Want To Know Where Your Wife Is? Saudi Arabia Has An App For That
Are women in Saudi Arabia really making progress towards becoming equal with men?
Let’s review some of the latest events and see how women are doing in the Saudi Kingdom.
- Earlier this year, King Abdullah declared that Saudi women will be allowed to vote and run for office in local elections… but not until 2015.
- At the Summer Olympic Games in London, another break in the glass ceiling occurred as Wojdan Shaherkani represented the Saudis in the women’s Judo.
Those two facts might lead you to believe that the very conservative, Sharia-compliant Saudi Kingdom is on the verge of some serious social change. And then you are reminded that Saudi Arabia is the only country in the world where women are not permitted to drive. This past summer, the Interior Minister made it official. There is no formal law against women driving, just a ban, and no Saudi DMV will issue a license to a woman.
One brave Saudi woman hopes to break the ban. Manal al-Sherif founded a movement called “Saudi Women To Drive” (also called Women2Drive in some social media environments). Last month in Geneva, Switzerland, she drove to a UN conference on human rights and delivered her message:
“In my country, a man comes of age at 18, a woman never: she needs permission from a male guardian for every life choice, from studying abroad to looking for a job.”
The restrictions on women in Saudi Arabia go well beyond driving. As Sharif stated, every Saudi women needs written permission to do just about everything. Women are forbidden to leave the country without the written approval from their “male guardian.” Seriously. For a Saudi female to be allowed to leave the country, she must be signed out by a man, effectively treating an adult woman like a piece of property. Some have called this slavery.
And now comes word of a new method for limiting the movement of women in the Saudi Kingdom — a tracking app. Tech Crunch called it “A Digital Leash For Women.” Blogger/Activist Pamela Geller referred to the action as “High Tech Sharia.” There is also a report from Al Arabiya News headlined;
‘Where’s My Wife?’ Electronic SMS Tracker Notifies Saudi Husbands
The Al Arabiya story opened with a chilling statement:
Denied the right to travel without consent from their male guardians and banned from driving, women in Saudi Arabia are now monitored by an electronic system that tracks any cross-border movements.
Since last week, Saudi women’s male guardians began receiving text messages on their phones informing them when women under their custody leave the country, even if they are travelling together.
The news of a government-run program that alerts husbands to the movement of their wives brought the expected reaction from the Twitter
The reason for the new tracking technology being implemented was not immediately apparent as the Saudi government has not made an official statement. However, some Saudis have speculated that the government was reacting to an incident that happened last summer when an adult female escaped the country without parental permission. With the assistance of her Lebanese employer, a 30-year-old Saudi woman fled the country, ending up in Sweden. Her statements to the press regarding how she managed to get out of the country also triggered some fairly extreme legal action.
The woman’s father filed a lawsuit against the two men for helping his daughter leave the country without his knowledge. The Lebanese man was reportedly jailed Monday in the city of Khobar on the eastern coast of Saudi Arabia.
Women in Saudi Arabia have been promised the right to vote and run for political office, but that right is still over two years away. In the meantime, they are still battling for the right to be able to drive, and if they chose to do so, leave the country without needing a permission slip from a man.
H/T – UrbanInfidel on Twitter
- ‘The Daily Show’ Creator Makes Outrageously Offensive Anti-Conservative Joke About Okla. Tornado 462 Comments
- Washington Times Writer: Fox News Scandal Goes ‘Much Deeper,’ W.H. Sitting on Something Top Obama Aides ‘Terrified’ About 440 Comments
- University Will Investigate Christian Professor’s Intelligent Design Class Following Atheist Furor 313 Comments
- See the First Behind-the-Scenes Photos as Beck and Mercury One Survey the Damage in Okla. 254 Comments
- Incredible: The Moment a Woman’s Dog Emerges from Rubble During TV Interview Right After She Describes Losing Him 228 Comments
- Farrakhan Talks of ‘Satanic Jews’ and ‘Synagogue of Satan’ at Detroit Church Speech — but Wait Until You Hear Who Was in Attendance Read More
- Biden Praises Jewish Leaders for Helping Change Americans’ Views on Gay Marriage Read More
- ‘Death! You F**k!’: Bat Mitzvah Chaperone Unleashes Explosive, Profanity-Laced Tirade Against Kids Over Candy-Throwing Incident Read More
- How Can God Let Tragedies Like the Okla. Tornado Exist? Pastors Weigh In 171 Comments
- Is This Video of Pope Francis Performing an Exorcism? Read More
- China Sets off What Could Be the World’s Longest Demolition Read More
- Here are the 5 Most Interesting Moments from Tuesday’s Hearing on the IRS Scandal 118 Comments
- Jay Carney Shifts IRS Timeline (Again!) 103 Comments
- Top IRS Official at Center of Political Targeting Scandal Will Plead the Fifth 138 Comments
- Disgraced IRS Interim Chief Now Fully Admits Knowledge of Planted Question (but Did It Reveal a Past Half-Truth?) Read More
- The Incredible Role Facebook Played in the Aftermath of Devastating Okla. Tornado Read More
- Tech Company Demonstrates Remote Disabling of a ‘Smart Gun’ Read More
- Meet the Blind Man Nicknamed ‘Midnight Gunslinger’ Who Has 80% Shot Accuracy Read More
- How a $4.5 Million Network of 181 Sirens Helped Save Lives in Oklahoma Twister Read More
- See the Record-Setting Python a Man Caught With His Bare Hands (and Guess How Much It Weighed) Read More
- Syrian opposition urges rebels to join key battle
- Iran's Ahmadinejad denounces election decision
- Trial for captain in deadly shipwreck in Italy
- Target's 1Q profit drops 26 pct on weak sales
- FEMA Chief: Feds won't go 'when the cameras leave'
- Boy Scout leaders to vote on lifting gay ban
- Futures rise; all eyes on the Fed
- Parents face tough choice when tornadoes bear down