There’s Corruption and There’s Corruption — But the Al-Sauds Take the Cake

Hossein Askari
3 min readNov 26, 2022

Does Saudi Arabia’s Constitution Condone Corruption and Murder?

Let’s admit it upfront. Corruption is everywhere in the world. In the United States, big time donors give big bucks or “dark money” to politicians to legislate and change laws in their favor. Still we are lucky in the United States that we can call out corruption and face no prison term and dismemberment. This is far from the case in Saudi Arabia, where such criticism of the Al-Sauds, the ruling tribe, could land you in jail or even result in your execution.

In Saudi Arabia, the king can take what he wishes from the national treasury. You might think how can this be a country? It sounds more like a family business or a ranch. And you’d be right as the Al-Sauds, a tribe of more than 20,000, see the country as theirs — their ancestor Abdul-Aziz took over the land through treachery using knives and proclaiming it as His kingdom in September of 1932. And as the Al-Sauds say, others could have done the same, but they didn’t. It’s ours. End of story!

You might ask, don’t they have a constitution? They would respond, yes, our constitution is the holy Quran and just read the words on our flag. So what does the Quran say about such behavior?

All depletable resources, which would include oil and natural gas, belong to the people of this and future generations. As oil is depleted it must be transformed or used in a way that affords everyone the same benefit, whether they live today or thousands of years hence. Well, Saudi Arabia’s income and wealth is essentially derived from oil, so the Al-Sauds should not enjoy special access to oil wealth as far as the Quran is concerned. It gets worse. In Islam corruption is abhorred as a cancer that should not be tolerated and there’s more. Islam condemns ostentatious lifestyles and recommends modesty in all things and yet the Al-Sauds with their palaces and yachts, furniture made of gold, international trips with over a hundred suitcases in a fleet of a hundred cars, make a mockery of the living Islam preaches.

But it does not end with corruption. Genocide in Yemen, human rights abuses, torture and murder — recall the cold-bloodied dismemberment of Jamal Khashoggi. And with all that the Al-Sauds claim to be the custodian of Islam! And the U.S. embraces Saudi Arabia as an ally and in turn supports the Al-Sauds !

It’s high time for all Muslims and Americans to call out the Al-Sauds and Saudi Arabia. Muslims the world over should denounce Al-Saud behavior contradicting the Quran and all that Islam preaches. Americans should demand President Biden practice what he preaches — treat Mohammad bin Salman as the pariah he is and not protect him from lawsuits for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

Hossein Askari

MIT engineer-economist. Prof: Tufts, UT-Austin, GW. IMF Board. Mediator Iran, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait. Writing: Econ-Finance, Oil, Sanctions, Mid-East, Islam.