BY Satish Kanady
DOHA: Amid reports from various quarters that powerful lobbies are making concerted efforts to malign Qatar’s international image, a solid proof of the nefarious act has appeared on public domain. An Israel think tank has called for actively engaging — overtly and covertly — to malign Qatar’s image and target the country’s preparations to host the World Cup 2022.
The Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), associated with Tel Aviv University, in its latest issue of INSS Insight publication urged Israel’s ‘partner forces’ to put pressure on Qatar and ‘stop the country firmly’.
Action must be taken against Qatar out in the open and behind the scenes to make sure the country is deterred, it said.
Targeting Qatar’s preparations for the World Cup 2022, the report asked its partners to seek support of human rights activists or groups to make sure Qatar is not hosting the championship.
It said with the support of these human rights organisations, legal actions must be taken against Qatar and the country should be sued in every eligible way to erode its international image, Al Sharq reported.
“In addition, an international campaign can be launched to prohibit Qatar from hosting the 2022 World Cup. This would be a serious blow to the country’s prestige, as Qatar views hosting the championship as an important achievement and global recognition of its status… there is no reason not to try to revoke Qatar’s right to host the event…”, the report said.
“Qatar should be vilified from every possible podium… If Qatar is painted into a corner, it will be forced to go on the defensive…Covertly, one can think of a range of creative actions that would make it clear to Qatar that its ‘support’ for destabilising elements in the region is liable to disrupt its financial stability and cost it enough to interfere with its decadent complacency”.
The report, which is critical of Qatar’s US diplomatic relationship, notes: “Qatar’s economic capabilities and geostrategic location between Iran and Saudi Arabia make it difficult for powers such as the US, which has significant economic and security interests in Qatar, to ignore it… In modern history, it is difficult to find a similar instance of a country so small and young that has carried out so ambitious a foreign policy… In a decidedly imbalanced dynamic, Qatar tries to leverage tremendous economic power in an irresponsible manner…”
Beyond the US, there are additional methods of putting pressure on Qatar and rein in the country.
Regional players and other partners in the international community can work creatively to make sure that Qatar is sufficiently deterred…, the report continued.