Wednesday 4 February 2015

Saudi Kings and reform?

Recently, I wrote about the joy I felt at the passing of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. This feeling was not held by many in the press however, as he was heralded as the light of the middle east, the promoter of womens right and the education reformer. As you know I do not believe this for a moment, and I think a recent shakeup in the Saudi government shows that King Abdullah was anything but a person set on reform. Now there is a new king in charge and within a week he has shown what a lame duck the last king really was.

King Salam has done a lot since coming into office, none of it good for human rights obviously but still change. So, lets look at some highlights from the news article I linked too. In one week, some within hours of the old kings death, he has fired two sons of King Abdullah, and he has also replaced top officials in  the National Anti-Corruption Commission and the conservative Islamic kingdom's religious police. He also decided to give bonuses of two months basic salary to all Saudi government civil and military employees.

Now, yes this is not reform in the sense that women are becoming equal to men. However, it is a major reform on government level showing that the king of Saudi Arabia has serious power. So this begs the question. Why could the reform King Abdullah not  even make women equal to men as he was heralded as such a reform king.

The fact is he was not interested in doing anything that went against his religion which teaches things like kill the infidel.