¿Son fanáticos los saudíes?

Los ataques terroristas en Arabia Saudí han hecho que muchos no sólo cuestionen las perspectivas de supervivencia de la gobernante Casa de los Sauds, sino que se pregunten si el reino es fundamentalmente disfuncional y destructivo. De algún modo, parece que la sociedad saudí ha producido un torrente de fanatismo violento que se inspira en la ortodoxia religiosa extrema.

El hecho de que 15 de los 19 secuestradores de los ataques del 11 de septiembre de 2001 en EE.UU. fueran saudíes cristalizó una visión de larga data que considera al reino como un bastión del autoritarismo y la intolerancia. En algunos aspectos, esta percepción es exacta, pero no se puede aplicar al público saudí general. Por el contrario, sería un grave error suponer que el islamismo fanático define por completo las actitudes saudíes hacia la religión.

Entre 2001 y 2003, formé parte de un equipo que realizó un amplio estudio de los valores en Arabia Saudí, Egipto, Irán y Jordania. Nuestros resultados ofrecen una imagen sorprendentemente matizada de las actitudes saudíes. En comparación con los encuestados de otros países del Oriente Medio, los saudíes eran en general menos religiosos, y sus actitudes hacia la democracia y los matrimonios pactados también indican una corriente moderada subyacente.

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