والله ما مثلك بهالدنيا بلد

Saudi Arabia is one of the worst places on earth to be a blogger. Or a woman. Or a lawyer. Or a human rights activist. Or just someone looking for a job.

Sometimes, it is not even a good place to be a Saudi.


The title comes from a well known national song here. It can be translated as: this country is like no other.

24 thoughts on “والله ما مثلك بهالدنيا بلد

  1. My first impression, which I got from the title was a more positive take on things.

    I always thought whom ever it was that wrote that song was on cloud nine.. since he begins the song with “over the clouds”

    But I have to disagre with u, it’s not the worst… But I’m not sure if it’s getting better though

  2. yeah and we are “surviving heroes”
    but I don’t agree Souma Cats are fine, Camels too. :P
    lets use the law of attraction!!

    we are fine
    we are fine
    we are fine
    we are fine
    we are fine

  3. We do have our shortcomings, but we certainly aren’t unique, nor are we the worst by any measure.
    Keep ignoring the positive my dear Ahmed as you always do for “obvious reasons”.
    Keep sighting negative comments by pointing at the most ridiculous arguments made by very well known individuals and organizations who either share your “obvious reasons” and neglect to mention where we were, and where we are today.
    It is really interesting that you are resorting to such articles and organizations to support your argument! It shows how bankrupt you really are.
    It is a sad situation! Isn’t it???

  4. OMG

    I’m a woman ,a blogger, an in-company lawyer and trying to find a new job …

    4 of 5…

    So I guess I can’t send any CV down there…or move…


    It’s a pitty that KSA rulers have not evolutioned a little. Open a little bit their mind does not mean going to the other extreme. I believe a balance can be found, just have to find the way, but for that they have to think a little bit. THINK, not follow what established just because is tradition without thinking if its the best for society.

    I feel so sorry for that in general, and in special for woman. It has taken hundreds of years to realize we are equal to man, no inferior. I can’t understand that in today’s world there are still some countries that consider women (or people from another race…) 2nd class people. So many prejudices.

  5. @SaudiAspire- “”the mind is a terrible thing to waste and our dear host is not wasting his!

    He is a thinker and a young man struggling to be himself in a “world” where individuality, compromise, “equality”, “freedom” are not the norm and where “conformity”, “uniformity” and “silence” are….

    So please be of the first group and not of the last- like you, he is entitled to his opinion and doesn’t need to be castigated in such a way for having one! And who are you to judge where he gets his ideas from?

    Nuff said!

  6. @ INAL “Judge” I didn’t. I was referring to the articles that were used to support his point.
    Unfortunately “individuality, compromise, equality, as well as freedom” were curtailed for the sake of “conformity, and uniformity” and people were “silenced” for the same reason. But it wasn’t the government alone that made the choice here. And it wasn’t the path the government wanted to follow. It is a very thin line they are walking. Our majority has a certain ideology. We have to navigate our way through it. If it were for the majority, not even television would’ve been allowed.
    Ahmed knows (being a student at KSU) how the majority thinks. He knows that the government is light years ahead in many issues. Saudi is not only major cities where we live. It is a very complicated matter. It needs time and a great effort that our government is trying hard to resolve.
    Again, we are far from perfect. But we are not standing still. And this is what I was talking about when I wrote that we have to accentuate the positive.

  7. بروذير أحمد- هناك بيت آخر يطابق الواقع حد الثمالة وفيه يقول القائل



    الله معاكي!!!!

  8. “Unfortunately “individuality, compromise, equality, as well as freedom” were curtailed for the sake of “conformity, and uniformity” and people were “silenced” for the same reason”

    By whom?

    “Our majority has a certain ideology”

    Democracy is based on the will (ideology) of the majority.

    Where’s the problem?

  9. Limited (or in some extreme cases lack) of awareness is a big issue that hinders a responsible enforcement of the will of the majority. An open minded, conscientious, and civilized majority would be the perfect remedy for our ills.
    We are a big part of the problem. But we are changing!

  10. You know that Business Week article is silly Ahmed. Who the hell would want to work in Nairobi Kenya instead of Riyadh Saudi Arabia?

  11. I do agree with SaudiAspire that it is not only the government that is making SA a country of hell to live in. (I do not know why I feel like SA is a part from the hell that was brought to this life).

    the majority of people are standing against development or as they call it westernization. A term that has unfortunately been used to reject any change to betterness.
    Tow examples support Saudiaspire in regard to the government aheadness. Women educationa and TV; and all of us know how they were backed up vigorously by king Faisal back then. Women rights are going through the same process nowadays. Yet, the government is still the only resort for those who are seeking fast change. If change activists are going to do it thier way then it might take us many decades to get to a point where living in SA becomes enjoyable.

  12. Democracy is based on the will (ideology) of the majority.

    Where’s the problem?

    Tyranny of the mob makes for spectacularly horrid living conditions for the minority, of course. I can’t believe you decided to type up such an obtuse statement.

    A majority of the US South decided that slavery is okay during the 1700’s up into the US Civil War.

    It doesn’t mean that SLAVERY as an institution/tradition/practice is OKAY.

    And Ahmed, keep up your observations and your complaining. Speaking out about the truth of the absurd restrictions put on you as you live it is very important.

  13. Linguist:

    It is true that the majority of our people are against what they view as westernization.

    A question for us all is that ther exists no real and agreed definition of what this term “westernization” means to which the majority are against.

    It clearly does not mean Westernization in a literal sense, insmuch as our nation strongly supports modern medicine from the West, modern engineering methods from the West, and other technology.

    It seems to refer to certain elements of Western culture, although that too is unclear.

    It must be remembered that important elements of Western culture came from Arab lands centuries ago, often as a re-transmission of ancient Grecian culture.

    To those who would feel discouraged in the current state of affairs, I would note that there exist many interesting teachings in Sufi works that are helpful in developing a broader and tranquilizing sense of perspective.

    It would perhaps be helpful were they to be more widely available.

  14. so sarcastic

    can’t disagree & I insist aggressively with the fake glory

    but bear in mind, Ahmed, it’s the best place for day dreamers.

  15. Hello,
    I am a french young woman, and I’ve just discovered your website …
    Living with such a tiny freedom is unbelievable for us, western people …
    Hope you’ll find a way to get out of here.
    We are young, we are the future of these countries !
    Kind regards

  16. I can’t agree more.Not that I have ever been to the Saudi ever, but then laws are officially so women unfriendly that it breaks my heart.
    I think the women of your country must sent a signed official written petition with as many signatures as possible, to the parliament(if there is one) or the kings, asking for equal rights, especially the right to drive cars themselves.

  17. Ahmad,
    Democracy is defined as “the doctrine that the numerical majority of an organized group can make decisions binding on the whole group” … or simply: majority rule.
    It takes no rocket scientist to figure that the majority of Saudis prefer the “Saudi Way” that you consistently criticize. Hence, democracy prevails when ideology prevails.
    The Saudi style, that you over and over again try to illustrate as a backward system (yet for some reason it still makes the first half of your blog name,) in no doubt has a room for improvement. However, the benefits that this system brings to the table, especially compared to other systems, are never mentioned in your blog, did you notice?
    Your never ending insults and sarcastic analysis is, unfortunately, recognized as the “Saudi View” making others assume is the general perception around here.
    And No. I will not start a blog *Saudi Thoub* and start clarifying most of the nonsense you post. First because I do not represent all Saudis – I’m sure many will disagree with some of my orientations. Second, I don’t wear Thoub a lot. However I will ask you: if you’re not so Saudi, what’s up with the name?
    Bottom line: I and most others like it the way it is. If you don’t, what’s keeping you?

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