Saudi Bloggers:

If you missed it, there's a nifty article in the Weekly Standard this week on Saudi Arabian bloggers as a force for liberalization and women's rights, "Blogging Saudi Arabia: Undermining the Wahhabis, one post at a time." On a related topic, Hugh Hewitt has a long, interesting article in the same issue of the magazine on the Columbia School of Journalism.

AGM (mail):
On a recent trip to Bahrain, I had an opportunity to meet with a group of Wahabi Saudis. Being well aware of their extremist reputation, I was shocked at how easy they were to speak to and how many of their ideas reflected a understanding of the world that frankly seemed more sensitive and open than that of many Americans.

For example, the group I met with, comprised mainly of older men, expressed how they distinguished the American people from the American government, and stressed that the extermist factions of their religions did not represent the views of the majority of people and shouldn't prevent the rest of the world in seeking their cooperation in defeating these sects.

I hope techology continues to make inroads into the seemingly inpentrable fortress of Saudi culture and I hope we Westerners encourage and support the efforts of Saudis in making this happen.
1.25.2006 12:44am
Just wait until the Virtue Police start chopping off the bloggers hands and hanging them around their necks along with the keyboard.
1.25.2006 10:38am
JBurgess (mail) (www):
I'm in Saudi right now, both to fact-check for my own blog and to meet up with some Saudi bloggers. I'll be reporting at Crossroads Arabia in the coming days.
1.27.2006 4:08pm