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.

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Two news items we've not seen in Saudi Arabia 

1) An expression of sympathy from our government to the victims and relatives of the Al Qaeeda bombings in Madrid

And now…

2) An expression of sympathy from our government to the family of Nick Berg

We get lots of hand-wringing about Arab civilian deaths in Iraq and Palestine, but never for the death of Western or Israeli civilians. Even though our Quraan, like the Old Testament, expressly forbids the killing of innocents.

May 2004 seems to be the month for government and popular hypocrisy, on all sides, to plumb the depths.

The Saudi government is making a lot about the Iraqi prison abuses.

Ibn Humaid Blasts ‘Hideous’ Iraq Prison Violations

Fair enough, except that it comes from the Speaker of our “Poodle Parliament”, which has not, to my certain knowledge, ever asked for an enquiry into the abuses committed against Saudi and other prisoners by Saudi security forces within Saudi prisons. True, our guys generally confine themselves to “bastinado”, sleep deprivation, and threatening to rape the victim’s wife / daughter / mother; they don’t generally use dogs (unclean), urination, or women warders pointing at genitals. However who knows whether they will now copy these new techniques from the US and Great Britain.

It’s all a depressing time for the Human Race. Governments and individuals on all sides are showing that we’ve not really advanced that much in the last few thousand years. However I would make one point. What the Coalition troops did in Iraq prisons is appalling, and very much undermines any case they make for bringing “Western Civilisation” to Iraq. However the West does have press and TV media that highlights and exposes these “dark corners”, and a political and judicial system that will, eventually, get to some sort of truth and bring about some sort of justice. In Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, the government can do what it pleases, it is never subject to internal criticism, or brought to account. So, whilst we’d rather not have your interrogation techniques, we’d very much like your free press and independent judiciary.

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