We are almost all kneeling in front of the television to enjoy football. We have World Cup. It does not matter if it is played in Qatar, a dictatorship, an absolute monarchy in which, according to the current constitution itself, the emir, with three wives and thirteen children, controls the legislative and judicial branches and appoints the prime minister and members of the government. We are talking about a country that is immensely rich thanks to gas and oil exports, but which terribly discriminates against women, condemns homosexuality and enslaves migrants who work under inhuman working conditions, under which thousands of deaths occur. Does not matter.
The Al Thani have been the ruling house in Qatar since the monarchy was established in 1868. It was then that Mohammed bin Thani signed a treaty with the British in which his status was recognized and Qatar became a British protectorate from the beginning of the 20th century until it gained independence in 1971. Unlike other emirates, such as Dubai o Abu Dhabi, Qatar (like Bahrain) became an independent country, ruled under an absolute monarchy.
FIFA President, Gianni Infantino, accused Western countries this Saturday of carrying out an exercise in “hypocrisy” for criticizing this situation with a view to holding the World Cup without paying attention to their own historical past. And he is partly right, although he did not say anything about the corruption of his organization, nor how they were condemned, one by one, Platinum not other leaders under whose mandate it was decided ten years ago that Qatar would host this World Cup. Nor what did that have to do with the purchase of PSG by the Qataris and the satrap who rules the host country.
At the opening of the World Cup, this Sunday, we saw Gianni Infantino with Mohamed bin Salmán (MBS), Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. The president, who also holds the position of prime minister of that country, sat in the presidential box next to the president of FIFA. The highest representative of the International Football Federation shared a row of seats with the man accused of having orchestrated the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of his regime, four years ago at the Saudi Arabian embassy in Istanbul.
The dictator in front of whom they have “kneeled” since Don Felipe y Mrs. Letizia to the rest of the western heads of state, receiving the satrap with honors in their palaces and residences, He is Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, third son of Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, and the second son of Sheikh Moza bint Nasser al-Missned, Hamad’s second wife. Tamim was educated at Sherborne School in Dorset, UK.
As we said, it controls the executive and legislative power, as provided for in the Qatari Constitution. It also controls the judiciary. He decides who is the prime minister and appoints the entire government. It also controls a colossal fortune, of such importance that rulers of the Western world show him respect and receive him with compliments and tributes, as Felipe VI did in May.
A fortune of 450,000 million euros
It is estimated that the fortune of the Qatari royal family exceeds 450,000 million euros. It includes huge investments in firms such as Barclays Bank, British Airways, Volkswagen, Harrods or El Corte Inglés. The British press highlighted these days that in London the Qatari monarchy has. more properties than the British royal family, including the luxurious Ritz and The Savoy hotels. The managing arm is the sovereign fund Qatar Investment Authority, created in 2005 to move the fabulous benefits generated by oil and gas exports.
Last May, during her official trip to Spain, we saw the unveiled Sheikha of Qatar An unusual image, because Sheikh Tamim I of Qatar allowed for the first time one of his three wives to debut as an ambassador abroad and exhibit herself in a public act without a veil. No one, neither in her country nor outside of it, had been able to see her wearing her hair, something that in the West would not have had the slightest importance.
The Sheikh of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, is the tenth child and fourth son of King Hamad. He was the third member to be appointed. The first official crown prince was his older stepbrother, Sheikh Mishaal bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani (1972), son of Sheikha Mariam, King Hamad’s first wife, and his first cousin.
Sheikha Jawaher opened her Instagram account in 2013. The new first lady He released it then but closed it after a month. She has used it again eight years later so that we could see her together with her husband, Emir Tamim, in Spain, with the aforementioned posed with her hair loose. “Primer post de Sheikha Jawaher Bint Hamad Bin Suhaim Al Thani desde 2014”, pray the note
Her husband, Emir Tamim, also has an Instagram account and has a million followers. During her trip to Spain, she uploaded three photos: two with King Felipe and one with Pedro Sánchez. She has never appeared with any of his wives. She has three. Her second cousin Jawaher is her first, he married her in 2005 and has two sons and two daughters. In 2009 he married Sheikha Al Anoud, with whom he had five children, three daughters and two sons. And in 2014, with a third wife, Sheikha Noora, with whom he had three sons and a daughter. It is assumed that the three wives travel together with her husband and all her children during the holidays, a large entourage, about which we know little and that is inconceivable in the eyes of Western society.
During his stay in Spain, the Arab press referred to the visit of Jawaher: He said that the first lady of the Gulf, without a veil, had defied the religious limitations of the conservative society that reigns in the country that hosts this world controversy and of the entire Arabian peninsula.
The modernizer Responsible for this supposed opening of the very rich Royal House of Qatar is Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, son of Hamad, from the Al Thani family. Sheikh Tamim represents the new generation of Gulf monarchies: he is 42 years old and his wife (and second cousin), Sheikha Jawaher, only 38.
Tamim came to power peacefully, and not after a coup, as had happened until now. His father, Sheikh Hamad, abdicated in his favor ten years ago, though he is said to continue to operate in the shadows.
At the age of 63, the very famous sheikha, the stylish woman who for 20 years gave fashion lessons, gave lectures on art, and drew the attention of the entire world as when, back in 2003, during her tour of the United States, she surprised by her glamor on the televisions that noticed her. Still today, Mozah bint Nasser boasts almost 900k followers on Instagram. The mother of Emir Tamim, who has her own website, is considered by the Arab press as the most elegant woman in the world. Sheikha Mozah chairs several charities and is a shareholder in luxury and fashion companies, in addition, she chairs the Fashion Trust Arabia, in charge of promoting Arab fashion. The image of her characteristic of her is what we all imagine: with the turban on her head, a true mark of her style.
It does not matter that Amnesty International has condemned the statements of the FIFA president without palliatives, or that it requests a compensation fund for the families of those who died in the World Cup construction sites. “For the things that Europeans have done to the world over the last 3,000 years, another 3,000 should be apologizing before they start giving people moral lessons,” the FIFA president said at a press conference. “How many business companies, European or foreign, that earn millions, billions thanks to Qatar, have discussed the situation of the rights of migrant workers with the authorities? None, because changing the legislation means fewer benefits,” he said. asked during the appearance, a monologue of almost an hour in which he defended the holding of the tournament in a country criticized for the repression against activists and the LGBTQ community and the mistreatment of foreign workers. “Today I have very powerful feelings. Today I feel Qatari, I feel Arab, I feel African, I feel gay, I feel disabled, I feel a migrant worker,” he said before clarifying that it was an expression of empathy.
“Of course I’m not a Qatari, Arab, African, gay, disabled or migrant worker. But I feel like them because I know what it means to be discriminated against and harassed as a foreigner in a foreign country,” he said.
Prior to the World Cup, former Qatari soccer international Khalid Salman, one of the tournament’s several ambassadors, declared that being gay is “mental damage”. For Infantino, “this one-sided moral lesson is just hypocrisy,” he argued.
Amnesty International condemns the words of Infantino, who has been reminded of the enormous number of fatalities, denounced in February last year in an investigation by ‘The Guardian’, among the migrant workers who have built the stadiums where the matches are held against the clock . The Qatari authorities have only confirmed 37 deaths among this community and only three “workers”.
“The demands for equality, dignity and compensation cannot be treated as a kind of cultural war: they are universal Human Rights that FIFA has promised to respect in its own statutes,” adds the NGO, which recommends that the international body “if there is a ray of hope”, the creation of a compensation fund from the money the organization raises.
“This cannot be mere window dressing. If FIFA wants to salvage something from this tournament, it must announce that it will invest a significant part of the $6 billion (approximate amount in euros) that the organization will earn from this tournament and make sure that this fund be used to directly compensate workers and their families,” concludes Amnesty.