Saudi-born singer Shams Bandar, also known as "Shams the Kuwaiti," recently declared that she was renouncing her Saudi and Kuwaiti nationalities for the sake of European citizenship. In a September 22 interview with the Egyptian Dream TV channel, she defended her decision, saying: "What can these wretched [refugees] do with their Arab citizenship?" "All the Arab countries have closed their borders to them." Shams further said: "Why do we pin all our problems on the West? For 1,400 years we have been slaughtering one another, just because one of us prays one way and another prays a different way."
Following are excerpts:
Host: Are you trying to sell the notion that foreign citizenship is the Paradise that will save you from the Hell of the Arab world?
Shams Bandar: Do you want me to be a hypocrite or not?
Host: I want the truth. Is it Paradise?
Shams Bandar: Of course. At this time...
Host: People will accuse you of treason, of collaboration, and the selling out of the Arab cause.
Shams Bandar: I have been accused of that for a long time now. It's nothing new. Foreign citizenship... It's not that I'm happy with the way things are, but let's not deceive ourselves. Why tell ourselves lies? The Syrians are scattered in the world's oceans, dying by the millions on a daily basis... Iraqis are dying by the millions... All the Arab countries have closed their borders to them.What can these wretched people do with their Arab citizenship? How does a suffering Syrian benefit from his Arab citizenship, when his children and family have been killed and his life has been destroyed? His own Arab brethren do not let him in. What if he were a British citizen? Wouldn't the British embassy send a ship to get their citizens out? Why are we lying? Why aren't we telling the truth? I'm not forcing people to get foreign citizenship.
Host: But it is these countries that caused the catastrophes of the [Arab] peoples. I wouldn't portray these countries as life savers.
Shams Bandar: They are not life savers. But in Britain or America... Note that I am against the policies of their governments. I always say so. But show me where it says in their constitutions that you can chop people's hands off, stone people, execute them in the streets, or do all the things done by ISIS and the Islamist movements, which are harmful to Islam.Do you see in the American constitution and law any of the things perpetrated by our Muslims? Can we say that they do these things in the West too? Why would they, when their constitutions are all about the respect for humanity? Let's not get into what they do in secret, because I have no proof of that.
Host: What about their barbaric, bloody, aggressive conduct...
Shams Bandar: I see no evidence of that. All I see is laws, legislation, and constitution. Can anyone convince me that in America or Europe, they do what ISIS is doing to the Syrians, to the Yazidis, or to the Iraqis?Why do we pin all our problems on the West? For 1,400 years we have been slaughtering one another, just because one of us prays one way and another prays a different way.America wasn't around 1,400 years ago. It wasn't around even 300 years ago. We have been fighting and shedding blood for 1,400 years, and now we are blaming America and Britain?!