I always thought that rave parties were the preserve of Goa, but Riyadh is now a competitor

When Bob Dylan sang in the 1960s, could he anticipate Saudi Arabia in the 2010s and 2020s?

Come mothers and fathers all over the country
And don’t criticize what you can’t understand
Your sons and daughters are beyond your command
Your old road is aging fast
Please come out again if you can’t help out
For the times when they change

In diplomacy, we are trained to reverse the timing of events

Even as the Saudis ordered their Pakistani minions to host an extraordinary conference of foreign ministers of Islamic countries in Islamabad to beg money for Afghanistan (and a lot for themselves), the House of Saud was taking advantage. of his very first International Rave Night of Electronic Music. which started over the weekend, hosted and paid for by the monarchy

Men and women were dancing side by side and alcohol-like liquid, smelling of alcohol and intoxicated as alcohol was served

The editor of the Goa Chronicle would have loved Riyadh these nights with musicians, dancers, DJs and beautiful women from all over the world!

Whatever his motivation, almighty Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman looks to the future

In 2015, some 150 beautiful women, from Brazil, Russia and elsewhere, were transported to a private island in the Maldives to party organized by MBS for $ 50 million with only “a few dozen” men from the region. Middle East.

The venue was Velaa, a private island in the Maldives “designed to be one of the most luxurious and expensive destinations in the world”.

As the boats arrived at the island’s wharf, the women were taken by golf cart to a medical facility where they were tested for STDs.

When news of the party broke, the prince and his pals ran off, the beauties left shortly after.

It took six years for extravagance to move from the Maldives to Riyadh, in three years the next mother of all parties will be at the royal palace

MBS saw what could happen during the Arab Spring, when the Muslim Brotherhood, a 90-year-old Islamist movement, temporarily won the presidency of Egypt, citing the high-flying and alcoholic manners of Saudi royalty as proof of the corruption of the Gulf regimes

For ben Salman, it is not so much a question of keeping two balls in the air simultaneously (fundamental Islam and liberalism) as of throwing a ball so high in the air (restriction) that we have all the time in the world to to occupy with the other (freedom)

He does it with panache

For decades Saudi Arabia with its Wahhabi brand of ultra-conservative Islam was increasingly viewed with suspicion, tolerated for Saudi Arabia’s oil wealth, but never loved.

Osama, son of Laden, did no good to his country’s reputation when he demolished the Twin Towers in 2001 with 15 Saudis among the hijackers

His stupidity led to the destruction of three countries – Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria as the non-Muslim world united in revenge

America has started closing its universities and training institutions to the Saudis

In 2001, New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani turned down a $ 10 million disaster relief donation from Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, who suggested that US Middle East policy contributed to the 11 September.

Interestingly, in November 2017, Alwaleed and other prominent Saudis were arrested in Saudi Arabia, in a purge that the Saudi government called an anti-corruption campaign.

He was released from detention after nearly three months following some kind of financial settlement,

Saudi Arabia’s rulers are under increasing pressure to address significant economic and demographic challenges so that they can remain a stable and prosperous country. These include a youth explosion with almost 45% of the population (currently around 26 million) under 25 and an increase in unemployment with almost a third of young Saudis unemployed.

As the demand for jobs increases, traditional employers – the public sector and the energy sector – are increasingly unable to provide opportunities.

Urbanized young Saudis demand reforms that will ease the country’s very restrictive social climate, especially with regard to gender issues

Mohammed bin Salman, knows that young Saudis are tired of decades of obscene spending by the ruling family and frustrated by the online accounts of the ostentatious homes of the princes, the follies at Harrods and the sports cars that race the streets of [London’s] Mayfair

They also want to have fun

Even though elements of repression are still evident, and human rights activists, women’s rights activists, journalists, former insiders and dissidents are systematically suppressed through tactics such as torture, imprisonment and murder , MBS has already instituted several popular social reforms and is now undertaking radical socio-economic changes to meet the challenges of the country

He created an entertainment authority that began hosting comedy shows, professional wrestling events, and monster truck rallies.

He was personally linked to the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post columnist who had criticized the Saudi government, but he denied any involvement in the murder.

The prince is behind the Saudi bombing campaign in Yemen which has exacerbated the humanitarian crisis and famine there, he has been implicated in the escalation of the diplomatic crisis in Qatar, the detention of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, the start of a diplomatic row with Canada, the alleged phone hack against Amazon President Jeff Bezos, and accusations of treason against his cousin and rival Muhammad bin Nayef in March 2020

In recent times, he has promoted reforms to redefine the image of his regime internationally and within the Kingdom.

Foremost among Saudi traditions that stand in the way of economic reform and modernization are those related to gender and the role of women in society.

He decreed restrictions on the powers of the religious police, the removal of the ban on female drivers and the weakening of the male guardianship system.

This decision was followed by further steps. The government announced that women would no longer be banned from attending public sporting events, and a senior Saudi religious official recently suggested that women should not be required to wear abaya and niqab (full veil). in public.

Other cultural developments during her reign include the first Saudi public concerts by a singer, the first Saudi sports stadium to admit women, an increased presence of women in the workforce, and the opening up of the country to tourists. international by introducing an electronic visa system.

The Saudi Vision 2030 program aims to diversify the country’s economy by investing in non-oil sectors, including technology and tourism.

Vision 2030 is an ambitious document that is candid about the need to open up Saudi society on many levels if economic reforms are to be successful.

Some elements of the traditional “male guardianship” system remain intact, although the government has committed to allowing women to travel abroad without a male family member accompanying them.

Well done MBS – you have chosen to advance your country’s clock by 1400 years

Yehi hai good choice baby!


Deepak vohra

Ambassador Dr Deepak Vohra, Made in India,
Special Advisor to the Prime Minister, Lesotho, South Sudan and Guinea-Bissau,
Special Advisor to the Autonomous Development Councils of Ladakh, Leh and Kargil, Gauri Sadan, 5 Hailey Road, New Delhi 110001.

I am not Indian because I live in India, I am Indian because India lives in me!

They said, Hide yourselves from the storm; I replied: I am the storm