A citizen of Saudi Arabia, saying “We don’t have a problem with other religions”? Sure — as long as they stay out of the Kingdom.
From a puff piece entitled “Students, envoys and tongue-tied” in the Times Leader (thanks to News4U), about Saudi students at Wilkes University:
For Saudi rulers, the program is a way to repair their kingdom’s image in the U.S. with person-to-person contact. In April 2005, President Bush and then-Crown Prince Abdullah issued a statement in support of more interaction between the two countries, including a pledge to “increase the number of young Saudi students to travel and study in the United States.”…
Although the Saudis admit they were a little nervous about American attitudes toward Muslims before they came here, Hussain said everyone has been “very kind, very lovely so far.”
From a lounge in the basement of the school’s library, Yami and Hussain talked about adjusting to life in the U.S. Behind them hung a white board that said “Wilkes Masjid” and had prayer times listed under it. Because they must pray five times a day in between classes and studying, the men have been using the lounge as a makeshift mosque.
Blanchard said she sees the Saudis” presence as an opportunity to clear up some of the misconceptions about their country. “Part of the excitement of getting to know them is to see their culture in a new light and a more accurate and truthful light “” to meet people as individuals.”
Hussain, the oldest of the group, has been giving presentations on campus to educate American students about his country. One troubling misconception, he said, is the idea that many Saudis support terrorism. “We don’t hate Americans; we don’t have a problem with other religions and other countries.”
Yami added that many Saudis despise al-Qaida and Osama bin Laden. “We have been attacked ourselves,” he said, referring to a May 2003 al-Qaida bombing in Riyadh that killed westerners and Saudis.
“Osama has killed people from my tribe, with my family name,” Yami said. “Most people in my country hate him.”
Oh, well then, I guess most people in Saudi Arabia reject the ideology of jihad and Islamic supremacism, eh?