23 September, Revisited

Today is the National Day of Saudi Arabia. On the same day two years ago, I wrote this, and it has become one of my favorite posts because I felt that it says a lot about myself and the message I’m trying to deliver through this blog. It saddens me to admit though that very little has changed since then. Have things become worse? No, because I don’t think it could get any worse. The country is changing, but at a glacial pace that is leaving me and many others dejected and frustrated. It is just disheartening to move in slow baby steps when we can — and should — take leaps ahead to the future. Here’s hoping our dreams won’t be deferred any longer.

P.S. I will be traveling with my family later this week and I don’t think I will be able to update the blog for two weeks or so. I will be back on the 2nd week of October.

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28 thoughts on “23 September, Revisited

  1. You sound very sad here! Don’t let this Pessimistic thing get into you Ahmad ^_^ I’ve been coming to this place regularly and was mostly inspired by your powerful will and courage.
    You might be right, but who knows! Perhaps those baby steps are best suited for this baby country while i’ve always believed that “great leaps” are “no good” for those who are still learning how to run!

    bottom line..
    We all love this country in many different ways as we like to show or maybe hide sometimes. But perhaps patience is all we need, long as it may seem, we shall get there oneday.

    Have a safe trip and enjoy your time ..

    P.S.
    Do leave your worries behind ^-^

  2. Ahmed, could you explain the image you posted?

    I wanted to say, that the national day is one more milestone into the identity building of the Saudi State, a very young and ‘not yet consolidated’ nation, in comparison to the long nation-states like Japan, Spain, UK, etc with several centuries of history…

    If the national identity is based on obedience to the Royal family and to just repeat as a parrot what a wonderful country is Saudi Arabia denies the deep problems that it suffers, it won’t help much.

    On the contrary, if the day is useful to build up a national conciousness and spread the seeds of a modern up to date civil society, independent from power, will certainly help improving the state of things in the long run.

  3. children today will became man tomorrow…know you’re taking baby steps, but if a new generation is rased believing in the things you believe the change will not happen faster in that time? everyone do what one can right? you’re doing your part ;)

  4. hey Ahmed…
    Baby steps goes a long way …
    I just wish ppl would read for Jobran Khaleel Jobran .. The piece about the children in the prophet just says it all …

    I’m unusually in Saudi these days .. Would be good to catch up with you , or shall i say meet you , Contact me on my email if u interested i’ll be leaving on the 4th of Oct.

    Sulaiman

  5. oh my ..
    I can feel you ..!
    the baby steps won’t be enough while you are having the desire to change this and that .. …still , there are 2 walls we are between which are the social ,and the dogma. Some of “the between” are in coma other are in denial while some are just like you very dynamic.
    I hope u enjoy the travel with ur family

  6. There is no plausible legal or religious argument against women exercising a basic divine and human right of driving. the arguments against are solely derived from cultural backwardness.
    I didnt see any steps forward baby or giant. Even worse, the continues silence in this matter is a leap backward.

    Safe travels, and Bon Voyage.
    Z.

  7. happy national day!!!
    i’m sad too…really sad even though i’m not saudi, i was born and raised here..and it’s more home than *back home* will ever be.
    here’s one thing i dream abt– when expats will have the same rights as the rest of the saudis. when the govt will TRULY live by the shar’iah. that’s when we’ll have the freedom of speech, women’s rights etc. cos Islam is perfect..if only it was truly implemented….:(

  8. youngMuslimah my dear, the truth is that SOME expats DO have more privileges than we Saudis do. They have a better claim into being respected, treated better and payed much more only because they’re (so) and (so) citizens.
    This double standard policy in segregation is part of the so undefined features of the legislations in this country. I have a Canadian friend who knows this better.
    And as you say, “Islam is Perfect”; but No one is! Those who implement it aren’t as well.

  9. ask the *third world* citizens. we may have been born and raised here, but theres no difference b/w us and those expats who came into the kingdom only today. but i guess i shouldnt get too hopeful. i mean let the saudi govt first give rights to their own people *sarcastic*

  10. “And as you say, “Islam is Perfect”; but No one is! Those who implement it aren’t as well”

    cos only Allah is perfect. if the saudi govt call themselves an “Islamic country”, at least they should TRY & act like one.. I know this is the prob with all the GCC countries..but since we’re talking abt saudi here..anyway this is a topic i can write a novel on..

  11. I wouldn’t worry about change so much. Speaking to you from the Western coast, and having been out of the country long enough to notice that the the expansion isn’t just going horizontally (in the form of more malls and cafes), but also vertically, where people actually are becoming more and more aware of aesthetics of life and intellectual richness.

    I wouldn’t want to move back to Saudi just yet, but if I had to, I know I wouldn’t be choking for intellectual and social freedom anymore. And that’s good news.

    For now.

  12. no one can accuse you personally of a failure of nerve or a lack of courage. in this you have been fully exemplary. but there comes a time to take steps other than baby ones.

  13. Dear Ahmad

    I realy can’t see any steps, and if there is they must be running in circles. The people are moving but government (instead of being the engine that drives the wheel of progress) is playing the role of breaks and slowing it down.

    Still I think that the role of a good writer (such as you) is not to seek results but to tell the truth as he sees it, and hope he is on the right track.

    And (a big and here) remember to feel good about taking this lonely road, enjoying the greet company he meets along the way, and appreciating the gift of God that he is not on the other side of the road.

    Keep blogging with a smile Ahmad, you will have more effect that way (and because I think you have a nice smile).

    Regards,

  14. السعوديه ضحية لعملية نصب عالمية

    الطاقة النووية وحتى السلمية منها لها مخاطر منها أنه لايوجد حل معقول للتخلص من النفايات النووية .. اذا تخلصنا منها فى البحر أو فى أعماق التربة فهى ستسمم المحاصيل والاسماك .. واذا حدث لاقدر الله زلازال وانفجرت المحطة فهذا انفجار نووى كامل .. أما اذا أخطأ عامل فالخطورة قائمة وهناك حادثة “ثرى ميل ايلاند” بالولايات المتحدة و” تشرنوبل ” فى أوكرانيا بسبب التقصير البشرى.. هذا بالاضافة الى ارتفاع نسبة الاصابة بسرطان الدم للبشر المقيم قرب المحطات النووية ” طبقا للتقارير البريطانية والألمانية”.

    ارجو من كل من يقراء هذا ان يزور ( مقالات النووى .. كمان وكمان !! – كارت أحمر – كارت أخضر ) فى هذا الرابط:
    http://www.ouregypt.us/culture/main.html

    لأفضل تصفح لهذا الموقع ينصح باستخدام برنامج
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