Australian woman imprisoned in Abu Dhabi for Facebook post

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Could someone explain to me why anybody, particularly a woman or a gay person but basically any sentient creature, would voluntarily go to a place like Abu Dhabi? Because I don’t fucking get it.


I gotta say, my sympathy is extremely limited for any person from a modern country to chooses to live in one of those countries. I have great sympathy for the people who were born there…and for whom a $2k fine for annoying the aristocracy would be a mercy.


Gotta love it when Westerners go to foreign lands with a completely different culture and still expect to be treated as if they were in their home country.

A spokesman for Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade said its travel advice for visitors to the United Arab Emirates was that they should be aware that the country’s laws appeared harsh by Australian standards.

Isn’t anyone who owns a car there powerful?

The Emirates have some of the world’s highest accident and driving death rates. Avoiding the rush hours in the cities as much as possible is a good idea as this is when people are at their most volatile. Tinted windows are often a sign that the car may have a privileged driver as they are forbidden by law, and cars with tinted windows should generally be given a wide berth. It is also difficult to see other drivers when changing lanes if cars have tinted windows so watch out for this.



Yeah, if you’re traveling to the UAE, you are either:

  1. A clueless ignoramus with no knowledge of the oppressive conditions
  2. A sociopath who is happy to see other people get oppressed.

No sympathy.


Having the same time on facebook and on passport is not advisable.

The tinted windows reminds me of a story I read about Argentina during the bad days. Apparantly the secret police drove ford falcons with no license plates. So one guy was saying that after the license plates were stolen on his Falcon, he didn’t get any tickets no matter WHERE he parked. But people nervously called up people after he had visited them to see if everything was okay…


I agree with the sentiment that is insane to voluntarily travel there given the constant reports of human rights abuses.

However, she was there teaching graphic design since 2012. I don’t know why she felt compelled to do that in UAE… Maybe she had cripple student loans or medical debts and they pay really well there? Maybe she has a significant other who works with an aid organization or maybe one who is part of the military industrial complex. Without any information that she was doing or supporting something horrible, I have to have some sympathy for her current circumstances.


I think there is a difference between expecting the cultures to be the same, and thinking that a country that passes itself off as a modern nation doesn’t have insane laws that violate basic civil liberties.

Though if you read anything more than the wiki page, you would know Abu Daubi has some really crazy laws and the rich and rulers there literally get away with slavery and murder.

As with the first post, nuh uh - no desire to visit that shit hole.


She’s living there, not just a tourist, so the simple answer is: money. Shitloads and shitloads of it flying around that country. Like, metric fuckton amounts of money.


It pays well to do things like teach English there. On top of big money in the first place, your apartment is paid for and you can get full paid airfare for visits home.


Any idea how well? I’d be expecting something like 3x my US salary to go over there just so I could come back here and not work for awhile… (And I’ve got all of the privilege check boxes marked.)

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I think, in a word, “luxury.” I read about Europeans going there for vacation because they get this “luxury resort” experience (presumably for far less than it would cost elsewhere) with all sorts of fancy nightclubs and shopping mauls malls, etc., and people working there because they not only get well paid, but they have access to (very) low-wage labor that allows them to have lots of servants. It’s all pretty appalling, really.


Not offhand, sorry. However there are better holes than Abu Dhabi to do that in. A basic google search looks to be about $500 to $1500 a month post expenses. The UAE looks to be quite nice for pay and bennies, location not so much.

Also - how Orwellian is it that someone on her “friends” list probably reported her. Unless her page was public.

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The people who were born there are doing just fine, it´s the foreign slave labourers you gotta worry about.

Add this to my list of “Reasons not to visit UAE”


There’s nothing wrong with having sympathy for someone who is facing a horrible and undeserved situation even if that person theoretically could have made different choices that might have avoided that situation.


People usually go for the money. Abu Dhabi has tons of it; and is busily trying to import the various ingredients of what we think of as a modern city as fast as possible. This makes it a very lucrative alternative to New York, London, etc. and offers a variety of modern amenities.

It’s just that people sometimes get lulled into the (wholly false) sense that just because it looks rather like other contemporary metropolises, the same rules apply. There are a number of fun stories about various second-string city trader types who headed over because it was easier than London and you could have your very own servant; and then learned that they have ‘debtor’s prisons’ rather than ‘bankruptcy filings’.

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She’s Australian, so it’s unlikely that she has either. And whether or not they have them, the UAE certainly doesn’t need any aid organizations.

They do pay very well, though. I’ve known people who were tempted by the money, but wouldn’t do it because they would never take their families to a place like that.

Still, probably shouldn’t make the Top Ten.

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