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WHEN the leadership’s primary concern is the advancement of his country, he is not pretentious in his assembly because he seeks advice and sound opinion. However, if he is among those who surround themselves with hypocrites and adulators, then there is no doubt that his state will face many challenges and crises due to the absence of guidance based on expert opinion.
A good example of this is King Salman bin Abdulaziz, who always said in his open gatherings, “A word I always repeat… May Allah have mercy on those who show me my faults. If you see anything that is in the interest of your religion above all and of your country, the country of the Two Holy Mosques, of which we are all servants of, then you are all welcome. I repeat, our doors are open and our ears are listening to every citizen.”
That is why the assemblies of these leaderships are devoid of hypocrites and adulators. Whoever has a project or advice puts it forward or remains silent. Likewise, the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is an ambitious and energetic young man, realized that Saudi Arabia could not compete economically and in investment if the basics were not available to it, which is openness within the constants on which this great country was built. He hence surrounds himself with people of good and sound opinion and knowledge.
In a matter of years, Saudi Arabia turned into an economic and tourist force, and an international forum for many activities, because the goal is to build a modern state with a solid foundation.
I remember that in the assemblies of Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, his son Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid, and finally Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, as he does not give way to adulators and authors of poems who seek personal benefit from them.
Whoever owns a project makes his statement or remains silent. This is why Dubai has now turned into an international investment base. It is progressing, like all of the Emirates, on the path of openness and development to the extent that it participates in space projects.
On the other hand, there are countries that seem as if they intended to retreat and regress. This is because they were filled with the idea that “It is different” while knowing that Allah said in His Holy Book, “Allah does not change the condition of people until they change what is within themselves.” This means that nothing changes as long as there is someone who is convinced that change is better than the status quo.
Our country is suffering under the yoke of backwardness, because the hypocrites, adulators, and slanderers surrounded the officials from all sides and thus blocked them from seeing the reality.
The story of the hypocrites applies to the wolves that tried to fight for the rights of the sheep, as one of the shepherds was taking his sheep out, and he drove them to the barn before dark, and closed the doors. The wolves watched him and did not find a way to prey on the sheep.
After a while, one of the wolves came up with a smart plan, which was to organize a demonstration in front of the shepherd’s house, chant for the freedom of the sheep, and demand their release. The sheep were influenced by the cheer, and started ramming the doors of the barn until they broke out, liberated themselves, and fled.
At that moment, the wolves ran after them. The shepherd called and shouted, but the sheep kept on running away without a shepherd or a guard.
It was a black night for the fleeing sheep and a delicious night for the lurking wolves. The next day when the shepherd came to the plain, he found nothing but torn body parts and blood-stained bones.
Sometimes the hypocrites fake their slogans for personal gain. They do not care about the interest of the country and the state, as they use it for their own interests.
Therefore, when the leaders gather people in their assemblies and listen to their opinions, they build a strong state that preserves its prestige, which is part of the prestige of the government.
Here, I beg to ask – have we become a country that Almighty Allah does not want to change?
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times
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