Donnie and Jared’s buddies in Arabia, the Saudis, just executed a person for protesting for Democracy.

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Who is Mujtaba al-Sweikat?

He would have been a college student in the United States had the Saudi Arabian Government not imprisoned him for participating in pro-democracy rallies while a teenager in 2011.

His incarceration, justified by a probably coerced confession (probably after torture and without access to legal counsel) sparked condemnation by Amnesty International, Reprieve, and Western Michigan University (where Al-Sweikat would have attended college.)

This week the Saudi Government executed him, by decapitation, along with 35 other people accused of various (likely fabricated in at least some instances) crimes.

Along with the murder and dismemberment of American resident and Washington Post Journalist Jamal Khashoggi earlier this year at their Consulate in Turkey, these acts by the Saudi government should make students and practitioners of international relations wonder why the KKK President and his son in law are investing trust and monies in such a repressive regime.

What does it say about our country that it does not strongly condemn a corrupt and reactionary oligarchal system that murders journalists who write the truth or children who want a democratic life for themselves and those around them? What does it say about our President (and their surrogates like Middle East “envoy” Jared Kushner) who deal with individuals who sanction such acts and only find public support among other vile and repressive leaders like Vladimir Putin?

While the leaders of nations have to deal with both allies and adversaries in order to maintain order and stability, it does not mean that leaders like who adopt vile and atrocious means to maintain power should be catered to or praised.

The Saud family has historically been unreliable agents in the Middle East, partly responsible for spreading economic, political and sectarian strife in the region over the last century since the Americans and British, in their quest to monopolize influence over the international petroleum supply, helped legitimize the Saud Family control of the Arabian Peninsula.

The price the West has paid for supporting the Saudis (the dependency on oil, civil strife between Shiites and Sunni’s,  the suppression of democracy in the region, the emergence of Wahabism and Al Queda) has been too high.

Donnie and Jared would do better to distance themselves from their Saudi buddies and become an honest broker again in the Middle East for all the countries in the area.

If they do that, hopefully, it will lead to an Arabia where there is no one will suffer the same fate as Jamal Khashoggi or Mujtaba al-Sweikat.

 

 

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David Gordon
Living in Arizona since his family moved to Tempe from New York in 1982, David Gordon has three degrees from Arizona State University and the University of Phoenix in History, Political Science, and Secondary School Administration. A highly qualified Social Studies instructor and Certified School Principal, Mr. Gordon owned his own charter school, Grand Canyon College Preparatory Academy from 1997-2016. The school served students in grades 6-12 in the East Valley of Maricopa County. Many of the graduates of GCP earned college credit for free while still attending high school, some completing the first year of college before graduating. Among the speakers at the school's graduations were noted figures in Arizona Politics like Harry Mitchell, David Schweikert, Juan Mendes, Andrew Sherwood, and John Huppenthal. Mr. Gordon also participated in the revisions of the Arizona History and Social Studies standards. In January 2017, Mr. Gordon started the political blog Twenty-First Century Progressive Bull Moose. It has a global following and routinely comments on the political events of the day. Mr. Gordon also helps administer the Facebook page Living Blue in Arizona. He is also currently writing a series of Young Adult science fiction novels which incorporate the themes of time travel and its impact on history. Mr. Gordon is very happy to be asked to join the Blog for Arizona team and hopes to spread the progressive word to make Arizona a better place for everyone.

2 COMMENTS

  1. our addiction to oil has caused our nation to turn a blind eye to the Saudis for decades, if we didn’t stand up to them after 9/11 we never will

    • Yep, cheap oil.

      Since Carter warned us in the 1970’s, we’ve murdered a few million people in the middle east, and tens of thousands of American soldiers have died, just so America’s don’t have to spend 10 dollars on a gallon of gas, or heaven forbid, take the bus.

      Shortsighted and corrupt.

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