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Today –  November 25- is the “International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women” and to mark that, I wanted to bring a news item highlighting structural violence against humans with the particular DNA code XX. In Saudi Arabia women are not allowed to travel without a male relative’s permission and most of the time supervision. BBC two days ago reported that a new SMS-service alerts men when “their women” are leaving the country.

I am disgusted. So it, thankfully, some of the Saudi men interviewd by the BBC. However the new ‘initiative’ stands. Restricting someone’s right to free movement is a violation of civil and human rights. Yet, so uproar is heard. You know what that reminds me of? This scene from the West Wing. It aired in 2002. How sad and infuriating that nothing has changed in 10 years!

Saudi Arabia remains a potential ally for Israel against Iran, and as the U.S. State Department says in their latest fact sheet on U.S.-Saudi relations from the summer 2012:

The two countries share common concerns and consult closely on regional security, oil exports and imports, and sustainable development, including issues such as the Middle East peace process and shared interests in the Persian Gulf. Saudi Arabia is a strong partner in counterterrorism efforts, providing military, diplomatic, and financial cooperation. It works closely with U.S. law enforcement to safeguard both countries’ national security interests.

And of course, there is the OIL. What was I thinking — human rights or oil. The ideals never stood a chance.

The page even mentions how both countries are members of the same int’l organisations. Like the UN. The same UN that has declared Nov. 25 a day to fight all expressions of violence against women. I guess both governments conveniently ignore that day in the calendar. Sic transit gloria mundi!

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