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Thursday, January 12, 2006


Another Triumph For The Magic Kingdom

The Saudi ruling family's claim to power and pre-eminence in the Moslem world derives from their guardianship of the two holy cities of Medina and Mecca. Here's an example of just how well they've been guarding the latter.

Part of the problem is that pilgrims all have to visit Mecca on the same day. Yes, that's right: Wikipedia, the world's most impartial and reliable source of information [/sarcasm], confirms that the pilgrimage must take place during the four days of Eid-ul-Adha. Now, given that there are at least one billion Moslem in the world, each one of whom is required as a religious duty to make the pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in their lifetimes, you can imagine the place gets pretty crowded around al-Adha.

The official explanation involves a bunch of people tripping over luggage, which begs the question: WTF was the luggage doing there? Mina (where the deaths occurred) is a grand total of three miles away from Mecca, where the hajis were staying. Who takes luggage on a day trip?

HT Mary from Dean's World. And remember folks, Alhamedi is your first-stop shop for Saudi-related facts and analysis!

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