Father of Oman: The Fragile Legacy of Sultan Qaboos

Father of Oman: The Fragile Legacy of Sultan Qaboos
Muscat, Oman /Shutterstock
Father of Oman: The Fragile Legacy of Sultan Qaboos
Published May 1st, 2019 - 11:09 GMT

This article analyses how Oman's nationalism resulted from Sultan Qaboos personally uniting a fragmented state, using the southern Dhofar Rebellion (1962-76) as a catalyst for paternalistic and Islamic nationalism in opposition to the Communist rebels.

His ascension is portrayed as the birth of modern Oman. In reality, Qaboos used the 1970's oil boom to personify modernisation schemes enacted by his father while expanding his Sultan's Armed Forces (SAF) in response to the Dhofar Rebellion.

Contemporary nationalism was born from opposition to Communist rebels and Qaboos' fear of being dethroned. Qaboos subsequently centralised government posts and increased post-war roles, including SAF involvement in civilian administration, ensuring Oman had Qaboos as its father. With the aging Sultan lacking an heir, nationalism remains fragile. As a linchpin between Yemen, Iran and Saudi Arabia, can Oman's successor replicate Qaboos’ personal rule or will the traditional tribes and expanded security forces reduce absolute monarchy?



 

Introduction

On November 15th, 2015, three days before his birthday, Sultan Qaboos of Oman made a rare public appearance. As annual tradition expected, he opened the yearly session of Parliament, yet the briefness of his three-minute speech perhaps contrasted with reports that he ‘[...] appeared in good health.’

Only a few months before, the Sultan had returned from an almost year-long retreat to Germany for an unspecified illness. Rumours abounded that Qaboos had been struck with a life-threatening case of colon cancer, and his return prompted nationwide praise. ‘I haven’t felt this happy for a long time,’ tweeted one Omani. ‘Welcome back baba [father] Qaboos, you have given your nation hope and courage.’ Another Omani went even further to declare that ‘[...][s]eeing [His Majesty] Qaboos […] makes me [want to] cry, you don’t even understand unless you’re Omani’.

Such public affection does appear to be genuine rather than orchestrated. Nonetheless, underneath the joy lurks anxiety, as the Sultan’s absence for undisclosed health issues is a reminder of Oman’s uncertainty in a post-Qaboos future. Modern Oman was established by Sultan Qaboos in 1970, after he overthrew the idle and restrictive regime of his father, Sultan Said bin Taimur. Qaboos is often credited with transforming an isolated Gulf state into a thriving cosmopolitan hub. However, Sultan Qaboos’ personal rule has created a very specific form of nationalism tied to himself. The majority of Omanis have known no other ruler. At the same time, Qaboos’ fear of being unseated like his father and a desire to restrict political competitors encouraged him to create state structures that may have ‘[...] sown the seeds of a power vacuum in the event of his death.’
 

Modern Oman was established by Sultan Qaboos in 1970, after he overthrew the idle and restrictive regime of his father, Sultan Said bin Taimur. Qaboos is often credited with transforming an isolated Gulf state into a thriving cosmopolitan hub. However, Sultan Qaboos’ personal rule has created a very specific form of nationalism tied to himself. The majority of Omanis have known no other ruler.


Oman will soon be at a crossroads. Having experienced a brush with the Arab Spring in the past four years and with ongoing conflict in neighbouring Yemen, understanding how Oman’s nationalism was constructed can help elucidate an uncertain future, the very real challenges of continuity and how Qaboos’ successor will be perceived not only by his people but by the region and the West.

The Isolation of Sultan Said bin Taimur  

At the time of Qaboos' father, Said bin Taimur (1932-1970), their Al Bu Said family had been ruling Oman for nearly 200 years. By the early 1900’s however, unity under Al Bu Said rule was already threatened. Despite British guarantees of protection in 1890 (or perhaps because of British interference), opposition to Al Bu Said rule over all of Oman had gathered force.

Local and ideological differences between Oman’s north and its mountainous south crystallised by 1901 into a political movement that threatened Al Bu Said unity. In 1920, said divisions were formally recognised by the Treaty of Seeb, which effectively split Oman into two separate regions: the coastal provinces under Sultan Taimur ibn Faisal Said (1913-1932) and the southern or interior Imamate.

In addition to the aforementioned split between the nation, the Sultanate’s stability was plagued by a heretofore succession of political divisions and public debt. Indeed, the Treaty of Seeb was intended as a de facto split between the coast and interior in exchange for the interior tribes’ loyalty to the extent that they would no longer attack the coast.   

Compounding the apparent weakness in Al Bu Said rule was, inter alia, British involvement. Although such involvement was subtle, it remained influential with both political and military implications. With a consul inserted at the Omani Court in Muscat and a proximate presence of the Royal Navy, domestic impressions of Oman’s autonomy were not always favourable. Worse still, such impressions were not inaccurate. Taimur ibn Faisal was the latest in a line of weak rulers; his repeated pleas to abdicate were finally acknowledged by the British in 1932, which saw the accession of his son, Said bin Taimur as Sultan.
 

Worse still, such impressions were not inaccurate. Taimur ibn Faisal was the latest in a line of weak rulers; his repeated pleas to abdicate were finally acknowledged by the British in 1932, which saw the accession of his son, Said bin Taimur as Sultan.

And so it was under the aforementioned circumstances that Said bin Taimur inherited rule over a fragmented and indebted state that was dependent on British military might. Perhaps it was more circumstance rather than political weakness that saw Taimur’s rule slide into popular hostility.

According to some critics, Oman’s political and financial situation was in dire crisis. Indeed, ‘[…] the situation was so desperate that the British began closely supervising the Sultanate’s finances [under Taimur ibn Faisal]’. Said bin Taimur had taken early steps to curb such financial strain. Even before becoming Sultan, he duly investigated non-payment of customs duties by dominant tribes in Oman’s east and upon his accession promptly cut generous allowances to royal family members. Nonetheless, financial and political setbacks would ultimately be his undoing.

Most glaringly, Taimur’s awareness of his state’s poor funds made him hesitant to invest in development projects. This reluctance attracted the ire of both the British and his own people. On the one hand, Omanis increasingly felt that Taimur ‘[...] was reluctant to allow for [progress]’, while the British perceived such actions as ‘[...] [obstinacy] in refusing British advice.’

Said bin Taimur, 1938 (Wikimedia)

The latter was in all likelihood politically linked to how the British wished to maintain their relationship with Oman (and its Sultan). Upon his ascension to the throne, it was clear that Said bin Taimur was meant to accept British control. Britain’s Permanent Agent in Muscat (PAM) clarified that Taimur’s chance to ‘[...] administer his state on Arab lines’ would be permitted only under British guardianship. Empire would influence Taimur’s rule under ‘[...] a façade of independence in the eyes of the world.’

Adding to historical tensions and Taimur’s perceived restrictiveness and stubbornness was another factor. For six years into his rule, the promise of oil would create further pressure on an already divided Oman. By 1938, the discovery of oil in so-called Gulf Trucial States had renewed interest in Oman’s hydrocarbon potential.

Although Oman’s own Petroleum Development firm had reported such potential as low, Taimur was quick to play energy politics in his bid to line depleted coffers. Reaching out to America’s Standard Oil allowed the Sultan to promptly arouse British concern for its dominance in Oman, and the Crown countered Standard Oil offers forthwith through its own concession via the Iraqi Petroleum Company. While significant discoveries would not be found until 1956 and commercial extraction would not begin until 1962, the cash flow from concessions would give Taimur some breathing space.
 

By 1938, the discovery of oil in so-called Gulf Trucial States had renewed interest in Oman’s hydrocarbon potential. Although Oman’s own Petroleum Development firm had reported such potential as low, Taimur was quick to play energy politics in his bid to line depleted coffers.


However, the location of Oman’s black gold served to only add fuel to a fragmenting fire. Oman’s precious but limited reserves were located to the south of the country; far from Muscat and in traditional Imamate terrain. The prospect of oil under Imamate territory no doubt contributed to the Imamate Rebellion of the 1950’s. Recognition of the Imamate’s sovereignty by regional political bodies such as the Arab League would have allowed the Imamate to claim ownership of Omani oil.

Indeed, at the peak of this rebellion, Taimur watched in horror as rebels in Oman’s mountainous south cut off communication routes between the Jebel Akhdar mountain region and Oman’s coast. The rebellion was only quelled with systemic British assistance. Taimur’s already weakened position as Sultan was further undermined during the 1950’s and 60’s. His repeated pleas for British intervention (especially military) created the image of a poor leader at best and an anxious puppet of British interests at worst.

This image was augmented further in 1955 when, to combat Imamate insurgents, British forces occupied Oman’s interior. Sultan Taimur decided to crown this achievement by visiting key interior towns under British control.

Rather than projecting an image of celebration, such a tour made Taimur’s public assertion of authority dependent on British approval. Compounded by a false sense of security, with rebellions recurring only two years later, Sultan Taimur was soon to fall. His descent would be foreshadowed by a brutal assassination attempt that would drown him in his would-be killer’s blood.
 

Sultan Taimur’s Downfall

In April 1966, Sultan Taimur made what would be his last public appearance. Celebrating a parade in his birthplace, the southern Dhofar region, Sultan Taimur was surrounded by the slaves of his private army.

It was they who ‘[...] started shooting at their master’, each bullet missing their target. Only when the ringleader assaulted him did a loyal slave intervene and ‘[...] cut the throat of the would-be killer.’ Drenched in the ringleader’s blood, the Sultan was alive but broken.

Omani soldiers in Dhofar, 1972, (Wikimedia)
 

Hailing from Dhofar’s regional capital of Salalah, the Sultan now resolved to remain there at his palace, treating Dhofar as his personal fiefdom and never again venturing out to see his people. His solitude mirrored his restrictive policies, intended to isolate Oman’s coast from its interior and the whole nation from the rest of the world.

Hailing from Dhofar’s regional capital of Salalah, the Sultan now resolved to remain there at his palace, treating Dhofar as his personal fiefdom and never again venturing out to see his people. His solitude mirrored his restrictive policies, intended to isolate Oman’s coast from its interior and the whole nation from the rest of the world.

As described by journalist Chris Kutschera in the 1970’s, Oman’s ‘[...] clock of history was stopped somewhere in the Middle Ages. […] [Coastal inhabitants] were forbidden to travel inland, and those of the inland valleys could not go to the coast. […] No one was allowed to go to Dhofar.’ As for global relations, Taimur decreed that ‘[...] [no] foreigner was allowed to visit Muscat without [his] personal permission, and sailors on ships anchored at Muscat could not land.’

Taimur’s isolation was complete. He would also extend this isolation to his son and future usurper, Qaboos bin Said Al Said. After Qaboos’ Sandhurst graduation, the young Omani spent time in Germany as an officer and enjoyed a carefully choreographed tour of Europe (under British supervision).

Upon his return home, Qaboos ‘[...] lived the life of a prisoner’ in Taimur’s Salalah palace, all the while ignored by his father. With British patience for Taimur wearing thin and internal family plots afoot, Qaboos knew he had to act. A new era was to begin. The dawn of Qaboos’ modern Oman would spread its first light.   

    Sultan’s Armed Forces soldiers on patrol, Dhofar, Oman. Courtesy of Lt Col Ian Buttenshaw, WKhM, Royal Army of Oman.

The Ascension of Qaboos: Unity through Resistance

While Qaboos’ Oman would forge an independent identity, Qaboos worked carefully to ensure British support of his takeover. Key British officers knew of the plan and informed Salalah’s local commanders to support the plot. On July 23rd, 1970, Qaboos and his soldiers surrounded the palace, cutting its communications.

Taimur’s isolation heretofore no doubt fuelled both his surprise and panic. Despite living next door to each other, father and son had not spoken for sixteen months at the time of the coup. Armed with a pistol, the elder Sultan wounded only himself; in the final phase of his reign he had shot himself in the foot, both literally and symbolically.

Despite living next door to each other, father and son had not spoken for sixteen months at the time of the coup. Armed with a pistol, the elder Sultan wounded only himself; in the final phase of his reign he had shot himself in the foot, both literally and symbolically.

Qaboos’ foray into politics began favourably due to two factors. First, the overthrow of his father effectively ended Taimur’s restrictive policies and weakened popular hostility to Al Bu Said rule. This first victory allowed Qaboos to use the ongoing Dhofar Rebellion (1962-76) to his advantage. By the time of his coup, resistance to Sultanate authority had morphed in the south into a proxy war funded by Communist Arab states.

Qaboos first tackled remaining Al Bu Said hostility by touring the entire nation. This act was combined with a general amnesty to Dhofari fighters. Hence, while his father’s tours of Oman marked British-assisted authority, Qaboos’ visits were regarded as humanising for Omanis and their ruler. Both visits and amnesty delegitimised the Dhofar Rebellion while legitimising the Sultan, allowing Qaboos to pursue the second factor in his favour; national unity through opposition to remaining rebels of the Dhofari uprising.

The transformation of the Dhofar Rebellion into a war of ideology did augment its threat in terms of allies, assistance and armed groups. However, the very ideology that attracted funding and aid from Communist states also became its undoing. With weakened domestic support post-amnesty, Dhofari rebels began using public executions and torture to prevent more defections. Unsurprisingly, such tactics only alienated them further from locals, and Qaboos’ propaganda machine widened this crack into a chasm.

The transformation of the Dhofar Rebellion into a war of ideology did augment its threat in terms of allies, assistance and armed groups. However, the very ideology that attracted funding and aid from Communist states also became its undoing.

Communism, he reminded his fellow Omanis, was most certainly not Islamic. ‘Allah’s hand destroys [C]ommunism,’ screamed one popular propaganda poster. The Dhofari rebels were kufr or Godless, while Sultan Qaboos led Omanis who were true to their faith. ‘[The] Dhofar rebellion allowed the [Qaboos] government to use the politically potent ideological weapon of Islam against its [C]ommunist […] enemies,’ explained Kutschera. ‘Sultan Qaboos convincingly painted [Dhofari rebels] as foreign and anti-Islamic using culture and ideology to undermine his opponents.’

The Dhofar Rebellion also acted as a catalyst for Sultan Qaboos to establish domestic military strength, with gradual independence from British support. In 1971, Qaboos created the Frontier Force to specifically address combat challenges in Dhofar. Qaboos then diversified his Armed Forces in response to ongoing military scenarios in the south.

Within a year, Qaboos had established an Artillery Regiment, Signal Regiment, Armored Car Squadron, Garrison Detachment and Engineer Unit. Each division was consolidated under the Sultan’s Armed Forces (SAF). Deploying the SAF in Dhofar allowed it to gain experience and expand. By war’s end in 1975, ‘[...] Oman’s armed force had matured into an efficient, combat hardened military organization’ distinct from Taimur’s British-backed units.

Complementing the SAF’s military victories, Qaboos ensured the SAF established government centres and basic amenities in the south. This act drove a ‘hearts and minds’ campaign humanising the SAF as a force for good in Dhofar and throughout Oman.

Finally, Qaboos emphasised nationhood by changing Oman’s official name from Muscat and Oman to simply Oman. Qaboos’ nationalism took significant shape from 1970-75. Modern Oman was united as an Islamic Sultanate against the un-Islamic Dhofar rebels. At the same time, the granting of amnesty and lifting of Taimur’s restrictions ensured that the south could feel included under Qaboos’ Oman, symbolised by the nation’s name change.

Qaboos’ Oman: from Military Nationalism to Personal Rule

Of note post-Dhofar Rebellion has been the personal rule of Qaboos. Sultan Qaboos expanded the SAF with a focus on personnel training as opposed to increased arms purchases. Regime security was handled by the Royal Guard of Oman (RGO) and the SAF expansion was completed by the Royal Army of Oman (RAO), Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO) and Oman’s Royal Navy (RNO).

At the same time, Sultan Qaboos oversaw not only military administration as head of the defence ministry but also became Oman’s prime minister, finance minister and foreign minister, positions held to this day. Such centralised personal rule around the Sultan implied Qaboos’ fears of being overthrown in the aftermath of the Dhofar Rebellion and his father’s repeated overreliance on British assistance, which led many Omanis to dismiss Al Bu Said figures as British puppets. Further, Qaboos’ control of key state sectors would cement his role as father of the modern nation and the progenitor of Oman’s nationalism.

The eventual production of oil would allow Qaboos to continue his personal rule as the founder of modern Oman. Although hydrocarbons were found under Taimur’s rule, Qaboos’ ascension just before the 1970’s oil boom and his father’s frugality allowed Qaboos to take credit for modernising his nation.
 

The eventual production of oil would allow Qaboos to continue his personal rule as the founder of modern Oman. Although hydrocarbons were found under Taimur’s rule, Qaboos’ ascension just before the 1970’s oil boom and his father’s frugality allowed Qaboos to take credit for modernising his nation.


No doubt, hydrocarbon coffers bolstered Qaboos’ expansion programs, which now turned from military and political administration to a more civilian ‘hearts and minds’ agenda. This sweeping campaign turned Oman into a modern welfare state by constructing schools, hospitals, universities, roads and even establishing a national healthcare system.

In time, the oil-driven reforms would win Qaboos the love of his people. However, the progress of hydrocarbon welfare could not suppress overnight Oman’s traditional powerbase: the tribes and merchant class.

Perhaps due to its heretofore cultural isolation and later oil discovery, Oman was the last Gulf state to restructure the powerful tribal politics of its nation under the borders of a modern state.  A history of Saudi incursions and protracted civil war emphasised the dangers of national fragmentation and greater identity of Omanis with tribal communities.

This sweeping campaign turned Oman into a modern welfare state by constructing schools, hospitals, universities, roads and even establishing a national healthcare system.

The solution presented by the 30 year-old Sultan was to expropriate the structure of tribal politics but on a national scale. Hence, as the eldest sheikh of each tribe negotiated differences and agreements under a council (majlis), Qaboos replicated the majlis system while retaining his role as Oman’s ultimate head. The national majlis acted as a hierarchical political system, with Sultan Qaboos as its sheikh and guarantor, allowing ordinary Omanis to bring concerns to their own tribal leaders, who in turn consult the Sultan with their peoples’ grievances.

Thus did Sultan Qaboos address the potential divisiveness of tribalism by incorporating the familiarity of the majlis tradition into modern Oman’s political structure. In addition, Oman had always boasted a powerful merchant class. Due to international trade expertise, such merchants had transitioned into modern technocrats and were thus easily co-opted by Qaboos for much-needed administrative roles in government, alongside key tribal leaders to bolster tribal allegiance to the new Oman and its father.

From his ascension to the present day it is clear that Sultan Qaboos was to be the unquestioned father of the nation. In all aspects of government, he was the most senior political administrator, dominating the SAF, foreign affairs, finances and even the majlis and its use as an instrument to bridge traditional tribalism with the nation state.

This form of absolute rule continues to penetrate not only Oman’s political but cultural aspects to define nationalism as Qaboos. In an age of the Arab Spring and youth movements, the question of succession becomes precarious. For the aging Sultan heads a predominantly young populous that remembers no other father.

/AFP

Preparing for Succession after Personal Rule: He’s not Qaboos  

Public praise by Omanis for their Sultan hides the fear of uncertainty in a post-Qaboos Oman. Akin to the unenviable position of Jordan, Oman is squeezed between the borders of conservative and restless states: Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Surrounded by instability, Oman requires stable rule, heretofore personalised in the Sultan’s central authority.

It was this type of rule that allowed Oman to modernise at a comfortable pace and enjoy the illusion of certainty amid tumultuous periods in the Middle East.

Childless, Qaboos has acknowledged naming his preferred successor in a sealed envelope should Royal Council fail to appoint an heir within three days of his death. Here lies the Achilles’ heel of Qaboos’ success: there can be only one father.
 

Childless, Qaboos has acknowledged naming his preferred successor in a sealed envelope should Royal Council fail to appoint an heir within three days of his death. Here lies the Achilles’ heel of Qaboos’ success: there can be only one father.

Upon his death, Qaboos successor will inherit regional instability, border unrest with Yemen and the rise of proximate Iran. He will not inherit the relationship of trust, loyalty and putative admiration that Qaboos gained over four decades. He may be unable to rely on hydrocarbon sweeteners amid crushed oil prices.

It is possible that Qaboos has created a most precarious legacy. With absolute power and having restructured military and security forces into an influential political class, the next Sultan of Oman will have to deal with the curse of a successful predecessor. Will Omanis accept that an untested administrator continues the practice of personal rule?

Can a father pass the mantle to an unrelated and barely symbolic son? Further, can such an inheritor match Qaboos’ recent achievement of creating 50,000 jobs in the military and security class, thus ensuring the loyalty of the sector that may pre-empt the first signs of revolution?

Conclusion

Oman’s modern nationalism is ultimately the result of personal rule dominating all major sectors of public administration. Pervasive portraits of the Sultan ensure that ordinary Omanis are daily reminded of their father, while Qaboos’ role as sheikh of the majlis system co-opts tribalism, Oman’s fragmented identity into a framework of nationalism united under one man.

Throughout his rule, Qaboos had to contend with tribes and merchants as Oman’s primary influencers and socio-political classes. He succeeded. The expansion of the SAF in response to Dhofar and the eventual expansion of other security services created a more contemporary political class loyal to His Majesty in return for privileges. For the king serves at the pleasure of his court, not the other way around. Hence, a successor may find that absolute rule is no longer a reality but that power will be shared among the most influential classes of tribe, merchants and especially the military.
 

Oman’s nationalism may yield to a class-based system of regime security. National unity through personal rule may thus become a myth remembered only as truth under Sultan Qaboos.    

Just as Egypt’s republics have been ruled through a presidential vassal by military pillars (with fatal consequences for those who shunned their military masters, like Mubarak), Oman’s nationalism may yield to a class-based system of regime security. National unity through personal rule may thus become a myth remembered only as truth under Sultan Qaboos.    


A previous version of this essay was entitled "Patriotism from Fragmentation: the Personal Nationhood of Oman." The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Al Bawaba News.

Literature Review
 

C.H. Allen, W. L. Rigsby II, Oman under Qaboos: From Coup to Constitution (New York: Routledge, 2002)
 

R.C. Barret, Oman: The Present in the Context of a Fractured Past (Tampa, Florida: Joint Special Operations University, 2011)
 

BBC, ‘Arab uprising: Country by Country- Oman’ (2013), BBC: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-12598273; G. Cafiero, ‘Oman breaks from GCC on Yemen conflict’ (2015), Al Monitor: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/05/oman-response-yemen-conflict.html# (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

BBC, ‘Oman Country Profile’ (2016). http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-14654150 (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)   
 

E. Blanche, ‘Exclusive to The Middle East Online…Oman Prepares for Change’ (2014), The Middle East Online. http://www.themiddleeastmagazine.com/wp-mideastmag-live/2015/02/exclusive-middle-east-online-oman-prepares-change/ (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)
 

J. Broder, ‘Sultanate Comes Out of the Dark Quickly’, Chicago Tribune (1985). http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1985-11-06/news/8503160692_1_sultan-qaboos-oman-london-symphony (last accessed January 2nd, 2017)
 

G. Cafiero, ‘Oman breaks from GCC on Yemen conflict’ (2015), Al Monitor: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/05/oman-response-yemen-conflict.html# (last accessed November 24th, 2015)  
 

G. Cafiero, T. Karasik, ‘Can Oman’s Stability Outlive Sultan Qaboos?’ (2016). http://www.mei.edu/content/can-oman%E2%80%99s-stability-outlive-sultan-qaboos (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)
 

G. Cafiero, T. Karasik, ‘Can Oman’s Stability Outlive Sultan Qaboos?’ Middle East Institute: Policy Focus Series (2016)
 

S.A. Cheney, The Insurgency in Oman, 1962-1976 (1984). http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/report/1984/CSA.htm (last accessed January 2nd, 2017)
 

Editors, Al Bu Said Dynasty, Encyclopaedia Britannica: http://www.britannica.com/topic/Al-Bu-Said-dynasty (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

A. Fisher, ‘The Case of the Sealed Envelope: Oman’s Path to Succession’ (2015), Middle East Eye: http://www.middleeasteye.net/in-depth/features/case-sealed-envelope-oman-s-path-succession-567113540 (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

P.A. Gardner, ‘The Demise of Qaboos is the Proof of Democracy’ (2014). http://www.bbench.co.uk/single-post/E71D9BFE-47A6-4D93-85BC-719118DF911B (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)  
 

G.A. Grappo, In the Shadow of Qaboos: Contemplating Leadership Change in Oman (Washington D.C.: Arab Gulf State Institute, 2015)
 

F. Halliday, Arabia without Sultans (London: Saqi Books, 2001)

C. Kutschera, ‘Oman: the Death of the Last Feudal Arab State’ (2012): http://www.chris-kutschera.com/A/Oman%201970.htm (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

S. Luscombe, ‘The British Empire: Oman’. http://www.britishempire.co.uk/maproom/oman.htm (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

I. Mac Gillivray, ‘Sultan Qaboos and the Omani Economy’ (2016).
http://globalriskinsights.com/2016/02/power-broker-series-sultan-qaboos-and-the-omani-economy/ (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)  
 

C. McGreal, ‘How Hosni Mubarak Misread his Military Men’ (2015), The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/feb/12/hosni-mubarak-misread-military-men (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)
 

MEE Staff, ‘Sultan Qaboos returns to Oman after Lengthy Absence’ (2015), Middle East Eye: http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/sultan-qaboos-returns-oman-after-lengthy-absence-868449166 (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

‘Omani Royal Armed Forces (RAF)’, Global Security (2013). http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/gulf/oman-mil.htm (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)  
 

F. Owtram, A Modern History of Oman: Formation of the State since 1920 (London: I.B. Tauris, 2004)  

F. Owtram, ‘The Financial Troubles of Said bin Taimur’, Qatar Digital Library: http://www.qdl.qa/en/financial-troubles-said-bin-taimur (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

G. Popp, ‘The Other Side of Omani Life: Tribal Society in Oman’. https://www.justlanded.com/english/Oman/Articles/Culture/The-other-Side-of-Omani-Life%20 (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)
 

N. Quilliam, Oman, Good Governance in the Middle East Oil Monarchies (London: Routledge Curzon, 2003), pp. 46-52  

Reuters, ‘Oman Leader Sultan Qaboos makes Rare Public Appearance’ (2015), Al Arabiya: http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/11/15/Oman-leader-Sultan-Qaboos-makes-rare-public-appearance.html (last visited November 24th, 2015)
 

Royal Airforce Museum, ‘A History of Oman’ (2013). http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk/research/online-exhibitions/an-enduring-relationship-a-history-of-frienship-between-the-royal-air-force-and-the-royal-air-force-of-oman/a-history-of-oman.aspx (last accessed January 2nd, 2017)
 

‘Taimur ibn Faisal, 1913-32’, Global Security (2011): http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/gulf/oman-taimur.htm (last accessed November 24th, 2015)
 

J. Tennet, ‘Who will Take Over from Sultan Qaboos, Arab World’s Longest Serving Ruler?’ (2015), International Business Times. : http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/who-will-take-over-sultan-qaboos-arab-worlds-longest-serving-ruler-1530757 (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)
 

Times News Service, ‘More than 60,000 People in Oman Register their Names for His Majesty’s Portrait’ (2016), Times of Oman. http://timesofoman.com/article/94184/Oman/More-than-26000-people-in-Oman-register-their-names-for-His-Majesty-Sultan-Qaboos'-portrait (last accessed February 2nd, 2017)   
 

U.S. Energy Information Administration, Oman: International energy data and analysis (January 2016). http://www.eia.gov/beta/international/analysis.cfm?iso=OMN (last accessed January 2nd, 2016)
 

J. Worrall, Statebuilding and Counterinsurgency in Oman: Political, Military and Diplomatic Relations at the end of Empire (London: I.B. Tauris, 2014)


© 2000 - 2019 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)