Category Archives: Culture

Slumdogs of Dubai: Not Your Father’s Dubai………….

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

       My BFF
Dubai: A man masturbating on a public street; a woman waking up to an intruder in her bedroom; a peeping Tom spying through women’s bathroom windows… life in Mirdif isn’t what it used to be. The once-sleepy suburb of families has attracted residents of various moralities, due to the downward spiral in rents………”On weekends I’ve seen mid-teens sitting on the steps with bottles of vodka in their hands,” says a 21-year-old Sudanese. XPRESS has also witnessed teenagers making out on the steps of the back entrance, as well as groups of underage boys leering at women. A drive around the area reveals an increasing number of obscene graffiti on walls and teenagers sitting on street corners smoking. “Mirdif was never like this,” says 34 year-old Rainn Walker. “Now, everyone who’s of the wrong kind is in Mirdif. Two months ago, a boy who looked to be no older than 13 grabbed my behind as he walked past me on street 37. Last week I read about a woman who was kidnapped and held in Mirdif. Who knows what I’ll hear next. I’m having second thoughts about living here, ” she says……..

It ain’t your father’s, or your mother’s, Dubai these days. It ain’t my father’s Dubai either (he made sorties there in the old pre-oil days, along with many others). These symptoms have always existed in the backstreets of Dubai, as they have in Abu Dhabi and Riyadh and, dare I say it, Mecca. There was so much going on in Dubai for the media in the boom years that these things were overlooked: nobody wanted to cover the slums with open sewers and Kabul-quality electricity and water services. Just like nobody ever covers the truly seamy side of Las Vegas. Now with the bust and the departure of many European and Gulf investors, the owners of these formerly exclusive developments have had to lower their sights. And their rents. The slums of Dubai have begun to move into the formerly exclusive parts of Dubai. The slumdogs of Dubai are moving in.
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Only in Dubai: an Impotent Polygamist Womanizer………

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF
Dubai: An Emirati man is being sued for Dh45 million in compensation for failing to sexually perform. The defendant’s ex-wife, told the court that she suffered from her husband’s erectile dysfunction while they were married. In her civil compensation claim, the ex-wife alleged that the accused suffered from sexual impotency that resulted in failing to fulfil her needs and forced her to have what she termed as “inhumane sex”. The case is being heard before the Dubai Courts…… She said her husband did not sleep with her in the first four months of their marriage. “When he did for the first time, he treated me inhumanly and inappropriately,” she told the court. “I discovered later on that he suffered erectile dysfunction. He was exactly the opposite of what he claimed to me before we signed the marriage contract……….”He was a sweet talker and after we got married, I discovered that he is a womanizer who married more than 12 times. Although he was a former public figure, but that didn’t prevent him from allegedly manipulating decent girls and spend weeks of pleasure with them before ditching them…….”

He was an impotent husband who was a serial womanizer and had married 12 women. Twelvefuckingwomen! No wonder he was impotent. Contrary to legend, “excessive” polygamy can lead to ED, sort of like taking steroids.
I don’t assume anyone knows if his name was Whatishisface al-Nahayan.
I list this under “culture”.
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

My Gulf: Two Views of Dubai and Kabul……..

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF

A cynical foreign view: “This is a good question! Everyone knows that Dubai is the most useless city in the world, filled with entitled, arrogant, rude, mindlessly materialistic Emiratis and the shopping malls that sustain them. If Dubai receded into the sand that surrounds it or if its man-made palm shaped islands were drowned by rising sea levels, we would not feel bad for more than one minute. This is all true and not subject to debate. There is absolutely no reason to go to Dubai. Unless, of course, you are arriving from one of the neighboring shitholes (Kabul, Baghdad, Kandahar). In that case, Dubai is absolutely indispensable. It is the only place for you. Dubai must exist because Kabul does, just a short two-hour flight away. Kabul is filthy, violent, medieval and necklaced with razor wire. Thirty percent of the dust in the air is fecal matter. The blue sacks sitting in the mud (30% of which, it stands to reason, is also fecal matter) in intersections are not bags of potatoes; they are women in burqas begging. Donkey carts, armored SUVs and military convoys jam its unpaved streets. Dubai is none of these things (it’s pretty much what happens what medieval warlords do when they come into lot of money, but that’s a different post)………

A native brown-noser view:
But why did one succeed while the other failed? Why did ‘Death to America’ not resonate? I suppose, in the end, nobody wants to live in Tora Bora — not even Bin Laden apparently — but, rather Dubai. People rose because they wanted to live well. It must have been hard for Egyptians and Tunisians to understand how a city-state like Dubai, and the UAE in general, could develop with none of the resources of their countries, let alone their political and social institutions. It was no longer about being like London or Paris but rather like Dubai……..”

As for me: I have been to Dubai, both before and after, and I have been to some of those other places. I think the truth lies somewhere in between, between the cynical foreigner and the native writer who never seems to want to displease the ruling masters. My gut feeling, which does not always agree with my economist’s judgment (I have gone sour on economics these past three years), is that the cynical foreigner is closer to the truth. The native writer al-Gergawi always seems eager to please the powers that be, the rulers; but I have read only two or three of his postings. The foreign cynic Carpetblogger clearly doesn’t give a rat’s ass about pleasing anyone, and that is a good sign. Besides, I have never cottoned up to brown-nosers, even when I got so close to being one myself some years ago. Close, but never made it.
Cheers
mhg




m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Politics on My Gulf: On Being Royally Anally Retentive ………

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF
Her Highness Shaikha Moza grandmother of His Majesty, for whom we sacrifice our lives may god keep and save him, mother of the late his Highness Shaikh Issa Bin Salman Al-Khalifa and His Highness ‘Prince’ Khalifa Bin Salman Al-Khalifa and the late prince Mohammed Bin Salman Al-Khalifa, has passed away.” Tweet by Nabeel al-Homar, Bahrain regime spokesman.

RIP for the lady: she is not guilty for the crimes of her son and her grandson.

But WTF? Now Bahrain shaikhs are all called ‘princes’. First the emir Shaikh Hamad promoted himself unilaterally to a ‘king’, although there is nothing kingly or royal or regal about him. Then all the shaikhs are calling themselves princes. No more frogs in Bahrain, but who kissed all the al-Khalifa to turn them into princes (and princesses)? Can it be the al-Saud? It has to be: the al-Khalifa are even starting to wear the shmagh ghetra, a telltale Saudi headgear, in summer now. Bahraini rulers and their retainers among the elite are going Saudi, and they can’t seem to do it fast enough. Saudi, or rather al-Saud, are chic in occupied Bahrain. Which makes me wonder if any Frenchmen started to wear small mustaches in Nazi-occupied Paris so long ago.
The Bahrainis of the “right inclination”, political or otherwise, may find other ways to ape their new Wahhabi masters. They can start frequenting the places where all the things that are banned in the Kingdom without Magic are available. Don’t let your imagination run wild, not too wild. You can get flogged in public in Riyadh for singing in public, even an innocent thing like a Salafi carol (a la Fa La La…….). That is if you are a male. As for a singing female, you can probably get flogged anywhere on both shores of my Gulf. Iranian mullahs can be almost as anally retentive about these things are the Wahhbai shaikhs: almost so, but not quite.
In occupied Bahrain, they can do as the uninvited Saudi visitors do. That may become even more necessary as the true Saudis take their business elsewhere: they will be more welcome now in economically depressed Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Hopefully not as part of an occupation army.
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

On Suicide Among Arabs and Iranians………..

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF
Countries and U.S. states that rank near the top in happiness also rank near the top in suicides rates, U.S. and British researchers suggest……Canada, the United States, Iceland, Ireland and Switzerland each indicate relatively high levels of happiness levels, but also high suicide rates. Nevertheless, the researchers note that because of variation in cultures and suicide-reporting conventions, the findings are only suggestive. Comparing happiness and suicide rates across U.S. states presents an advantage because cultural background, national institutions, language and religion are relatively constant nationwide……..UPI News

We in the Middle East, both Arabs and Iranians, do not have high suicide rates. In fact we have very low rates, possibly the lowest in the world. The rates did spike last December and January (starting with Tunisia). The reason is not that people in our region are happy. It is not Islamic fatwas against suicide either (the al-Qaeda Salafi types do it for the perks and extra benefits they expect to get on the ‘other side’). No, these are not the reasons for our low suicide rates. It is that the malcontents, the angry ones, don’t get a chance to commit suicide. Long before they reach that level of despair, Arabs and Iranians are either killed or tortured or imprisoned by their regimes. Or forced into exile, where they are no longer part of the local statistics.
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Emirates Try Baby for Adultery, Shaikh Warns Girls about Fathers…….

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF
A 14-YEAR-OLD Arab schoolgirl who has been detained in the United Arab Emirates on a charge of adultery will appear in court later this month. “The trial will start in spite of the age ceiling set for trials on sexual related crimes by the UAE law,” said the daily newspaper Gulf News today. “The law states that the minimum age of suspects in crimes related to sex must be 15 years. Such cases should be conducted in special juvenile courts. Otherwise, suspects are considered victims rather than suspects,” the daily quoted a “law expert” as saying. On April 5, Gulf News said police in the emirate of Ajman had arrested the teenager after she met up with her boyfriend on the roof of her family home. She has since been forced to undergo a gynaecological examination which “confirmed she was still a virgin”, the unnamed girl’s father was quoted as saying………

It is a sure sign of a somewhat fuckedup society when a 14 year old girl is tried for “adultery”, even though she is a virgin according to medical examination. It is also a bigger sign when a top Saudi cleric and televangelist (M. Alarefe) blames some young girls because their fathers sexually abused them. Then he suggests that girls and fathers should never be left alone. He issued something like a television fatwa that says fathers should be suspect with their own daughters. Now what kind of a fucked up pious society is this? The same al-Arefe had earlier described why and how a husband should beat up his wife.
And I had thought these things only happened in ‘certain’ parts of Texas and Oklahoma. Some of these judges and clerics in my Gulf are worse than those in parts of Texas and Oklahoma! I forgot to mention Belgium, which used to be, may still be, notorious for pedophilia rings.
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Rumi: Iranian Cleric Mixes Bestiality with Politics……….

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
      My BFF
A racy allusion in a Friday prayer sermon by Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati has become the talk of Iran. He invoked a well-known poem about an intimate coupling between a maidservant and a donkey to issue a warning to opposition supporters. “The foe always try to use psychological warfare against the Islamic regime to tarnish the image of the system inside and outside the country,” he said (Persian link). “Therefore, I tell them, the enemies, to go and study the story of the pumpkin.” The “pumpkin” refers to a famous story by the 13th century mystical poet Rumi, “The Importance of Gourdcrafting,” in which a resourceful maidservant who sleeps with a donkey uses a pumpkin as a marital aid. When the lady of the house catches on, she decides to follow suit. But rather than consulting the maidservant she sends her away without obtaining the secret of the pumpkin, and is killed by the donkey. The story is intended as a parable about the dangers of immoderation……….”

Interesting. He seems to be comparing the Iranian regime to an ass without meaning to. Or am I wrong?
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Secretary Clinton and Middle East Women and Costco……….

     
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
     My BFF
US State Dept tweet:Secretary Clinton: women must participate in all aspects of political and institutional reforms….” I agree with her, although she did not specify if all the wives of the potentates are allowed to engage in such activity. I mean the king of Bahrain had three wives at last count. The potentates of Abu Dhabi keep it under wraps (one of them in Dubai is married to a Jordanian princess). As for the Saudi princes, oh boy, some of them probably don’t know the answer……. Can be costly, too bad Costco doesn’t carry wives……

Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com

Ahmadinejad: for Chastity Belts and against Tyranny?……….

        
Follow ArabiaDeserta on Twitter

 

 
    
Noting that the world is in dire need of a modern system and new shape and design, the President said that in the New Year efforts will be made globally for reforms in the tyrannical and inhumane structures and systems. He said human beings are universal creatures, so their attitude and lifestyle should be universal. “Man’s true prosperity depends on his global vision and today, under God’s grace, suspicious borders are getting eliminated. Today, materialistic management has come to an end and all nations are going to share similar universal feeling.” Saying that monotheism, justice, chastity and durable peace are true causes of nations, President Ahmadinejad said all nations are seeking kindness and friendship and this promises coming of a promised rule over the world…….

I am dubious about his bit on “tyranny”: one person’s tyranny is another person’s everyday dirty police work. Tyranny is in the eye of the beholder, or maybe the receiver. As for the ‘chastity’ bit: he ain’t gonna win the West with that one, not even the God-fearing Bible-belt. He’d need millions of chastity belts. Lighten up, Mahmoud!
He’s only antagonizing Sarkozy and most of the French nation (the none-immigrant most).
Cheers
mhg

m.h.ghuloum@gmail.com