They are not asking for the King to abdicate. They are envisioning a constitutional monarchy which will provide some check on the King’s absolute power.
Since I first wrote about Facebook’s Saudi Women Revolution website, almost 600 “fans” have joined. It is still only a virtual “revolution.” But they are now posting some fairly hilarious, fairly tragic, but rather powerful cartoons. For example, behold the following cartoons:
Man: “You’re her guardian…go ahead and sign here!”
Baby: “Can I give you a footprint instead?”
“Cover your tongue!”
“The suicide of a young woman”
(The man is “society”)
“Who gave you permission to put my new daughter in a ‘mixed’ room?!”
This website (Saudi Women Revolution) and the Saudi Youth for Justice group are not the same people who, according to the Associated Press, have promised a “day of rage” in the Kingdom on March 11th. Days of Rage are also being planned in Iraq (February 25th) and Syria (March 15th).
Muammar al-Qaddafi has claimed that his people have been fed hallucinogenic drugs in their coffee by none other than Bin Laden. He is saying that after him—comes the Islamist, al-Qaeda-run deluge. The eminent Steven Emerson suggests that indeed an al-Qaeda ally lurks in the shadows, namely the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG). The apparently genuine (virtual) reformers in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere have another scenario, a more peaceful change, one that embraces an Islamic version of human and women’s rights.
President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton ought to take a stand on behalf of such potentially real reformers.
We have, so far, failed the brave reformers in Iran. Tomorrow, Iranians will conduct a panel and afterwards a rally outside the United Nations on behalf of Iranian women. It is not too late for America to signal its strong support for those Muslims and ex-Muslims who truly wish to enter the modern world, not in terms of bombs, cell phones, and other deadly weapons but in terms of universal, western, Enlightenment values and rights.
I wish to acknowledge my assistant Nathan Bloom’s translation from the Arabic.
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