This TV interview has been shown an written about widely in the Arab world and the west. Here is the take of Huffington Post by Ed Mazza on 2/10/15. A link to the story is here, and the text is below the video clip of the show that appeared on 1/31/15. The video has subtitles.
A Saudi Arabian historian trying to justify the nation's ban on female drivers says women who drive in other countries such as the United States don't care if they're raped and that sexual violence "is no big deal to them."
al-Saadoon claimed in a recent TV interview that women can be raped
when a car breaks down, but unlike other countries, Saudi Arabia
protects its women from that risk by not allowing them to drive in the
first place, according to a translation posted online by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
"They don't care if they are raped on the roadside, but we do," al-Saadoon said on Saudi Rotana Khalijiyya TV.
on. Who told you they don’t care about getting raped on the roadside?”
asked the host, a woman who is not named in the transcript.
no big deal for them beyond the damage to their morale,” al-Saadoon
replied. “In our case, however, the problem is of a social and religious
Two other guests on the show -- a man and a woman --
appeared to be in shock over his comments. Al-Saadoon said they were out
"They should listen to me and get used to what society thinks," al-Saadoon said.
the rape argument didn't seem to be convincing anyone, al-Saadoon tried
another approach, claiming that women are treated "like queens" in
Saudi Arabia because they are driven around by the men of the family and
male chauffeurs. That led the host to ask if he wasn't afraid that
women might be raped by their chauffeurs.
is a solution, but the government officials and the clerics refuse to
hear of it," he said. "The solution is to bring in female foreign
chauffeurs to drive our wives."
That caused the female host to laugh and cover her face with her palm.
"Female foreign chauffeurs?" she said. "Seriously?"
Saudi women face serious penalties if they are caught driving, including lashing. Two women who defied the ban on driving last year, Loujain al-Hathloul and Maysa al-Amoudi, are being tried in a court that handles terror cases.