Baljarshi’s fatal car chase

On the 7thof July at 2am a young Saudi family was taking advantage of the cool night air at a public park in a small town, Baljarshi, Southwest of the country. According to AlRiyadh newspaper, Abdulrahman loaded his family into his car to head home and started playing Arabic Islamic children songs on the car stereo. The PVPV came up in their huge GMC and ordered him to turn down the music. Witnesses say that there was a back and forth between him and the five members of the PVPV. Abdulrahman decided to ignore them and drove off. The PVPV responded by giving chase with the assistance of their accompanying  police patrol car. The chase went on for 4 kilometers until they reached an overpass that was still under construction where Abdulrahman lost control of the car and went over the edge. Witnesses say that when the family went over the edge, the PVPV and the patrol car panicked and fled the scene instead of assisting.  Abdulrahman passed away at the accident site. His six month pregnant wife had her right arm completely smashed and is currently under threat of having it amputated. Their six year old son, Khalid, is in the ICU with internal bleeding and a head injury and their four year old daughter, Dorar, is in stable condition with a few broken bones. A life lost and a whole family  ruined because of a little music on a car stereo.

Abdulrahman’s car at the site of the accident

When the news broke out muttawa PVPV sympathizers came out of the woodwork fabricating stories about how Abdulrahman was actually going through a police checkpoint and didn’t stop or was uncooperative and the police were the ones to chase him while the PVPV only came upon the scene after the accident. However the governor, Prince Mashari bin Saud, ordered an emergency committee to investigate what actually happened. The committee announced yesterday that the accident was mainly caused by the PVPV members and their accompanying police patrol car and secondly by the road construction company. This of course isn’t the first time that PVPV members have caused the death of innocent civilians due to their fervent enthusiasm for a moral society. Some of these deaths can be read about here and here. I’ve also written here on the blog about deaths, stabbings for showing pretty female eyes via a slit through the face cover…etc.

The new head of the PVPV has tried to rein in his overly eager employees and even issued a complete ban on car chases a few months ago. Honestly I can’t see the sense in that, considering you have fanatically religious young men with the conviction that they are doing God’s work on Earth and saving the souls of their fellow citizens from sin being equipped with state of the art jeeps, GMCs and surveillance devices. They are then divided into pairs and groups of three and four. They are also accompanied by an armed police officer. It would take a lot of self-control and will-power to not chase people who resist moral guidance given the whole structure, provisions, mission statement and attitude of the PVPV. If  Al-Shiekh is truly serious about making the PVPV more civilian friendly, he would look into how they go about their work. If they are to have their GMCs and surveillance than they should be given real police training and of course start dressing in a uniform. But if they are going around in their Islamic thobes and cloaks and are here to simply advise and provide guidance then why are they provided with all these serious man-toys?

It’s hard to think of something positive to end with after the news of a death over something so stupid but remember when the nail polish girl insisted on her rights in the mall a month ago? The religious establishment with the blessing of the government has ensured that every average citizen is fair game when it comes to personal beliefs, clothing and behavior. Add to this the widespread and widely accepted method of proving your own personal faith through the harassment of others in the name of moral advocacy and you get a society where it’s easier to just give in and suffocatingly obey.

I’m very happy to report that a new discourse of asserting your rights and giving others theirs has started to take over the younger generation of Saudis. An example of this is this video where two Saudi men openly state when asked their opinion on if women should be allowed to drive that the real question is why is the government treating citizens like children or dependents by even considering such a ban never mind implementing it. The way the two argue their opinions shows how the terminology and the dialogue has changed from what it was only a few years ago.


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13 responses to “Baljarshi’s fatal car chase

  1. These wild chasers are not interested in moral society as much as they are hired, trained and unleashed to instill fear of authority in people’s hearts, minds and dreams. By any name or standard, this is a licensed terrorist organization whose job is anything but what its name depicts.

  2. Dana Islam

    Saudi society is completely absurd! They let 12 yrs old boy driving car, but they forbidden women to drive! What? For them, 12 yrs old boy has better mind than a 35 yrs old woman. It’s the own buisness of each one to listen music or no inside his private car. Maybe I can understand it’s forbidden in public place, because it’s might disturbing someone else with conservative values. But, if you listen at music inside your own car, you don’t disturb anyone and it’s your own buisness. Whatever if you’re right or wrong in front of God, it’s him, God the Almighty who will judge you at the end of the world. So, religious police should leave people in peace !

  3. Given how dangerous chases are (and this is something that is a problem in in the US too), one wonders why people flee, especially a man with his wife and children in the car.

  4. Nadia

    I have read that the police car hit the back of the victims car, causing it to swerve and fall into the pit. Can you please check and update?

  5. Unfortunately ( With all do Regards and Sympathies, for those who were Personally affected by this Tragedy ) the way things are transpiring in Libya, Egypt, Bahrain, Syria, so on; It seem`s It will more than a Traffic Accident to brig about the Change necessary, to Right this sort of Social Injustice !

  6. Unfortunately, ( With all do Regards and Sympathies, for those who were Personally affected by this Tragedy ) the way things are transpiring in Libya, Egypt, Bahrain, Syria, so on; It seem`s It will take more than a Traffic Accident to bring about the Change necessary, to Right this sort of Social Injustice !

  7. MW

    Shame on those which caused the accident and then fled the scene. Will these people ever be brought to justice. An innocent family has been broken up because a dad wanted to play some music for his children. Why does Saudi Arabia want to control it’s citizens so much?

    • I. Think The Answer lies at the End of the Rainbow for the Saudi Monarchy. Sadaam Hussien, Osama Bin Laden, Muammar Gaddafi, Hosni Mubarack, Bashar Al Assad, Queen Elizabeth II, and The Saudi Monarchy, really only have, one thing, in Common; That is the level of Progressive Sociopolitical Conscience, (None) applied to there respective Regime`s ? An Example to all would be World Leaders. Revolutionary, Republican, Military Dictatorship, Whatever ! Intelligence, Beauty, Compassion, and Patriotism, Never Forget !

  8. omlujain

    Frustrating.. and I hope that justice is actually served this time.. (whatever justice can be done for a family that have lost their husband/father/son/brother) 😦

  9. Ridiculous.. Hope the whole family is fine now.
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  10. Daniel

    I was as horrified when I read about the incident and wrote to the Saudi Gazette about the thugs in Muttawa. A foreigner (Asian, as racist Saudis like to say) who lived in your country for some time, what struck me was that despite the exposure and material wealth from oil, the mindset of your country men (and women) belongs to the middle ages.
    What justification is there for causing death and grievous injury just because someone was playing his car stereo too loud? In most civilized parts of the world, including the ‘Asian’ country from which I hail, the thugs in the Muttawa would be prosecuted for murder.
    By the way, when Saudi newspapers refer to dark-skinned people from the eastern countries as ‘Asian’ are they ignorant of geography: the last time I checked, the entire middle east was still in Asia. Or are they merely being subtly racist?
    In your blog you speak eloquently about the rights of Saudi women. But I know that it is Saudi women who usually beat and ill treat their impoverished maids. It has always surprised me that Saudi women do not particularly mind if their men rape the maids.

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