I started this blog because I left Boston to live and work in London for a while, and I wanted to stay in touch with family and friends. I'm back now, but still have plenty of opinions on world news, politics, the media and the absolute craziness that comes from dealing with people. Bring it.

22 January 2006

Eye for an Eye

I know I should really stop reading Saudi Arabia's Arab News daily but I just can't help it. Afterall, I had many fun, interesting and amusing conversations with people following my post on The Paper Cup Incident and that has only encouraged this bad behavior.

Today's gem is titled
"Assault Victim Spares Assailant's Eye," and the topic is just what you think it is.

Apparently, a Saudi "got into an altercation over payment" with the Indian-born foreign worker pumping his gas. The fight got physical, and a few weeks later, the Saudi started having problems with his vision. His "assailant" was charged with causing his "blindness" and sentenced to having his eye REMOVED. Luckily, the "victim" granted him a pardon and he gets to keep his eye.

The Arab News interviewed a number of Indian nationals living in The Kingdom:

“This is definitely a humanitarian act. We all know that Saudis are known for their goodwill and kindness, and this is just one more example of the magnanimity of Saudis. This also shows the special regard Saudis have for India and Indians. In Naushad’s case the media in both countries should be congratulated for highlighting the issue,” said Dr. Abdullah Moopen, a psychiatrist with Al-Abeer Polyclinic.

An accountant at a steel mill, a hospital administrator and a manager at an advertising agency were interviewed as well. It's unclear what, if any, relation these people have to the case, other than being Indian, but their quotes are all variations on the theme of: "Saudis are kind and we love being here."

I suppose the reporter couldn't use quotes like, "I have a good job. Please don't set me up on some trumped-up charge and take any of my organs or limbs. I mean, I have a nice life. Money actually DOES grow on trees here, did you know that? I love Saudi Arabia. Seriously. I want to stay and keep my body intact if possible."

Does this seem like propaganda to you? Maybe, just maybe, since it comes on the eve of
King Abdullah's trip to India. I wonder if the "victim" got an oilwell as a "gift" recently?


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