tuque /tūk/ n Canadian English, var. toque [19th c. Canadian French, from the French toque, from the Basque tauka] 1 A close-fitting knitted cap, often with a long tapering end or tassel or pompom. 2 fig Something quintessentially Canadian.
souq /sūk/ n from the Arabic سوق var. souk 1 An open-air marketplace. 2 fig A central meeting place for the circulation of news and ideas.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Kuwaiti Prime Minister plays "tag" with self over and over again

Kuwaiti Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah yesterday tendered his resignation to his boss (and uncle)--the Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah--deciding that he would rather quit his job than face tough questions in Parliament about his shoddy handling of the economic crisis.

The Emir, who has final say on all matters of the government of Kuwait, can choose to appoint a new prime minister, or he can choose to dissolve parliament and force new elections and then appoint a new prime minister. Either way, the dude that becomes the PM will be the same dude.

You see, here's the great thing about Kuwaiti democracy: In November of last year, Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah tendered his resignation to the Emir because of parliamentary infighting over economic issues. The Emir accepted, and then chose a new prime minister. Whom did he choose? Why, Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah!

The same dude got reappointed. He was also reappointed in May 2008. He's also been reappointed several times since he was first elected prime minister in 2006. How's that?

Well, it seems there is a pretty narrow list of possible Prime Ministers of Kuwait. In fact, the list is 1: Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah.

He's also the Crown Prince. In fact, on the Wikipedia site of the current Emir (Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah), it already says "Succeeded by: Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah" even though the latter al-Sabah hasn't even become Emir yet. The former al-Sabah was the last prime minister before the latter al-Sabah, before the former al-Sabah became Emir and appointed the latter al-Sabah as his replacement.

[I realize this post has be come ensconsed in al-Sabahs. So I'll get to the point.]

Bottom line, if anyone comes up to you today and wants to place a bet on the next PM of Kuwait, and further offers you the chance to bet on every single Kuwaiti in the entire universe other than Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah, and further gives you 10,000-to-1 odds... Do NOT take the bet. You've been warned.

The Tuque Souq is here to help.

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