Fol­low­ing in China’s foot­steps

The Washington Post Sunday - - SUNDAY OPINION -

Re­gard­ing the Nov. 6 front-page ar­ti­cle “Sweep­ing Saudi purge hits ri­vals of prince”:

The Saudis years ago made a con­scious de­ci­sion to re­ject the U.S. model of democ­racy and elec­tions. They seem to have been fol­low­ing the Chi­nese model. The Saudi tribal monar­chy saw how China man­aged to mod­ern­ize its econ­omy and granted greater so­cial free­doms yet main­tained the sin­gleparty to­tal­i­tar­ian po­lit­i­cal sys­tem. Is there re­ally much dif­fer­ence be­tween the Saudi king and the now-Mao-like Chi­nese leader Xi Jin­ping?

Whether the young Saudi crown prince can trans­form the so­ci­ety while main­tain­ing ab­so­lute author­ity is the chal­lenge.

Charles Kesten­baum, Vi­enna

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