During the chaos of the Arab Spring, Western diplomacy was facilitated through the State of Qatar. The small country's rise into the apex of international relations did not occur immediately after the first sparks of the revolution. Rather, Qatar's leadership within the Middle East resulted from years of effort put in by their leaders into devising a foreign policy that emphasized building relationships and cooperation with Western countries and their Arab counterparts. Qatar's leaders specifically focused their efforts on enhancing their reputation within international sporting forums, and the business that resulted from it. Major athletic events like the Asian Games boosted the small country's profile around the world, and Qatar became known for their internationalism and cosmopolitan outlook. This work would pay off as soon as Arab governments teetered with the demonstrations in Egypt and Tunisia. Qatar's high profile status helped maintain the shuttle diplomacy that supported Western governments as they tried to contain and control the flames of revolution.
Pavgi, Kedar and Kadaba, Nakul
"From Stadiums To Shuttle Diplomacy: Qatar’s Emergence as a Regional Diplomatic Power,"
Exchange: The Journal of Public Diplomacy:
1, Article 3.
Available at: http://surface.syr.edu/exchange/vol3/iss1/3