On the 22nd of March, Code Pink again disrupted an event featuring Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. This time it was a fancy dinner at Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium, which attendees had to run a gauntlet of protesters to enter. One of the Code Pink activists got inside before being expelled. The Prince himself found his motorcade jeered by screaming protesters.
The makeup of the crowd going to the Prince’s dinner was interesting. Almost NO Saudi women were visible. A few very rich and very thin Western Women attended, more than a few wearing fur coats made by killing animals. Senators, Congressmen, and other assorted US men in very expensive suits mingled with Saudi men. Presumably the poor who don’t get the oil money in Saudi Arabia (just the punishments) were no better represented than Saudi women, so over half of Saudi Arabia’s population went unrepresented. No matter: Saudi Arabia makes no claim to democracy, only to a curious hybrid of absolute monarchy with theocratic religious rule. For as long as absolute kings have existed anywhere, they have always been head choppers. The only thing unusual about this in Saudi Arabia is that it still exists today.
Code Pink and other activists invoked a variety of issues against the Senators, Congressmen, and assorted corporate drones attending this lavish dinner for a Crown Prince who will be the next (and hopefully the last) King of Saudi Arabia. The protest was primarily about Saudi Arabia’s murderous bombing of Yemen. Also invoked was Saudi responsability for the 9-11 terror attacks, in which Saudi billionaire Bin Laden and his 14 Saudis out of 19 hijackers essentially bombed the United States itself with its own airliners and all the passengers on board.
There is also the oppression of women, the execution of GLBTQ folks, the floggings, and amputations, and beheadings in Saudi Arabia. These take place in Rydah at a place known locally as “chop-chop square.” Most of the people of Saudi Arabia are victims of the head-chopping, theocratic absolute monarchy. Both theocracy and absolute monarchy are forms of government considered to be to the right even of Fascism.
Speaking of Fascism, the bombing of Yemen by Saudi Arabia (and of Afrin by Turkey) is the sort of thing the Nazis first showed the world at Guernica during the Spanish Civil War, and then expanded in the London Blitz. In the rest of the Second World War the US, Britain, and Russia paid the Nazis back in their own coin-cities blasted to ruins. Photos from both Afrin and Yemen today resemble photos of WWII bombed-out cities from Guernica to Berlin.
Two considerations likely drive the unlikely alliance of the US with the Saudi royal family and Wahhabi religious establishment. One is the addict-pusher relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia over the question of oil. The other is that Saudi Arabia is regarded (as Israel is) as an “unsinkable aircraft carrier” and in fact was used for exactly that during the first Iraq War.
A Code Pink member dressed as a head-chopping, bomb-dropping Saudi king
Code Pink’s banners
Middle finger to the probable next King of Saudi Arabia