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Shaykh Ibrahim Mogra on the new issue of Charlie Hebdo


- Informed comment on Paris atrocity

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- MCB statement on Peshawar atrocity

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- Preparing for the 2015 General Election!

- The British Muslim Narrative


Expiry of an authoritarian ruler
Madawi Al-Rasheed in the Guardian: Abdullah’s succession as Saudi Arabia’s sixth monarch resulted from his father King Abdulaziz ibn Saud’s strategy of marrying the daughters and widows of defeated enemies. It was hoped that Abdullah’s birth in Riyadh would end the enmity between the ousted northern Hail emirate and the newly emerging Saudi kingdom. Abdullah’s mother, Fahda bint Asi al-Shuraim, was the widow of Saud ibn Rashid, who ruled over the emirate before its collapse at the hands of Saudi forces in 1921. Abdullah continued the tradition of his father and included, among his 30 or so wives, daughters of the Shaalan of Aniza, al-Fayz of Bani Sakhr, and al-Jarba of the Shammar tribe....

During the last years of his reign, Abdullah ruled over a country with incredible economic resources that failed to guarantee him regional influence. Saudi foreign policy was in fact mostly reactive to events beyond its control. Like many expired authoritarian rulers, he promoted himself as the champion of women’s rights in a desperate attempt to appeal to sceptical audiences at home and abroad. His development projects, new universities and industrial cities generated more controversy than solutions to real economic problems. However, Abdullah was perhaps the first Saudi ruler to seek a new legitimacy, this time emanating from serving the people rather than simply applying divine law.

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