By Dr. Marcus Papadopoulos*
Saudi Arabia, by its very nature, is a malevolent country. A malevolent country whose cancerous tentacles extend far beyond the Middle East. And those cancerous tentacles have caused abject pain and suffering to people of different nationalities and different religions for decades now.
Wahhabism, Saudi Arabia's official ideology, and the basis for every aspect of life in the country, is a perverted interpretation of Islam. And at the heart of Wahhabism is the Saudi Royal Family - a family whose views and practices are a throwback to a bygone era.
Saudi domestic practices are cruel, to say the least. People are flogged or whipped for being in the company of a member of the opposite sex or for being gay. People have their eyes gouged out for brawling in public. People have their limbs amputated for the act of theft. For the act of adultery, people are buried up to their waist or chest and stoned to death. Then there are the beheadings and
crucifixions (yes, crucifixions) in public for the offences of taking part in protests or disrespecting the King of Saudi Arabia. There is no justification whatsoever for those practices. They are both shocking and despicable and are carried out on a regular basis in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Turning to Saudi Arabia on the international stage, its actions here are just as abominable as its actions at home are. Saudi Arabia has long been the leading exporter of religious extremism and terrorism to the world. In Britain, it has been documented that mosques up and down the country deliver sermons by Saudi imams and/or sell literature by Saudi imams calling for the killing of non-Muslims, Jews and gay people. In Afghanistan, during the 1980s, Saudi Arabia played an instrumental role in supporting the Mujahideen, including Osama bin Laden, against the Soviet Army. During the Bosnian civil-war, Saudi Arabia helped to facilitate the arrival of Mujahideen fighters from different Muslim countries to Bosnia to fight the Bosnian Serbs, and the Mujahideen committed heinous atrocities against Serb civilians and POWs, including cutting people to pieces alive with chainsaws as a form of 'entertainment'. Today in Sarajevo and others parts of the Muslim-Croat Federation in Bosnia, Saudi-financed mosques and madrassas can be found in alarming numbers where they teach the poison of Wahhabism. The Taliban, in Afghanistan, were largely educated in Saudi-financed madrassas in Pakistan. On 9/11, 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the appalling attacks were Saudi citizens. In Libya, in 2011, the Islamist-inspired rebellion against Muammar Gaddafi was supported by Saudi Arabia. In the current conflict in Syria, all of the terrorist groups fighting against the Syrian Government, including ISIS and al-Nusra, are supported by Saudi Arabia with weapons, training and money. And finally, Saudi Arabia is currently trying to impose itself on the people of Yemen and is using murderous means in doing so, including through the use of cluster bombs.
The evidence of Saudi Arabia's involvement in exporting religious extremism and terrorism to the world is overwhelming. However, Riyadh would not be the malignant force that it is in the world without the
close support of the West, in particular the United States and Britain. Because of Washington and London's lucrative oil and defence contracts that they have with the Saudis, the American and British governments turn a blind eye to the Saudi export of extremism and terrorism to the world, even though this export is endangering the lives of their own citizens, as 9/11 and the London bombings demonstrated. British and American defence companies have seen their revenues increase dramatically as a result of the Saudi war in Yemen, with Saudi forces using weapons supplied to them by the US and UK to kill Yemeni civilians.
Western involvement, however, is not simply confined to business dealings. The Americans and British work with the Saudis to enhance Western dominance in the Middle East and North Africa; for instance,
all three are working together to try and overthrow the Syrian Government in order to end, principally, Russian but also Iranian influence and power in the Middle East - and they are doing so by using terrorists in the country.
Riyadh has many friends in the political, business and military circles in Washington and London. Concerning the political circle, American and British politicians personally benefit financially through their lobbying for Saudi Arabia hence Saudi money buys Western politicians who care more about their personal bank accounts than they do about the safety of their own people who are exposed to the consequences of the export of Wahhabism to their towns and cities.
So Saudi Arabia's tentacles in the Middle East and in the wider world are malignant, extensive and strong. But they are only the force they are because of Western support to the kingdom.
Saudi Arabia is a force for evil in the world, while its own practices at home are repugnant and inexcusable. However, all is not well for Riyadh. With the West's global power diminishing, the return of Russia to the international arena, with fracking having taken off in the US and with social media exposing to the world the loathsome nature of Wahhabism, the future is not bright for Saudi Arabia which, conversely, means that the future for global peace and stability is bright. A world without Wahhabism is what every person in the world, regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender and sexuality, should be striving for.
No to Saudi Arabia, No to extremism, No to terrorism.
* Dr. Marcus Papadopoulos is the editor of Politics First magazine and a regular pundit on RT and PressTV. He has written this piece exclusively for habilian.ir