Tagged as billionaire
SHOULD THESE BILLIONAIRES GET A DIVORCE?
WHO? Rupert Murdoch and Prince Al-Waleed of Saudi Arabia
AGE: 79, 55, respectively
WHAT? Their ménage a deux and the New York “terror mosque” connection
NETWORTH: $6B and 19B, respectively (both are on the Forbes List of Billionaires)
MARITAL STATUS: Both currently married (Wendy Deng and Princess Ameera, respectively) with two ex wives each. (Ex wives are Patricia Booker, Anna Torv and Princess Dalal, Princess Iman, respectively)
HEIRS: Rupert has six, Prince Alwaleed has two.
PROVENANCE: Australia/England/America and Saudi Arabia, respectively
CONTROVERSY: The New York “Terror Mosque”
QUESTION: Should these two lover boys get a divorce?
BACK-STORY: Twice-divorced House of Saud billionaire Al-Waleed is rumored to be bankrolling the controversial mosque in New York that has the whole country, me included, in an uproar. But does that make him a bad person?
The prince, a co-investor of Rupert Murdoch’s (billionaire owner of Fox News) is, globally, real estate-affluent (he invests through his company Kingdom Holding Company) with stakes in such holdings as The Plaza Hotel, The Four Seasons Hotel, Monte Carlo Grand, London Savoy, among others, according to Wikipedia. He’s also a big time philanthropist and the Ground Zero mosque is just the latest of his charitable giving activities. In addition to millions he’s given around the world (Louvre Museum, Harvard University), he also bankrolls the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University and he famously gave Rudy Giulliani a check for $10 million following the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York by Muslim extremists. (Rudy gave him his money back.)
But does that make him a bad person?
A son of divorced parents, the Saudi Prince describes himself as “pro-American” and virtuously aligns himself with president Obama on the issue of terrorism. I read that somewhere. Where? Don’t remember. But I definitely read that. The Prince is listed as the 13th richest person in the world, per Forbes Magazine (that means he has loads of money to pump into this mosque) and lives with his current wife, Ameera Khawlud(?) and another woman (does he have two wives? is he a polygamist?) in a palace in Saudi Arabia. According to sources:
“Al-Waleed and his children live in a $100 million sand-colored palace whose 317 rooms are adorned with 1,500 tons of Italian marble, silk oriental carpets, gold-plated faucets and 250 TV sets. It will have four kitchens, for Lebanese, Arabic, Continental and Asian cuisines, and a fifth for dishing up desserts, run by chefs who can feed 2,000 people on an hour’s notice. Their royal highnesses can swim in a lagoon-shaped pool, or catch a film in the 45-seat basement cinema.
Prince Al-Waleed also owns a 317-room palace in Riyadh where most of his guests come to visit him.”
Nice. Where did I get that quote? I think it was Wikipedia. Oops. Can’t remember….But is Prince Alwaleed a bad person for bankrolling this mosque? That’s what I’m trying to figure out. Is he really a “friend” of America? I don’t think that Prince Al-Waleed is a bad guy necessarily. For one thing, he loves and cares about women and children. In addition to his other virtues, he is said to be pro-women’s rights (he’s reportedly even in favor of giving Saudi women the right to drive a car, for instance. That’s huge for a Saudi prince!). Consequently, how can anyone in good faith say anything bad about the Prince or align the Prince with terrorists and malign his good name? Just because he’s Muslim does not mean he’s a terrorist. I am anti Islamophobia, I really am. Even though, I am totally against building that mosque there. There’s something wrong about it. I can’t put my finger on what is wrong. I just know that something is….
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But of course, the Prince has friends in high places so how can he be a bad guy? Think about it. George W. Bush was an old pal. Another is news oligarch and divorcé Rupert Murdoch (New York Times today posits that Murdoch is one of the billionaires who is bankrolling the Tea Party movement, coincidentally). Nobody cares more about restoring America than Murdoch. That’s pretty obvious. That means that if he’s in business with Al Alwaleed, then Al Alwaleed must be a good guy. Right?
Murdoch, it appears, is not a huge supporter of the Democratic Party or of President Obama (and any of his policies) or the mosque. He is a conservative Republican as far as I can tell; and so is his news organization, Fox News and they think President Obama is the worse thing that has happened to America. To them, he disgraces the memory of President George Washington and Abraham Lincoln and all the greats. Heck, he blasphemes the Constitution just by being there! They want Obama to fail. If they could, I sense they would go into the White House and physically drag Obama out and toss him into the streets for hungry pitbulls and grizzlies to devour. That’s how dishonorable Rupert and the tea party members think Obama is. But Alwaleed likes Obama, supposedly? Even though he’s good, tight friends with Murdoch. And then there’s the question of that mosque…..
Where am I going with this? In circles as usual. I have no idea what the point of this post is to tell you the truth. What the heck does it have to do with divorce? (BTW, I am writing it between commercials for The Devil Wears Prada; such gorgeous clothes!)
Okay. Let me wrap this up. I think that the interesting thread that sews this whole thing together for me is that Al-Waleed is heavily invested in Murdoch’s business, News Corp., and owns a huge percentage of Fox News, a stake worth over one billion dollars. In other words, as Frank Rich says in his New York Times op ed, Al Waleed and Murdoch are “in bed together” since Al-Waleed owns a 7% stake in Fox. And that is interesting because Fox, like I, has come out swinging against building the mosque at Ground Zero. And Fox reporters went even further than I by claiming that the mosque is being built by, I guess, people who are terrorists by association. This is what I’m gathering but I don’t really watch Fox so I don’t know for sure. But if I am getting the story right, then it would mean that Fox is actually partially owned by one of those so called “terrorists by association” that Rupert Murdoch, vicariously through his Fox reporters, detests and disdains – none other than His Royal Highness Al-Waleed bin Talalbin Abdul Aziz al-Saud – and so technically, Fox is bankrolling the mosque!
Do you think Rupert needs to divorce Al waleed?
What does this all mean? Dunno. What does it have to do with divorce? Nothing. But it sure does make interesting copy, doesn’t it?
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