The diary of a Saudi man, currently living in the United Kingdom, where the Religious Police no longer trouble him for the moment.
In Memory of the lives of 15 Makkah Schoolgirls, lost when their school burnt down on Monday, 11th March, 2002. The Religious Police would not allow them to leave the building, nor allow the Firemen to enter.
US Criticism Disappointing: Kingdom
RIYADH, 19 March 2004 — The Kingdom yesterday voiced disappointed over US criticism of its arrests of Saudi reformists, saying the detentions were an internal security issue.
“The US State Department should have consulted us to learn the truth of the issue before its spokesman made his remarks,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The United States said Wednesday that Saudi Arabia’s detention this week of 13 prominent reformists was a step backward for political change in the Kingdom. However, there was confusion about the exact number of the activists detained. On Tuesday, a Foreign Ministry source spoke of “a small number of individuals.”
So now it's 13 people in prison for advocating such revolutionary changes as parliamentary democracy and human rights. Things that the West have had since the 1700's, at least. And the reason that there is "confusion" about the numbers is that in Saudi Arabia there is no "Habeas Corpus", no due process, no reporting of cases, no legal representation, no time limit for prosecutions. So you can disappear into their "black hole" and never be accounted for; just hope you've got friends or relatives who notice you are missing.
(They won't get me, I use a direct satellite link. Expensive, but it avoids the eavsdropping ears of the Ministry of Thought Monitoring).
It's good to see that the US has delivered its mild rebuke. What many of us would like, of course is for the US and the West to forget their oil interests just once, and really play hardball with this Medieval Theocracy. Let's have a blaze of publicity, UN Resolutions, the lot.
Just in case you hadn't got the picture yet:
Advocate Political Reform, and you go to Prison.
Screw a 13-year-old girl, and you become a newspaper Celebrity.
Any problem with that?