Kuwait 2006-2007 (Part Three)

The Bottleneck Period-Facts and Analysis

In my last article I have listed the points that the ruling entity should take into consideration for a smooth, easy transition of the rule to the future ruler.

And here is a summary:

  1. Adequate selection of the eligible candidate for future ruling of the country.
  2. Creating alliances to the future ruler, and decreasing any chance of future competition with a rival.
  3. Last and most important point; early and adequate marketing of the future ruler.

And now, I would like to go more into the details of point three:

One of the key elements of a successful marketing strategy is a thorough understanding of who your customers are and what “needs” they are looking to satisfy, and generally speaking; the customer in our case is the Kuwaiti citizen, and the marketing idea represents: creating a positive project of the to-be ruler “X” Alsabah that meets the needs of the public.

And according to this hypothesis; we need to know what are the needs and the demands of the public that are required to be met in his future ruler? What is the public’s ambition regarding the personality of his future ruler? How does the public evaluate his ruler’s performance? And lastly; public empathy and respect; is it an important element in this equation?

Like all other Arab citizens, Kuwaiti citizens are moved by mere emotions, and it is very easy to win their love and loyalty with rather simple gestures; a word or a stance in which the ruler increases his assets would most probably do the trick. But what makes Kuwaiti citizens different than others can be summarized in these two points:

  • First; Kuwaiti citizens have no role in choosing their rulers; this decision-making is solely a constitutional right of the Amir with the consultancy of the royal family.
  • Second; most Kuwaitis do not really give any importance to the specific traits of the ruler; the ruler could be stingy, learned, drunken or even an athlete. What they care about is his decrees and his general direction concerning state laws, and those acts that impose direct impact on their daily lives.

And I think that the above mentioned points signify encouraging elements to the benefit of the future ruler. His chances to be chosen is dependant on a specified, limited group, and it won’t be hard for him to earn the trust of his people who do not interfere with his personal life, and therefore he does not need to change his habits or life style to earn this trust.

Yet; these people have some limited demands, which are not hard for the future ruler to meet:

  1. The ruler should have a vision of how to plan the country’s future and insure its prosperity.
  2. People should not feel that the future ruler is competing with them in their daily earnings.
  3. The ruler should be cautious that his authority is not passed to his allies who might misuse it.
  4. The ruler should always resume a neutral state in disputes concerning the citizens.
  5. The ruler should have a clean financial record -although hard to apply- and should not in any way be a part in any suspicious financial lawsuits.
  6. The ruler should emphasize on the liberty of the country, the security of its lands, the liberty of it’s citizens and he should also maintain the constitution.

These demands are summarized in the constitutional oath of the Amir at a special sitting of the National Assembly:

“I swear by Almighty God to respect the Constitution and the laws of the State, to defend the liberties, interests, and properties of the people, and to safeguard the independence and territorial integrity of the Country.”

And now after we specified public demand of the future ruler, we can clarify the steps that he should take to market himself properly.

  1. The future ruler should master the art of communication and know when and how to give an announcement, he also should be able to pre-calculate the implication of every speech he gives, so that he won’t get what’s coming to him in the futue.
  2. He should have an insight; a foresight for economical as well as cultural advancement that awaits the country during his reign (hint; learn from Dubai, Qatar and soon Bahrain)
  3. He should refrain from direct involvement into investments or establishing businesses to avoid any unjust competition with the public.
  4. The future ruler should choose his team of advisors early, making sure that they are professionally qualified personnel, for Kuwaitis are eager to see the team that possesses high qualifications and expertise, and not the carpetbaggers, social climbers, and the carriers of Bishoots* and Mabakher**.
  5. He has to put a clear, honest red line under his retinue so that they know their natural limits, because the public may overlook the follies of the ruler but not that of his retinue’s.
  6. Future ruler should avoid siding as a competitor with one party against the other in public disputes, whether these parties belong to institutional factions or are individuals.
  7. Future Amir should not get involved either directly or indirectly in any dubitable project that may raise red flags around his status or financial intentions.
  8. In general; the future Amir should be tolerant, but he should also display resoluteness and power in any circumstance that may jeopardize the security of the public or the stability of the country. He also has to make sure that Kuwait stays a safe haven, and no specific party is allowed to exploit his influence and impose guardianship over other parties.

I think it is very important for the future ruler to adhere to the above-mentioned points in order to gain public support in any type of temporary competition or dispute that may rise in the future.

And now the second question is; how would the public evaluate his ruler?

Evaluation process is quite easy; any ruler that participates in the prosperity of the country, in the enhancement of public services and economical growth, as well as, in the development of the living and cultural standards of the country is considered a successful ruler, and any ruler who becomes a stumbling block to the advancement of the country, and participtes in declining its public services and economical growth is a failure.

And according to this supposition; you can compare the honorary stand of the Kuwaiti citizens with their legitimate government during the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, to that of the Iraqis’ on the day the Americans entered Iraq, so that you can envision the importance of public empathy toward their ruler.

Next article would be diverted a bit and is titled; Alliances…But

*Bishoots: men’s Arabic garments worn over the national Dishdasha as the official attire.
**Mabakher: Incense Burners.

Please add your comment here on Killah Matgoog’s original post.
If you have any comment regarding the translation or the translator , please add it here, thank you.

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