When there was terrorist activity for the first time in KSA, SKY news traced me somehow and interviewed me on their channel. The reporter kept asking questions that were ….: ABSURD. Her effort was to make KSA look bad and make me say things that would make it look bad.
I, however, said what I felt was right and true. I try to do that always. And, the truth then was that: We cannot blame Saudi Authority for what happened. NOWAY.
I am sure that interview was monitored.
In 2003: Arab News published my interview about Saudization. Ghazi Al Gosaibi ( May Allah Bless his soul) , was not in office then and I shouted out things that later became policy and is still becoming part of policy. I also mentioned, as I always do, that there should be minimum wage and the sponsorship system should be abolished. The reaction of all the people I knew was : YOU must have a A LOT OF Guts to say such things. But, I knew at the time, in that moment when Molouk was interviewing me in Khobar, that what I was saying was bound to happen one day soon. I saw the trends and needs of my land, Saudi Arabia. I felt the pulse of my people, the Saudis. I felt every heartache, I wiped tears and I stood by them, as I still do.
It is only now that Saudi women started protesting about Niqab and Driving. I was talking about this when I was in school. Niqab is not compulsory and women driving is not haram. I used to say this because I could see that in the next twenty years populations will double , it will get crowded and there will be millions of single women.. in addition to financial and social issues. But, if I had written something about it back then, they would have called me crazy. Today, we read in the arab news that there will be 4 million single women in KSA now! I have had countless talks about this with Religious people and even members of the PVPV. Everyone understands the trends and needs here. No one is blind. Trust me.
So, I wrote and said all these things and it was ok. What is not ok , however, is constant bitching about KSA by the whole world. The constant pointing of fingers at our leadership, policies and traditions – the constant questioning of our religion and faith. And, this is what should be and WILL be regulated.
If I find issues within KSA, then I also reply to allegations against this country. I will not let your question go unanswered. I will answer for KSA.
When I demand citizenship ( Previous Post), I demand it because I am a son of this land by all means. There is no question about it. A child of Al Hashemia,. we are from Makkah. My wife is the daughter of the Al Ansar of Medina. From Abu Ayyub Al Ansari of Medina. If we are not from this land, then who is? I am as is an Otaibi, Qahtani or Zahrani. I am Al Hussainy, Al Hasan, Al Hashemi.. Sada.. call it whatever you want – Pakistanis chose to call us SHAHs – just titles and names – blood Talks!
It is my right. In fact, it is more than a right. We are the people that conquered the lands of Sindh and Hind and came back victorious. We sacrificed, fought battles and protected our land : Saudi Arabia and our people – the Ummah.
We came back in 1964 and before that we kept coming each year, distributing wealth and we built buildings for pilgrims in Makkah.. every year for a thousand years. So.. hand me that Batqaga.. No questions asked. Khalas! I will keep Saudi, Pakistani , Jordanian and every Muslim countries citizenship.. I would keep Indian too but India is a secular country now. I demand this from the Ummah and they are OBLIGED to accept it. Allah WILL question them if they do not respond. And He shows cause and effect everyday. Cause and effect I write about..
Saudi Arabia is not only Nejd. It covers the east and the west and the south and the north. We are a tribe from the West. A tribe surrounded by controversy for 1400 years.. but , definitely from this LAND and extremely loyal to it’s rulers and its people. We cannot be, and will not accept being sponsored.. nor will we let anyone tell us we are not from here. Because we DO not live here for money, nor work.. nor any business. And the Saudi Government should know that AND if they don’t then they can appoint people to do their research and find out. In fact, I have , myself, hired 3 people, Saudis, to conduct this research and submit a report to the Minister of Interior. Why have I done this? Because if I leave, many families will get hurt. It is for them that I demand all this. I was way too happy living in Cyprus or Karachi near the beach , riding horses and having a ball. But, life is not just about making yourself happy. We have a responsibility towards those that we grew up with, those that need us. We cannot just ignore them to find our happiness elsewhere. I consider that a violation of THEIR rights. And, I will not be able to forgive myself for abandoning these people.
So, let me tell you what is going on people.
When an expatriate applies for his wife, mother, or sister’s visa and is refused, he gets terribly upset and angry. But, does he know what is going on in reality?
Before, you could bring anyone of your family here. Long time ago. Then, people started bringing “family” that were not really family. Countless cases of men selling girls in Makkah during Hajj, posing as parents or husbands or brothers. Crimes. Drugs. Murders and prostitution. So, regulations were set. It is the maintenance of law and order that led to such restrictions. The government is not your personal friend. The government has tasks and issues that it must counter through correct policy and it must do so now. Millions of people come and go. Some bring garbage and some take resources and lives with them.
Do you honestly think it is easy to maintain the peace and tranquility here? Do you know how many forces around the world must be working day and night to cause problems and issues here?
When you run a country that has the two holy mosques of the Muslims, you are faced with great challenges too. Saudi Arabia is the only country on earth that really cannot, under any circumstances, open completely. And, I understand that. You should also. It is also a country with immense resources and those resources need to be protected. Why Not?
Then, to maintain uniformity in religion so sects are not born and chaos is not created. That is a challenge too. It is part of maintaining the security of the country. Why should that be questioned by anyone? A guy with a turban walks in to the USA , everyone panics..and KSA should let anything walk in? Not fair.
Also, citizenship should be granted. But,not to everyone. Not possible. I once again question the many expatriates living here: How much Arabic have you learnt? How loyal have you been to this land? How much of the policies do you understand and comprehend? But yes, let me tell you from now.. there will come a time when citizenships WILL be granted and if not that then means to settle here will be given IF you meet a criteria.
The Saudi population is growing, day by day. When this happens, distribution of wealth gets affected. People need jobs, they need to survive. I very openly and aggressively HATE the sponsorship system because I have seen jobless Saudis. I have wiped the tears of many people and seen their frustrations. Sitting in their own land, penniless. And, no.. the reason is not ONLY because they are lazy. The reason is also that NO ONE WANTS TO HIRE THEM. They are not challenged enough to rise and work! Greedy company owners overlook the need to train and employ and simply import cheap labor! These are NOT loyal to the country.
The root cause of this is the Sponsorship system. Where, a handful of people bring in thousands of people and let them roam the streets for work, charging them a few hundred each and making a fortune every month! This hurts the locals more than everyone else, believe it or not. And, what pisses me off even more is when I read articles about how the expatriates are taking over. Some people are just not really LOYAL to this land. And, that hurts. Because if you are truly loyal,you define the problem AND provide the solution too. You don’t just say : Oh , DUH, this has happened. You find out WHY it happened, What is the cause, What is the solution and you fix it.
I was at a parking lot of a supermarket with a Saudi Lawyer , saying the above. He protested, but I stopped him and said: Look around you, what do you see? 5 guys, illegals, washing cars..right? If this was not happening, 5 young Saudis could get together and put an automatic car wash in that corner there and would generate an income.. right? He could not differ.. he HAD to agree.
People are, and People do confuse “ freedom of speech” with “ Rude, idiotic and baseless bitching”.
The point of this post is to tell you that in my experience, positive criticism is not countered by ANY regulation but dangerous allegations, pictures of sensitive locations, mention of names and the outright attack on the dignity of a land, its people and their religion HAS to be countered by regulation. This is why committees are setup and regulatory bodies impose bans, blocks and punishments. We have some fools who are too influenced by thoughts and views that work AGAINST this country, and they go out of their way to make them known and spread hatred amongst people.. they SHOULD be punished because to me they are traitors. If these same people define a problem, analyze it and then either discard it or solve it, I am sure the government will ENCOURAGE them and THANK them.
Remember? Ask not what your country can do for you…?
Women Driving; Ok, lets say that tomorrow morning the Saudi Government allows women to drive. Sit with me here and just imagine what will happen. Can you? I will not respect your intelligence if you tell me it will be all good. People WILL go crazy. The number of Police patrol cars will have to double, there will be traffic jams, and crimes will happen. Trust me. The government knows this, so the implementation WILL take time and many factors HAVE to be considered. Now, do you want to understand this or do you want to cry about hundreds of years of culture and PVPV? Does it make any sense?
Abaya: No one tells you to cover your face. And, if they do – YOU can ignore them. We now see women without hijab too. Society changes over time. Why get SO damn bothered about it?
Yes, the judiciary system needs reforms : Happening
Yes, there are social and family issues: Being addressed
Yes, the systems are old and need to be updated: Millions are being spent on JUST that
You want Saudi Arabia to change so that you feel that you are living in Las Vegas?
NO.. not possible