The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

New Saudi opposition group

Never heard of this before:
CAIRO -- A Saudi opposition group is set to breathe new life into the kingdom's dormant political reform movement. But in a sign of changing alliances, its founder hopes for a boost from public anger over government criticism of Hezbollah.
Founded in Paris by the exiled son of the last ruler of part of present-day Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Democratic Opposition Front claims about 2,000 members, mostly in Saudi Arabia.
It aims to provide an umbrella network for secular and Islamist activists both inside and outside the country who are campaigning for the overthrow of the al-Saud ruling family.
"We have founded the Saudi Democratic Opposition Front to push for 100 percent democracy in the country," said Talal Mohammed Al-Rasheed, the son of the last ruler of the independent Rashidi emirate, which reigned in Saudi Arabia's northwestern region of Hail from 1835 to 1921.
"If the al-Saud [family] introduce genuine democracy, we will support them. But if they do not, we will push by all peaceful means to make them give up their power," said Mr. Al-Rasheed, 72, who still likes to be addressed as Prince Talal.
I don't know what to think of these people. I found this interesting though:

Earlier this month, Mr. Al-Rasheed gave an hourlong interview to the Paris bureau chief of the Pan-Arab, Qatar-based Al Jazeera satellite news network. After announcing the formation of his party and advertising the forthcoming interview with Mr. Al-Rasheed on its news bar at the bottom of the screen, Al Jazeera suddenly removed the information and the interview was spiked.

"My sources told me that after they saw the information on Al Jazeera's news ticker, the Saudi government called the station more than five times in one hour, pleading with them not to air it," Mr. Al-Rasheed said, adding that Al Jazeera had "obviously caved in to the pressure."
Et tu, Jazeera?