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Phil Perry

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Chatting about world affairs ( as you do ! ) I came upon a couple of comments, attracted by the fact that I personally know two of the three named posters. Two of whom have working experience in Saudi / Qatar / Bahrain / UAE.


It began as a basic chat about the price of oil, and expanded a little.


( Please let me know if I am boring you off your breasts with this stuff, and I will desist from posting such.)


(Martyn )


"Two-thirds of working Saudis are public servants and protests had been called for four cities.


Saudi Arabia reinstated financial allowances for civil servants and military personnel on Saturday after better-than-expected budget figures, ending unpopular cuts to a key perk triggered by low oil prices and cheering the stock market.


King Salman issued a royal decree restoring “all allowances, financial benefits, and bonuses” following calls for protests in four Saudi cities over the weekend, adding a two-month salary bonus for forces fighting in the kingdom’s intervention in Yemen.....


....Under the Twitter hashtag “April 21 movement”, Saudis circulated statements last week demanding the reinstatement of benefits, a halt to the sale of shares of state oil giant Aramco, a constitutional monarchy and the restoration of the powers of the religious police.


Security forces lined the streets of central Riyadh over the weekend, although no demonstrations appeared to materialise. "




A number of things stand out - firstly the internet and social media is being used by people to communicate and organise just as it was in Tunisia and Egypt as well as the UK and US for the uprisings and recent votes respectively. The genie is out of the bottle and there is no stopping it. We have our little community here, but our readers, posters and article writers spread far and wide. Once upon a time you would have been constrained to your social circle, but today you can reach the world when it comes to ideas and movements.


Secondly, they seem to want a harsh version of islam. The religious police over there are utterly ruthless. Real bastards. I'm sure you've heard of the event whereby girls died in a fire due to the religious police stopping them from fleeing the building because they weren't dressed 'properly'.






This is the first time I've heard of any form of widespread dissent in Saudi. The Shia in the oil producing east are oppressed, but they don't make too much noise. These rumblings are coming from the molly-coddled and pampered, with a good dose of religion mixed in.


We really do need to do everything to keep the oil price low, because eventually Saudi will collapse. It'll be the new 'Syria' (unless the Turks get there first). The benefit to us will be they'll spend their money on killing one another rather than funding mosques in the West.




Thing is - the Saudi royal family (all 30,000 of them) are totally corrupt and are going to come to a sticky end up some point, but what comes after will be worse...


Most of the civil service jobs are sinecures...organised by a relative with no chance of getting sacked - Saudi's are utterly opposed to doing hard work for the most part - so foreigners like me are brought in to do that - there is high youth unemployment but the massive bennies (and very low prices esp for oil [well below cost of production]) are designed to keep everyone happy. The foreign workers remit most of their wages overseas which is ok when oil price is high but screws the Balance of payments at other times.


'Allegedly' . .The regime does disappear ( execute in secret ) those that it thinks are fomenting trouble - but the Wahabi / Salafi nuts will probably overthrow them in the end, especially if economy remains difficult over a few years so population starts getting poorer..


The whole economy is pretty useless beyond oil. The completely segregated university (massive wall down the middle to separate male and female - no gender fluidity here!) has fully 25% of students enrolled in "Islamic studies" lord knows what they are being taught, but I can’t see that it could be anything to help the economy.


( Les )


OPEC is playing an end game. Oil production has been steadily falling for the past 10 years... it's running out in Saudi, but not elsewhere in the world, there are plenty of newly discovered undeveloped oil fields and we in the UK are sitting on a shale gas gold mine.


Which is why they lowered their price. To make other oil field developments uneconomic. However, this situation is still completely unsustainable.



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Unusually, Phil. I'm in full agreement with all of that. This lot will reap what they have sown. The Middle east is a basket case of "My" god inspired hate. NO proper peaceful end is possible with the BAGGAGE they have accumulated. Bin Laden's main argument was with the Saudi Hierarchy and they have exported and funded the most extreme forms of Islam to as many places as they could. Nev



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