Tags: Exclusive Interviews | ISIS/Islamic State | MidPoint | War on Terrorism | saudi arabia | intolerance | isis

Ex-US Ambassador: Saudi Arabia Is Exporting Intolerance

By    |   Wednesday, 03 Jun 2015 06:34 PM

Former U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia James Smith tells Newsmax that Saudi Arabia, which wants to head up the U.N. Human Rights Council, needs to understand that when it exports its brand of Islam, it is exporting intolerance.

"They have to come to terms with the unintended consequence of their regional policy of exporting their brand of Islam, which in their mind is stability," Smith told Ed Berliner on "MidPoint" on Newsmax TV on Wednesday.

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"It actually has been the exporting of intolerance in the same way that Iran has to come to terms with the unintended consequences of their strategy since 1979 of instability in the region," said Smith, who served under President Barack Obama from September 2009 until September 2013.

The question, according to the former ambassador is "what do you do about it?"

"I'm not sure that the appropriate course is just continue to isolate them. In my view, sunlight is the best antiseptic," Smith said.

"These are issues that are important for public debate and they're important for debate at the United Nations," he said.

"Saudi Arabia faces a very unique challenge now because the Daesh [Islamic State or ISIS] has come home to roost and with the tax in the eastern province over these last few weeks and the attack at al-Ahsa last Fall... it has become an attack on Saudi citizens," he explained.

"At some point they have got to stand up in their role, their self-appointed role as the custodians of the two holy mosques and stand up for all Muslims," he added.

Saudi Arabia is seeking to lead the U.N. Human Rights Council. This has sparked an uproar since the Middle Eastern nation has one of the worst records when it comes to human rights violations, the International Business Times reports. 

According to Middle East political analyst Catherine Shakdam of Mint Press News, who joined Smith on "MidPoint," ISIS and Saudi Arabia "essentially... share in the same ideology, which is Wahabi Islam."

"When it comes to Saudi Arabia, we need to really open our eyes and realize that they are not just sponsoring terror, they're actually promoting the ideology of terror," Shakdam explained.

"To allow such a country to rise at the presidency of the U.N. Human Rights Council would actually equate to almost legalizing these kinds of violations against human rights, and that to me is very frightening," she added.

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Former U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia James Smith tells Newsmax that Saudi Arabia, which wants to head up the U.N. Human Rights Council, needs to understand that when it exports its brand of Islam, it is exporting intolerance.
saudi arabia, intolerance, isis
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2015-34-03
Wednesday, 03 Jun 2015 06:34 PM
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