Al Dakheel is the number one interviewer in Saudi Arabia. If there’s a controversy going on anywhere in the Middle East, trust Al Dakheel to be the first Saudi to interview the people behind it. He was born in Riyadh in 1973. In college he majored in the principles of the Sunni sect of Islam at Imam Mohammed University in Riyadh. He even spent a stint as a mosque imam. He originally started off as a journalist and contributed to most of the major Saudi newspapers, including Al Riyadh, Al Sharq Al Awsat and Al Majala magazine. His last journalism post was at Al Hayat newspaper.
Currently he has his own show on Al Arabiya news network and another radio program on Panorama radio channel. He also writes a daily column for Al Watan newspaper.
Al Dakheel’s appeal lies in him combining three factors; a background in religion, spunk in his choice of guests, and accessibility in that he gives off the impression of being an average Saudi. His ability to tackle the tough issues with tact is admirable. And being indirectly related to the monarchy works as a safety net in case he does slip up.
He’s also famous for publicly admitting his weight problem and writing a quite successful book on how he slimmed down titled Memoirs of a Previously Obese Man (translation).