I share values, do you share values?

Okay what about dear Saudi Arabia with whom we share all these ‘values’? What about all these ‘values’ that we share? Which ones are those then? People are asking.

As Gordon Brown faced mounting criticism yesterday over the state visit of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, the Foreign Office minister Kim Howells called for Britain and the Saudi monarchy to work more closely together on a basis of “shared values”…The statement by Mr Howells drew an angry reaction from the Labour backbenches. “I am astounded that a government minister can identify shared values with a regime that is world-renowned for its abuse of human rights and civil liberties,” said John McDonnell, the left-wing MP co-ordinating protests at the Saudi embassy tomorrow.

Well there’s always money. And monarchy. Will those do?

Perhaps not.

A dossier on executions, prolonged detention of peaceful critics without trial, and discrimination against women was issued yesterday by Amnesty International who said that it was “extremely concerned” at the extent and severity of human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia. This year, at least 124 people have been executed, the majority by beheading, said the group.

Well how about ‘faith’ then? That’s a shared value, surely.

Maybe not.

Material urging hatred of other religions can be found in mosques across Britain, most of it linked to Saudi Arabia, according to a new investigation…Researchers uncovered propaganda calling for homosexuals to be murdered, women to be subjugated and denouncing Jews and Christians as the enemies of Islam…Many publications urged British Muslims to segregate themselves from non-Muslims and for “unbelievers” to be regarded as second class. Most of the material is produced by agencies closely linked to the Saudi regime, according to the investigation. It included virulently anti-Semitic propaganda produced by the Saudi ministry of education. Some of the literature discovered espoused the creation of a separate state for Muslims, governed by sharia law.

McDonald’s? Starbucks? Oil? Sunshine? There must be something…

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