Hot on the heels of holding Haotong Li to the fire for breaking a rule that he didn’t break, the European Tour turns a blind eye to everything that is wrong with the world, Saudi Arabia. You may be asking what the European Tour’s support for holding an event in a country that tops the list of the worst offender of human rights in the world is. Well… “We have an excellent relationship with the Middle East and it’s very important; why it’s important is we can’t play anywhere in Europe at this time of year. Saudi is just an extension of the Middle East strategy,” said Keith Pelley, CEO of the European Tour. Anything for a buck, eh, Keith Pelley? World #1, Justin Rose, is headlining the field. Why? He doesn’t need the event. He doesn’t need the world rankings points. He said, ‘It’s not about politics.’ Then what is it about?
It was only three months ago when Saudi Arabia killed Jamal Khashoggi. They did it. Everyone knows they did it. Let’s ignore that the leader of Saudi Arabia had a reported killed because he dared write critically of his reign. Women are looked down upon in Saudi Arabia. They’re considered beneath animals. If you happen to be homosexual in Saudi Arabia, or even accused of it, you’re as good as being executed, publicly. That is, if you’re not part of the royal family. Then you’re given a pass. And don’t you dare speak ill of the Saudi government in Saudi Arabia. You’ll be publicly executed as well.
Now that that is out of the way, why would any golfer agree to play in Saudi Arabia? How much money has to be given to a player to entice them to play in that country and pushing aside all of their morals? It’s sure not about trying to make a statement or hope to make a change in Saudi Arabia. They’re not changing. Then why? It call comes down to money. It has to. There’s no other way a top player would agree to play there.
How well does Dustin Johnson think the Saudi’s would embrace his recent Instagram posts where he’s grabbing wife Paulina Gretzky’s butt and kissing her? How about Brooks ‘butt off’ with Jenna Sims? How do they think that would be met in Saudi Arabia. Even kiss in public comes with a severe flogging. If you don’t know what flogging is, it’s a lashing to a part of your body by am unbreakable stick, dozens of times. Google it at your own peril.
This isn’t something new for the European Tour. Every time they go to Dubai, they’re supporting much of the same human rights violations that Saudi Arabia is guilty of. Homosexuality is illegal in Dubai. It’s punishable by death there as well. With all of this, why does the European Tour continue to hold events in these countries? Money.
The European Tour, the world’s best players, all seemingly turn a blind eye when the price is high enough. Paul Casey has been outspoken and is not playing this week in Saudi Arabia because if their human rights violations. Casey is an ambassador for Unicef. He never intended to play the event even though others claimed he did. He’s making a stand. He made a stand the European Tour, the top players in the world, all should have made. Instead, they decided to let the all mighty buck corrupt their morals. At least we know where their priorities are now.