Reasons to care about the new king in Saudi Arabia has an article written by Juan Cole on the ascent of Abdullah to the throne in Saudi Arabia. In many ways, this is a non-event, as “[t]he devout Abdullah (‘the servant of God’), who has the smile and goatee of a genial beatnik, has been in de facto control of the kingdom since 1995, when Fahd (‘the panther’) had a debilitating stroke.” But Cole provides some useful insights into changes in Saudi Arabia that have accompanied the change in power. It’s not all good, but it certainly isn’t all bad.

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