As in the rest of the Arab world, Saudi Arabia's blogs have been full of commentary on the events in Gaza. However, there is no consensus as to who is politically responsible.
Saudiwoman is pleased to see what her country is doing:
It makes my heart swell with pride to know that my country is trying to do something for the Palestinians in Gaza. A friend who works in the military hospital here in Riyadh told me that for the past two days the hospital has been discharging people left and right to accommodate the wounded from Gaza and today the first airlift arrived. Everyone here in Saudi feels helpless and frustrated when we see the photos of the Israeli air raids aftermath. The photos of bleeding children and leveled buildings are driving us crazy. We need to have something to do. It’s so bad that many people went to government hospitals wanting to donate blood to the Palestinians. So many that the Health minister had to issue a statement saying that the Palestinians need supplies not blood.
But Ahmed Ba-Aboud has a different perspective:
Blogger and journalist Yaser Al-Ghaslan is also frustrated:
و آخر يتكلم عن جهوده في صياغة مشروع قرار عربي لشجب ما يجري بينما مجموعه منهم يخططون لتناول الموضوع ضمن أجندة إجتماعهم المقرر أصلا سابقا، (كلام كلام كلام كلام(.
[…] أحبتي نحن امه لم يبقى منها شئ سوى إسمها، فالشعب لا يعدو من كونه (صوت) يهلل بجميع الإتجاهات حتى اصبح نشازاً و مثيراً للأعصاب لدرجة القرف
Abdul Rahman Allahem thinks Egypt has been unfairly blamed:
Mohammed Abdullah Al-Shahri thinks there's no point blaming any Arab nation:
Writing in another post, Yaser Al-Ghaslan has a very clear idea of who is to blame:
Hala, who currently lives in the USA, asks:
Would wars and weapons be the only means – as ever – to reach resolutions and peace?
Sabria Jawhar says:
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was on an Arabic news show last week in which he basically bragged that Israel is the biggest, baddest and most powerful country in the region and it won’t hesitate to use its might to protect itself. Well, my question is if Israel is indeed the biggest and most powerful country in the Middle East, why doesn’t it take the high road and expend a lot of that negative energy into something positive, like sparing the lives of innocents and demanding the resumption of peace talks with Hamas. The sad fact is the Gaza Strip’s civilians are simply pawns in a power struggle that should have ended long ago. And the price will be more blood.
And Ahmed Al-Omran reports on some demonstrations that have taken place:
On the 19th of December, a few hundred people demonstrated in Qatif, a predominantly Shiite area east of Saudi Arabia, to protest the Israeli siege on Gaza. The protesters lifted posters of Hizbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasarallah and chanted anti-Israeli and anti-US slogans. According to the website Rasid, the demonstration ended peacefully under the eyes of security forces who watched closely. However, tens of young men who demonstrated were arrested in the following week. After Israel started their barbarian attack on Gaza last Saturday, thousands of angry demonstrators took to the streets in Egypt, Jordan, Yemen and other countries. In Saudi Arabia, where the law does not give people the right to demonstrate publicly, more than 60 political and human rights activists signed a letter to the Ministry of Interior asking for permission to hold a peaceful demonstration in Riyadh. While activists in Riyadh were waiting for a reply from MOI, protesters in Qatif demonstrated again on Monday, but this time they were faced by the security forces and riot police who fired rubber bullets to break up the protest. Mansour al-Turki, spokesman of MOI, denied that such protest took place. “Street protests are banned in the Kingdom and that the security forces will intervene to enforce the ban,” he added. His denial is not surprising, but everyone knows that people of Qatif have a long history in street protests with major demonstrations held in 1979, 2002 and 2006. […] People should be allowed to protest, but it seems that the government is afraid that people will realize the power of public demonstration and later use it not just to protest against Israel but also to demand their rights. Giving permission to these demonstrations would set a precedent that the government clearly doesn’t want to deal with its results and consequences. 2009 will be interesting.