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Friday, September 11, 2009


There is a veil hung over Saudi Arabia that distorts the reality that resides behind it. Lift the veil, however, and you will find that many conceptions of Saudi Arabia are misconceptions. It is a country with many areas of beautiful oases and dramaticmountain-tops, beaches and rivers. Itscities, although having no nightlife, do have plenty of cafes and restaurants. There are alsoshops galore, from the souk to the huge department store. Indeed, Saudi Arabia's major cities are generally very modern, with amenities of a high standard.

In the year AD622, Prophet Muhammad launched a successful campaign to recapture Mecca from the Persians, who had made it a province of their empire. Afterwards, the Muslims would continue their expansion across the Arabian peninsula and into Syria, Mesopotamia (Iraq), Persia, and westwards into Egypt and North Africa.

As the
birthplace of Muhammad, Saudi Arabia contains the holiest cities of Islam. The Saudis take the responsibility for protecting the integrity of this holy land with utmost seriousness, and Islamic laws are strictly enforced by the mutawwa (religious police).

To the non-Islamic eye, Saudi Arabia also succeeds in being
beautiful andpraiseworthy. This complex country is likely to remain a significant part of the worldwide map for some time.