The Middle East Channel

A five-star retirement home for dictators

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia—Where once there were gilded gates and sweeping views, now there are parking lots, hospital ceilings, and object lessons for the Arab Spring’s new dictators-in-exile to contemplate. For the routed presidents of Tunisia and Yemen, the latest additions to Saudi Arabia’s guest list of leaders no longer wanted by unappreciative homelands, exile after ...

PRESIDENCY/AFP/Getty Images
PRESIDENCY/AFP/Getty Images

JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia—Where once there were gilded gates and sweeping views, now there are parking lots, hospital ceilings, and object lessons for the Arab Spring’s new dictators-in-exile to contemplate.

For the routed presidents of Tunisia and Yemen, the latest additions to Saudi Arabia’s guest list of leaders no longer wanted by unappreciative homelands, exile after their people pulled the plugs on their presidencies-for-life is appearing gloomy and isolated. Their Saudi hosts are forbearing but not especially thrilled, either.

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