• Hani Naqshabandi: “We Saudis are not greatly different from anyone else, in money or knowledge or health. Poverty has no homeland, for it thrives in every country, ignorance exists here as it does everywhere else, and health problems that others have elsewhere are also found here. We might be better than others at some things, but they are also better than us at others, but no one is “better”, in an absolute sense, than anyone else.”
  • Popular Mechanics correctly notes that King Fahd International Airport in Dammam is the the largest airport in the world in terms of landmass. It is so enormous that it is actually about 28.5 square kilometers larger than Bahrain. What they fail to mention though is that it’s so empty most of the time it feels more like a ghost town than an international airport. The General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) is rarely in the news, but it’s actually one of the worst performing government departments. (via jb)
  • Speaking of ghost towns, Nathan Deuel writes about life inside the DQ. Few weeks ago I wanted to visit Nathan’s wife Kelly at their house in Riyadh and he had to come pick me up at the checkpoint at the DQ entrance. He wrote about it here.
  • How do KAUST students entertain themselvesUPDATE: After speaking with the video owner, I decided to remove it because it might compromise her safety. She did not ask me to remove it, but I thought it would be better for everyone. Sorry.
  • Jeddah United basketball team has joined efforts with automobile distributor Haji Husein Alireza & Co. Ltd. to launch Khobar United, the first of its kind women’s sports organization in the EP. When I visited Jeddah two years ago I had a chance to attend a kids tournament organized by Jeddah United where I also met the team’s captain Lina al-Maeena. Sports in girls’ schools is still being debated, but what these guys have been doing is really impressive.

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