Saudi Arabia is medieval, cruel and an absolute tyranny.

Crucified and then beheaded in SA

“There’ll be an announcement on Monday on what we’re going to be doing with Saudi Arabia generally.”

Biden’s decision to release the report in the first weeks of his presidency fulfils campaign promises to reassess ties with Saudi Arabia after critics accused Donald Trump of ignoring gross human rights violations such as a sweeping crackdown on activists and the war in Yemen. Biden, however, is seeking to sideline Prince Mohammed without completely breaking off one of the US’s core relationships in the Middle East.

Friday’s news caused shock in the region, with social media networks such as Twitter and Clubhouse lighting up through the night as exiles debated how much the US opprobrium would help in the fight for freedoms in the country.

The exiled Saudi opposition National Assembly party said “true justice for Khashoggi and others facing similar risk” would mean following the recommendations of a UN inquiry into Khashoggi’s death, including pursuing criminal prosecutions in the US and using harsh Magnitsky-style sanctions on those responsible.

Amrit Singh, a lawyer with Open Society Justice Initiative, who filed a lawsuit to have the intelligence report released, said: “It is unconscionable for the US government to let the murderer-in-chief – the crown prince – walk free from punishment.” The Guardian

Comment: I was Defense and Army Attaché in the US embassy in Saudi Arabia for three years. Then I was head of US Defense Intelligence for the ME for eight years. After I left the government I traveled to SA many times on private business.

I have been in just about every Islamic country. Ah, I remember now that I have never been in Algeria. Saudi Arabia stands out in the mind as being an absolute hell hole. The country LOOKS good. The infrastructure is modern. The medical facilities are first rate although nearly all are run by expats. But there is an overwhelming atmosphere of oppression generated by a clerically dominated regime in which a parasitic and gigantic “royal” family exercises ruthless and unrestrained power on behalf of a theocracy based on the Wahhabi sect of Sunni Islam. This in turn is based on the Hanbali school of Sharia, a variety of Islam that is uncompromisingly rigid, and incapable of internal reform.

When I was a Counselor of Embassy equivalent there, the Saudis I dealt with delighted in pressuring me into going with them to the weekly public executions held in front of the central mosque. The drill there was usually to march some condemned African or South Asian out into the square where an African slave would then behead him with the sword. Occasionally a woman judged an adulteress would be carried into the square sewn into a bag. Deposited on the ground she would then be stoned to death with rocks taken from a conveniently located pile nearby. Why did the Saudis take me to these events? They wanted to see if I would flinch. They were looking for weakness.

Saudi Arabia is a medieval barbarism still extent in the 21st Century. It is an unsuitable ally for the US and it has always been unsuitable. The US government should DEMAND major reforms in Saudi behavior or we should walk out of the relationship. They need us a hell of a lot more than we need them.

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37 Responses to Saudi Arabia is medieval, cruel and an absolute tyranny.

  1. Escarlata says:


    But now that KSA is an ally of Israel, do you think that, curtail relation until they reform to “democratic” standards, is possible?

    Take into account Kamala´s husband is a dual citizen and what she stated in AIPAC…

    Then I viewed yesterday a video where a younger Biden states it is not needed to be Jew to be a Zionist…

    Estamos apañados…todo seguirá igual, los países donde más se violan actulamente los derechos humanos seguirán siendo China, Rusia y Venezuela…

    Yesterday Spanish Foreign Minister visited Cúcuta, she said, “to offer support of Venezuelan refugees”, but did not said a word about summary executions by death squads of civil rights activists in the narco-state of Colombia, nor expressed any support for the Colombian refugees in Venezuela…. It would had costed her the same, as she was equidistant from the two countries, if it was for human rights and,any aim of neutrality…Instead she, making just the dirty work for Blinken, created a serious diplomatic conflict with the Bolivarian country where Spain has a lot of economic and comercial interests, thus, doing the usual puppetery job of throwing stones against their own countries of origin on behalf of their international careers as future officials of NATO, WTO, the EU, transnational corporations boards, and so on…

  2. Deap says:

    When it comes to the universality of domestic violence, those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

    Attending a summer law program at the University of Malaya in the 1980’s, and becoming acquainted for the first time with the fundamentals of sharia law as officially incorporated legal doctrine in that country, I was asked why women in the US were left abandoned and destitute after divorce, as well as physically harmed, maimed under the failed domestic violence protections offered by the US legal system.

    It was explained at least with sanctioned polygamy, the first wife retained her position and resources. “Divorce” had recently been introduced in Malaysia at that time (1980’s), and it was the women lawyers who were expressing doubts about former protections they had lost, when they gained to freedom to be “abandoned” by prior sharia law marital protections.

    They even cogently explained the western myth that in Muslim countries all one has to say is ‘I divorce thee, three times” and one is divorced. Those three utterances were not intended to be made in rapid succession, but more in a way to slow down any hasty decision on this important matter – say it once, think about it and say it again, and only after third time with this intervening contemplation should the divorce be finally granted.

    Much like our own US system in fact – file for a divorce (#1 – I divorce thee), be subject to an interlocutory period (#2 – I divorce thee) and only then is a final divorce granted. (#3 – I divorce thee)

    Each system has it strengths, weaknesses and barbarities, when one drills down the details and the anecdotes. And yes, public executions and stoning are barbaric. But these are not only ways we do harm to each other. Or the harm we inflict when we fail to connect personal choice to public consequences, in our own attempts to establish a code for public order.

    • Pat Lang says:


      Islam and its application is much different in Saudi Arabia than it is in Malaysia.

      • Deap says:

        Agree. Thanks for raising this distinction. KSA is the Vatican; Malaysia is Hawaii.

        I had to struggle a lot after 9-11 because I had a relatively positive experience with “Islam” in Malaysia, while post-911 presented a very different version of Islam often for the first time in the US – Wahhabi extremism etc. Hard to generalize over a billion adherents and their multiple sects. Kudos to the Ismali – Aga Kahn – Muslims, one find in the Hunza Valley, Pakistan too.

        Yet even in the 1980’s in our long lunch chats with the law school students and faculty, they were very concerned about the extreme radicalization of students coming back from study in the UK and were debating about sending them to the US instead.

        As well as their chagrin trying to evolve as a modern country when the Imans still subjectively decided when Ramadan was over instead of following a fixed re-start date on the business calendar.

        My return visit in 2015 – 30 years later — indeed saw a very different country than the sleeping Asian tiger kitty I got to know in the 1980’s.

        When locals mocked the slowly emerging Petronas Towers as some banker’s ridiculous ego trip, constructed out in the middle of no where KL suburbs. Who would even venture that far out of town which clustered at that time around the former British cricket club holding forth in its stately half-timbered glory.

  3. BillWade says:

    Between Elon Musk (Tesla) and Andy Marsh (Plug Power) we’ll have zero need of the Saudis soon enough.

    An uncle of mine spent years there building airports, nearly drove my aunt crazy.

    • JohninMK says:

      Bill, the need for the Saudi’s oil will I suspect last far into the future for a couple of reasons.

      First electric vehicles use a lot of hydrocarbons in their construction. Directly in terms of plastics and indirectly in terms of processing the metals it is made of. No real progress is being made in electric trucks/farm tractors/trains etc and aircraft. No-one has yet faced the problem of electricity distribution with millions of cars sucking power or the last mile substation problem or the last 10 yards in inner cities where a car has to be plugged in but can’t park near the owners house or needs a cable over the sidewalk.

      US shale production of both oil and gas is falling fast. The US is going to have to start importing more than it does already fairly soon. Petrol (gas) and diesel are complimentary products when refining crude. If diesel demand continues whilst petrol drops then there will be a lot of petrol looking for a home.

      Incidentally, windmills consume a very large amount of energy in their manufacture plus their unrecyclable blades have to be replaced every 15 years or so. Texas, of recent fame, are about to have to start that process with their oldest windmills. Unless the Green Deal includes nuclear power, oil and gas and probably coal still have a future.

      • Pat Lang says:

        A need? Yes, but how much of a need except for among you foreign energy dependent creatures in England and the rest of Europe?

      • BillWade says:

        Johnin MK,

        Take a look at hydrogen fuel cells, it’s the next step after batteries. There will be class 8 trucks on the road within a year or so using HFC’s – range likely to be about 1000 miles. You’ll probably see HFC’s powering Microsoft, etc date centers soon, getting them off diesel generators.

      • Fred says:

        “No-one has yet faced the problem of electricity distribution with millions of cars sucking power….”

        The CEO of Toyota addressed that issue some time ago.

        The shift to EV is ideologically driven and entirely dependent upon state regulatory changes in the energy sector and fuel mileage standards. It is a barrier to entry to entry and a giant retstraint upon middle and lower class economic freedom and freedom of movement.

  4. james says:

    it’s all about the money and keeping it flowing… same deal the cozy relationship of israel to ksa…. when they get tired of this, they can move over to the other backward fiefdom – uae… as the stomach turns…..

    • Pat Lang says:


      Why do you think I am railing against the relationship? Biden must be held responsible for playing the money game.

      • james says:

        did you hold trump accountable on this same topic?? what did you think of his response to kashoggi?? all of these political leaders are useful idiots to keep the same game going.. that is what it looks like to me.. in fact, they probably know all this too, but just play along for the perks that come with the gig of being president…

        • Pat Lang says:


          I have said many times that Trump’s ME policy was idiotic as is that of the Globalist Borgies

          • Deap says:

            A good point was raised here once. Was Trump supporting historic Christendom, or modern Zionism when he supported “Israel”?

            During a day trip around the various smaller of the United Arab Emirates during a Dubai cruise stop, our guide, kept claiming he was a relative of the king while emphasizing his “official” UAE version of the Middle East. This was being the geographical center to over 4 billion growing middle class people, who were only an 8 hour plane ride away.

            His stated ME goal was for Dubai to offer best of everything that would attract this large potential customer base – from becoming the largest health tourism center to offering the world’s biggest Disneyland.

            His version of ME policy required both peace and prosperity – eternally hating Israel did not seem to factor into his future business development vision for the UAE.

            Anecdote only. Mercantilism seemed to trump any latent anti-Zionism. At least from this canned presentation to passing tourists.

            Can’t decide if the UAE is an urban planning disaster, or the face of the future. They have us out-numbered.

          • Pat Lang says:


            IMO Trump was supporting modern Zionism and this attitude was reflective of his NY City origin. This is a place where even the RC cardinal is a Zionist.

          • james says:

            it is only idiotic, or- like my comment ‘useful idiots’ comment – if we believe trump and biden don’t understand and benefit from this ongoing approach… it seems to me zionism is built into all western political ideology at present and support for ksa-uae, isn’t that far behind… it is all about the money… politics today is completely contrary to anything about representing the people… it is all for the service of those already in power and not accountable to such a thing as democracy.. that’s what it looks like to me..

          • Pat Lang says:


            It must be wonderful to be a cynical little p—k who never had to do anything significant in life.

          • james says:

            whose being cynical now??

          • Pat Lang says:


            SA is incurably twisted. If you knew the place you would know that.

          • james says:

            pat – i do agree with you fully on your viewpoint on KSA! on this we agree! thanks for your work and sharing all this..

  5. Eric Newhill says:

    I dated a girl – of course many years ago now – who’s father worked for Aramco. They lived in an American compound in Saudi Arabia. She told me that one day she (a teenager) and some friends left the compound, against advice, to do something or another and the Saudi Moral Police (?) grabbed her and her friends, took them to a nearby spot where a beheading was taking place, and forced them to watch. That event had caused her some small amount amount of trauma. She knew that the Saudis were trying to shock her and enjoyed doing so.

  6. John Merryman says:

    I think we will have to dig down into the conceptual fallacies and develop a public debate around them, before any real change is possible.
    For instance, a spiritual absolute would be the essence of sentience, from which we rise, not an ideal of wisdom and judgement, from which we fell. Remember democracy and republicanism originated in pantheistic societies, as that was the interpretation of the multiculturalism that arose, as tribal societies developed into more cosmopolitan states.
    Rome adopted Christianity as the empire was fully assumed and any remnants of the republic were shed. Though shades of pantheism remained, with the Trinity.
    When the West went back to populist forms of government, it resulted in the separation of church and state, culture and civics.
    The reality is more the yin and yang of nodes and networks, organism and ecosystems, than it is an absolutist God Almighty.
    As for money, is it a social contract and accounting device, enabling mass society to function, or is it a commodity to mine from society?
    The fact is that we have not philosophically evolved much beyond the linear, goal oriented predators that got us to the top of the food chain, even as we destroy it.
    Nature is circular and reciprocal. This global Tower of Babel is crumbling under its own hubris and blindness.

  7. wtofd says:

    Why never in Algeria? Duty elsewhere or personal aversion?

  8. Yeah, Right says:

    Has anyone in the State Department thought about having a quiet word with the Hashemites and gauging if they are interested in moving back into what used to simply be called Arabia?

    They ran the place once, long ago, and have shown some degree of competence in running the consolation prize that is Jordan. They might welcome a change of scenery.

    After all, the USA has a track record of orchestrating regime-change, but a patchy record of managing the handover to a new regime. At least in this case there is a pretender, and that pretender already has experience in running a country.

    The USA could do worse, and taking down the House of Saud and replacing it with the Hashemites is somewhat more do-able than some of the other current regime-change obsessions.

    • Pat Lang says:

      yeah, right

      I have had that conversation many times with the Hashemites and their supporters and descendants. They know Wahhabi indoctrinated SA well and are not interested.

      • Yeah, Right says:


        I remember reading one of Robert Fisk’s books and noting that while he showed general contempt for ME leaders he displayed a soft spot for the “plucky little king”.

        What is your opinion of the Hashemites?

        • Pat Lang says:

          Yeah, Right
          I am generally unfavorably inclined toward monarchy, but Hussein was one of nature’s noblemen like his cousin Zeid bin Shaker. In the old Jordanian Army, the one that Glubb and Peake bequeathed to the Hashemite family the story was told around campfires that if Hussein had told them that the only way for them to solve their problem with Israel was to convert to Judaism, the response would have been, “if you say so boss.”

  9. BillWade says:

    Listened to some NPR today, some Dems thought Biden could have done a bit more about MBS. Hunter’s dad says, “c’mon man, grifters gonna grift, doncha know”.

  10. O.B. says:

    Interesting picture – of the things we are not supposed to see. And then the conversation opened more windows.
    Thank you for sharing. I hope one of these days to share my own visions of the past, present and future.

  11. JohninMK says:

    Colonel, how do you think the Saudi leadership is reacting to the ongoing missile/drone attacks that the Houtis or others are inflicting on them currently?

    Also on their failure in Yemen?

    • Pat Lang says:

      I have asked TTG to write something on this and don’t want to step on his aticle.

  12. Wahhab’s book on Tawhid, for those who are interested in the source

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