How can we improve the world’s image of Saudi Arabia?

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By Majed Abdullah – Al-Sharq : –

A few months ago, I delivered a speech inside the hall of one of the most prestigious universities in the United Kingdom. When I finished, the university president looked at the faculty members and said, “That is great.”

This is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia we want, a Kingdom that is viewed by the Western world as great. We want the entire world to talk about our accomplishments. The problem is that our media is not doing a good job and is not showing the whole world the true image of our country.

Unfortunately, all that the media focuses on and transmits to the Western world are videos of young Saudi men engaging in car drifting, or some funny clips or videos of Saudis flaunting their fancy cars on the streets of London.

We want our country to have strong news channels that can highlight facts and shed light on the accomplishments of young Saudi people. This is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia that we want. Numerous achievements have been made by Saudis in the field of education, economics, etc. We want the world to know about them.

For example, the execution of terrorists has proved that our media is not up to scratch. We should have different channels in different languages to highlight the positive role the Kingdom plays on various levels, regionally and internationally. We should change the stereotypes held by Westerners about our country.

Politically speaking, the Kingdom has restored balance in the Middle East following recent developments in the region. Let us look at Iran’s sectarian interference in the region and how Arab countries have suffered because of this interference that aims to sow sedition. Iran depicts Shiites as being humiliated and deprived of their rights by Sunnis while Shiites and Sunnis have both lived together in harmony for years without any problems.

Economically speaking, oil will run out one day and our continuous reliance on it as the main source of income will be a terrible mistake. Most of our population is young. We have pressing issues such as housing, education, infrastructure and high living expenses that need swift action and solutions.

Socially speaking, we only have two classes: the working class and the well-to-do. The middle class is disappearing. Nobody can deny that our society has classes. We want a Kingdom that has no classes, a Kingdom that does not differentiate between a prince, a minster, a businessman or an average citizen.

Before concluding, I would like to remind all Saudi students abroad of the fact that they should reflect a good image of the country and make others look up to us and not down on us.

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