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Holy Shit: Palace Revolution in Saudi Arabia

By MisterLearnToCode following x   2017 Nov 4, 5:48pm 6,321 views   74 comments   watch   nsfw   quote     share    


As an alleged Houthi Missile was shot down over Saudi Arabia, King Salman and Crown Price Mohammed removed several figures, from the Army to the Navy.

King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz has sacked prince Moteib Bin Abdullah, Minister of the National Guard from his post on Saturday through a Royal order.

Prince Khalid bin Ayyaf has been appointed as minister for the National Guard.


A second Royal Order was issued to relieve Minister of Economy and Planning, Adel al-Faqieh, from his duties, and the appointment of Mohammed Al Tuwaijri as Minister of Economy and Planning.

https://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/gulf/2017/11/04/King-Salman-issues-Royal-Orders-relieves-Minister-of-the-National-Guard.html
They also arrested Saudi Billionaire and Trump Hater, Prince al-Waleed bin Talal,on corruption charges, along with several other ministers and former ministers.
LONDON — Saudi Arabia announced the arrest on Saturday night of the prominent billionaire investor Prince al-Waleed bin Talal, plus at least 10 other princes, four ministers and tens of former ministers.

The announcement of the arrests was made over Al Arabiya, the Saudi-owned satellite network whose broadcasts are officially approved.

The sweeping campaign of arrests appears to be the latest move to consolidate the power of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the favorite son and top adviser of King Salman.

The king had decreed the creation of a powerful new anticorruption committee, headed by the crown prince, only hours before the committee ordered the arrests.

Al Arabiya said that the anticorruption committee has the right to investigate, arrest, ban from travel or freeze the assets of anyone it deems corrupt.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/04/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-waleed-bin-talal.html



WOW. History in the making folks. And it was all waiting for a President that could backstop them during their reforms, who wasn't a Political Islamicist Sympathizer or Neoliberal, but a man of business.

#Saudi #SaudiArabia #EndOfWahabi

« First    « Previous    Comments 35 - 74 of 74    Last »

35   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Nov 26, 9:23am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Strategist says
A Saudi with intelligence? Very rare indeed.


KSA was smart enough to fuck over America for 50 years so far. They are using your money to pay terrorists to attack us as we speak.


Are you trying to provoke me into hating the Saudis? I already hate them. Not because they are Saudis, because they practice a rotten religion that is nothing but trouble.
The next 50 years will see the collapse of Islam. And it will be the Saudis who will do the most damage to Islam. All thanks to our new best friend, MBS the Prince of Arabia.
36   MisterLearnToCode   ignore (4)   2017 Nov 26, 11:46am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Rew says
LOL. Trumpcucks are embracing another authoritarian regime. Nothing new here really.


You mean the regime that gave millions and millions to the Clinton Foundation, right? Except that wasn't the current leadership, but the Wahabi Exporting Old Guard that just got thrown out of power.

anonymous says
Insider claims Saudi princes and billionaires ‘tortured and insulted’ following brutal crackdown. SAUDI royalty and billionaires are being strung up by their feet and beaten by American private security contractors, according to insider reports.


I doubt that is happening, but beating Wahabi Exporters and Twitter Censors is doing God's work.
37   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 4, 6:19pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

anonymous says
There is no doubt that 80 odd years of oil pumping has created a very mixed society in Saudi Arabia with indescribable wealth balanced against a struggling Saudi underclass. The young people are revolting – as everywhere, and want part of the action. The state has been increasingly paying out vast amounts to keep Saudis in the lifestyle to which they have become accustomed. The oil price collapse has driven home the fact that no country, not even Saudi, can afford to just pay its people to do nothing.


The whole population of Saudi is basically on oil welfare. Technology is replacing crude oil with renewable energy. When the oil checks stop coming, and they will stop coming quicker than most people believe, what will the Saudis do? They are not very bright, extremely lazy, and have no natural talents. We can't educate them, nor can we quickly civilize them. They will resort to violence, and that is when we will have the greatest terrorism problem ever. Our only choice is to control them through puppets like the Crown Prince MBS.
38   Tenpoundbass   ignore (13)   2017 Dec 4, 6:38pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (1)   quote   flag        

That's why they've divested in Countries all over the world.
39   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 4, 6:46pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Tenpoundbass says
That's why they've divested in Countries all over the world.


Their investments with a population doubling every 25 years won't last long. They are already facing a huge deficit, and have started tapping into their investments.
They are no different than the lottery winners who squander their winnings in a few short years.
40   bob2356   ignore (4)   2017 Dec 4, 6:47pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says
All thanks to our new best friend, MBS the Prince of Arabia.
Strategist says
Our only choice is to control them through puppets like the Crown Prince MBS.


You guys are really funny. How many radical imans around the world have been stopped from preaching terrorism? How many radical madras (aka terrorist training schools) around the world have been shut down? How many saudi's nave been arrested for sending out money to terrorists? The answer would be zero/zilch/nada/none.

The people arrested have only 2 traits. They have big bank accounts to confiscate and they have enough power to oppose MBS. The whole thing is a power grab, nothing to do with reform of any kind.

But hey keep on dreaming.
41   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 4, 7:06pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Strategist says
Our only choice is to control them through puppets like the Crown Prince MBS.


You guys are really funny. How many radical imans around the world have been stopped from preaching terrorism? How many radical madras (aka terrorist training schools) around the world have been shut down? How many saudi's nave been arrested for sending out money to terrorists? The answer would be zero/zilch/nada/none.


Good evening Bob. Hope you are keeping warm in ice country.
Like Rome, Islam was not created in a day. Like Rome, Islam will eventually be destroyed.
Unlike Rome, which was destroyed by the barbarians, Islam will be destroyed by the civilized.
It will happen because we will make it happen. We have no choice.
42   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 4, 7:08pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
The people arrested have only 2 traits. They have big bank accounts to confiscate and they have enough power to oppose MBS. The whole thing is a power grab, nothing to do with reform of any kind.

But hey keep on dreaming.


Power grab comes first if you want your own puppet in power.
43   bob2356   ignore (4)   2017 Dec 5, 5:33am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says


Good evening Bob. Hope you are keeping warm in ice country.


Totally toasty, really enjoying the cooler weather. No ice to be seen except at the ski area's. Ski day 19 today. Should make the 100 day club by late march.

Strategist says


Power grab comes first if you want your own puppet in power.


How do you figure the saudi prince in power de jour is our puppet? More the other way around, trump is his puppet. The bullshit talk of reform will die the second aramco goes public and KSA aka the prince banks the money.

Let me know when some reforms that actually reign in saudi sponsored radical islam around the world happen. Not that anyone born in the 20th or 21st century is going to live long enough to see that happen.

Keep dreaming.
44   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 5, 5:54pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
How do you figure the saudi prince in power de jour is our puppet? More the other way around, trump is his puppet. The bullshit talk of reform will die the second aramco goes public and KSA aka the prince banks the money.

Trump is their puppet? ha ha ha Trump does not need the Saudi regime to survive. The Saudi regime needs Trump for their survival. They need our weapons to defeat Iran. Without American weapons the Saudis would get barbecued by the Iranians.
I believe your thinking is a bit frozen. Throw another log on the fire will ya.

bob2356 says
Let me know when some reforms that actually reign in saudi sponsored radical islam around the world happen. Not that anyone born in the 20th or 21st century is going to live long enough to see that happen.

Have patience. Let MBS become king first.
45   bob2356   ignore (4)   2017 Dec 5, 7:03pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

Trump is their puppet? ha ha ha Trump does not need the Saudi regime to survive. The Saudi regime needs Trump for their survival. They need our weapons to defeat Iran. Without American weapons the Saudis would get barbecued by the Iranians.


So thats why trump scrambled to make KSA his first foreign visit as president and kuscher and company have been running a commuter service over there. Because they need us Just look at how many trips the needy king has taken to see trump here. Did you ever consider making objective reality align with what you post? It's just a thought.

Strategist says

Have patience. Let MBS become king first.


He had no trouble arresting and confiscating all the money from the most powerful people in the KSA. Yet he can't shut down rag bag mosques and madras schools in third world shitholes. Nor can he stop the flow of money to terrorists in a country where the government controls every financial transaction? How does that work?. Did you ever consider making objective reality align with what you post? It's just a thought.
46   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 5, 7:47pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Strategist says

Trump is their puppet? ha ha ha Trump does not need the Saudi regime to survive. The Saudi regime needs Trump for their survival. They need our weapons to defeat Iran. Without American weapons the Saudis would get barbecued by the Iranians.


So thats why trump scrambled to make KSA his first foreign visit as president and kuscher and company have been running a commuter service over there. Because they need us Just look at how many trips the needy king has taken to see trump here. Did you ever consider making objective reality align with what you post? It's just a thought.

Irrelevant, deceptive, and false. You are comparing "kuscher and company" vs the Saudi King. They are not equivalent heads of state.
Please throw a second log into the fire.

bob2356 says
Strategist says

Have patience. Let MBS become king first.


He had no trouble arresting and confiscating all the money from the most powerful people in the KSA. Yet he can't shut down rag bag mosques and madras schools in third world shitholes.

Confiscating the money from all those Prince's was the right thing to do. They stole the oil money, not earned it. It belongs to the people. His actions tells us this is the guy we need to support. MBS could be an atheist in the closet. I pray to Allah that he is. :)
47   anonymous   ignore (null)   2017 Dec 5, 7:49pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

You want to support the people that fund and create Radical Islamic Terrorism?
48   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 5, 8:14pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

errc says
You want to support the people that fund and create Radical Islamic Terrorism?


I want to support the people who are willing to destroy radical Islam.
49   anonymous   ignore (null)   2017 Dec 5, 8:19pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says
errc says
You want to support the people that fund and create Radical Islamic Terrorism?


I want to support the people who are willing to destroy radical Islam.


You are terribly confused, then.
50   bob2356   ignore (4)   2017 Dec 6, 4:00am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says
Confiscating the money from all those Prince's was the right thing to do. They stole the oil money, not earned it. It belongs to the people. His actions tells us this is the guy we need to support.


The prince got his money from the tooth fairy leaving a really big lump under his pillow is what you are saying? Even more lame. If you look around the poker table and can't see the sucker then the sucker is you.
51   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 6, 9:42am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Strategist says
Confiscating the money from all those Prince's was the right thing to do. They stole the oil money, not earned it. It belongs to the people. His actions tells us this is the guy we need to support.


The prince got his money from the tooth fairy leaving a really big lump under his pillow is what you are saying? Even more lame. If you look around the poker table and can't see the sucker then the sucker is you.


They have hundreds of Prince's. All of them looting the treasury in broad daylight. You think they have what it takes to earn billions?
52   bob2356   ignore (4)   2017 Dec 6, 12:02pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

They have hundreds of Prince's. All of them looting the treasury in broad daylight.


Of which MBS is top of the list of looters. Do you think he paid for his 425 million euro yacht with grocery store redemption stamps? You, trump, and two scoops getting played big time. At least trump is going to put a shitload of money in his pocket. What are the patnet twins getting?
53   Strategist   ignore (2)   2017 Dec 6, 3:38pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Strategist says

They have hundreds of Prince's. All of them looting the treasury in broad daylight.


Of which MBS is top of the list of looters. Do you think he paid for his 425 million euro yacht with grocery store redemption stamps? You, trump, and two scoops getting played big time.

MBS probably is the biggest looter. I'm willing to look the other way as long as he remains our puppet. It's not even my money.

bob2356 says
At least trump is going to put a shitload of money in his pocket. What are the patnet twins getting?

Trump isn't getting paid, and neither am I. I wish I was getting something out of it, though. I take bribes. :)
54   APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   ignore (37)   2018 May 29, 5:28pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Arm the chicks and encourage them to kill mullahs in the nude.
55   Strategist   ignore (2)   2018 May 29, 9:28pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Feux Follets says
“The business case is hard to make for manufacturing and light industry in Saudi Arabia,” says Karen Young, a senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington.

The Neom development is the flagship project of Prince Mohammed’s plan. He unveiled the scheme at a glitzy investor conference in October where he wooed some of the world’s top bankers and executives. Neom is far more ambitious than the six economic cities launched in the 2000s: it will cover 26,000 sq m and targets attracting investment in new technologies, including renewable energy and robotics. Its goal is to contribute $100bn to GDP by 2030.

Prince Mohammed will personally oversee the project, and it is be financed by a combination of government spending, funding from the Public Investment Fund, the $230bn sovereign wealth fund, and private sector investment.

Similar diversification plans have been tried many times before and stumbled. But Saudi officials insist they have heeded ...


Nice article. Thanks for posting.
I wish MBS the best, and want him to succeed. I just don't see him succeeding even if he throws billions more at his pet projects. The Saudi people just don't have what it takes to succeed without oil money and foreigners. The Saudis are basically lazy, unskilled, not very bright and uneducated. It's not gonna change in 12 years. They will be counting on outside help to make anything work.
56   Quigley   ignore (0)   2018 May 30, 5:47am   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Yah I agree with Strategist. Your people are your best resource, so when those people are lazy, unmotivated to accomplish anything in this life other than jihad, and incredibly fatalistic, they won’t create much that they aren’t commanded to create. Unless the prince manages to reduce the sway of Islam in that most Islamic nation, he has precious little hope of advancing his people past the barbarian stage.
57   APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   ignore (37)   2018 May 30, 5:55am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

KILL! THE! MULLAHS!

AND! FUCKING! BAPTISE! THEM! ALL!
58   HEYYOU   ignore (25)   2018 May 30, 10:35am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

It's not news unless there was a slaughter.
59   APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   ignore (37)   2018 Jun 10, 2:39am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Arm the chicks.

Every Saudi lady that can lift M134 should have one.
60   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 5:37am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Feux Follets says
Prince Muhammad’s strategy of suppressing dissent while loosening up in some areas appears calculated. He has made many enemies by sidelining fellow royals, shaking down businessmen, locking up liberals and alienating religious leaders. But few question his rule. Saudis seem to be adapting to the likelihood that one unaccountable man will rule them for decades to come.


Yet another leader for life ruthless strongman that trump gushes over. Unlike those weak democratically elected leaders who are actually accountable to the voters.

Anyone want to take a bet on when we will start hearing that limiting the president to 2 terms is a bad deal for America? That we need to overturn the 2 term limit to MAGA.
61   Strategist   ignore (2)   2018 Jun 10, 10:20am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Feux Follets says
Prince Muhammad’s strategy of suppressing dissent while loosening up in some areas appears calculated. He has made many enemies by sidelining fellow royals, shaking down businessmen, locking up liberals and alienating religious leaders. But few question his rule. Saudis seem to be adapting to the likelihood that one unaccountable man will rule them for decades to come.


Yet another leader for life ruthless strongman that trump gushes over. Unlike those weak democratically elected leaders who are actually accountable to the voters.

Islamic countries are not ready for democracy. The best we can expect is an American friendly puppet, and we have that in Saudi Prince MBS.

bob2356 says

Anyone want to take a bet on when we will start hearing that limiting the president to 2 terms is a bad deal for America? That we need to overturn the 2 term limit to MAGA.

Hey, that's a great idea. How come I did not thunk it.
62   MisterLearnToCode   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 10:23am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
Yet another leader for life ruthless strongman that trump gushes over. Unlike those weak democratically elected leaders who are actually accountable to the voters.


Whereas under Obama, King Abdullah was a beacon of democracy. And nary a peep was heard from Obama or his secretary of state, Hillary Clinton.
63   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 10:41am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsOfDragonEnergy says
bob2356 says
Yet another leader for life ruthless strongman that trump gushes over. Unlike those weak democratically elected leaders who are actually accountable to the voters.


Whereas under Obama, King Abdullah was a beacon of democracy. And nary a peep was heard from Obama or his secretary of state, Hillary Clinton.


So you are in favor of Trump continuing the offical US policy of sucking Saudi dick? What happened to Trump fixing Obama's mistakes? You can't have it both ways, although god knows you certainly try.
64   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 10:42am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says

Hey, that's a great idea. How come I did not thunk it.


Be carful what you wish for you may get it.
65   Strategist   ignore (2)   2018 Jun 10, 10:57am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
So you are in favor of Trump continuing the offical US policy of sucking Saudi dick? What happened to Trump fixing Obama's mistakes? You can't have it both ways, although god knows you certainly try.


No Bob no. You don't understand real life politics.
Obama implemented policies to suck Saudi dick. We all saw Obama bow down towards the King's dick, didn't we? Trump changed the policy to making Saudi Kings bend over, and now they know what a big dick Trump has.
66   MisterLearnToCode   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 11:13am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
So you are in favor of Trump continuing the offical US policy of sucking Saudi dick? What happened to Trump fixing Obama's mistakes? You can't have it both ways, although god knows you certainly try.


Have you noticed what's been happening in Saudi Arabia since Trump became President?

First Female Driver, Wrestling and Music Events, Women unbanned from many Public Events, etc.

We tried "Shock Liberalism" before and it's failed. But a nice, decent pace of reform HITHERTO UNSEEN in Saudi Arabia is preceding nicely.
67   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 11:22am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Strategist says
No Bob no. You don't understand real life politics.
Obama implemented policies to suck Saudi dick. We all saw Obama bow down towards the King's dick, didn't we? Trump changed the policy to making Saudi Kings bend over, and now they know what a big dick Trump has


TwoScoopsOfDragonEnergy says
Have you noticed what's been happening in Saudi Arabia since Trump became President?

First Female Driver, Wrestling and Music Events, Women unbanned from many Public Events, etc.


This all makes us safer from Saudi sponsered and financied terrorism world wide how exactly? When radical wahabbi madras schools and mosques around the world start shutting down and radical imans defunded then I'll be believe MBS is something other than a power grabbing opportunist. Not before. Actions speak louder than words. There is zero evidence Saudi funding of terrorists world wide has changed. Never going to happen. The last thing in the world MBS wants is for these people to come back to KSA. They spent a lot of time and money getting them out in the first place.
68   MisterLearnToCode   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 11:24am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

bob2356 says
When radical wahabbi madras schools and mosques around the world start shutting down and radical imans defunded then I'll be believe MBS is something other than a power grabbing opportunist.


Boom - Saudi Arabia breaks with ultra conservative Mosque.
BRUSSELS/RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia has agreed to give up control of Belgium’s largest mosque in a sign that it is trying to shed its reputation as a global exporter of an ultra-conservative brand of Islam.


https://www.reuters.com/article/us-europe-attacks-belgium-saudi-insight/giving-up-control-of-brussels-mosque-saudi-arabia-sends-a-signal-idUSKBN1FW0R3
https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/surrendering-brussels-mosque-saudi-break-ultra-conservatism/
69   bob2356   ignore (4)   2018 Jun 10, 11:37am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

TwoScoopsOfDragonEnergy says

Boom - Saudi Arabia breaks with ultra conservative Mosque.


The Belgians threw them out for christ sakes. Saudi's "ageed" to be thown out to save face. This started last year anyway, when MBS was first appointed. Nothing to do with MBS or his policies. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/the-mosque-is-belgiums-biggest-officials-say-its-a-hotbed-for-extremism/2017/11/10/8a6d7746-b849-11e7-9b93-b97043e57a22_story.html?utm_term=.35a593ed8256

Try again.
70   Kakistocracy   ignore (6)   2019 Feb 19, 3:34am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Saudi Arabia encouraged foreign workers to leave - and is struggling after so many did

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — Mohammed Iqbal joined the throng of foreign workers bound for Saudi Arabia during the oil boom of the 1970s, after recruiters from Pepsi visited his native India and dangled an opportunity in the kingdom driving a delivery truck.

The workers arrived from Asia and the Middle East, often on short-term contracts, to satisfy the Saudi government's ambitious development plans. But Iqbal stayed, raising three children and finding work over the decades, even as the Saudi government's priorities changed and its control over the foreign labor market tightened.

Recent shifts in government policy, however, have forced Iqbal to consider pulling up stakes, at the age of 60.

The government has imposed fees on the dependents of expatriate workers and restricted foreigners from working in certain sectors. Rising costs, as part of an overhaul of the economy intended to make Saudi Arabia less dependent on oil, have hit low-wage foreign workers especially hard. The result has been a massive exodus of foreigners from the labor force.

The abrupt outflow has also illustrated the steep challenges facing Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as he tries to remake the Saudi economy. A central pillar of his plan involves creating employment for Saudi citizens in the private sector, where jobs are overwhelmingly held by foreigners. In the short term, though, Saudi citizens have not filled the jobs that expatriates are vacating, adding to the pressure on business owners already struggling with an economic downturn.

Between early 2017 and the third quarter of last year, more than 1.1 million foreigners left the workforce in Saudi Arabia, according to the latest figures from the government statistics agency. It is not the first recent large-scale exodus of foreigners: Hundreds of thousands left or were deported in 2013 and 2017. But while that exodus was largely the result of a government crackdown on people violating a work visa sponsorship program, the latest flight appears to reflect broader hardships and unease, among foreigners and Saudi citizens alike.

The upheaval has added to a sense of uncertainty in the country as Saudi leaders grapple with a depressed economy, struggle to attract foreign investment and try to repair the kingdom's image after the killing of Washington Post contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi officials in Istanbul four months ago.

There are signs that the exodus has caught the government by surprise. Late last year, Saudi officials were reportedly considering lifting or easing the fees imposed on expatriate workers because of the harm the policy had caused the economy, according to Bloomberg News. But Saudi officials have yet to announce any change in the policy, and the fees remain in place.

In the long term, the flight of foreigners serves one of the government's most urgent priorities: finding jobs for the more than half of Saudis younger than 30 — and in doing so, staving off the kind of youth dissatisfaction that has led to protests in other Arab countries and unnerved the Saudi leadership.

But for now, a major concern has been a spike in the unemployment rate over the past two years, to as high as 12.9 percent. The growing jobless rate is forcing the government to revise its short-term unemployment goals and further exposing the gap between the expectations of Saudi workers and the jobs that are becoming available to them — in lower-wage construction or retail, for example — as the foreigners leave.

Karen Young, an expert on the political economy of the Persian Gulf states at the American Enterprise Institute, said that while it is good news that more Saudi women are entering the workforce, many with higher education degrees are not finding positions that match their skills.

The business environment in Saudi Arabia has also suffered because of the crown prince's more aggressive policies, including the arrests of hundreds of business executives, public officials and members of the royal family during what the government called an "anti-corruption" sweep last year. The crackdown spooked international investors, and local investors "complain of new hurdles to license and register businesses, and comply with new hiring policies" that require the hiring of Saudi citizens, Young said.

The government's response — to focus on "pump-priming," or increased government capital expenditures, was in line with what many economists would suggest to start growth when foreign investment and the local economy are sluggish, Young said. "But that is not a sustainable long-term growth strategy. The government cannot spend its way out of this forever."

In a sign that it was responding to the economic fears, the government this past week held its second major investor conference in less than four months, intended to draw hundreds of millions of dollars in investment for mining, energy and other industries. Also this past week, the Saudi leadership announced what it said was the conclusion of the anti-corruption purge, another major cause of investor anxiety.

The government has also promoted plans to expand the entertainment industry and tourism, betting that those initiatives will create jobs while also distracting from the criticism of the kingdom over its more repressive policies.

In the meantime, in immigrant neighborhoods, the exodus is immediately apparent. Buildings are emptying, stores staffed by foreign workers are struggling or shuttered, and nearly everyone knows families who have left or are strongly leaning toward heading home.

Those leaving or considering doing so include single men who spent a few years in Saudi Arabia, building up their savings or sending their earnings to family back home. And as the expatriates have embarked on an anxious search for work outside the kingdom, their home countries are bracing for the impact of a potentially dramatic decrease in remittance payments.

Christian Lacap, originally from the Philippines, has worked in the coastal Saudi city of Jiddah for the past seven years, but he said he decided to leave Saudi Arabia because of price hikes, which were imposed by the government as part of its economic program.

Saudi citizens, with better-paid government jobs, could absorb the rising costs. "But it's big for us," he said. "We have minimum salaries. It's too hard."

Lacap, who works in a restaurant, did not have a job lined up back in the Philippines and was hoping to go to another country — maybe South Korea or Canada — where the prospects were better, he said. He said he doubted whether a Saudi worker would take his job.

Others, such as Iqbal, said they are holding out for now.

He lost his last job, at a market research company that downsized as it struggled to pay the new government fees. Iqbal has been unable to find work since and fears his age has become as much a reason as the "Saudization" effort to replace foreign workers with nationals. The cost of utilities and basic goods has been rising, he said. Medicine is becoming more expensive for his wife, who is diabetic. Many of his friends have already left, so it is only a matter of time, he reckons, before he joins them.

"No one wants to live here. Everyone is going back to India," he said, adding that he had planned to work in Saudi Arabia for at least another five or six years. "I'm very sad, but what can I do?"

https://www.stripes.com/news/middle-east/saudi-arabia-encouraged-foreign-workers-to-leave-and-is-struggling-after-so-many-did-1.567141
71   APOCALYPSEFUCKisShostikovitch   ignore (37)   2019 Feb 19, 3:39am   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Saudi Arabia needs only FREEDOM!

A second amendment will fix their shit.

Armed expatriates, armed chicks, cheap gas, fucking A!

Paradise!
72   Kakistocracy   ignore (6)   2019 Mar 3, 5:27am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Google, siding with Saudi Arabia, refuses to remove widely-criticized government app which lets men track women and control their travel

Google has rejected calls to remove a Saudi government app which offers a tool for men to control where women travel.

The company told the office of Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier, who had called for its removal, that the app does not violate its terms of service.

Google has declined to remove from its app store a Saudi government app which lets men track women and control where they travel, on the grounds that it meets all their terms and conditions.

Google reviewed the app — called Absher — and concluded that it does not violate any agreements, and can therefore remain on the Google Play store.

The decision was communicated by Google to the office of Rep. Jackie Speier, a California Democrat who, with other members of Congress, wrote last week to demand they remove the service.

Google did not respond to a request for comment on the decision.

https://www.businessinsider.com/absher-google-refuses-to-remove-saudi-govt-app-that-tracks-women-2019-3?utm_source=fark&utm_medium=website&utm_content=link&ICID=ref_fark

Saudi Arabia runs a huge, sinister online database of women that men use to track them and stop them from running away

Saudi law says every woman must have a male guardian, who has enormous power over her life and travel.

The Saudi government has digitized parts of the guardian system, letting Saudi men manage women's lives online.

Guardians can specify when and from which airports women can travel, effectively trapping them in Saudi Arabia.

The system includes a text-messaging system that alerts men when women use their passports. They are often able to catch them as a result.

The system has existed for years, but it has come under renewed scrutiny after the high-profile asylum claim of the Saudi teen Rahaf Mohammed.

https://www.thisisinsider.com/absher-saudi-website-men-control-women-stop-escape-2019-1
73   Kakistocracy   ignore (6)   2019 Mar 3, 5:30am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Saudi Arabia: why jobs overhaul could define MBS’s rule.

The crown prince is leaning on the private sector to recruit local workers, but some businesses are paying a heavy price

Fahad al-Shahrani answers his phone with a glint in his eye, like a gambler who knows the cards are stacked in his favour. The 27-year-old has been enthusing about how the dynamics of the Saudi labour market are shifting as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman oversees what is widely viewed as the kingdom’s most aggressive drive to secure private sector employment for young nationals. Before, he would send his CV to 30 companies and receive no responses, he says.

But in recent weeks he has found himself in demand. “My phone is ringing all the time,” he says. As if on cue, it buzzes into life — a perfume shop where Mr Shahrani applied for a job has called to say he is being considered for the post.

The scene plays out in a watch store where the young Saudi started working just a month earlier. Nidhal Shaaban, the shop’s Syrian manager, observes quietly that his newest employee is already on the hunt for a better paying job. Watch stores are among 12 retail sectors — ranging from opticians to car parts outlets — added to the so-called “Saudisation” programme in November that means Saudi nationals must account for at least 70 per cent of their employees. The store manager knows government policy is, at least for now, working in favour of Mr Shahrani and his peers.

Yet Mr Shahrani’s optimism belies the massive hurdles that face Riyadh’s efforts to overhaul a labour system that has for decades been dependent on millions of imported workers from across the region and Asia, who are typically willing to do more work for lower pay. Of all Prince Mohammed’s pledges to modernise and diversify the oil-dependent economy, it is the most daunting and critical challenge, experts say.
Get it right and Saudi Arabia will ease its addiction to foreign workers, who occupy about 90 per cent of all private sector jobs, and address rampant youth unemployment in a country where more than half the population is aged under 25. Fail and joblessness will soar and risk becoming a source of social instability in the world’s leading oil exporter.

“Job creation is at the crux of Prince Mohammed’s [reforms] and the long-term prosperity and stability of the country,” says John Sfakianakis, chief economist at the Riyadh-based Gulf Research Centre. “At the end of the day it’s your ability to produce employment and income that people test you on.”

The omens do not appear good. Even as more Saudis have found jobs in the private sector, unemployment among the local population has been on a steep upward trajectory in the three years since the crown prince launched his ambitious Vision 2030 reform plan. From 11.5 per cent in the first three months of 2016, it climbed to 12.9 per cent in July last year, the highest level on record. Youth joblessness is close to 40 per cent and far higher for young women.

The measures Riyadh has introduced to accelerate labour reform have increased the costs for businesses already grappling with lacklustre growth since the 2014 oil price drop tripped up the economy.

In addition to forcing Saudisation on a widening number of sectors, the government has increased the levies that firms must pay for each foreign worker from SR200 ($53) a month to SR300 at companies that employ more Saudis than expatriates, and to SR400 a month for those that employ fewer nationals.

Riyadh also introduced a monthly SR100 fee that expatriates have to pay for their dependants in 2017, and doubled it last year.
The goal is to begin to close the gap between the cost of employing Saudis and foreigners, with the former typically paid 1.5 times to three times more than overseas workers.

The most visible result of the reforms is Saudi nationals standing behind shop counters and burger bars in the ubiquitous malls dotted across the country’s cities, or repairing mobile phones, selling car parts or hardware. But many small and medium-sized companies have been forced to close, according to analysts and Saudi media reports, due to the added labour costs and lacklustre growth.

“[If] you are trying to improve employment — which is happening — but at the same time you are imposing another [cost], this creates pressure on business,” says one Saudi executive. You have to protect the existing businesses . . . [but] some are closing.”

He and others insist the government is doing the right thing after years of inaction and complacency while the petrodollars flowed in. Previous attempts at Saudisation in the 1990s and 2000s were toothless, with companies doing the bare minimum to tick their quota boxes and complaining about the work ethic of nationals. Generous state benefits, which can amount to as much as two-thirds of the minimum public-sector wage, provided little incentive for Saudis to search for work.

Today, labour ministry officials patrol shops to ensure they are complying with quotas. Those in violation face a SR20,000 fine. “We have had a very disorganised economy since 1975. Before then we had normal cycles of everything, the number of foreigners was only 100,000,” says the executive. “With the oil booms things went in all directions, there was no plan, there was no strategy.”

Yet he accepts that there will not be any reduction in unemployment for the “foreseeable future”. Instead, just holding joblessness at the current rate for the next few years “is a challenge”.

The reforms are already having a dramatic impact on many of the 10m overseas workers in the kingdom, which has a population of 33m. Coupled with the woes of a battered construction sector and weak growth, the reforms have fuelled an exodus of expatriates. More than 314,000 left between the second and third quarters of last year, bringing the number that have departed the kingdom since the beginning of 2017 to more than 1.4m.

For years, the kingdom has provided an outlet for jobseekers in the Arab world’s non-oil exporters and Asian countries that provide the bulk of the country’s construction and domestic help jobs. No one is expecting Saudis to take on roles in these sectors and foreigners will continue to constitute a major segment of the labour force.

But the more Saudis are employed in the service sectors, the more they will be replacing Arabs from neighbouring countries, threatening to weaken a vital economic link between the region’s oil exporter and poorer neighbours such as Egypt and Jordan. Remittance outflows from Saudi Arabia fell from a peak of $38.8bn in 2015 to $36bn in 2017, according to World Bank data.“

All foreigners are worried. If I lose my job I will have to leave the country and as I’m a Syrian I can’t go home because of the war,” says Mr Shaaban, who fled his homeland in 2011 and says he has had to dismiss some Yemeni workers to make way for Saudis since the changes were introduced. “I know more than 50 people who left in the past year after being replaced by Saudis. They had to leave. Companies don’t want to hire any more foreigners.”

For Riyadh, the dilemma is how to push ahead with reforms without inflicting more damage on a private sector that is being leaned on to hire Saudis. The economy has struggled since oil prices plunged in 2014 and it slipped into recession in 2017. Gross domestic product bounced back to expand by 2.3 per cent last year, but the IMF forecasts it will slow again to 1.8 per cent in 2019.

The situation has been exacerbated by government moves that have hurt fragile investor sentiment. Prince Mohammed’s extraordinary crackdown on corruption in November 2017, during which more than 300 princes, businessmen and former government officials were rounded up, sent shockwaves through the kingdom. The global outrage triggered by the October killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi further dented international interest at a time when the kingdom is desperate for foreign backing for the prince’s mega-projects.

In January Riyadh launched a $450bn, 10-year plan that focuses on mining, industry, logistics and energy, with the hope of creating 1.6m jobs by 2030. But that — like so many of Prince Mohammed’s plans — will depend on the kingdom attracting massive levels of investment.
Some businesses say that in the wake of the Khashoggi murder, the leadership is paying more attention to local concerns. King Salman approved in February a $3.1bn plan to ease the burden of expat levies on businesses in a bid to stimulate growth. And the government will exempt some companies from paying the 2018 fees or reimburse those that have already paid on the condition that they make progress on hiring Saudis. Officials acknowledge that some of the reform targets were too ambitious.

At the same time the government has quietly recalibrated its goal of reducing Saudi unemployment to 9 per cent by 2020 to 10.5 per cent by 2022, analysts say. But Prince Mohammed is unlikely to ease up on his Saudisation drive.

“He’s just going to keep pushing this as his main priority. Every time someone suggests, your Royal Highness, should we slow down and ease the process,’ he says, ‘no, this is a priority and we have no more time to slow down,’” says Fawaz al-Alamy, a former deputy minister of commerce and World Trade Organization chief technical negotiator. “Some believe the answer is to improve the skills of Saudis and narrow the chasm between foreigners’ and locals’ wages, until the Saudis are grabbed by employers for their merits.”

But the kingdom is in a race against time. A 2015 report by McKinsey, the consultancy that advises the government, estimated that up to 4.5m working-age Saudis would enter the labour market by 2030, almost doubling the size of the domestic labour force to 10m. The report said that to absorb the influx would require the creation of almost three times as many Saudi jobs as were created during the 2003-2013 oil boom.

Job creation is already failing to keep pace with about 400,000 young Saudis entering the job market each year, 230,000 of them university graduates. Mr Sfakianakis calculates that just to meet the 10.5 per cent unemployment target by 2022, the economy will need to absorb about 30,000 jobs in the private sector every month, compared with the 4,000-6,000 a month generated so far.

The relaxation of some of the social restrictions on women in the highly conservative state, such as lifting the ban on driving, means more of them are also looking for work.

“Pressuring the private sector to hire regardless, although positive, is going to have its limitations. You need real and productive growth,” Mr Sfakianakis says. “The Saudi employment we are having now is mainly the [foreign worker] replacement factor and government employment, but after that you need real growth [to create jobs].

”An important test will be whether the Saudi nationals — often criticised for depending on state handouts — can match the productivity of those they are replacing.

Using his phone, Mr Shahrani checks his employment history on the government social insurance website and discovers that he has only been in a job for 27 months in the nine years since he completed a diploma in computer studies. He spent time at a car company but felt uncomfortable as most of the other employees were foreigners. A job in the customs office ended because the commute was too long. And he tried working as a supermarket cashier but it “was long hours” and “very tiring”.

He earns SR3,000 a month in the watch shop, but plans to quit as soon as he finds a better paying job. And he dismisses the idea that Saudis have a poor work ethic “as just a stereotype”.

Across from the shop, Afrah Hilal, 23, is settling into a new role running a small perfume stall, work she started 24 hours after leaving her previous employer. “I was fired in the morning, came here in the evening and started work the day after,” she says.

“Some companies used to hate hiring Saudis but that has changed and workers are being more serious,” the 23-year-old adds. “Previously they would never last long, they would stay for two to three months, get some money, buy something and leave. But now there’s a much better work ethic.”

Others are less convinced. “The young population is not willing to work . . . Social and cultural change can’t happen overnight,” says the Saudi executive. “It [the reform] is tough. It’s not an easy job.”

https://www.ft.com/content/fc240c0e-29fb-11e9-88a4-c32129756dd8
74   Kakistocracy   ignore (6)   2019 Mar 15, 4:44am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Why the U.S. and Saudi Arabia Are Destined to Diverge

Highlights

◾The relationship between Saudi Arabia and the United States has long been a volatile one, but that volatility will become more frequent in the coming decades, outgrowing some of the personal relationships that provide its framework today.

◾U.S.-Saudi cooperation has always been based on common interests rather than common needs. While those interests have changed over time, they are now entering a phase in which they will not be as closely aligned.

◾The shale revolution and its effect on global energy markets is driving Saudi Arabia ever-closer to Russia and China economically and politically.

◾An ascendant China will force the United States to complete its pivot toward Asia, with a resulting reduction in the attention it pays toward the Middle East. More and more often, Riyadh will struggle to get on the same page as Washington in balancing against China.

President Donald Trump's current enthusiasm for Saudi Arabia notwithstanding, the relationship between the United States and perhaps its most important ally in the Middle East is undergoing a significant transformation. U.S. political pressure on Saudi Arabia is rising, led by a growing congressional discomfort over the Saudi-led intervention in Yemen and the circumstances surrounding the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, but that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Beneath the surface of the politics of the day, a pair of more significant geopolitical shifts is helping pull the longtime allies apart: the evolution of the global system away from U.S. dominance toward an intensifying, near-peer competition with China, as well as the fundamental reshaping of the global oil and gas markets upon which Saudi Arabia has built its wealth and power. As both countries adjust to these changing dynamics, their shared strategic relationship will evolve away from the foundation of oil, counterterrorism and the mutual desire to contain Iran. It's likely that, as those changes play out, the countries' future priorities will not align as they have in past decades.

The Big Picture

The fundamental relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia is changing dramatically and will continue to undergo significant shifts over the next two decades. Their alliance has always been beset by complications — becoming downright antagonistic at times — but the distance will only grow as their mutual strategic importance declines in the coming years.

The U.S. and the Balance of Power - https://worldview.stratfor.com/themes/us-and-balance-power

The Saudi Survival Strategy - https://worldview.stratfor.com/topic/saudi-survival-strategy

A Relationship Built on Pragmatism - Despite their obvious differences, Saudi Arabia and the United States have maintained a nearly eight-decade friendship. From the beginning, the U.S.-Saudi relationship has rested on mutual needs, not necessarily shared values.

A World that is Shaken, not Stirred - Two significant geopolitical shifts are altering the fundamental way that Saudi Arabia and the United States interact: the dramatic transformation in global energy markets and the rise of China, which is reducing the dominance of the U.S.-led Western order that emerged after the Cold War.

Toward a Multipolar World - After the Cold War ended, the United States was left standing as the global system's dominant power. But with China's emergence, that is evolving into a more multipolar structure, and the United States has, naturally, refocused its attention on countering its rising rival.

A Relationship that Bends but not Breaks - Even if Saudi importance in the eyes of the United States declines, their relationship would not necessarily reach a breaking point, but it would certainly become more volatile.

NOTE: Each sub-header above covered in detail: https://worldview.stratfor.com/article/why-us-and-saudi-arabia-are-destined-diverge

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