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No more elections in Saudi Arabia?

May 19, 2009

imagesIt is being reported that Saudi roal family is discontinuing its limited experiment with local democracy.   Perhaps the Royals were concerned of a repeat of what happened in Gaza, where the most politically organized folks happen to be the nutty Islamist fringe?  Then again, allowing the crazies into the political process would be the standard refrain for any government looking to repress dissent.

Just five days earlier, a group of activists eager for a more representative form of government sent a letter to King Abdullah and other members of the royal family. They called for the royal family to allow for an elected parliament with legislative authority, term limits for royals in appointed posts and to have someone outside the royal family be appointed as prime minister.

Without saying directly, the signatories had called for creation of a constitutional monarchy — including public accountability — a prospect the royal family has demonstrated it is adamantly opposed to and views as a threat.

Perhaps the Royals were concerned of a repeat of what happened in Gaza, where the most politically organized folks happen to be the nutty Islamist fringe?  Then again, allowing the crazies into the political process would be the standard refrain for any government looking to repress dissent.

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