There’s a famous scene from The Dark Knight in which the Joker gives a rare insight into why he does his disruptive, anarchic things. “I’m like a dog chasing cars,” he says, “I wouldn’t know what to do if I caught one, you know, I just do … things.” There is a certain Middle Eastern prince whose actions can be most accurately explained by this philosophy….MORE: theguardian.
The vast halls of the Dhahran Expo in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province tingle with youthful excitement. One 28-year-old would-be entrepreneur named Zaid, wearing an immaculate white traditional thobe, says he wants to start a business making sandboards for tourists to hurtle down desert dunes. Female university students stop visitors to show off projects for an innovation class. In fluent English,…more:bloomberg
CJ Werleman documents his conversations with Faisal Thar Thakin, a Rohingya Muslim who has been held in the kingdom’s notorious Shumaisi detention centre for the past six years.
For several months, I have been holding regular conversations with Faisal Thar Thakin, a 20-year-old Rohingya Muslim asylum seeker who has been detained and separated from his parents in Saudi Arabia’s notorious Shumaisi detention centre since 2013.
“We would rather die now than be kept in here forever or sent to Myanmar or Bangladesh,” Thakin told me in early April when explaining why he and upwards of 1,000 Rohingya detainees had decided to launch a hunger strike in protest against their indefinite detention and threats by Saudi Arabia to deport them….MORE: bylinetimes.com
.. The officials said MBS placed his mother under house arrest at least for some time at a palace in Saudi Arabia, without the king’s knowledge…more: nbcnews
They call diphtheria the “strangling disease”. Parents have to watch helplessly as it slowly clogs the throat and chokes the life out of their children. Thankfully, vaccination has wiped it out in most parts of the world. But not in Yemen. Not this past year. Hundreds of children have been infected, and dozens have died that cruellest of deaths….MORE: theguardian
…the 32-year-old who effectively runs the country in his father’s name, just placed a big bet on his millennial peers. By ending the world’s only ban on women driving cars, the crown prince has upset plenty of people in this Islamic kingdom, founded on a pact between clerics and the royal family.
He may be calculating that an even larger number of Saudis are ready to go along for the ride.
Will it work? It’s hard to gauge the mood of a country with little freedom of expression or opinion polling,..more: nypost.com
Rebel media in Yemen said the missile targeted an international airport in Jiddah, though Saudi Arabia said it was “intercepted and destroyed” 65 kilometers (40 miles) from Mecca, which is home to the cube-shaped Kaaba that the world’s Muslims pray toward five times a day. The missile launch shows the capability of Yemen’s Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, and their allies to continue to strike Saudi Arabia. It also drew the immediate anger of Saudi citizens, as the protection of Mecca is a key pillar of the Saudi royal family’s prestige and the country’s national identity. .nytimes
NOBODY knows exactly when Islamic scholars decided that booze was sinful. In the 1970s political Islam led some countries such as Iran and Pakistan to ban alcohol, although many do not and exceptions are made for non-Muslims. In some countries the…