Well, there goes my vacation: but the current flailing about and frothing at the mouth by Saudi Arabia because Canada DARED to call it out for its latest disgraceful human rights violations are well deserving of comment.
Saudi Arabia is a barbaric medieval society where arrests, imprisonment, torture, executions are still commonplace … not just for major crimes … but for the tiniest amount of dissent, protest or even for women, minorities, gays, bloggers, intellectuals … anyone just trying to express ideas and beliefs critical of the ruling dictatorial regime or the Wahabi religious extremists who terrorize the kingdom.
Kudos to Canada for speaking up … and taking a stand!
For far too long, too many countries have sacrificed their values and moral standards for economic trade and political alliances … and remained silent or averted their eyes and ears as human rights are trampled in far too many nations around the world.
And Saudi Arabia has been among the worst!
Hard for Canadians … and anyone living in other civilized countries … to imagine a society where public beheadings and public lashings are still carried out today at all. And not just for murder, but almost incredibly, in Saudi Arabia, for a whole list of other “capital” crimes including: burglary; adultery; blasphemy; and … how’s this … atheism.
Of course, most world governments … hungry for Saudi oil … seldom point out the abysmal Saudi record and practices … preferring to heap praises on the new Saudi Crown prince for “progress” … like permitting women to drive and allowing the opening of movie theaters.
Those are causes for celebration in 2018? When protestors/dissenters are still rounded up, beaten and tortured …sometimes to death?
In fact, the number of executions in Saudi Arabia have actually been on the RISE for several years: 79 (2013); 90 (2014); 158 (2015); 154 (2016); and 146 (2017).
In the latest cases, which finally drew condemnation from the Canadian government, the Saudis have jailed two women’s rights activists, Samar Badawi and Nassim al-Sadah. For daring to suggest women deserve equal rights! Despicable!!
But there’s more. Clearly the Saudi government/establishment is trying to send a wider harsher message
As CBC has reported: “Badawi is the sister of Raif Badawi, a Saudi dissident blogger who has been imprisoned by the Saudi government since 2012 on charges of apostasy and “insulting Islam through electronic channels.”
Think about that. Raif has been imprisoned in a Saudi prison for SIX YEARS for blogging his ideas! And he has also been sentenced to 1,000 LASHES … still to be carried out.
The Saudis DESERVE to be called out on their barbarity … and in this case, Canada had a special role to play, because Raif Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, and their three children live in Quebec, after fleeing the kingdom in 2015.
If I have any disappointment at all, it’s that MORE countries have not spoken out in support of Canada in exposing Saudi’s inhumanity and demanding the country join the civilized world if it wants respect.
Instead, the Saudi’s are throwing a tantrum, trying to bully Canada into apologizing.
Nuts, I say!