Ibn Saud (26 November 1876 – 9 November 1953) was the first Monarch of Saudi Arabia. He is noted for being the head of the Saud's family, and being in power when oil was discovered in Saudi Arabia. His support for Palestinians and strong opposition against Israel has been praised by various groups as well.
- Faisal, Saud is your brother. Saud, Faisal is your brother. There is no power and no strength save in God.
- The last words of Ibn Saud; quoted in Ibn Saud, by Leslie McLoughlin.
Quotes about Ibn Saud
- A number of social problems arose. I had been told that neither smoking nor alcoholic beverages were allowed in the [Saudi] Royal Presence. As I was the host at luncheon I raised the matter at once, and said to the interpreter that if it was the religion of His Majesty [Ibn Saud] to deprive himself of smoking and alcohol I must point out that my rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after, and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them. The King graciously accepted the position. His own cup-bearer from Mecca offered me a glass of water from its sacred well, the most delicious I had ever tasted.
- Winston Churchill, Discussion of an audience with Saudi King Ibn Saud at the Fayoum oasis, Egypt, on February 17, 1945; in The Second World War, Volume VI : Triumph and Tragedy (1953), Chapter 23 (Yalta: Finale), pp. 348-349.
- We liberate our nation's heart inside of Indonesian independence!! Ibn Saud liberated Arabian's heart inside of Saudi Arabian independence one by one!! Stalin liberated Soviet-Russian's heart inside of Soviet one by one!!
- On September 18, 1932, Ibn Saud, at the age of fifty-two, declared himself the King of Saudi Arabia. Actually the concept of a king had never been accepted in central Arabia, where tribal tradition supported less centralized leadership, but Ibn Saud was inspired by European royalty and so a king he would be. He ran his new country like the Mafia. Cousins by marriage became lieutenants, half-brothers were given areas to rule, and non-Saudis, if they proved their loyalty, were treated like adjuncts to the family. Pursuing Wahhabist doctrine, Ibn Saud took the position that there should not be a division between religion and the state. He claimed that his absolute authority was sanctioned by Allah and that disobedience to him was heresy. He used the ulema (religious leaders) to issue fatwas (written judgments) to justify his policies. He tried to expand his kingdom by invading Yemen, but the Yemenis successfully resisted and Ibn Saud had to settle for a peace treaty. Internationally, he flirted with the Soviets, who loaned him oil, and with the Nazis, who gave him German-made rifles and built him an arms factory in Riyadh. Basically though, Ibn Saud leaned toward Great Britain through most of World War II. On February 14, 1945, after the Yalta Conference, Ibn Saud met for the first time a non-Muslim leader: the president of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Roosevelt, who died two months later, agreed to help the Jewish people only in ways that were not hostile to the Arabs. Ibn Saud also met with Winston Churchill, who irritated him by smoking. By the end of the war, Saudi Arabia had turned away from Great Britain and embraced the United States. Ibn Saud also managed to declare war on Germany in time to be invited to join the United Nations.
- David Wallechinsky, Tyrants: The World's 20 Worst Living Dictators (2006), p. 2