The Middle East and it’s politics is, no doubt, convoluted and, at times, confusing. To keep this simple. Saudi Arabia has many branches of the Royal Family. Prince Alwaleed is, basically being ousted as reported by Reuters. Alwaleed’s Uncle, King Abdullah operates Saudi Arabia under Sharia Law. Alwaleed owns part of Fox News, Century 21 and is known as a global investor and according to Forbes is the 45th richest man in the world.
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal was arrested in Saudi Arabia yesterday. Why is this important? As per Reuters “This consolidates Prince Mohammed’s bin Salman’s control of security institutions which had previously been headed by separate branches of the ruling family.”
News of the purge came in the early hours of Sunday after King Salman decreed the creation of an anti-corruption committee chaired by his 32-year-old son Prince Mohammed, who has amassed power since rising from obscurity less than three years ago. The new body was given broad powers to investigate cases, issue arrest warrants and travel restrictions and freeze assets. “The homeland will not exist unless corruption is uprooted and the corrupt are held accountable,” the royal decree said.
Analysts said the goal of the purge went beyond corruption and aimed to remove potential opposition to Prince Mohammed as he pushes an ambitious and controversial reform agenda.”
OLD NEWS about Prince Alwaleed’s holdings with Fox News : Prince Alwaleed’s uncle, King Abdullah, actually rules Saudi Arabia under Sharia law. Prince Alwaleed, who is reported to enjoy a close personal relationship with Murdoch, has become so enamored of Murdoch’s media success that he is starting his own 24 hour news station.
Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch has partnered with Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal to launch a new 24-hour news network for the Arab world, a move that has drawn mockery from Murdoch’s critics and questions from media experts. First and foremost among those questions is whether a news service linked to the famously pro-Israeli Fox News will resonate among Arab viewers. “Fox News, famous for its uncomplicated, gung-ho and pro-Israel stance whilst maintaining a mocking notion of neutrality, does not seem like a likely partner” for the Middle Eastern news network, writes David Roberts at the Gulf Blog. “Their coverage of Middle Eastern issues is far from renowned or competent.” The new channel, based in Saudi Arabia, “will focus on development in Saudi Arabia and the Arab world on the political, economic and social fronts,” Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the world’s 19th-wealthiest person according to Forbes, said in a statement. The network will be competing with the two principal international Arabic news services, Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya, and “is going to become an addition and an alternative for viewers,” bin Talal said.”
Prince Mohammad who is a socially open ruler, and appears to lean toward western ways, is the one who lifted the right for women to drive in Saudi Arabia. Per the New York Times “Saudi Arabia announced on Tuesday (September 26, 2017) that it would allow women to drive, ending a longstanding policy that has become a global symbol of the oppression of women in the ultraconservative kingdom.
The change, which will take effect in June 2018, was announced in a royal decree read live on state television and in a simultaneous media event in Washington. The decision highlights the damage that the ban on women driving has done to the kingdom’s international reputation and its hopes for a public relations benefit from the reform.”
Mohammad bin Salman, is the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, First Deputy Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia and the youngest minister of defense in the world. Mohammad bin Salman is also president of the Council for Economic and Development Affairs. He has been described as the power behind the throne of his father, King Salman. He was appointed Crown Prince in June 2017 following his father’s decision to remove Muhammad bin Nayef from all positions, making Mohammad bin Salman heir apparent to the throne.
Out with Alwaleed and in with Mohammad. What do you think of that? Drop a line below and let us know.
(Feature photo credit to Human Rights Watch Saudi Arabia: End Male Guardianship)