The paper was launched in 1974. In April 2014, the paper and Alam Al Youm were temporarily closed down for two weeks by the Kuwaiti government due to the publication of a videotape showing former senior officials plotting a coup in Kuwait. In June 2014, both papers were shut down for five days because of the same reason.
In January 2015, the Kuwaiti government shut down Al Watan because the newspaper violated the license law, since it had less than enough capital to maintain a license.
The circulation of Al Watan was 86,000 copies in 2001 and it was the second best selling newspaper in the country. The 2006 circulation of the paper was 100,000 copies.
The paper's online version was the second most visited website for 2010 in the MENA region.