Madawi Al-Rasheed is a fellow of the British Academy and a visiting professor at the Middle East Centre of the London School of Economics. Her latest book is The Son King: Reform and Repression in Saudi Arabia (Hurst, 2020).
Search search input Search input auto suggest search filter Search
The rapid ascent of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman over the past several years has shaken Saudi Arabia. Delegated unusual authority by his aged father, King Salman, the crown prince has promised bold steps to modernize the economy and loosen social restrictions on youth and women. Yet his actions on these fronts have been overshadowed by his ruthless moves to intimidate rivals to the throne and silence dissidents at home and abroad. Mohammed’s aggressive foreign policies have also caused many to question his judgment. Now the COVID-19 pandemic and a fall in the oil market have added to the kingdom’s discontents.