The news is that Saudi Arabia … yes, that well-known bastion of peace-loving tolerant humanists … has criticised Norway’s human rights record, accusing the country of failing to protect its Muslim citizens and not doing enough to counter criticism of the prophet Mohammed.
The Independent reports …
The gulf state called for all criticism of religion and of prophet Mohammed to be made illegal in Norway.
…Russia meanwhile called for Norway to clamp down on expressions of religious intolerance and and criticised the country’s child welfare system.
This all leaves me scratching my head thinking … WTF did Norway do to merit all this attention?
OK, so what is going on here is that the UN holds a Universal Periodic Review, in which 14 States are scheduled to have their human rights records examined, and it was Norway’s turn.
This criticism is of course a complete farce, the Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende who listened to all this responded as follows …
“It is a paradox that countries which do not support fundamental human rights have influence on the council, but that is the United Nations,”
No kidding, as noted by one commenter, being criticised by Saudi Arabia on your Human rights record is like being told off by Hitler for being a tad too critical of the folks down at the local synagogue.
OK, since Saudi Arabia has raised the topic, lets consider their specific track record …
- Saudi women face discrimination in almost every aspect of their lives – They don’t get to drive, in fact they don’t get to do anything without permission from a male guardian
- Saudi Arabian law does not recognize religious freedom, and so the public practice of all non-Muslim religions is actively prohibited
- Saudi judges have harshly punished confessed `witches` for what at worst appears to be fraud, but may well be harmless acts.
- There have exactly zero LBGT rights
- If you are unfortunate enough to suffer from HIV or AIDS, most hospitals will refuse to treat you.
- There is no freedom of the press, the press and other forms of communicative media, including television and radio broadcasting and Internet reception, are actively censored
- Political parties are banned
- They even recently declared atheists to be terrorists.
- Justice is also a complete farce – you have amputations of hands and feet for robbery, and flogging for lesser crimes such as “sexual deviance” and drunkenness. In the 2000s, it was reported that women were sentenced to lashes for adultery; the women were actually victims of rape, but because they could not prove who the perpetrators were, they were deemed guilty of committing adultery. Then in stark contrast, a cleric who recently raped and murdered his 5 year old daughter walks free after paying a modest fine.
- Oh and let’s not forget, that even thinking the wrong thoughts merits a death sentence. If you leave Islam because you no longer believe then the sentence is death.
Now you can be the judge, given the farcical “human rights” concerns raised by Saudi Arabia about Norway, and the ever so real human rights concerns raised by every single thinking individual on the entire planet about Saudi Arabia, the question for you is this – which specific nation would you prefer to live in?
Think carefully now … take your time … (I reckon you should need as much as several nano-seconds to reach the right answer).