Thursday, November 27, 2008

Speaking of Saudi Arabia . . .

"Rock the Casbah"
(Image from Wikipedia)

Music from The Accolade isn't the only sound emanating from Saudi Arabia these days. We also hear remarks about fighting terrorism.

For example, in its Special Dispatch Series, Number 2130 (November 26, 2008), MEMRI informs us that on October 2, 2008, Saudi Interior Minister Prince Na'if bin Abd Al-'Aziz -- who happens to be a 'Prince' -- spoke in his Jeddah home to senior officials of the Saudi Ministry of Interior about terrorism: "I appeal to the clerics, the intellectuals, and to all my compatriots -- each according to his position and ability -- to help [fight terrorism]."

A couple of weeks later, on October 15, 2008, Prince Na'if spoke at a symposium on "ideological security," stating that "in combating ideological extremism, the Saudi mosques had failed to fulfill the task expected of them -- that is, preaching tolerance. He contended that the global increase in crime demanded close cooperation between security [apparatuses] and educational institutions."

About a week later, Prince Na'if described "the damage that terrorists had caused Saudi Arabia, explaining that not only had their activities harmed the country's reputation worldwide, but that terrorism had come to be regarded as an integral part of Islam and to be attributed to all Muslims." He added "in this regard that various crimes, including bombings, kidnappings, and terrorizing people in the Saudi Kingdom, were crimes of haraba. Such crimes, defined in the Koran as acts of 'spreading corruption and chaos around the world,' are characterized by the shari'a as especially grievous, and as punishable by death."

I suppose this Na'if's remarks should be welcomed, but he's truly a 'naif' if he thinks that a substantially more tolerant form of Islam can be fostered through Saudi Arabia's normative Wahabism, for Wahabi Islam is one of the world's most intolerant forms of Islamism. At best, Wahabism can be made only marginally more tolerant.

I know, I know, I ought to provide evidence for my harsh judgement, but that would take too much time this busy morning (though readers can search my blog for more on Wahabism, and Salafism generally), so I'll leave my judgement dangling without a support net below.

Meanwhile, I'm placing my bets on cultural phenomena linked to the younger generation to which that girl band The Accolade belongs. Incidentally, one of this blog's regular readers, "Conservative in Virginia," reminds us that The Clash predicted way back in 1982 that music would "Rock the Casbah":
Now the king told the boogie men
You have to let that raga drop
The oil down the desert way
Has been shakin' to the top
The sheik he drove his cadillac
He went a cruisin' down the ville
The muezzin was a standing
On the radiator grille


The shareef don't like it
Rockin' the casbah
Rock the casbah
The shareef don't like it
Rockin' the casbah
Rock the casbah

By order of the prophet
We ban that boogie sound
Degenerate the faithful
With that crazy casbah sound
But the bedouin they brought out
The electric camel drum
The local guitar picker
Got his guitar pickin' thumb
As soon as the shareef
Had cleared the square
They began to wail


Now over at the temple
Oh! they really pack em in
The in crowd say it's cool
To dig this chanting thing
But as the wind changed direction
The temple band took five
The crowd caught a wiff
Of that crazy casbah jive


The king called up his jet fighters
He said you better earn your pay
Drop your bombs between the minarets
Down the casbah way

As soon as the shareef was
Chauffeured outta there
The jet pilots tuned to
The cockpit radio blare

As soon as the shareef was
Outta their hair
The jet pilots wailed


He thinks it's not kosher
Fundamentally he can't take it.
You know he really hates it.
Yes, yes -- more of this, please. If you missed it, try You Tube.

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At 6:26 AM, Blogger Conservative in Virginia said...

Happy Thanksgiving, Jeffery!

At 6:37 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Same to you . . . and thanks for rocking my casbah!

Jeffery Hodges

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At 2:24 PM, Blogger Malcolm Pollack said...

Yeah, baby! Long live the Clash.

Happy Thanksgiving, Jeffery.

At 3:34 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Thanks, Malcolm. Holiday greetings to you, too.

Jeffery Hodges

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