The Saudi Dialogue with the "Other"

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An Arab News article reports the conclusion of a Daudi Arabian forum to produce a "unified national vision related to how citizens should approach bridging the cultural gaps with outsiders." Highlights of the forum "Us and Others" follow:

  • Dealing ethically and in a civil way with foreigners living in the Kingdom, enforcing the rules already in place to protect their rights;

  • Taking advantage of the Haj and Umrah seasons by instituting cultural exchange programs with visiting Muslims from all over the world;

  • Increasing the amount of printed materials, such as government press releases and books, offered in multiple languages inside the Kingdom;

  • Utilizing Saudi embassies and consulates to offer more opportunities for dialogue in other countries;

  • Boosting the amount of educational exchanges with students and researchers; and

  • Interacting with outsiders at an international level to address a range of social issues, such as human rights, women's empowerment, poverty and unemployment.

    It must be remembered that the term "Other" is a Saudi euphemism referring to non—Muslims. The head of the National Dialogue Center, Faisal ibn Muammar, made it very clear that inter—Saudi discussion to engage "Others" was a starting point, but

    "outsiders should not be allowed to employ differences among Saudis in order to create divisions among the people of Saudi Arabia."

    The dean of the girls section of the King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah echoed Mr. Muammar's sentiments:

    "[S]audis must first define and agree on the vision that they want to sell to the 'Other', and that they must try to eliminate the stereotypes and misunderstandings outsiders have about the Kingdom."

    What the Saudis want to sell and export has already been covered here at The American Thinker.

    Eric Schwappach  12 16 05

  • An Arab News article reports the conclusion of a Daudi Arabian forum to produce a "unified national vision related to how citizens should approach bridging the cultural gaps with outsiders." Highlights of the forum "Us and Others" follow:

  • Dealing ethically and in a civil way with foreigners living in the Kingdom, enforcing the rules already in place to protect their rights;

  • Taking advantage of the Haj and Umrah seasons by instituting cultural exchange programs with visiting Muslims from all over the world;

  • Increasing the amount of printed materials, such as government press releases and books, offered in multiple languages inside the Kingdom;

  • Utilizing Saudi embassies and consulates to offer more opportunities for dialogue in other countries;

  • Boosting the amount of educational exchanges with students and researchers; and

  • Interacting with outsiders at an international level to address a range of social issues, such as human rights, women's empowerment, poverty and unemployment.

    It must be remembered that the term "Other" is a Saudi euphemism referring to non—Muslims. The head of the National Dialogue Center, Faisal ibn Muammar, made it very clear that inter—Saudi discussion to engage "Others" was a starting point, but

    "outsiders should not be allowed to employ differences among Saudis in order to create divisions among the people of Saudi Arabia."

    The dean of the girls section of the King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah echoed Mr. Muammar's sentiments:

    "[S]audis must first define and agree on the vision that they want to sell to the 'Other', and that they must try to eliminate the stereotypes and misunderstandings outsiders have about the Kingdom."

    What the Saudis want to sell and export has already been covered here at The American Thinker.

    Eric Schwappach  12 16 05