A case of the pot calling the kettle black or just blind hypocrisy – Saudi Arabia decries Paris attack


SHAFAQNA – As a political analyst for the Middle East I must say that rhetorical hypocrisy and double talks are occupational hazards, but I draw a line at complete and utter lunacy.

While one would expect for the world to rally around France as its people are coming to terms with the reality of terror – which realties I’d like to stress have been imposed on millions across the Middle East. We don’t hear much about those lives which were stolen and destroyed!

I assumed that those countries most in affinity with terror: Saudi Arabia and Qatar for example, would retreat behind a very tactical political silence … apparently not!

On November 16, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, among others, came out to condemn Paris terror attacks, labelling those radicals’ actions “repugnant.”

A letter send by Saudi King Salman to French President Francois Hollande read: “We learned about the pain and the sadness of the terrorist attacks in Paris… we express our condemnation for this repugnant terrorist act and offer our condolences to your excellency, the French people and the families of the victims.”

Are we supposed to really take this and run with it?

Does anyone else feel the oppressing degree of such patronizing arrogance? To have the most violent, repressive theocracy in existence, stand and cry outrage when the very system its institutions rest upon, and have been built upon is anchored in the very extremism which inspired Paris attack is repugnant … let me rephrase that: it is insulting to human’s intelligence.

Innocent lives were criminally taken in Paris this November 13. Those families deserve their pain and their loss to be respected, not trivialised and turned into a pathetic lip service exercise.

Saudi Arabia might not have pulled the trigger on Paris attack but it might as well have for all the sectarian venom which has emanated from its Wahhabis and Salafis clerics’ mouths. How many times have Saudi Arabia’s clergy called and argued for the destruction of “Rafidah apostates” aka all Shiites, Sufis, Alawites and other Muslim groups?

If indeed Riyadh felt appalled by radicalism, then why is it that its officials insist on keeping it so close? Why is it that it continues to rain death on Yemen as it works to annihilate Yemen Shiites from Southern Arabia?

If Saudi Arabia did indeed find extremism so distastefully criminal then why sponsor ethnic cleansing in Bahrain, Iraq and Syria? We all know where terror funds are coming from, and we all know which powers are benefiting from this all so convenient proxy which terror’s armies has become for those modern day imperial powers.

ISIS is fascism arm and fascism I’m afraid sits still in Riyadh – undisturbed, unchallenged, blanketed under Western veto, propped by Western officials in exchange for lucrative contracts,territorial access … Unfettered capitalism and fascism are walking side by side into the sunset and we are all being fed a lie.

Yes radicalism is an evil which needs to be stopped. Yes Paris attack was a tragedy! But can we please remember that for the past decade the Middle East has lived through hundreds of Paris attacks, thousands of equally heart wrenching tragedies and tales of destruction.

Where were your tears and your outrage when thousands of Yazidi women were sold into slavery? Where were your candles and your flowers when entire communities were massacred on account of their ethnic lineage and religious traditions across the MidEast?

This Liberty, Equality and Fraternity France has cried out as a rallying patriotic call means nothing if it only includes an elite few. Aren’t all lives worthy?

Can you truly and honestly stand today and proclaim that ethnocentrism is not the very trait which made Western society’s ISIS designated target?

It is Western society’s disdain for the “other” which helped create the very ethnic and sectarian tensions which have fed ISIS’s radical war machine, acting a self-fulfilling prophecy of hatred and ostracization.

Can everyone please wake up already!

While society keeps on hating Islam and all Muslims, it is your civil liberties too which are being eroded by those powers which claim to keep you safe. While you insist on pointing the fingers at religious communities calling for the respect of your own values, it is your rights you  are forfeiting as you denied others’.

Racism is like greed, leave it to fester long enough and it will become cannibalistic.

So if not out of compassion, end this cycle of violence out of self-preservation – and learn to identify those enemies you insist on calling your allies.

By Catherine Shakdam for Shafaqna – The views expressed here are the author’s own.

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