Hajj Message 2017 – tell another Hajji

9th Dhil HAjj or the Day of Arafah is the important day for the global Muslim family. Day of Arafah for the year 2017 shall be on 31 August, Millions of Muslims shall gather in Makkah for the Holy pilgrimage and on this day the most important rite will take place on the plains of Arafah, a place just outside of Makkah, where pilgrims pray, supplicate and ask for God’s Mercy. Arafah can be distinguished by the site of Hajjis sitting on a mountain called the Mountain of Mercy (Jabal Rahmah), its where the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallillahualihi wa alihi wa sallam gave the farewell sermon.

This great day of Muslims is followed by celebrations called Eid al Azha which lasts for about 3 days. In this Eid, Muslims sacrifice an animal as re-enactment of Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Ismail for the sake of Alimighty God. Sacrifice is usually followed by distribution of meat amongst the needy.

In addition to the religious ceremonies, Muslims have another golden opportunity to address the issues facing 1,7 billion Muslims. Political leaders may have succeeded in keeping Pakistanis away from Indians and Bangladeshis away from Rohingyas but in Makkah all of them will come together without any prejudice and without any care for boundaries or languages.

Hajj is indeed a great event. Its the world’s largest gathering of people who desire nothing but peace for Muslims and non Muslims. Makkah for five days becomes the political religious and social center of the whole world. The pilgrims come from countries around the world with only one agenda, ISLAM, peace, submission to God’s Will. It is therefore a truly common ground for bringing together people from two categories, from the grass roots – workers, farmers, laborers AND also from the landed aristocracy, elites and business empires etc. No other event in the world compares to this classless and self motivated and self financed attendance, and this is a potential weapon unknown to most Muslims.

Lets come to the point. Muslim world is being humiliated by the political and religious leaderships. Muslims should understand very well that, their only way out of the terrible situation is to throw away the junk at the top, reorganize their social and economic systems and ensure that accountability and transparency are never compromised again.

All the Muslims all over the world should know that they have a religious responsibility to make an effort to change their corrupt, despotic and dictatorial leaderships. Muslims should also remember that according to the monotheistic (unitary) principle there can be absolutely no room for racial, linguistic, nationalistic, tribal, wealth driven prejudices. The power to change a corrupt government lies with the mass people, the workers and home makers. This realization seems the hardest part to communicate to mass people although it happens to be in their primary interest. So long as Muslims continue to feel helpless, small wolves will pretend to be big lions.

The blood of a Kashmiri Muslim has the same value as a Punjabi, the life of a Rohingya child has the same value as a Bangladeshi child. The world, and everything in it, belongs to ALLAH swt, no man has the right to deny or deprive another human being their right to security of life and property. Kashmiri Muslims and Rohingya Muslims demand this security of life and property from their fellow Muslims in Pakistan and Bangladesh. May God have Mercy on them and on us if we failed to do that.
Yemen and Syria and two blessed lands. The entire Muslim world will have to answer for the genocide happening there. Misr still asks why the petro dollars were used to bankroll into office a psychopathic murderer? It needs to be reminded, the one who shows no mercy to those on EArth, the One in the sky will show no mercy to him on the Day of Judgement.

Muslim commoners are united in their hearts through the feeling of pan Islamic bonding. Its the political leadership and the economic system which needs to be thrown into garbage before something meaningful can once again begin to grow on Muslim lands.

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Morsi Smiles at Sisi and his Zionist Friends

Egypt’s former president, Mohammed Morsi, along with 105 co-defendants, has been sentenced to death for a prison break during the upheavals of the 2011 revolution. On the ethical level, this trial is a travesty because Morsi did not enjoy due process in a highly politicised trial which Amnesty International described as “grossly unfair” and “a charade based on null and void procedures”.

While I wanted to know if this sentence will be any good for Misr, my blogger friend wrote these words which threw me off guard, `Sisi´s hands are blood stained. Morsis not. We are now the laughing stock of the civilized world´. How true and how deep these words from an average man is ringing loud bells in the ears of other men who are silently watching a nasty as well as a cruel joke unfold before them in the very birthplace of civilization. What could be more ironic I was thinking until I realized that this fanatic race to punish anyone un-secular in the Muslim world is not unique to any particular country, it actually flows through almost all the Muslim countries like a river of contaminated water from a mountain of corruption. I mean no disrespect for any of my Muslim friends, but I do want to call a spade a spade, and the Muslim spade is currently drenching with the blood of injustice, intolerance, corruption, greed and everything else that comes with these lofty value systems managed at the top of the pyramid.

The pyramid structure in the Arab world is lot more complex than in other areas. The injustices committed by those at the top trickle down to the last brick. The image of Misir is now one of dictatorship, brutal military stronghold, authoritarian single eyed regime of a man upon whose orders hundreds of innocent protesters were mercilessly gunned down.

We now see Misir is an example of intolerance. Muslim Brotherhood was pulled down from power because they were leading the country away from the secular block to the Islamic block. Muslim Brotherhood enjoyed 70% popularity, allowing them to amend the constitution based on peoples´demands. Since the vast majority of their voters were rural poor who wanted Islamic shareeah, the Muslim Brotherhood turned out to be the single most significant threat for the secular loyalists whose lifeline depended on generous business concessions from their like-minded commercial partners. I fail to see how a faulty trial can bring any good news for the general people.

Sisi is a typical military dictator, as men like him have surprisingly short memories. The general has forgotten how the Muslim Brotherhood grew to be the single largest political party of the country. Nasserists fail to point out that it was them secular Baathists who elevated the status of the Brotherhood in the country after the killing of Hassan Al Bannah and the unjust and highly controversial hanging of Syed Qutub, former was the founder and the latter was the spiritual-intellectual guide of Muslim Brotherhood. El Sisi is close to adding a third name to the list. The death sentence on Morsi on the one hand will cement the dictator´s grip on power while on the other hand it would create another martyr for the cause especially for the youth who like to rebel against authority.

Will the Egyptian Army really benefit from this sentence? The armed forces were suffering from humiliation from the very day Tahrir Square became a successful revolution. Former president Mubarak and his sons were quickly dispatched to the prisons. This was a blow since Mubarak was considered to be a pride for the forces going back to the 1973 Ramadan War against Israel when Egypt defeated Israel regaining its prestige in the world specially in the Arab and Muslim world. The army was a staunch Mubarak loyalist. With Mubarak in jail the old guard must have been waiting to strike back. This was not limited to the forces only, all other branches of government administration after nearly five decades of Mubarak could not easily accept the whirlwind change of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. It was just too difficult and much too insecure for the Mubarak guard to make friends with the new rulers from the Islamic block.

It could be understood for the defence and administration, but why would this sentence be of any good for the common people who gave support to Tahrir Square revolution? Common people wanted democracy, and they probably still want to live under a democratic government, which does not reconcile with the undemocratic overthrow of the voters´ choice. People lost their right to select the president they deem fit for their republic. The voters were the only authorized persons to decide whether Mursi was good for them or not. It was not a decision that was given to the authorities by the voters. The republic may have taken a wrong turn at the cross roads making the destination confusing for the voters once again. As one Egyptian commented, we are back to square one.

The single greatest beneficiary from the overthrow and the subsequent death sentence of Mursi should be Israel. It has a policy of promoting Arabs and Muslims in general as unfit for democracy and liberalism. May be they are right, or maybe they have lost their minds, but they have been successful in portraying the Arabs, especially Egypt and Syria as countries which need an iron man at the center, no democracy, no liberalism, no social justice is doable for the two. The fact that the rest of the Arab world is´nt much different from this sad portrayal helps the Zionist cause immensely, yet it is basically the closes neighbors of Israel which deserve special praise for dictatorship by its most important military threat.

It copuld be well understood what is bad for Arabs is good for the Zionists, but what is puzzling is why conservative, traditionalist, dynastic monarchy of Arabia is happy at the overthrow of the Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. Its also strange that the dynasties of Arabia should have similar desires and targets for the Arab world as like the Israelis. What is the common bond between Israel and the Arab dynasties? It makes heads roll and twist in search for facts on the ground. The recent attack on the Houthi population in Yemen by the GCC led by Saudi Arabia points to a regional geo-political struggle for supremacy in the Arab world strategy. The proxy war between two regional heavy weights may themselves be proxies for two global super heavy weights also running in the race for supremacy over strategic points across the world.

Muslim World 2014 – Between Agony and Revivalism

From Cairo to Gaza to Peshawar – Muslims are desperately searching for a way out. The insanity, the madness, the killings, bombings, bloodshed and the heart-wrenching sights of mothers wailing at the coffins of little children has become a regular phenomenon. Oppression has its limits written only in the pages of books, but not in the reality Muslim lives. This situation is unique only in the Muslim world; the target of attacks is the Muslim community, the victims are Muslims and the perpetrators are also Muslims. In this issue we look at the critical areas gearing for Muslim revivalism.

 

Palestine

While the rest of the Muslim got together with their families to eat Iftar, Gazans were bombed mercilessly by the Israeli war planes. Shelling the Gazans continued while the powers of the civilized world looked on. Some cruel-hearted Zionists climbed a hilltop to watch and celebrate when the Palestinians were succumbing to Israeli attacks. The massacre of Palestinians in Gaza was no war. It was genocide in the 21st century. The UN failed to do anything about it. The US, the EU, NAM, NATO and other alliances in the world failed to stop the slaughter of innocent people day after day.

 

Gaza´s genocide has brought the reality of the Arab and the greater Muslim world to the open. First, the government of al-Sisi in Egypt refused to come to the rescue of Palestinians in Gaza. The only state which defeated Israel militarily is Egypt and its soldiers are highly respected amongst the Arabs for their valor and courage. But al-Sisi chose to look the other way this time. He closed the border with Gaza, stopped all supplies to them and destroyed the famous tunnels used by Gazans to bring in essential supplies and weapons for resistance. Historically, Egypt was given the responsibility for administering Gaza while West Bank administration went to Jordan. Both Sisi and King Abdullah II of Jordan have found themselves in the net of the Zionists. Their grip on power depends on their ability and success to keep the pro-Israeli lobby happy.

 

 

Pakistan

Few cowards belonging to Tehrike Taliban Pakistan (TTP) shattered the concept of humanity when they broke into Peshawar´s Army Public School, opened fire on students and killed 141 children all aged below 14. TTP declared in its website the attack was revenge for the Pak Army´s infamous operation called Zarb-e-Azb, which conducted combing operations in North Waziristan allegedly killing many men, women and children. TTP claims that it did not kill any children, it was the Pakistani soldiers who killed the children after they went in to rescue them.

 

Pak Army has started operations in Waziristan to capture (and kill) members of TTP. Two TTP convicts have been hanged so far. 27 TTP militants were killed in air raids. Army chief general Raheel Sharif in his tweet requested prime Nawaz Sharif for permission to hang 3,000 militants in 48 hours. The people of the civilized world join the people of Pakistan in their shock and outrage over this atrocious act by a terrorist group using Islam as its shield.

 

 

Iraq

 

ISIL opened the game with a big bang. They captured large swathes of territory in northern Iraq, exposing the inexperience and inability of the Iraqi army put together by US-friendly Iraqi regimes. ISIL quickly moved close to the Syrian border to do the only thing which carried immense strategic sense; it erased the Sykes Picot border between Iraq and Syria.

 

Much of the Muslim world looks at Abu Bakr al Baghdadi with suspicion. Some believe he is a Zionist spy trained by Mossad. This is according to Wikileaks and the famous US whistleblower Edward Snowden. Without the atrocities of ISIL it would have been impossible for the US forcesto re-enter Iraq. Since this is the beginning of another ghost war, another hunt for bogey men, the production floors of weapons industries will keep working full time.

 

While the world was furious about the genocide in Gaza, ISIL entered the scene with its famous poster boy, Jihadi John, executing innocent western charity workers. The anger of the world against Israel shifted to these desert executioners. The request to US legislators to authorize action against ISIL passed like a breeze. The game was on again. The war on terror continues under a different banner, war on IS.

 

Syria

Syria is another flash point in the Muslim world. The butcher remains supreme in Damascus, thanks to the help he keeps receiving from Moscow and Teheran. The success of ISIL did not translate into the fall of Assad. Cynics believe that Israel would like to see both Assad and Abu Bakr keep fighting each other until the time comes for it to occupy both to form Greater Israel according to its alleged master plan.

 

Lebanon

Lebanon is swinging between being Paris of the Middle East to being the center of Hezbollah, which is the only non-state entity to have defeated Israel in a battle. Lebanon as a state had to pay for the actions of Hassan Nasrallah (head of Hezbollah). Lebanon may not be a large country but its location and intellectual capital makes it a strategic nerve center of Muslim desire for a revival.

 

 

Arab Awakening

Four years after Arab awakening movements swept many long-entrenched dictators from power in the Middle East, it appears the old order is back with a vengeance. The uprisings were also referred to as the “Arab Spring” or “People’s movements” depending on the political orientations and preferences of those describing it.

Of all places, Egypt’s situation has been the most heart-wrenching because it has the potential to be on the cutting edge of the Islamic movement. Its loss to the military and by extension to the imperialist-Zionist duopoly is a major loss to the global Muslim Ummah. In the countries that experienced upheavals — Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen— only a few faces at the top were replaced, while the systems have remained largely intact. It could be argued that Tunisia has made a successful transition from the dictatorship of Ben Ali to a “democratic” dispensation. After Ben Ali’s overthrow, primarily because the military refused to come to his rescue, al-Nahda Party won the election but it was thrown out of office in the recent elections (end of October 2014). Ben Ali’s party is back in power. The problems that had led to the upheaval have not been addressed: unemployment remains high; corruption is rampant and the military is all supreme.

In Egypt, the situation is even worse. The military did not even wait for the political process to take its course as in Tunisia. Within one year of the election of Mohamed Mursi as president, the military returned with a sledgehammer. It not only ousted Mursi from power but also slaughtered thousands of innocent people, including women and children. People were not spared even when they sought refuge in mosques where they were ruthlessly gunned down.

Tens of thousands have been thrown in Egypt’s notorious dungeons while hundreds have been sentenced to death after kangaroo trials presided over by judges beholden to the brutes in uniform. What is even worse, many people have been terrorized into supporting the military’s brutal crackdown.

When the Ikhwan organized peaceful sit-ins in Egypt’s Rabia al-‘Adawiya Square and in Giza, these were allowed to continue for a few weeks before the military and other security forces struck with extreme brutality. On August 14 and 16, 2013, thousands of Ikhwan supporters, many of them women and children, were mercilessly killed. Even funeral processions were attacked. Worse, many Egyptians applauded the massacres claiming that Egypt had been “saved.” One wonders from what and for whom?

It appears that the west was not keen to have the Egyptian military strike so soon. Washington had already secured agreement from Mursi and the Ikhwan to advance its agenda. Mursi did not repudiate the humiliating treaty with the Zionist regime; he did not cut off gas supplies to Israel nor did Mursi do anything meaningful for the Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip. While the US may have been agreeable to Mursi remaining in power for a little while longer, the Saudis were not.

They viewed Mursi — and more broadly, the Ikhwan — as a threat to their claim to being the leaders of “Sunni” Muslims. While few Muslims outside the narrow circle of their paid agents accept their leadership claim, the Saudis continued to delude themselves. The Saudi regime was the first to congratulate the Egyptian military for its great “feat.”

The triangle of terror represented by the Saudis, Egyptian generals and the Zionist war criminals was complete. Since the coup, the Egyptian military has been busy destroying tunnels through which the besieged Palestinians used to smuggle much needed goods — food, medicines and household items — for mere survival. This was unacceptable to the Zionists and, therefore, to the Egyptian generals. The destruction of this triangle of terror is a pre-requisite for the Muslim liberation movement to have any chance of success.

 

Afghanistan

The year 2014 is a milestone year for the Afghan freedom fighters. In this year foreign troops left the country after 13 years of occupation. The Afghans have been left to wonder what did 13 years achieve for them. Although it may be too early to state conclusively, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the official name for Afghan Taliban) is already making plans for celebration. For them, this is a great victory, perhaps more significant than the joy of defeating the Soviets. Beating America and its combined help from NATO will most likely place the chief of the Afghan Taliban as the undisputed leader of the Muslim community in and around Afghanistan.

The new Afghan army of 200,000 recruits will probably be no match for the battle-hardened warriors of Mullah Omar. The west has also been preparing for such eventuality. In Qatar, Afghan Talibans opened a foreign office for holding talks with international players. It is a sign of the things to come in the near future. That near future may be knocking on our doors already.

 

Muslim Ummah and Alice in Wonderland

Does it not bother you when you see the Ummah in its present condition? Wherever you turn you will read a page from the same book. Whether its Egypt, or Syria, or Iraq or Pakistan or Bangladesh, its the same situation. On the other hand, we also see muslims at masjids and musallas in increasing numbers, Alhamdulillah. Muslims celebrate Eid, attend Jumah, and other religious functions with lots of energy and beauty. Alhamdulillah. 

 
But is’nt it a contradictory image of the Ummah?
 
If an alien came to visit us, it would probably point out the Ummah as a large community of worshippers living under a hypnotic spell, unable to break free from the chains of domination like an elephant tied to a small pole. A large army of soldiers sleeping in the middle of a battle. A boat without a sail. Like beggars fighting each other for imaginary kingdoms. A magnet whose two poles are both North or both South. 
 
Where is the Nasrun-Min-Allahi and where is the promised Fathun-Qarib?
 
WHY DOES GOD NOT HELP US?
 
And those who strive (jahadoo) in Our (Cause) We will certainly guide them to Our Paths: for verily Allah is with those who do right.
(Surah 29, Al-Ankabut, Ayah 69.)
 
This condition of the Ummah is due to its ignorance about the concept of striving – jahadoo. We have forgotten to strive with our wealth and our own-selves. We close our eyes when we see oppression. We are deaf to the cries of our mothers and sisters. We are speechless in front of ‘wealthy’ paymasters. We are embarrassed to honor our martyrs. We are afraid to tell our kids the history of struggles and movements of our Islamic champions. This is not the signature of the Ummah of Rahmat Al-Alamin Sallillahu alihi wa alihi wa sallam.

Domestic imperialism in Middle East

Muslim world has been colonized by domestic imperialists. The systematic elimination of the civilizational concepts from the Islamic world is as clear as the blue skies swimming over the Persian Gulf.

The chess board of regional strategy has been in place since the fall of the last legal Islamic government in Istanbul, thanks to the treacherous revolts in the Hejaz.

What we see today in Cairo, Damascus, Baghdad, Jerusalem and San’a are consequences of not having a central leadership to guide the ummah as one united universal community. Instead of a united global village muslims have been broken up into small segments of statelets and sheikhdoms fighting with each other with weapons supplied by their “protectors”.

At the heart of Ummah’s sickness is the presence of a cancerous disease which is slowly turning the dynamic movement of ideas into a mummified body of stagnancy.

Below is an article worth reading:

Saudi Arabia miscalculated the ease with which US-led Western powers could quickly organize a military strike on Syria following the now-confirmed chemical attack of Aug. 21. The push for a quick strike stumbled in Washington, London and Paris, giving way to high-level diplomacy between the United States and Russia and disappointment in Saudi Arabia. The US-Russian framework for the elimination of Syria’s chemical arsenal appears to be a deviation from Riyadh’s immediate objectives. By focusing on the sole objective of removing the Bashar al-Assad regime from power, the Saudi leadership may have overlooked that despite having important resources and weight, regional powers like itself can today be constrained by the changing international environment.

About This Article

Summary :

Saudi Arabia, like Iran, has pursued a sectarian interventionist strategy in Syria that furthers the war and undermines a democratic transition.

Author: Madawi Al-Rasheed
Posted on:September 17 2013

Categories : Originals Saudi Arabia   Syria  

In Jiddah on Sept. 16, Crown Prince Salman Ibn Abdul Aziz presided over the Council of Ministers and warned the international community against reducing the Syrian crisis to the issue of chemical weapons. In anticipation of a UN Security Council meeting on Sept. 18 to discuss the UN report on the Syrians’ use of chemical weapons and pass a strong resolution, Salman called on the international community to strengthen the Syrian opposition and protect civilians, reminding it of the urgency of pushing for a new regime in Damascus. Saudi Arabia may soon find itself a spectator on the periphery, watching an international game in which it can only make noise, and possibly trouble, if its objectives cease to be a priority for other, more important international players with their own agendas.

The US-Russian framework unexpectedly eclipsed active Saudi diplomacy of the last weeks, during which it insisted on military intervention in Syria. While the United States continues to stress that this framework does not rule out future military strikes in case of noncompliance, this is simply not enough for Riyadh.

The Saudi leadership’s bewilderment over the changes that have swept the Arab world over the last three years has focused its foreign policy on two main objectives. First is sabotaging any glimpse of a democratic transition that might lead to the rise of new, unpredictable forces in Arab countries and consequently undermine its own grip on power domestically. From the Saudi perspective, any political change threatens to undermine a familiar status quo characterized by political stagnation and repression, defined by the Saudis as stability.

“Change” to the Saudis means unpredictability, chaos and loss of influence in a region that has been dependent on the integration of its failing economy into the Saudi oil empire. From subsidizing poor, loyal regimes to taking in excess labor migrants, Saudi Arabia has ensured that poor Arab countries remain within its sphere of influence. Yet this policy seems to be dependent on authoritarian and repressive regimes remaining in power and willing to play the Saudi’s game of loyalty in return for oil rent. The Arab uprisings threatened to destroy this formula, leading the Saudis to fight several battles in different places at the same time. From Bahrain to Yemen and Egypt, loyalty for oil must be reinforced because it is the only way the Saudis can remain relevant at the regional level.

The second objective is removing regimes that have distanced themselves from the Saudi sphere of influence and revolve in the competing Iranian sphere, as is the case with the Syrian regime. Only a military strike that promises to remove the current Syrian government will satisfy the Saudis and the Syrian opposition forces that have emerged under its patronage. Therefore, the destruction of Syrian chemical weapons, albeit a welcome step toward weakening the regime and enhancing the chances of its rivals, falls short of meeting Riyadh’s urgent requirements.

What makes things more complicated and challenging from the Saudi perspective is the recent gradual rehabilitation of Iran as a major player that the international community seems to be willing to accommodate following the 2013 presidential election that brought to power Hassan Rouhani, someone believed to be willing to moderate Iranian foreign policy. Saudi influence will receive a great blow if the United States and Iran reach an agreement on the Syrian crisis.

Certainly the United States would prefer not to rely on only one regional power to guard its interest in the Middle East. So far, the Saudis remain a steady regional ally. A rapprochement between Washington and Tehran would be interpreted in Riyadh as a blow to its special relationship with the United States. Although the relationship has experienced serious challenges in the last decade, it has nonetheless remained firmly established through common interests. Today, neither the Americans nor the Iranians can afford to sustain their hostility and mistrust to satisfy Riyadh’s desire to remain the only regional partner on which Washington can depend.

Here one has to imagine the unimaginable. If Iran makes progress in negotiations on its nuclear program with the help of Russia, a great tension will have been diffused in the region. Security in the Gulf would be enhanced without the looming threat of future military confrontations that all the Gulf states, including Saudi Arabia, should be worried about, not to mention the rest of the world, whose livelihoods depends on the regular flow of oil from the Gulf.  

More important, maintaining a nonconfrontational balance of power between regional players like the Saudis and Iranians would no doubt have a positive impact on the tense sectarian situation that threatens the coexistence of Sunnis and Shiite communities across the region. Without falling into the trap of glorifying a peaceful coexistence in the past, it is accurate to say that peace between Sunnis and Shiites has only in recent times been shattered completely, under the pressure of regional rivalries. While beleaguered minorities have always been forced to look to outside patrons for protection, the willingness of powerful regional powers to espouse a cause for their own interest has tended to fuel more tension and massacres. It is urgent for the Saudis to understand that sectarian foreign policies are counterproductive. In equal measure, the Iranians cannot lord over the Arab world under the pretext of protecting their co-religionists.

The Arab world will remain a mosaic of sects as it has always been. Whether under the rule of empires or nation-states, this mosaic has endured, with no one group able to eradicate the other. It seems that in the Middle East, there is no room for “final solutions,” although several contestants might entertain such an idea. Religious pluralism will persist as a feature of the region regardless of who rules it.

The only safeguard against pluralism degenerating into sectarian war is an agreement between regional rival powers to refrain from interventions with the purpose of asserting their dominance at the expense of social cohesion and religious tolerance. Only an inclusive and representative democratic system can solve the problem of sectarianism and protect minorities. The current problem stems from neither Saudi Arabia nor Iran being truly interested in such a democratic system at home or nearby. Their intervention in Syria so far has seriously undermined the prospects of a democratic system emerging from the ashes of Syria’s cities. Their failure to conceive a democratic Syria has prolonged the misery of the Syrian people and led to perpetuating atrocities. One can hope that destroying Syria’s lethal chemical weapons under international supervision promises to be a step toward ending the saga regardless of whether it meets Saudi Arabia’s current wishes.

Madawi Al-Rasheed is a visiting professor at the Middle East Centre at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She has written extensively about the Arabian Peninsula, Arab migration, globalization, religious trans-nationalism and gender. On Twitter: @MadawiDr

Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2013/09/us-russia-deal-sets-saudis-back.html?utm_source=&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=8185#ixzz2fK1VjUXd