Sexual violence “is no big deal to them”, he says.
Saleh al-Saadoon claimed in a recent TV interview that women can be raped when a car breaks down, but unlike other countries, Saudi Arabia protects its women from that risk by not allowing them to drive in the first place, according to a translation posted online by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
An attitude that is not unrevealing.
"They don't care if they are raped on the roadside, but we do," al-Saadoon said on Saudi Rotana Khalijiyya TV.
So it’s men who get hurt when women are raped? Sounds familiar.
“It’s no big deal for them beyond the damage to their morale,” al-Saadoon replied. “In our case, however, the problem is of a social and religious nature.”
“Morale” is a nasty, dismissive way of putting it, but then dismissal is what al-Saadoon is doing. His social standing is more important than any mere pain, terror or social standing of his wife and daughters because – after all – they’re his property. His daughter being raped would be like someone slashing his tyres.
al-Saadoon went on to call the show’s other guests, who appeared shocked, “out of touch”, sending the irony meter into orbit.
"They should listen to me and get used to what society thinks,”
Then he changed tack because this message didn’t seem to be going down very well. Women in Saudi Arabia are treated like queens, he said, being driven around by male chauffeurs. He was ask whether he was worried that the chauffeurs might rape their passengers. His solution was to bring in foreign female chauffeurs.
I don’t think I have the strength to pull that one apart.