Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Opinion: King Abdullah’s Egypt speech was like a surgeon’s scalpel | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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File photo of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, chairing a Saudi cabinet session. (SPA)

In clear and brief words, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz said: “Let the entire world know that the people and government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia stood and still stand today with our brothers in Egypt against terrorism, extremism and sedition, and against whomever is trying to interfere in Egypt’s internal affairs.”

In saying so, the Saudi king has drawn a clear line for the international, regional and Arab handling of Egypt.

The historic statement from the King went on to say that there are those who stand with Egypt and there are others who are against it, and that Saudi Arabia declares support for Egypt and the Egyptian people extremely clearly. The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques spoke the truth when he described what is happening in Egypt today as “terrorism, extremism and sedition.”

In keeping with his past statements and actions, the Saudi King was even clearer when he issued his warning: “Let it be known to those who interfere in Egypt’s internal affairs that they themselves are fanning the fire of sedition and are promoting terrorism, which they claim to be fighting. I hope they will come to their senses before it is too late, for the Egypt of Islam, Arabism, and honorable history will not be altered by what some may say or what positions others may take. Egypt will be able, with the grace and might of God, to pass into the land of safety, and then they will realize the wrong they committed after it is too late to show regret.”

The statement is important for many reasons: Saudi Arabia’s religious, political and economic value, and also the reputation and weight the Saudi King himself has in the Arab and Islamic worlds and in the international community. Indeed, the King’s address was like the scalpel of a skillful surgeon in an extremely complex surgery. His aim was to delineate acceptable and unacceptable actions in handling the situation in Egypt in light of the Muslim Brotherhood’s terrorism. He has done this by declaring with utmost clarity that his country has supported and will continue to support Egypt and the Egyptian people, by warning against intervention in Egypt’s internal affairs which, as he said, will further ignite sedition. The message here is clear both regionally and internationally, and is directed to specific countries.

We all saw regional countries acting to declare support to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosque’s address that served as a political prop for Egypt and its people and has put an end to some countries’ overbidding towards Egypt.

King Abdullah’s address has put an end to an ongoing quarrel, yet there are still some who seek to complicate the situation through their shallow understanding and their delusions. There are attempts to portray what is happening in Egypt as something similar to what is happening in Syria or in other Arab Spring states. Several powers and parties are clearly seeking to support this endeavor through forgery, delusion and provocation. In his address, the Saudi King was able to describe the scene with complete clarity and reason.

The historic stance of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is one of a leader who wants to protect the state against whomever seeks to destroy it. It is the stance of a leader who seeks to protect the region against whomever thinks the violation of its sovereignty is permissible. King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz’s address is a historic one, for it will be decisive in understanding what has happened—and what will happen next.