Arab Digest editor William Law welcomes back Egyptian analyst Maged Mandour. Their conversation this weeks looks at how international finance has enabled President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to continue his mega-projects spending binge as the military tightens its iron grip on the economy and ordinary Egyptians are plunged ever deeper into poverty.
Summary: a mega-tourism hub in the South Sinai town of Saint Catherine threatens the local Bedouin population, the environment and an ancient monastery that is a UNESCO world heritage site.
Summary: Israel is positioning itself well when it comes to exploiting natural resources in the Middle East.
Summary: in Libya current events, peace processes and diplomats all seem to be caught in a cyclical game and the country appears to have now gone the full circle, returning to the environment which existed just before the start of the war on Tripoli in 2019.
Summary: as COP27 opens in Sharm el-Sheikh, the Egyptian president is hoping that the climate crisis will give him cover to obscure the rising tide of debt that threatens to wreck the economy and bring more misery to millions of Egyptians.
Summary: a new revolutionary pan-Arab liberation movement launched in London on September 30. A straw in the wind?
Summary: opportunity beckons for Algeria as Europe struggles to meet its urgent need for reliable gas supplies but much needs to change in the energy, financial and industry sectors for the country to realise its full potential as a major European gas supplier.
Summary: the recent visit has less to do with commercial arrangements than with Abu Dhabi’s desire to shore up support for the Abraham Accords and find a way out of the Yemen quagmire using Oman as an interlocutor.
Summary: Sheikh al-Qaradawi has died leaving behind a complex and controversial legacy.
Summary: the IMF has made a new loan to Egypt contingent upon fiscal and structural reforms. The problem is those reforms are likely to serve only to drive more and more Egyptians into absolute poverty while further enriching the military elite.