Monday, September 9, 2019

"Can Influencers Improve Saudi Arabia’s Image?"

Bloomberg:

Gateway KSA was born after Dutch-Australian influencer Nelleke Van Zandvoort Quispel visited the kingdom on business. She saw an opportunity to show another side of the country and proposed the concept to Prince Turki when they met at a Georgetown University event.

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While some of Lal’s followers attacked her for posting “propaganda,” others were won over, saying they couldn’t wait to visit. She posted stories of her trip, including how she stumbled across rules on gender segregation by accidentally entering the male side of a Starbucks.
In other news from the Middle East:
When trying to understand Israel’s election on Sept. 17, the second in the space of six months, you can easily get lost in the details — corruption charges, coalition wrangling, bickering between left and right. But the best explainer might be a small film that you’re unlikely to see about something that people here prefer not to discuss.

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Given the centrality of those years, it’s striking how seldom they actually come up in conversation. Along Jaffa Road, the hardest-hit street (and the setting for “Born in Jerusalem”), the traces have become nearly invisible. The Sbarro pizzeria where in 2001 a Palestinian suicide bomber killed 15 people, including seven children and a pregnant woman, is now a bakery with a different name.