Saturday, August 30, 2008

Saudi Moral police have poor IT skills and demand access to porn, social networking sites

In a classic case of 'yeah, right, sure you do' - the Saudi religious police, infamous for their stupidity, violence, and homophobic and misogynistic attitudes, have asked to have their internet filters turned off according to The Gulf News. They say its just to monitor immoral practices, naturally. (hey kids, don't try this 'oh I was just monitoring immoral practices' excuse at home, as, lets face it, it just won't wash. Blame an email virus...)

Its a sign of great relief I'm sure to many Saudis, especially the young ones, that the Commission for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice is neither internet savvy enough to get around the filters already, and that there isn't already someone monitoring them as they use myspace and facebook to talk, meet members of their desired sexual orientation in virtual space and in person, and exchange saucy webcam and phone camera shots.

Fortunately, the Chairman of the Shura didn't seem to buy the excuse either.

Exclamations of laughter from the Council members combined with lots of winking, immediately following the request, were not reported.

Religious police demand access to blocked websites
By Mariam Al Hakeem, Correspondent
Published: August 28, 2008, 23:44
Riyadh: A number of members of the religious police (the Commission for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice) have urged the Chairman of the Saudi Shura Council, Dr Saleh Bin Humaid, to enable them to have access to blocked websites to monitor immoral practices by visitors of these sites.

In an open meeting held by Dr Bin Humaid at the headquarters of the Commission in Makkah last night they justified this unexpected request by arguing that there are some male and female youngsters who exploit blocked websites to get involved in negative practices away from the eyes of the Saudi authorities.

"Since members of the Commission have no access to these blocked websites, such immoral practices cannot be pursued and put an end to," they said.

Dr Al Humaid told the Commission members to provide the relevant authorities with convincing justifications to give them to access to the blocked sites. However, he expressed doubt on the need for such a thing
"These justifications must be supported by clear evidence, otherwise there is no need for it," he said.

He said that Commission members should not think that they can correct all immoral practices in society but they have to advise society members who might listen to them.

"It is your duty to advise people and try to guide them to the right path, but you should not expect immediate results following your advice," he said. He urged them to be polite with wrong-doers and to listen to the views of others and try to strengthen relations with them.

While the Religious police focus on getting access to Penthouse, Hustler and Facebook, the Kingdom continues to lock up people for their political views. (see another Gulf News story)
Saudi group calls on rights body to stop illegal arrests of citizens
By Mariam Al Hakeem Correspondent
Published: August 28, 2008, 21:49
Riyadh: A group of citizens has urged the National Human Rights Association in Saudi Arabia to try to find a solution to the illegal arrest of Saudis, especially those who express their opinions in peaceful and civilised ways.

The group denounced the arrest of Professor Matrook Al Faleh, political science professor at King Saud University (KSU) which it described as an indication of a serious human rights violation. His family was not informed about his arrest until late at night. Dr Al Faleh was not provided with an attorney during questioning, even though Saudi law grants him that right.

Dr Al Faleh's wife, Jameela Al Aqla, said that her husband has been in prison for more than 80 days; however, he is still in solitary confinement in Al Haeer Jail. He is prohibited from receiving books, newspapers, and watching television.

Its always nice to remind myself that I'm not living in Saudi (or Yemen, or Kuwait, or Qatar, or..). Note: for those overseas, Oman does not have an equivalent of the Saudi Religious police.

So, if you get a bit down this Ramadan, with the extra-suicidal and super-rude driving that always accompanies the month of brotherly kindness; Take a breath. And repeat:
'At least I'm not in Saudi'.


  1. I agree with you in most points, but, I still think you're some paranoid nerd, who disguise some good talks with some shitty feelings that you may have everyday before sleeping. dam it, just spit the shit out whatever you feel. Say it, "month of brotherly kindness". I'm sorry mate, this is for you and everybody who shares this same crap, you're living in a place where you may feel safer than your home, so accept the whole package as it is, or get your ass out.

  2. Kickass,

    What a winning example of an Omani you are. Really, you must be making the whole of the GCC population proud with your enlightened discourse.

    I can only imagine the impression you are giving the various visitors to this blog of the articulate, reasonable, and intellegent Omani people. You're doing a great service to your nation my man.

    Or perhaps you're Saudi? You sound like one.

    Dragon, great find on the Gulf news. I laughed my ass off.

    'At least I'm not in Saudi' is a copywrited mantra of mine. but you can borrow it.


  3. Kickass,
    Hmmm. You sure its me who's the 'paranoid nerd'...?

    The month of Ramadan is supposed to be a time especially emphasising kindness, charity, and goodwill to your fellow man. And in Oman it generally is, except on the roads. In my experience during Ramadan, there seems to be a feeling that the edicts cease to apply when you're driving your car, and acts of blantant agressive, rude and downright abusive driving by Omanis (and otthers too), IMHO, go up, not down during the Holy Month. Anyone who possibly can is best advised to stay off the roads around 12-2pm, and from 5:00-6:30pm.

    And while I'm at it, I'm afraid I don't buy this whole - 'if you don't like it, then shut up or get out', cop-out attitude. Its not so binary, or so easy. Take the chip off your shoulder and learn to accept that criticism can often be a positive force for change, and that 'nothing's perfect' is not a grown up defense to the suggestion of change or improvement.

  4. Maybe poor KA's mad 'cause he hasn't figured out a way around the firewall to the great wide risqué world?

    And O Lord have you called it on the driving. Heaven help anyone on the road in the hour before the Maghreb...

  5. UD
    Couldn't agree more on road rage during Ramadan.

  6. (Take a breath. And repeat:
    'At least I'm not in Saudi'. )
    will i'm kinda living in saudi what do i say
    'At least I'm not in a Soltanat'.

  7. I have been working in Saudi for some time...

    I hate being there, I agree to what you said about them, I was stopped once by the Moral police, They were rude and Stupid to a level that you cant imagine, but they left me in peace once they knew I am an Omani...
    I know Saudi's very well, and I tell you this is all just an excuse. They talk one thing about religion and then do another...

    Oh I miss driving in Oman, LOL it is true that they change in Ramadan, may be due to lack of FOOD,,,

  8. UD, you can't blame the religious police for trying ;)

    I agree with you about driving during Ramadan.

    It made a very strong and lasting impression on me when I got here last year.

  9. Kickass, you are a dunce, now go and sit in the corner and have a think about your terrible mind set.

    Driving in Ramadan is crrrraaaaaaazy. I'm considering setting up some beach chairs on the Wizarat road and watching the daily crashes that are almost guaranteed to happen.

    We'll give it a few days for the dizziness to set-in. Tuesday 9th at 4pm on Wizarat anyone?!

    As for the religious police, that is so funny I have to designate it a comedy goldmine. I look forward to more funny stories about the Saudi religious police.

  10. The Saudi wahhabi doctrine in no way represents the majority of muslims thank God. In a weird way, it was promoted by Britain in an effort to dismantle the Ottoman empire...the Saud clan and their cleric Abdal Wahab wiped out entire Sunni tribes (men, women and children) who opposed their doctrine before the very same doctrine has come back to bite the west through people like Bin Laden...and the Saudi people (many of whom are traditional sunnis and not wahabbis) have to suffer these nut cases.

    There are certain people (I'll mention no names) who say that arabs blame the 'west' for their ills. I do agree we should do that, BUT on the topic of Saudi it is the west who is squarely blameworthy because for the past 100 odd years, they've propped up this vile regime (which as a regime is contrary to the spirit of traditional sunni Islam) for their own ends...I mean there really isnt much difference between Saudi Arabaia and the Taleban's afghanistan in terms of doctrine and how they treat their people is there.

  11. correction:

    *"ShouldNT do that"

  12. I think 'Tumbleweed' has got his history wrong, and if he checked he would find that it was Great Britain who stopped Oman becoming part of Saudi Arabia. Just ask HM and his mates. At least GB did something right!

    Willie D.

  13. "and if he checked he would find" checked where? give me some reliable source, because mate this is the first time i hear of such bullshit. Oh by the way, didn't the UK bring Oil and inject it into oman reservoirs long time back too? and what's now called UAE, East African Coast, Korea Morea, Bandar Abbas, how were those places lost (some un-regrettably)? UK did to this country worse than black death did to it. This won't go unpunished

  14. My, my Kickass you are a delightfully ignorant toad are you not? I will try to dig up some history for you (... big sigh), but I'm sure that many other bloggers on the Dragons Blog will do it far better than I ever could. You are quite obviously missing some big, big chunks of Omani history - and that is indeed very sad. I suggest you get out and about and talk to some of the old folk. You do the nation that is modern Oman a disservice. Shame on you.

    Er, umm, this won't go unpunished.

    Willie Dryer

  15. For Kickass,

    With much needed love,

    Willie Dryer

  16. All,
    Thanks for the comments on Ramadan and driving! Sorry about the typo filled comment earlier...

    Kickass, Willie, Lurker, Tumbleweed,
    We've drifted a long way from the topic of Saudi idiots and Ramadan driving it seems... and surprisingly quickly, if I may opine.

    But excellent steer for a new post (or posts) on Omani history and things like oil. Just have to feed with work the people who pay my salary first... Nice link Willie. Ta.

    And don't worry Kickass, there'll be lots of opportunity for half-baked historically inaccurate xenophobic nationalistic comments too. You won't be dissappointed ;-)

  17. Willie D and who created the power that was Saudi Arabia? And who allowed the 'trucial states' which were originally part of Oman's soveriegn territory to form seperately? You have a very selective memory and an arrogance that only those expats who want to relive the says of the British Empire foster..and have some respect when you talk about say "just ask HM and his mates" as if thy're ever indebted to you. Fuck you and your self-regarding divide and rule policies.

    Dragon I'm sorry to have detracted from your original post but I was giving a bit of background and context when good ol Willy decides to give his self-righteous speech about Britian being our saviours with totally altruistic intent.

    I've managaged to find some declassified British papers to the contrary which I'll upload and link soon for our matey Willy who shops at M&S and reads his Mail on Sunday to peruse over.

    Great post though Dragon.

  18. Tumblweed my friend your history is still as wacky as your earlier post showed. Where did you go to school? Moscow? Anyway, I don't expect you to really know of your neighbour's history, but at least TRY to get your own sorted. If its all still an effort just ask HM and is mates... Again.

    Trucially yours,

    Willie D.

  19. I know all about your commie Faris Glubbs and Betrand Russells causing trouble in Oman on the one side and the British military forces wiping out villages in Oman on the other..I know more than you could ever begin to know. I'll give you a taster in a few weeks after the documents have been next time you

    And I've got a PhD from an Ivy league institution so go fuck off back to Blighty and deal with your immigration, knife crime and hoody problems

  20. Is the driving in Oman really that bad during Ramadhan? Other than being annoyed at rush hour traffic, I don't ever remember feeling this way. I was there last Ramadhan too, just won't be around this time round. Perhaps it's because I'm a crazy driver too? :/

    tumbleweed: while the british of course didn't exactly have altruistic intentions during the jebel war, it was still a better outcome for Oman that they got involved no?

    -Omani in the US

  21. Is the driving in Oman really that bad during Ramadhan? Other than being annoyed at rush hour traffic, I don't ever remember feeling this way. I was there last Ramadhan too, just won't be around this time round. Perhaps it's because I'm a crazy driver too? :/

    tumbleweed: while the british of course didn't exactly have altruistic intentions during the jebel war, it was still a better outcome for Oman that they got involved no?

    -Omani in the US

  22. Will read that for sure, and see if necessary to comment. Keep your nasty odour for you, PhD holder, you must be some low class briton jerk. if want this to carry on, keep your shit for yourself, you're already too much to accept more crap from you

  23. Tumbleweed, So, an Ivy league institution eh? My, my. What was its name... Poison Ivy?

    Willie D.

  24. Hand bags at 10 paces then?

    The way I see it, the UK maintained cordial relations with Oman for centuries. Saudi Arabia became what it is today because at the time that's what the majority wanted. There's always people who are unhappy about decisions.

    Regarding the quite ridiculous threat of punishment for British people, I really do feel that perhaps not such a gung-ho attitude is required? You know, because the Jebel Akdar and Dhofar insurgencies were won with significant support and aid from the UK. And that Taylor Woodrow, a UK company, built a lot of the new schools, hospitals and houses in the Dhofar region (at the time) as part of the first steps of HM's plan to modernize Oman.

    I fail to see why punishment is deserved for this. Oman has done well from it's relationship with the West. It has a free medical system, it has roads, schools, hospitals, lots of lovely new mosques, and a flourishing tourism trade to boot.

    Look what happened to Yemen, because the UK left that country and were not welcome there (because the Russians were pushing communism there, but that's another blog). Yemen today is barely more developed than it was 100 years ago.

    Or would you prefer to go back to the days of mass child deaths, camels and city gates being closed at night?

    You think you would know what the Internet was without help from the West?

    There's rights and wrongs in history, the trick to peace is to figure out how to be happy with what you have and how to improve upon that. Violence and threats is not the way to go, because right at the end of that road is terrorism, and that is the single biggest scourge on this earth. No one should live in terror, no one.


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