August 3, 2022 – https://www.tehrantimes.com/
Muslims the world over must shun Mohammad bin Salman and members of the al-Saud tribe. They must demand that Saudi Arabia relinquish its control over Islam’s two holiest places in Mecca and Medina and place management of the two sites under the stewardship of all Muslim countries.
MBS and the al-Sauds have so shamed Muslims and Islam that they have no legitimacy left, nor can they continue to claim their stewardship of Islam’s holy places as grounds for their legitimacy and refer to Islam on their national flag. To keep the al-Sauds as absolute rulers is for the people of Saudi Arabia to decide, but the control of Islam’s two holiest places and the self-proclaimed honorific of “Custodian of the Two Holy Places” is for all Muslims to decide, not a tribe that brings only shame to Islam.
Throughout their rule of 90 years over what became Saudi Arabia, the al-Sauds have done little to uphold the teachings of Islam (http://islamicity-index.org/wp/), which include:
– freedom (God gave humanity the freedom to choose)
– the eradication of poverty
– a modest lifestyle and the sharing of wealth
– equal opportunities to develop the self
– rulers who serve with the approval of the community
– the management of natural resources to equally benefit every person in all generations
The Al-Sauds’ transgressions have no limit and have been magnified with the arrival of Mohammad bin Salman (MBS) on the scene. Just take a glance at his horrid record:
– a palace coup
– the imprisonment and torture of hundreds of dissidents
– the execution of hundreds of Saudis under questionable judicial proceedings
– the dismemberment of Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post columnist
– the purchase of a yacht with a price tag of about $750 million
– the purchase of a palace in France (https://www.cogemad.com/property/chateau-louis-xiv/) along with gold furnishings that would conservatively exceed $400 million
– a visit to France and Greece with an entourage of 700, 7 planes, 350 limousines and much more (https://medium.com/@MiddleEastEye/limousines-dieticians-chateau-mohammed-bin-salmans-opulent-europe-trip-d6e56d81f6e8)
– many other ostentatious assets that are hard for a decent person to imagine
– a war in Yemen (with American weapons, support and intelligence) that has caused over 350,000 casualties and been called a genocide by the United Nations
– “investing” $2 billion with Jared Kushner against the advice of his own advisors
– “investing” billions in a golf circuit and other sports to “clean” his name
Such opulence alongside horrendous destitution in Saudi Arabia with Muslims all over the Middle East (West Asia) wallowing in poverty, with Palestinians in the West Bank and in Gaza suffering distress and privation without food and medicines. It is in hardship that many transgress and commit crimes. All this in a country whose entire wealth comes from oil, in Islam a God-given depletable resource to benefit every member of all generations equally. As Muslims, the al-Sauds are carrying out the greatest theft of all time, in contravention to everything that Islam preaches.
While the al-Sauds have shamed all Muslims, Biden of Arabia has brought shame on America with his U-turn on MBS and his pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia for oil. Candidate Biden said of the al-Sauds “there is very little social redeeming value in the government” and vowed to make the Saudis “pay the price, and make them in fact the pariah that they are.” This is the country whose citizens perpetrated 9/11. Yet President Biden went to Saudi Arabia to beg MBS to produce more oil. Biden was not even met at the airport by the king or by MBS. Biden was unable to secure the promise of higher oil output. All the while many warned that higher Saudi output alone would do little for prices at the pump in the United States. Dictators around the world must have laughed and become emboldened at the humiliation of the United States. But sadly all oppressed people around the world saw the duplicity of the United States yet again. America does not stand for human rights and the oppressed, but for short-sighted self- interest, which will only shame America in the eyes of the world. As America loses its soft power, it will be left with only military power to affect change around the world.
It is time for Saudis to hold their rulers accountable, for Muslims to demand control of the holy sites in Saudi Arabia and for Americans to demand that their government reflect the values of its people.