If there was ever any question what hypocrisy looks like in the flesh, Abdallah al-Mouallimi, the Saudi Arabian Ambassador to the United Nations, put on a live display when he agreed to an interview with journalist Mehdi Hasan.
Hasan merely asked Mouallimi a simple question – why elections were being demanded for Syria when the same is not tolerated in Saudi Arabia. Mouallimi’s attempt to dodge the question were rebuffed by Hasan and what resulted was Mouallimi not only admitting his country’s lack of respect for the right of Saudi citizens to choose their own leaders but also that Saudi Arabia has ulterior motives for its attempt to destroy the secular Syrian government.
The entire clip of the interview, being widely shared across the Internet, is a classic example of real journalistic questioning and the inability of world leaders to justify their imperialist actions against Syria.
Below is the transcript of the clip:
Hasan: Many people might say that’s a good thing, there should be democracy in Syria, there should be an elected government in Syria, but they might also wonder why are you ok with an elected government in Syria, but not an elected government in Saudi Arabia. If the people of Syria get to choose their rulers or head of State, why can’t the people of Saudi Arabia choose their own head of state?
Mouallimi: Go and ask the people of Saudi Arabia . . .
Hasan: I can’t, can I?
Mouallimi: Of course you can.
Hasan: No, it’s illegal in Saudi Arabia to call for a change in the government, to call for the King to come out of office.
Mouallimi: I didn’t say go call for a change of government, I said, go and call and ask the Saudi people whether they are happy with their system of government.
Hasan: How do I do that? What’s the process?
Mouallimi: In any way you want, opinion polls, anything.
Hasan: What about an election?
Mouallimi: Well, we will have elections at some point of time. We’ve started with municipal elections, but elections is not the panacea for everything.
Hasan: No, I agree, but you said you want elections in Syria, I’m saying why not have elections in Saudi as well?
Mouallimi: Well, just because there are elections in Syria doesn’t mean there have to be elections somewhere else. I said elections and you agreed is not a panacea for everything. The key question is “is the population content and happy and satisfied with the form of government they have?” and I would like to claim that if you went to Saudi Arabia and if you conducted a survey in Saudi Arabia in any way, official, formal, otherwise, you will find a high degree of support for the system of government in Saudi Arabia.
Hasan: Isn’t that partly because if they do say they don’t want this government, they want another government, they’ll go to jail?
Mouallimi: No, no.
Hasan: It’s against the law in Saudi Arabia to call for change in the system of government. . .
Mouallimi: But that’s not the issue . . .
Hasan: That is the issue.
Mouallimi: No, no it’s not.
Hasan: How can I, as a Saudi, say I want a different system of government, if it’s illegal for me to say that?
Mouallimi: I’m saying that if there was a way by which you could ask the common people in the street anonymously, privately, any way…
Hasan: There is, it’s called voting.
Mouallimi: Well, voting along the lines of Western democracy is not . . .
Hasan: No along the lines of whatever you want in Syria.
Mouallimi: OK, well even that is not the solution for a system of government. What is important is the pact between the government and the governed, the mutual acceptance. I can tell you that that mutual acceptance is much higher in Saudi Arabia than in almost any other country in the world.
The Middle Eastern nation’s crackdown on dissent and history of human rights abuses have been the subject of harsh criticism from non-governmental organizations like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
The plight of Raif Badawi, a Saudi blogger sentenced in 2014 to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes for insulting Muslim officials, has yielded international concern and outrage against the Saudi government for its restrictions on free expression.
On Thursday, the Saudi journalist Alaa Brinji was sentenced to five years in prison for “insulting the rulers” and “inciting public opinion” as well as “accusing security officers of killing protestors in Awamiyya” through a series of tweets, Amnesty reports.
“It’s scandalous that the UN chose a country that has beheaded more people this year than ISIS to be head of a key human rights panel,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer, suggesting the decision had been influenced by other factors.
“Saudi Arabia has arguably the worst record in the world when it comes to religious freedom and women’s rights,” he said. “Petro-dollars and politics have trumped human rights.”
Mouallimi’s interview was perhaps one of the most obviously hypocritical performances by a head of state of spokesman in some time. This is quite the feat since the competition for this title is fierce.
Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is the author of seven books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 and volume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria, and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 650 articles on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s radio show Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. His website is BrandonTurbeville.com He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.
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