The former Saudi monarch King Fahd stands at the center of the image, donning a cross. The caption reads: “khadim al-Salib” (“servant of the cross”), which is a pun on the traditional title of the Saudi king, “Khadim al-haramayn,” or guardian of the two holy shrines, Mecca and al-Madina. To his left is the American flag, and to his right, instead of the Saudi flag (which displays the shahada, the Islamic testimony of faith, above a long curved sword), the viewer sees a symbol associated with Saudi Arabia and the Saudi royal family (a palm tree over two crossed swords on a green background). The American flag, or parts thereof (such as the stars and stripes), are widely used in jihadi propaganda to evoke negative sentiments towards U.S. foreign policy and military campaigns. The absence of the Saudi flag, combined with the caption, the flames and the American flag, convey an attempt to delegitimize the Saudi royal family and to frame it as a source of evil and as an adversary of the jihadi movement. At the same time, the royal family is depicted as collaborating with the U.S., which jihadists view as the major enemy of Islam.  King Fahd was particularly reviled by the jihadists for his willingness to allow U.S. troops to be stationed in the Kingdom during Operation Desert Storm.

More Information
Group Type Jihadist Group
Dominant Colors Green, Red, Yellow
Secondary Colors White, Blue
Language Arabic
Isolated Phrases / Mottoes / Slogans Khadim al-haramayn
Image Number 0098
Groups Region of Operation Middle East
Groups Country of Operation Arabic
Weapons Cold Weapons and Defensive Armor, Sword / Crossed Swords
Fire Flames, Smoke
Geopolitical Symbols Symbol of party, movement or company, Slogan
Geopolitical Analysis Symbol associated with Saudi kingdom - green background with white palm tree and crossed swords under the palm
People Political Leader, Man / Men
People Analysis King `Adballah of Saudi Arabia
Religious Symbols Cross
Flora Trees / Shrubs, Palm

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