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The Fifth Fleet Public Affairs Office said although departures of family members and "non-essential civilian personnel living in Bahrain" were authorized, operations "at US Fifth Fleet and NSA Bahrain remain normal, and US service members and family members are not being evacuated."
However, unidentified sources said Washington wrote off Bahrain, believing the Al Khalifa may collapse. Whether or not it's true isn't known.
What is known is Bahrain's reputation as "a good place to do business" is fractured. Its economy has suffered, and bond rating lowered from A3 (upper medium grade) to BAA1 (lower medium grade junk status).
Moreover, many Western businesses relocated large numbers of staff over concerns about the country's stability. In addition, unidentified US sources believe the once valued Al Khalifa monarchy is now more a liability. Daily protests met by violent crackdowns reinforce that view.
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