It was a majestic scene as the royal salute was played out in the presence of Saudi King Salman when those present stood up in respect.
However, in a video circulated online, Riyadh’s Governor Prince Faisal bin Bandar reprimanded some of the attendees for not standing up and asked those who do not respect the national anthem to leave the hall. The prince is absolutely right.
The royal salute is not an anthem you listen to on the radio. It narrates the tale of the establishment of the state and the stories of wars fought for peace. The national anthem is about vows and homage to the nation.
The royal salute is not an anthem you listen to on the radio. It narrates the tale of the establishment of the state and the stories of wars fought for peaceTurki Aldakhil
Honoring the heritage
It reflects the promise that the state will remain stable and that lives will be sacrificed to defend the heritage inherited from our forefathers.
Standing up for the national anthem is thus a pillar of patriotism and of respect for the homeland. Standing up is an expression of the vow and the promise we make.
For years, patriotism was called “heathenism.” Those days are now over. We are in civil times as we live through modernization in all its detail.
This article is also available in Arabic.
Turki Aldakhil 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.