Saudi Arabia's Orwellian "Development Plans" For The Shia Town It Just Flattened

Last week we reported on the Saudi regime's brutal crackdown against its own citizens in the largely Shia town of Awamiya in the country's East. We described the weeks long siege and official Saudi policy of 'relocation' of Shia residents as in truth a targeted cleansing of religious minorities, considered by the Wahhabi Sunni state authorities as heretics and apostates:

Activists describe it as a concealed sectarian-based cleansing of the Shia population, which has been historically persecuted by the Sunni Wahhabi state. Regional news outlets have published footage which they say reveals active sectarian anti-Shia cleansing on the part of Saudi forces currently underway.

Saudi state media has now confirmed completion of its campaign to drive all pockets of Shia resistance out of Awamiya and is currently maintaining a heavy troop presence in the town. It is unclear how many local Shia militants were engaged in the fighting, but it appears the military brought its full weight to bear against the contested Almosara neighborhood which forms Awamiya's walled 'old city' section. As we reported, the Saudi military utilized:

...air power, heavy artillery, RPGs, snipers and armored assault vehicles in the area. Earlier this year the Saudi regime announced plans to demolish the neighborhood and hand it over to private developers in a kind of Saudi version of "eminent domain"; however, the presence of Shia militants hiding amidst its narrow roads and concealed alleyways appears the be the real motive for razing the district.

While Saudi Arabia is framing its actions in terms of necessary counter-terrorism police action, other regional media outlets and local activists now report over 500 homes flattened in Almosara by military bombardment and subsequent bulldozers that entered the town, with estimates of 8,000 families having fled the area. Evacuation notices were also issued to Shia residents in the area by the Albarahim private property developer, and stamped by the government's National Joint Counterterrorism Command (NJCC), which was formed in 2003.

Meanwhile, The Independent (UK) reported the death of a three-year-old boy who was shot by Saudi forces as his family merely drove their car near a protest earlier this summer. The boy succumbed to his wounds while in a local intensive care unit on Wednesday.

So it appears there is a two-fold motive for the Saudi state's aggressive military takeover: forcibly change the Shia demographic - a form of religiously motivated genocide, while at the same time claiming the area is needed for "property development" in a land grab that is sure to enrich developers close to the Saudi royal family. None of this, however, is taking place in secret or completely hidden from public view - video footage of armor enclosed government bulldozers operating in Almosara leveling what appears to be an entire city block amidst gunfire has spread widely on the internet, which we featured in our initial report of the siege.

Saudi soldiers further appear to be uploading photos and videos of themselves celebrating their entry into and current occupation of the town. Some footage, which was quickly picked up in Arabic media, shows Saudi elite troops desecrating a Shia mosque while repeating sectarian slogans commonly used among ISIS terrorists.

In one of the videos, a Saudi soldier enters the historic Al-Fotya mosque in Awamiya, sacred to Shias, while declaring, “These are the Shia’s Hussainiyat, the Rafidi’s (rejectionists), the sons of dogs, thank you Allah, thank you Allah...The monster forces.” Rejectionist is a derogatory term for Shia Muslims favored by Wahhabis. It is the most common slur bused by ISIS when referencing Shias.

The Washington D.C. based Institute For Gulf Affairs has translated the brief video:

A 2009 Human Rights Watch report acknowledged that Shias "face systematic discrimination in religion, education, justice, and employment" in Saudi Arabia. This is especially true in the military and government ministries. Saudi special forces, which have reportedly spearheaded the military assault on Awamiya, are put through Wahhabi religious instruction and ban all Shia from their ranks.

Photos out of Awamiya also being widely circulated show Saudi special forces ("SSF" - which is printed on the soldiers' body armor vests) desecrating a Shia shrine while standing atop an image of the revered slain Shiite preacher, Sheikh Nimr Al-Nimr, who was controversially executed early this year after his arrest for being a fierce critic of the Saudi monarchy.

Al Masdar News
featured the photo set and reported: "The Saudi regime forces have recently taken to social media to brag about the Awamiya siege that has displaced thousands of civilians and killed several other residents."

To see what developers under the aegis of the government have planned for the area, one need look no further that Saudi state media. Al-Arabiya, a Saudi government funded regional news channel which operates out of Dubai, published plans for Saudi "redevelopment" of the now utterly destroyed ancient walled quarter of Awamiya.

The visual concept plans were issued at a Wednesday press conference hosted by a government housing and development ministry. The Saudi Undersecretary for Construction and Projects, Essam Al Mulla,
presented the government's vision, which he called "a quantum leap in urban development".

Saudi government supplied visual concept for Awamiya development, currently being occupied by the military after its Shia residents were forced out, with many of them reported killed and their homes and historic neighborhoods demolished. State owned Al-Arabiya English captioned this image as follows: "The development project for Awamiya city in north eastern Saudi Arabia."

State owned Al-Arabiya's caption reads: "The development project for Awamiya city in north eastern Saudi Arabia."

Should the project come to completion it is uncertain who will inhabit the newly developed property. What is certain is that activists and displaced residents say it is part of a long term plan to purge the country's East of its ancient Shia heartland - something even the United Nations Human Rights Commission has taken note of. Saudi Arabia claims that Iran and other pro-Shia entities purposefully stoke unrest in the province. With the complete takeover and military occupation of restive Awamiya amidst international media silence, the plans seem to be making progress. It appears the project would run at least in the hundreds of millions of dollars - possibly more given the potential for an active Shia insurgency vowing to oppose the obliteration of the area's religious heritage.

Saudi Arabia's ability to engage in overt sectarian cleansing of its Eastern province with complete impunity is made glaringly evident by the fact that its state-run media can openly post Orwellian "urban development" plans for a zone now being flattened by government bulldozers accompanied by sectarian sloganizing special forces troops.

Meanwhile, there's not a peep from Western capitals accustomed to lecturing the world on the supposedly unique evils of Putin, Assad, or Kim Jong Un.


GRDguy Fri, 08/11/2017 - 19:33 Permalink

Governments were supposed to protect people from bullies (sociopaths).This is what happens when governments become sociopathic bullies.There's no way for honest people to defend themselves anywhere.

redmudhooch Fri, 08/11/2017 - 19:42 Permalink

Fear not, these nice Saudi fellows are building lots of pretty mosques here in America too.Your neighborhood will look like the above in the future.

xrxs Fri, 08/11/2017 - 19:48 Permalink

With all the symmetric tit for tat going on, I wouldn't be giving shiites in SA a reason. I'll have to keep my eyes out for anti monarchy graffiti.

WorkingClassMan Fri, 08/11/2017 - 19:48 Permalink

Sort of similar to how their cousins, the jews in Isn'treal, are doing to the real inhabitants of the land there.Buzzards of a feather flock together...I hope the Shia can crush these Sunni scum.

AlbertthePudding Fri, 08/11/2017 - 20:57 Permalink


earleflorida Fri, 08/11/2017 - 21:28 Permalink

the saudi wahhabi will gladly team up with zionist israel`plaestine. (afterall the terrorist zionist fascist jews made deals with hitler and mussolini in the late 1930's) wiki/ stern gang --- ben-gurion and begin the destroyer the progenitor/creator of mossad! all the good oil wells are in the saudi`shia south east (and west?)Israel wants all of jordan and of course whats little left of arab palestine they haven't already captured? and will push the hashemite dynasty of past Transjordan into iraq, as the british pushed king hussein for saudi arabaia into exile in cyprus, for king saud who allowed jewish palestine to exist after balfours declaration folly! 

earleflorida SmittyinLA Sat, 08/12/2017 - 13:07 Permalink

as i had written about king hussein (arab leader in ME of all tribes, although saud was his lesser adversary) regarding the wwi arab [ref: t.e. lawrence] army helping defeat the 'ottoman' for their independence & rule promised by the british--- the arabs knew about the sykes-picot ageement of 1916, leaked to arabs by russian bolshevik trotsky at the dawn of the russian revolution/civil war--- and were yet fully abreast {(aware?, of the balfour ([late 1917][fait accompli to present day and its drastic ramifications for centuries to come on the ME!])} of  the nov/1917 balfour [?] declaration, but they still believe [?]([hoped is a better word?][yet... they were naive in how aggressive the zionist were/would become fanatical terrorist in reaching/fulfilling their means])--- the british (they had no faith in the french, and basically had hoped america would help them via wilson) would fulfill their promise.they were all royally fucked!!!the jewish palestinian 'spiritual home' didn't bother the arab leader [hashemite] hussein,... it was the 'political home' of palestine shared with the foreign jews that was insulting. indigenous jews were never a problem in all of the ME!!!--- regarding the arabs. Period!!!that said--- to your point of iran?iran wasn't, and never was influenced/or dependent upon the Ottoman Empire--- it was in a entirely different sphere,... namely the Persian Empire!Iran, [persia] has always been, and hasn't changed for centuries.the mossad and [terrorist/ two factions] jews never mixed with the iranian ideology or religion, unless your talking the (brief?) period of time before the WZO was created in late 19th century (note: strange tyming of the WZO in prelude to wwi?). your reasoning/rationale is without merit and flawed with anachronistic propaganda.  

In reply to by SmittyinLA

mabuhay1 Fri, 08/11/2017 - 23:04 Permalink

I am glad that the Saudi's have carried out a successful and complete operation to clear the area. Once the area is redeveloped, there will be much less terrorism in the area.

any_mouse Fri, 08/11/2017 - 23:35 Permalink

The House of Zion and the House of Saud, a match made in hell. Woe upon their unwanted residents.

At least the USA requires a simple act of monetary independence before dealing death and destruction.

Fireman Sat, 08/12/2017 - 03:19 Permalink

The fecal filled feudal crypt of Saud, that head-chopping wahhabi, takfiri, salafist terrorist sewer has become more Israeli than the khasarian mutts infesting apartheid, occupied Palestine. The good news is both will disappear the day the IOU petroscrip Saudi Mercan I$I$ backed toilet paper dollah gets flushed from the ponzi "economy" and the free lunch genocide on Chinese credit Pentacon mob can no longer "pay" for their global slaughter.

Which way to t… Sat, 08/12/2017 - 04:00 Permalink

I'm sure this human rights violation will be fully investigated, as Saudi Arabia has a seat on the UN human rights council, as well as UN womans rights council. /sarc The only thing more evil than Saudia Arabia are those governments and media that condone and support them. And who is fighting back against this evil? Well that powerhouse of the ME, Yemen. I cheer their every success against the KSA. It shouldn't be a surprise that KSA and Israel, both fake nations, with religious fanatics in control finding common ground, hating Iran and Syria and backing the Kurds and stirring up hate. The day Zioniam and Wahhabism are eradicated from the ME will be a day of celebration.Bubbles 

Glyndwr will return Sat, 08/12/2017 - 09:01 Permalink

In Britain, we call this the moral high ground. At least our bought and paid for politcians do.The Saudis are our allies - the US told us they were - and we are doing good work selling them arms. - Nay - we are doing God's work!

Synoia Sat, 08/12/2017 - 12:04 Permalink

That image looks like nothing on the current map of the City.The possability of all thet green is nonsense. It's a desert with little water, no rivers, on the Persian Guld between Bahrain and Kuwait.