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Remaining vigilant to dangers threatening Saudi Arabia

Political analysts are also called upon to present solutions and realistic proposals to address major concerns

Samar Fatany

Published: Updated:

Political and sectarian conflicts are major challenges facing our region today. In order to confront these challenges and maintain peace, religious scholars must rise to the occasion and provide wise council, rejecting extremism and strengthening Muslim unity.

Political analysts are also called upon to present solutions and realistic proposals to address major concerns, and most important of all, citizens are expected to shoulder the responsibility to protect the nation and safeguard the future of the younger generation.

Unfortunately, the bloody fighting has escalated to dangerous levels around us. The government can no longer depend on foreign experts or international think tanks to define our national interests.

The enemies within

Decision makers need to rely more on highly qualified Saudi analysts to identify the enemies within. It is time that we created our own expertise on foreign policy matters to confront external powers with vested interests.

There is a dire need to maintain farsighted and long-term national strategies to address political, economic and social needs in a more effective way.

Today religious extremism, terrorism and uncertainty continue to threaten the region. However, our national security and social stability cannot be protected if the public is indifferent to the extent of the dangers that threaten the country.

It is very critical at this stage for the nation’s youth to have a better understanding of the principles of civil and political rights which are vital requirements for establishing tangible improvements in the lives of all citizens.

We should educate the youth from an early age to learn the values of civic sense, work ethic and social responsibilities. It is urgent that we address public needs so that we can develop more responsible, contributing and law-abiding citizens.

It is quite evident that the Saudi public stands behind the leadership under Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman to maintain national security.

Great determination

Young people have shown great determination to support government initiatives that reflect a strong political will to combat extremism and implement reforms.

The young generation is our hope for a better future. Talented and educated young men and women are keen today to help Saudi Arabia modernize and develop.

They are striving to achieve success without compromising their Islamic values and traditions. We should not underestimate their creative and innovative capabilities and we should allow them to contribute in resolving issues of major concern to our economic prosperity.

We have every reason to be proud of our young scientists, doctors, lawyers, businessmen and women, bankers, academics and artists who are working hard to achieve our national goals.

There are many involved in scientific research to eradicate disease, hunger and poverty. There are also many who are involved in volunteer programs to serve their community and are inspired by the entrepreneurial activities initiated nationwide to build a vibrant and strong economy.

However, they all need to be provided with better incentives and stronger government support. Social scientists stress the need to build public appreciation for all kinds of cultural activities in order to create a more progressive society.

Developing cultural intellect

The government has initiated educational campaigns to develop cultural intellect within society. It has established partnerships with schools, universities, and the private sector to support the preservation of our Islamic and cultural heritage.

There are concerted efforts to enrich the scope of artistic experience and to enhance public appreciation for our cultural heritage from food, clothing and lifestyle to music, painting and architecture.

This is a step in the right direction; however, developing a taste for quality and standards should remain an issue of high priority.

We live in difficult times. Obviously there is an urgency to enforce laws to protect the country from infiltrators and foreign espionage; however, there is also a need to create policies to address the needs of the younger generation: good education, job opportunities, better wages, housing, medical insurance, and less rigid laws to lead a more comfortable lifestyle.

The government needs to implement well-researched strategies and appoint only efficient and qualified officials to guarantee a safe environment and a productive generation.

Only then can we all succeed in our contributions to build a strong nation and a more prosperous society that can defy all the prevailing challenges and the looming threats that surround us.

This article was first published in the Saudi Gazette on April 20, 2015.

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Samar Fatany is a Chief Broadcaster in the English section at Jeddah Broadcasting Station. Over the past 28 years, she has introduced many news, cultural, and religious programs and has conducted several interviews with official delegations and prominent political personalities visiting the kingdom. Fatany has made significant contributions in the fields of public relations and social awareness in Saudi Arabia and has been involved in activities aiming at fighting extremism and enhancing women’s role in serving society. She has published three books: “Saudi Perceptions & Western Misconceptions,” “Saudi Women towards a new era” and “Saudi Challenges & Reforms.”

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.