[A timely reprint from June 12, 2016] Talk to Muslims. The faithful. And ask them what the problem is in the world of Islam. Many (as I observe on 8/19/12 and 12/20/15) will confide that the problem in Islam can be summed up in two words: “Saudi Arabia.“
Saudi Arabia is a paragon of hatred, repression and discrimination. Saudis are Wahhabi — the ultra orthodox branch of Sunni Islam. The country is the hub of anti-Semitism. A glowing, seething inspiration for groups like ISIS. Boko Haram. The Taliban. Al-Qaeda. Al-Shabaab. An instigator of state terrorism. Responsible for the murder of 2,977 souls on September 11th. Women are subject to genital mutilation. They must be completely covered (it is the woman’s fault she is a woman). Cannot leave home without a male relative. May not drive. Or marry without permission. No passports. Higher education is haram (forbidden). The penalties for defiance are steep. Women may be beaten or killed for missteps.
On Fridays, one can saunter down to the public square to watch beheadings, eye gouging, stonings or hands getting chopped off. Children too – can watch. Or have a hand amputated for misdeeds. Thus enforcing Sharia law. If you are a kafir (an infidel) – you are not welcome in Saudi Arabia. There are no tourist visas (except for business or to visit a family member). And a non-Muslim may never visit Mecca or Medina (see 11/16/14). Criticism of the government is a crime punishable by imprisonment. Or worse. Saudi Arabia has been condemned by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. Then again, they are an ally of the U.S. . . . . .