interviews on the subject (which I frequently summarize to report to my boss), he constantly plays on the good muslim/bad mulsim model when asked about Syria/Iraq and what he and his administration perceive to be a good muslim type group is the group that Qatar will support. A tiny state like Qatar will NEVER act independently and it will certainly never do anything that is not in the interest of the US.

  46. "punishable by death" says:

    If the following from Wikipedia is true, isn’t this enough to decide whom we do business with?

    “Flogging is used in Qatar as a punishment for alcohol consumption or illicit sexual relations.[7] Article 88 of Qatar’s criminal code declares the punishment for adultery is 100 lashes.[8] Adultery is punishable by death when a Muslim woman and a non-Muslim man are involved.[8] In 2006, a Filipino woman was sentenced to 100 lashes for adultery.[8] In 2012, six expatriates were sentenced to floggings of either 40 or 100 lashes.[7] More recently in April 2013, a Muslim expatriate was sentenced to 40 lashes for alcohol consumption.[9][10][11] In June 2014, a Muslim expatriate was sentenced to 40 lashes for consuming alcohol and driving under the influence.[12] Judicial corporal punishment is common in Qatar due to the Hanbali interpretation of Sharia Law.”

  47. Ari, thanks so much for writing this. You are spot on in your assessment of Qatar and Georgetown needs to seriously rethink its relationship with Qatar if it wants to retain its reputation as a university that cares deeply about social justice. Additionally, Georgetown has no limits currently in place on what it can and can not invest its endowment in, another issue that is definitely worth looking into.

  48. So the fundamental basis of this piece is: since Qatar (allegedly) is involved in “wrong” activities then GU should pack up and leave as to not be complacent or supportive of these actions. Following this logic then if America was to be involved in wrong activities (supporting terrorism or discriminating against a segment of its population), should GU also close its doors and pack up in protest so as to not to be complacent with immoral actions?

    At the end of the day universities (especially elite ones such as GU) have a duty to continue promoting positive values no matter what the circumstances of the governments around it. It is the students that marched first for change be it in the civil rights movement or freedom movements across eastern Europe. It is the Jesuit values installed in every Hoya that in the long run will create positive change. Extremism and violence like the ilk of ISIS are bred from the lack of opportunities and disenfranchisement.

    Furthermore, it seems Ari does not fully comprehend Qatar’s foreign policy. Qatar “aims to be a friend to everyone” in order to act as an international intermediary between powers. It uses its energy, identity, and financial resources to invest in ALL countries, from Iran and Hamas to Europe and the USA. This is how it guarantees its security and national interests. It uses its influence with these states to be a bridge and mediator between conflicting parties. After all, Qatar is a small country wedged between large and hostile parties (Saudi/US axis vs Iran).

    As for its domestic policies, you should all really take a look at the Qatar National Vision 2030 to see what the country has committed itself to achieving and how it sees its destiny. And as a fact, Qatar Foundation is perhaps one of the most ambitious and beatiful projects Qatar has embarked. Education City universities have not only provided elite education to Qataris, but also to thousands of students across the middle east. One need just take a walk through Georgetown’s atrium here in Doha to see the dozens of flags representing the students and graduates.

  49. The Oppressed Woman Who Can't Drive says:

    There’s this country:
    It purposely infected more than 50,000 Guatemalans with diseases. It fought a pointless war in Vietnam, with hundreds of thousands casualties and injuries. It decided to participate in a gulf war, defending said countries you currently claim to dislike from a man which that country itself supported its rise to power. It then decided not take out that brutal dictator when they had the chance, but imposed heavy sanctions that affected that man little, as he decided to steal from his people to compensate. In other words, said aforementioned country, it knowingly imposed such strict sanctions on the people of the country, the same people it claimed to be attempting to protect from brutality. Years later, they decided to invade that country again, finally making up their minds on what to do with that brutal leader, 10 years too late and after that country has become so weakened, that it had little impact on the world scale. What did that country do? It made up lies—lies it sold to its own best friends, the fellow protectorates of modern democracy and freedoms, the “all men and women are created equal” group of countries, the “civilized” countries, the feminist countries, the “liberal” countries. But with all these countries, only one was stupid enough to buy said lies, and its the only country that was hit the hardest from the recession from Western Countries. Great Britain-hit the hardest amongst all the Western European countries, harder than France, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, but the same country who was saved—literally saved, by the gulf money you are all trashing. Harrods, Manchester City, etc. all owned or sponsored by the gulf money. The tourist money, the houses the gulf citizens buy in England. The millions it invests in the United States, in France, in Spain, etc. That’s all irrelevant? I digress, going back to that country, I forgot to mention the lack of response to a major disaster storm, Hurricane Katrina, and poor response, the lack of funding, the racism in the motivation not to act by the president. The racism that continues to exist, blatantly, outright, around 40% of Mississippi think that interracial marriage is wrong, should be outlawed, like it’s a dirty thing. They’re the same people, conservatives and defenders of Jesus, Christmas, and all things Christian and human. They’re the ones who hated Black people, the Jews, the Catholics, the Japanese, and everything and everyone that does not fit into the WASP.

    That country, those people, that’s America, and I only started mentioning the incidents since the 60’s.

    For a country who’s law dictated that Blacks and Whites drink from different water fountains and enter through different doors, for a country who’s beloved “founding fathers” claimed that Black people were 3/5ths of a human, who owned slaves and plantation farms, the absolute gall, the hypocrisy, the complete and sheer stupidity of your argument, that just astonishes me. It’s why you got a lot of europeans, europeans who aren’t a big fan of Muslims and Arabs, but dislike you the same, despite the shared values. It’s this all-knowing, self-righteous, imposed-amnesia, naive, and hypocritical speech you say and actions you do, where you forget all your faults and where you literally believe the bullshit your leaders say, that you are “the greatest country on earth”, forgetting that there is at least 10 other countries who have similar values and freedoms, but with less discrimination. The ignorance in believing in manifest destiny, the belief that continues to linger in the American psyche. Count how many people America’s killed, then count the number that the Jihadis killed in the name of Islam. Then you can tell me who killed the most. I dare you.

    America has destroyed countries, entire countries. America’s the primary reason behind the recession, America…America…America…

    Just because it’s an army doing the killing, in the name of patriotism and American nationalist values, doesn’t make killing innocent people okay. And just because America happened to kill one terrorist, criminal for every 100 innocent people killed, that also doesn’t justify the deaths. America ain’t that much different than the terrorists, and if you all were the intellectual people you believe you are, if you know history, if you know politics, you’d realize the same.

    The only difference between America and the terrorists is that America managed to kill more people, destroy more lives, discriminate against more people than the so called “Islamic Jihadis”, because more of your people actually believe in the bullshit the government sells. The racist, white-man, manifest destiny-like ideologies, that God gave America the right to police the world. And we all know what happens when you give someone infallible policing power…Just ask the people of St. Louis and Florida…

    Your religion is democracy, your extremists are the conservatives, and even liberals that became infected by the conservatives. Your extremists are government officials…your Jihadis, the army, military who actually believe in what the political stars tell them, that they’re doing a good thing, that they’re defending freedom and democracy. If only you realize how stupid you sound to the rest of the world when people say something so simplistic, echoing the politicians speech, except we know the politicians do not actually believe in the bs they’re saying, but the people who listen, the people who echo them, they actually do.

    Before you bring your self-righteous moral listens, do take a good look at yourselves in the mirror.

    And for the sake of God, do learn your history better than you learned your geography.

    • Sweetie! If you could see me right now, you would know I’m giving you an STANDING OVATION for your input.
      It is very true what you are saying, they don’t know they’re own history (I have an American teacher on my school that teaches U.S. History, and she has boldly stated this multiple times, HERSELF!) and some of the comments I’m reading here just prove that. I’m glad people like you are taking participation on this kind of debates, because believe me there are very few. Best Regards!

  50. “When you can’t make them see the light, make them feel the heat.” Ronald Reagan

    If Qatar wants an alliance with American institutions …they will remove AlThani.

    He is a thug involved with the drug cartels, trafficking of women and children..and funding of terrorists who cut the heads off of Christians in the Jihad toward a caliphate.

    If Qatar cannot manage to operate like a civilized nation…get OUT of all things American.

    Our universities, our corporations, our politics. God help those who remain working with them..Americans are demanding to stop the dirty corrupt influence of Qatar.

    America, and Georgetown particularly, are Christian Institutions…

    Qatar funds and supports barbarians. Americans reject that..Get out Qatar…Qatarsnipes from the uncivilized world of radical disgusting, muderous ISIS, AlQaeda, Muslim Brotherhood, Al Jazerah, AlNursa, …take your dirty money and GO home Qatar…or Change.

    • I can’t stop laughing!
      First of all AlThani is a family. So you’re basically telling Qatar to kick out around 10-15 thousand people. Secondly, “get out of all things American” and who gave you the impression that your opinion matters? Seriously who are you to make accusations that have no basis whatsoever! Thirdly, “Americans are demanding the dirty corrupt influence of Qatar” don’t make a laughing stock out of yourself if you don’t know anything about Qatar. Who appointed you as keynote speaker for the Americans? I’m sure they wouldn’t appoint someone as naive as you. Do us all a favor and stop commenting! You’re just proving to Georgetown that sfsq alums are waaaaaay more intellectual than main campus’. Spare yourself the embarrassment and don’t reply to me ok?

      • Antonia is referring to the Emir.

        Who gave you the impression that your opinion matters?

        Qatar created Boko Haram and the Islamic State. They’re AQ’s, Hamas’ and Ansar al-Sharia’s hedgefunds, and they have strategic alliances with Dawood Ibrihim’s D-Company, ISI and the NLC, who are little more than drug mules these days.

        The Qataris are also aiding the Taliban in smuggling heroin through Iran and into Turkey.

        But it gets better:

        The Qataris have also forged strategic alliances with the Mexican drug cartels, for the low entry cost of $100 million, I would add.

        They are actually flying Mexican heroin to Istanbul, in order to obfuscate its origins.

        Anyway, if you really care, which may be doubtful, you could check out my group’s report on Qatar, for starters:

        http://www.constitutionalright.net/2014/03/the-jihadi-threat-report-on-islamist.html

    • okay because a further round of colonialism and orientalism is the answer. lets not forget america’s involvements in all things horrid in the world. if you want Qatar to change to meet America’s standards then you’re point is redunant, they are already less horrible and tyrannical than the American government.

      • I want them to stop funding terrorism and turning the entire Middle East into one gigantic drug state.

        But they have shown little willingness to do so. And, in all truth, it is impossible to stop something like this, once it has been started.

        In a geopolitical sense, the al-Thanis have signed Qatar’s own death warrant.

        And the massive unwillingness Georgetown’s defenders have to simply examine this problem should tell you something.

        Not too late to save Georgetown’s reputation.

        But, presently, we are uncovering more and more every day, both by ourselves and via our global partners.

  51. Bill O'Rights says:

    Please take the time to read mt group’s report on Qatar, which provides a broader understanding of Qatar’s involvement in drug and human trafficking and the funding and arming of terrorism:

    http://www.constitutionalright.net/2014/03/the-jihadi-threat-report-on-islamist.html

  52. Probably the worst article I’ve ever read in the Hoya. Probably written by a freshman. Still not an excuse for being racist and ignorant though.

  53. I just read that article..it was a comprehensive study on Qatar.

    More and more, the world is seeing Qatar for what it is…

    http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/special-report-bret-baier/blog/2014/10/17/turkey-qatar-complicate-operation-against-isis

    Qatar, the terrorist state working with Turkey…to protect ISIS

  54. http://www.thehoya.com/social-awareness-abounds-at-sfs-q/#comment-12721

    Singapore and China are not supporting TERORISM..Qatar is…

    http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2014/10/isis-crucifies-17-year-old-boy-for-apostasy-photo/

    Qatar funds ISIS…Qatar funds Georgetown University…this is who you’re in bed with Georgetown …see the picture of what your sugar daddy Qatar supports

  55. sorority boy! says:

    When you get to know the difference between dynastic monarchy and competitive authoritarian regime, then speak of democracy and the problems of authoritarian regime. One of your comment mentions the weaponized money; if you want to mention defense industry, do some research and find out which country has the major portion of the defense industry. If you go to Georgetown, don’t make conclusion first and work on premises– it’s too obvious ;). I like your name though. I’m a big fan of Ari Gold, he lacks propriety, but has a brain.

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  62. http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/05/middleeast/saudi-bahrain-egypt-uae-qatar-terror/index.html

    Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Egypt cut off relations with Qatar

    CNN Updated 7:12 AM ET, Mon June 5, 2017

    The three Gulf countries and Egypt have accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and destabilizing the region. Qatar — which shares its only land border with Saudi Arabia — has rejected the accusations calling them “unjustified” and “baseless”.

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