Delta & Saudi Alliance Raises Concerns
It's an issue that you will be hearing a lot more about.
Delta Air Lines is partnering with Saudi Arabian Airlines, the government-owned airline that embraces discriminatory policies targeting religion, ethnicity, and gender.
In announcing the partnership in January, Delta issued this statement as part of its press release: "We are honored that Saudi Arabian has chosen to link its future growth and success with Delta and our SkyTeam partners, while bringing our alliance greater access to destinations across the Middle East."
Delta says it does not discriminate, and isn't responsible for what other nations do. That's ridiculous. If they choose to partner with the Saudis, they simply can't back away and shut their eyes to this discriminatory behavior.
And, now the Saudi embassy in Washington says it doesn't discriminate either. "The fact of the matter is American citizens are not being discriminated against based on their religion," said embassy spokesman Nail Al-Jubeir.
If that's really the case, then why does their application for a visa, posted here, include a mandatory request to list your religion?
The fact is that with this new alliance, there's real concern that American Jews will be prohibited from flying into the country. Even non-Jews with an Israeli stamp in their passport could be targeted. And, of course, U.S. citizens who are Christian are in the danger zone as well, often facing blatant discrimination in Islamic countries like Saudi Arabia where Sharia Law is embraced.
Read more about this issue here.
We are working on this issue and will have more details on Monday. Our legal and legislative teams are putting together a strategy to address these very serious concerns.
In fact, already on Capitol Hill, there's a call to get to the bottom of this. U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Illinois) has sent a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration to investigate these concerns.
"I request your investigation into this matter to determine whether Delta Airlines violated U.S. law or regulation and to ensure no U.S. citizen is denied their right to fly solely on the basis of their religion." Sen. Kirk wrote in a letter to the head of the FAA.
More about all of this on Monday.