The King's palace in Riyadh, which I visited in November 1973, was on a monumental scale. Preceded by two sword carriers, I was taken to a tremendous hall. Dozens of men (women being strictly segregated) in identical black robes and white headdresses were seated along the walls, immobile and silent. What seemed like 100 yards away on a slightly raised pedestal sat King Faisal ibn Abdul Aziz Al Saud, aquiline of feature, regal of bearing. He rose as I entered, forcing all the princes and sheiks to follow suit in a flowing balletlike...

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