Saudi Arabia halts aid to Lebanon, Al-Hilal crowned champion!
Riyadh did not bet on a certain sect in Lebanon but on the entire Lebanese people
The attractive headline was the answer a friend gave me days ago when I asked him about the day’s most important developments. He briefly answered, saying Saudi Arabia has halted its aid to Lebanon and Al-Hilal FC has won the Saudi Crown Prince Cup.
Let’s move on though from Al-Hilal’s victory, which has become routine as this was the 11th time the club has won the cup. Let us talk about Lebanon which has always been a part of us and which we have always been a part of.
The support which Lebanon receives from Saudi Arabia and Gulf countries is a lot more than mere ink on paper. Loyalists acknowledge this while prejudiced people deny it. Saudi Arabia has supported Lebanon through war and peace.
Riyadh’s hand will always remain extended to the moderate and wise men in Lebanon in order to maintain whatever is left of state institutions and historical cultural valuesTurki Al-Dakhil
Christian figures acknowledge that no Arab country helped as much as Saudi Arabia in protecting them against forced displacement. Riyadh did not bet on a certain sect in Lebanon but on the entire Lebanese people and supported the Lebanese state, which is the way to guarantee stability.
The recent Saudi decision to halt a $3 billion program for military supplies to Lebanon is not directed against the good people of Lebanon, or against the Lebanese civilization. It falls within the context of political measures against a flagrant aggression practiced by unruly parties which do not believe in civil and state values.
Riyadh’s hand will always remain extended to the moderate and wise men in Lebanon in order to maintain whatever is left of state institutions and historical cultural values, which some intend to destroy through a revolutionary and militant culture.
The Lebanese people know Saudi King Salman very well. They remember his visits and they know how concerned he is over them. However, decisiveness is a must to confront hostile practices. King Salman is the king and master of decisiveness.
Everyone knows that Saudi Arabia’s sovereignty is a serious matter, which is never taken lightly even when it comes to best friends.
This article first appeared in Okaz newspaper on Feb. 21, 2016.
Turki Al-Dakhil is the General Manager of Al Arabiya News Channel. He began his career as a print journalist, covering politics and culture for the Saudi newspapers Okaz, Al-Riyadh and Al-Watan. He then moved to pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat and pan-Arab news magazine Al-Majalla. Turki later became a radio correspondent for the French-owned pan-Arab Radio Monte Carlo and MBC FM. He proceeded to Elaph, an online news magazine and Alarabiya.net, the news channel’s online platform. Over a ten-year period, Dakhil’s weekly Al Arabiya talk show “Edaat” (Spotlights) provided an opportunity for proponents of Arab and Islamic social reform to make their case to a mass audience. Turki also owns Al Mesbar Studies and Research Centre and Madarek Publishing House in Dubai. He has received several awards and honors, including the America Abroad Media annual award for his role in supporting civil society, human rights and advancing women’s roles in Gulf societies. He tweets @TurkiAldakhil.