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Is this Saudi Arabia

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Is this Saudi Arabia

Post  katertaif on Wed 14 Oct - 14:21

The outburst of publicity for this 74 year old man caught transporting alcohol does surprise me. I feel there must be more to the story. All told on three contracts, I did over 10 years in Saudi Arabia, much of it on married status with my wife. We drank, and most expats I know did. Providing you observed one or two basic common sense rules, you don't get caught. Because to the best of my belief, the police weren't trying to catch you drinking. If you did something stupid, and made them sit up and take notice, then yes, there may be consequences.

From reading about him, I spent the morning researching reports of similar incidents. While I have never been in jail there (or anywhere else) A very good friend of mine was sentenced to 50 lashes and deportation. (He agreed with me afterwards it was his own stupidity) He was back in Jeddah a year later, still enjoying a drink, but sadly having learned nothing from his experience.

When our wives rang me about it I rang the Embassy. One of the pieces I read his morning was to the effect that the Embassy does nothing. They certainly pulled out all the stops for Gordon, so why they should be so dilatory in other cases I don't know. Unless it makes better copy. As for their human rights record, I fully agree, abysmal doesn't come near explaining it. On the other hand I don't actually know anyone who has been forced to go there, at least not from Britain

What it really comes down to is that we all know the rules in Saudi Arabia. It's a dry country You are not supposed to drink there. In case of doubt, you are told at the induction stage. If you drink, and get caught, you should be prepared for the consequences. I would suspect that due to his age, this man will be spared the flogging, but I would like to know the rest of the tale.

In Taif the Colonel from the airbase came and welcomed us all. Then he said he wanted to touch on a taboo subject. He realised we were all expats, and most of us liked a drink. I'll give It to you straight he said. If you restrict yourselves to beer and wine, and give me no trouble off the compound, you will have no trouble from me. I don't know how much further backwards he could have bent, but still we got idiots.

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