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Westerners In The Mid East  
User currently offlineRai From Canada, joined Feb 2008, 0 posts, RR: 0
Posted (13 years 6 hours ago) and read 2339 times:

To say that there's a lot of tension in the Mid East right now is an understatement. I was just wondering how it has affected the lives of any Westerner living in the region. Have you guys been treated any differently recently? Do you guys have to change your habits and routines? Have your lives changed in any way recently What is it like now living there? Anything you might want to add?

These questions are posed to those who currently live there or still have family and friends there (i.e. Marco). Please take these questions as is. They are not meant to incite anything that says that one group of people’s lives take precedence over another -- these questions just deal with my curiosity of how one group of people is going through living in a certain region.

7 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineRyanb741 From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2002, 3222 posts, RR: 15
Reply 1, posted (13 years 5 hours ago) and read 2327 times:

The irony of all of this is that I have lived in the Middle East (UAE, IRAN, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain) and yet without a doubt I have met more Islamic nutcases in the UK, France and US than I ever have in those countries! It's all these Manchester born Pakistanis who think that their 'brethren' in Islamabad are crying out for them to show their Muslim roots and fight all infidels. Most Muslims living in the Middle East are just preoccupied with what they are going to eat tonight, where they are going on holiday, what new car should I buy etc. Just like you and me in fact!

I used to think the brain is the most fascinating part of my body. But, hey, who is telling me that?
User currently offlineQatarAirways From Qatar, joined Sep 2008, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (13 years 5 hours ago) and read 2324 times:


I am not a Westerner in the Middle East, I am a Qatari living here in Qatar (although I will be leaving for the UK in a few weeks) but I have discussed this issues with many western friends of mine and I am willing to share with you what I have learned.

All of them say that they didn't notice any change in there life after September 11 and the increase of the tension here. An American teacher who has moved to Qatar the week after September 11 said he was very afraid at first but after coming here his perspective changed a lot, and he never ever felt unsafe. Although he said he has had very interesting discussions with the Iraqi, Palestinian and Irani Diaspora living in Qatar about the United States but all of those distinguished Americans from the American government.

A New Zealander who has a wife and two kids said that he never felt safer than what he felt now in Qatar. All of the ones I spoke to said they never recieved any threats and always found the locals as friendly as ever.

The thing I notice is that there are a lot of misconceptions about living in the Middle East and usually new arrivals from the Western world especially after September 11 are very nervous and weary but after a few weeks they notice that all these misconceptions are untrue.


I agree with you fully, the only time I heard extremist views during my life was when I was living in the UK!

User currently offlineQatarAirways From Qatar, joined Sep 2008, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (13 years 5 hours ago) and read 2319 times:


You might find this article by a woman expat living in Qatar interesting. http://www.expatmum.com/pr_doha.htm

User currently offlineArsenal@LHR From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2001, 7792 posts, RR: 18
Reply 4, posted (13 years 3 hours ago) and read 2307 times:
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Ryanb741 is correct, most of these nutcases are from Manchester,Bradford and Luton. Brainwashed is the keyword.

In Arsene we trust!!
User currently offlineSAS23 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 2292 times:

I travel extensively throughout the region and have had no hassles whatsoever.

User currently offlineEg777er From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 1844 posts, RR: 13
Reply 6, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2262 times:

Bahrain is the safest little island in the world.

There is no crime. Period (as our US friends would say). I can go into the middle of the city, leave the car unlocked with the keys in the ignition for a whole day and it won't be touched.

Time after time in the local paper you read letters about visitors who have lost thier wallet etc. only for it to be returned, contents intact, to their hotel by a someone who's come across it in a shopping mall, restaurant etc.

Ryanb is absolutely spot on - the majority of Muslims have the same hopes and dreams that we have. They work to pay their mortgage, put their kids through education and build stable families. Just like us.

It's only the fundamentalists that have been, frankly, kicked out of their home countries for p***ing people off who cause such problems in European countries and the USA.

Anyway, I urge ya'all to come visit - the temp's just cooling down now to about 30C.....and the beaches and swimming pools are waiting (as are the cool beers!!!).

User currently offlineAvt007 From Canada, joined Jul 2000, 2132 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (12 years 12 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2257 times:

I've noticed no change in the attitudes of Libyans towards myself or other expats. Obviously Iraq and 9/11 are hot topics, yet as others have said, the locals just want to live their lives and put food on the table. As with anyone else, they separate the actions of Western governments with Westerners themselves.

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