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Old January 20th, 2013, 12:58 AM   #471

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Originally Posted by infestør View Post
i am guessing there are no sculptures in ksa. because they can be taken as idols!
too bad for muslims that today kaaba and other holy sites remain in ksa.
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Essa you argue that they wanted to prevent idol worshipping but I don't buy it. What idol they can worship in a castle? Saudi rulers are mongrels without any sense of history or art or preservation.
Guys you have to understand that there are people in the Middle East (as well as other regions) who overreact to anything religious....the existence of anything related to the Prophet or his companions induces wrong practices are similar to "idol worship"....some of these pratices are excessive and continuous grieve, approaching that place or artifact as means to reach God, asking for solution of certain matters of life, and/or asking to harm others....those are some of the actions that might happen, and is actually heppening in many parts of the Middle East with Islamic relics or places (other than Saudi Arabia)....you can't control a holy place in this sense, because lot and lots of lay people and people who don't understand their own religion would flood such places.....

To me this rationale is valid, but I also support keeping these artifacts/places intact or preserve them for research and studies, so the benefit of them is not lost....
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Old January 20th, 2013, 12:59 AM   #472

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But the Ottoman castle didn't have anything to do with religion or Mohammed or etc.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 01:33 AM   #473

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But the Ottoman castle didn't have anything to do with religion or Mohammed or etc.
Correct, but how can this be preserved with the huge number of muslims during the pilgrimiage....the Saudi government are under constant pressure to expand the holy mosque and its capacity + expand other facilities...such pressures are very urgent and critical as the pilgrimage almost always spelled problems....some people died years back + political incidents + casualities......all of these has to be dealt with through expanding the holy places.....

Now, Saudi is planning for the grand mosque to bear 2 million muslims....that is a monumental project that will be costing the Kingdom billions....

Too bad the castle cannot be preserved.....but is there any solution for that vast growth of pilgrims every year ?
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Old January 20th, 2013, 01:37 AM   #474

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But the Ottoman castle didn't have anything to do with religion or Mohammed or etc.
saudis have no regard to anything historic. they just need to extend the area around kaaba no matter what, so they can accommodate more pilgrims (more $). if they had little bit more brain they could have built all those hotels out there in the close desert (where there are no historic sites, nothing) and transport pilgrims from there with railways. but the former method is less costly, so they did that.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 01:41 AM   #475

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Don't forget also to praise the absurd war of Iran-Iraq. Both countries get same weapons from same European manufacterers, both regimes strenghten it's position and grip on the country. Result: thousands of needless death in both countries.
That would be needless if we had started the war, or had entered the state of war for stupid reasons. At least until 1984 Iran was still regaining lost territories and occupied cities. As an Iranian, I can say that none of those actions and sacrifices were absurd or irrational. However, after 1984 the nature of the war changed a little.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 05:35 AM   #476

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Ayazid....

- On Bourghaiba....

You show a lot of hypocrisy here....you've very critical of tyrants like Saud family and others but not for Bourghiaba....because of a style or reforms you like....

His so called reforms on some Islamic instructions shouldn't be made in the first place, there are references that people follow for the religious part of their life and they only have the option to follow or not....

- On Saddam.....

I never praised or reasoned Saddam's actions, I only said that he's liked and by people in the Arab because he fought Iran, but disliked because of the invasion of kuwait...its widely recognizable that he was a tyrant.
I am not sure what hypocrisy are you talking about, Essa. I mentioned the Saud clan and Saddam as examples of much worse and more brutal rulers than Bourguiba was. Under the rule of the latter, Saudi Arabia became a beacon of religious ignorance and oppression and symbol of it, and Saddam was a butcher, who massacred Kurds, Shia and all other political opponents by thousands and started totally unnecessary wars against two neighboring countries. Also, he is definitely not liked by Shia Arabs and anybody with some brain. Iraq is what it is now mainly thanks to him and his sectarian and bloodthirsty policies.

As for Bourguiba, I appreciate his social reforms which accelerated greatly the development of civil society in Tunisia and improved the status of women there. That doesn't mean that he was an angel, he was an authoritarian ruler, sure, but that was the case of all Arab countries in his times and of many even today. I think that his top-down reforms were a necessary step for any future functioning democracy in Tunisia. Concentrating on his moves against some Islamic practices and institutions and his undemocratic methods and ignoring of the positive outcome of his reforms is pretty short-sighted.

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- On Bahrain......

What you mention here signals that you're taking a one side view of the whole matter....there is a vast portion of the Bahrain population who support Al-Khalifa, they held large demonstrations too (which I'm sure you chose to ignore)....The opposition went violant and some leaders of them came and claimed control over Bahrain !! and were clear in their allegiances with Iran...they ignored invitations for "Discussions" and were the primary cause of violance....

The entrance of Saudi/GCC troops was welcomed by the people of Bahrain in support of the government after escalation from the opposition....you say: "they quelled democracy"......I can't find anything more sacrastic than that, knowing that the same protestors blocked roads, attacked ministries, attacked civilians.....
The Bahraini uprising seems to have a clear sectarian dimension to me: members of the Sunni minority (like yourself) support the Sunni regime, whereas the Shia majority feels oppressed and tends to oppose it, being vilified as agents of Iran. I don't want to turn this into a discussion about the political situation in Bahrain, but I am pretty sure that its rulers are no democrats and are guilty of many human rights violations.

Quote:
- On Saudi Arabia in general.....

We all agree that Saudi Arabia is not a good example, I never implied that....but credit should given nevertheless....In some aspects they did made huge contributions for muslims as well as others....
Those contributions were made by money which belongs to the Saudi people, both Sunna and Shia, not to the parasitical and sectarian regime, which exports religious intolerance into the whole Muslim world.

Quote:
- On Islam + preservation of artifacts....

I think I've expressed my view when I said its "unfortunate", I mentioned Saudi authorities perpective on the whole thing, not necessarily mine....I don't agree to destruction of any artifacts, I rather say that the authorities can have a reasonable solution to this, through preservation but not making it available for lay people....by this they satisfy their believes (preventing misuse or wrong practices) + allowing experts to study these artifacts and publish their works...
Leveling down historical sites in order to stop people from doing "wrong practices" there is a sort of thinking which belongs to the Dark Ages. I wouldn't expect any rational solutions from people who think that way. There are millions of non-Wahhabi Muslims worldwide, but Saudis simply don't give a damn about their opinions. Nice combination of bigotry and greed.

Quote:
Other aspects of Islam which you may see confining......As I said, polygamy is only an aspect of the Islam's whole family or societal system, it's allowed in certain conditions, and I've highlighted that....Slavery was also allowed in the condition of wars, and we've talked about that....Its a personal view of yours (and respected) that you see all this as restrictive or unjust....Islam however looks at these ascpects as part of whole structure that needs to be understood (in a whole).....

And - most importantly - Islam is a code of life, people who follow it are not necessarily backward if they're not strictly following secularism....
Secularism is no religion. You can be a religious Muslim and live in a secular country, there is no problem with that. Only a secular liberal democracy can assure freedom to people of all beliefs and life styles, which is not the case with theocratic societies, where one religion is dominant and the rest is discriminated.
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Old January 20th, 2013, 09:23 PM   #477

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Ayazid....your statement: " but I am pretty sure that its rulers are no democrats and are guilty of many human rights violations "

Shows that you're just speculating it or you just qualified it based on your perceptions....as it seems, you can easily be particular about rulers but completely neglect the fragments who miuse "Human Rights" !!

The ruling family established a parliament in 2001 and the experience is a native one, second to Kuwait in terms of democracy. It had flaws like any experience and the government itself do have many negatives.....But, the Sunni sect objects to the use of violance to amend matters....

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Old January 21st, 2013, 02:28 AM   #478

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Nope, I am not just speculating:


Quote:
In mid-February Bahraini authorities used lethal force to suppress peaceful anti-government and pro-democracy protests, killing seven and wounding many more.

The crackdown resumed in mid-March, after troops from Saudi Arabia entered Bahrain and Bahraini military and security forces launched a systematic campaign of retribution, arresting thousands of demonstrators or individuals who supported the protests. Authorities fired hundreds of public sector employees suspected of supporting the protests, as did large private firms in which the state had a substantial stake.

Security forces’ use of birdshot pellets, rubber bullets, and tear gas as well as live ammunition caused most of the deaths and injuries of protesters and bystanders. Attacks against protesters continued after authorities formally lifted the “state of national safety” on June 1. At this writing more than 40 persons had been killed in connection with suppression of protests, including four who died in custody in April from torture or medical neglect, and several members of security forces.
World Report 2012: Bahrain | Human Rights Watch


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Important recommendations contained in the BICI report have yet to be fully implemented. These include recommendations dealing with accountability for the human rights violations carried out in connection with anti-government protests in 2011. The reported investigations of allegations of torture and unlawful killings by the security forces have been shrouded in secrecy. So far only nine low-ranking policemen have been put on trial. The new investigative body, placed under the PPO, lacks independence, impartiality and effectiveness. Scores of prisoners, tried unfairly in military courts and sentenced to long-term prison sentences, have not been released although they were convicted solely for leading and participating in antigovernment protests without using or advocating violence. Police brutality continues unabated with daily excessive use of force to deal with demonstrators. Reports of torture and other ill-treatment continue to reach Amnesty International.

Hardly any efforts have been made to implement recommendations relating to national reconciliation, ending discrimination against the Shi’a community, especially in the security and armed forces and ending incitement to hatred in the government-controlled media. The government has dedicated significant resources to appoint international experts to investigate human rights violations committed during and after the February and March 2011 antigovernment protests and to provide advice on human rights reforms. The BICI report was a breakthrough but if the authorities continue to only partially and superficially implement its recommendations, it will ultimately be judged as nothing more than a public relations exercise, rather than a real move to implement meaningful human rights reform.

The government must now seriously and genuinely implement recommendations contained in the BICI report, including those which deal with tackling the roots of the sectarian divide, otherwise its reform promises will remain hollow.

The Bahraini authorities appear to have taken superficial measures to shield themselves from the real human rights reform they promised the people of Bahrain and the international community in 2011. However, five months after the BICI report, immediate measures that would indicate the political will to implement human rights reform are now urgently needed.
Flawed Reforms: Bahrain Fails to Achieve Justice for Protesters
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Old January 21st, 2013, 02:34 AM   #479

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In order to measure how much dictatorial, tyrannic and harmful Bourguiba's rule was, it would be good to put it in context and make a comparison with other Arab regimes and their achievements between the 50s' and 80's. I see absolutely no reason to think that he was worse than the rest of the bunch, on the contrary. He implemented crucial reforms which were beneficial for the Tunisian people, especially women, and facilitated the birth of democracy there in the long run (secularism is an important element of democracy). Condemning him for petty reasons related to religion and ignoring positive outcome of his reforms is unfortunately symptomatic for the Arab world.

Last edited by Ayazid; January 21st, 2013 at 02:49 AM.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 03:08 AM   #480

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Yeah, and what about the protestors actions !!! That is ofcourse unseen....

I agree that the authorities were incorrect to use force in some instances, but.....The protestors attacked/harassed some civilians and police, blocked roads and attacked ministries in city center....people working in these areas had to stay home....they spilled oil on the roads (where cars cannot be controlled).....molotov was used on police guarding the main roads....some of their major leaders during the protest stated their allegiance to Iran...and all demanded a fall of the government (although the other sect of Bahrain agreed to hand reforms to government which were mostly present in the very protestors' claims and are beneficial to all)....

You tell me: Is that a protest to you ??!!

Just to conclude on this matter.......your resources are simply one sided...
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