Vehicle Decal

Many vehicles here in KSA sport Arabic script decals like this one on the back window of this SUV. This particular decal contains exactly what the flag of Saudi Arabian government bears, however the flag itself has a solid green background with white Arabic script and sword. The script on the flag is called the “shahadah,” which is the Islamic declaration of faith spoken when one becomes a Muslim: “There is no god but God and Mohammad is his messenger.” The sword beneath the script denotes justice. It is interesting to note that the flag of Saudi Arabia is not normally seen or printed on things like t-shirts and such because the shahada is considered holy since it is from the Quran. For the 2002 Football World Cup, the FIFA had plans to produce an offical football including all the flags of each participating country on it, however Saudi Arabia officials objected on the grounds that it would be disrespectful to kick a football bearing the shahadah. But I guess it’s okay for it to appear on vehicles in this dusty country. Another fact regarding the Saudi Arabian flag is that because of the shahadah inscripted on it, it is unlawful for the flag to be flown at half-mast.


About SusieOfArabia

American woman now living in hubby's homeland of Saudi Arabia
This entry was posted in Culture, History, Photo, Religion, Saudi Arabia and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Vehicle Decal

  1. Pingback: Saudi Flag Verse Decal « JEDDAH DAILY PHOTO JOURNAL

  2. Also, I was curious about the role of the sword, but now I know!

  3. Christy says:


    Never knew anything about their flag.

  4. rantingcynic says:

    Like alot of people out there, I don’t have the cash, so I travel by blog. I find that Arabic script is more elegant that english. I am really fond of Sanskrit, it is by far my favortie written language. the two seem very simular. Thanks for sharing.


  5. Very interesting to see the decal and read about the Saudi flag!

  6. Chiara says:

    It seems to me that kicking a football with the flag on it and using the shahada as a decal are 2 very different things. Add to that, the Muslim injunction against showing the soles of the feet to Allah as disrespectful–which is the reason all footwear is carefully lined up soles downward, and crossing one’s legs with the soles upward is inappropriate–and the Saudi objection makes more sense. I can only presume that the half-mast has some similar meaning of which I am unaware. All countries have laws protecting their flag, and some apply them more than others (I think in fact some uses of the American flag in certain clothing is disrespectful but it is not prosecuted). Nice photo, and I appreciate the information. I was curious about the role of the sword, and now I know! Thanks.

  7. SandyCarlson says:

    The script is beautiful. Whatever it says. It’s interesting to me how a typeface can say a lot about a world view. And an alphabet.

  8. Jerry M says:

    and what is disrespectful about flying a flag at half mast?

    • I have no idea, Jerry – I also forgot to mention that it is not allowed for the Saudi flag to be flown lengthwise either. I always thought that flying a flag at half-mast was a sign of respect.

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