Xenophobia in Kuwait

Post by Mark


There is a video that has been circulating via whatsapp of a woman dressed in full Kuwait national day gear (screenshot above) at a McDonalds hurling insults at an employee. The woman who seems to be a local citizen verbally abuses the employee calling him names and demeaning him in front of everyone over what seems to be a misunderstanding.

Many readers have emailed me requesting to share the video which I would usually do because it’s news worthy in a tabloid sort of way but, I’m not sure I can do so without legally getting in trouble since the woman in the video is recognizable.

Anyway, here is my opinion on the video. This woman obviously doesn’t represent the majority or even minority of Kuwaitis. From the way she’s dressed and the insults she’s throwing I don’t think she’s even mentally stable. It’s just a one off situation similar to those random homeless people you run into in New York subways who talk to themselves and hurl insults randomly at strangers.

On the other hand one reader sent the following email which I thought I would share:

Being a Kuwaiti man, I am insulted by the behavior of some Kuwaitis over behavior like this:

Please do something about it. I truly believe this behavior needs to be made example of. A few years ago, a woman who threw her Kuwaiti passport on the ground to get a message across was made into an example of after social media widely spread her video. Such behavior that is displayed in this video needs to be stopped as well and it will if social media does the same thing to her.

I do agree that there should be consequences to her actions but again I don’t think this behavior or at least behavior this extreme is common. For those of you who’ve watched the video what are your thoughts on this?

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85 comments, add your own...

  1. Devil says:

    Can we?!!

  2. mohammad says:

    of course you can make an example of her.
    by sharing the video and making her lose face in front of the country.

  3. sala6a says:

    I watched the full video yesterday and did not share it because I thought that the lady does not seem to be mentally stable.. That was clear towards the end of the video …

  4. Umm Omar says:

    I saw the same woman in City Stars a few weeks ago hurling insults at the employees there. Definitely unstable.

  5. sarah says:

    Seriously, I really don’t need to see the video, I know what I see daily. Not too long ago there was an article by a Kuwaiti psychologist in the local paper who stated that 1 in 5 Kuwaitis are suffering from a mental disorder.

    • lolguy says:

      One fifth of 1.2 million is effectively saying there are 240000 loonies. Any links to back this?

      • Abdullah says:

        Yes the quote above from the statement of Dr, Mohammad Al-Suwaidan, The head of the Psychiatric Department in MOH. You can check taqabal.com or follow @taqabal on Instagram to get more info.

    • aaa says:

      FYI this counts relatively “minor” disorders like depression and anxiety, which are still serious but not as obvious to a random observer

  6. Rashid says:

    She actually said Filipino curse words at the last few seconds of the video before walking out.

    In my opinion, I think she should explain her side of the story before drawing out any conclusions.

    • Khalid says:

      Really? Is it really necessary to listen to someone who did not get her order in and started hurling out insults? It is pretty self-explanatory what happened here.

      It looks like she is in bide3 McDonalds. If she didn’t get what she wanted, she could have drove to Hardee’s right next door, or the supermarket that is attached to McDonald’s.

  7. bojaij says:

    Around 100 000 Kuwaitis have severe mental issues according to the Psychological Medicine Hospital. 100 000 who actually were treated there. Of course not all of them will end up staying in the hospital.

    Good move in not sharing the video, obviously she has a mental problem and I think the employees even knew that from their reactions.

  8. khaled says:

    I am into a customer service job (in a reputed company) and we face such cases very often. There is nothing we can do to stop. This depends upon how a child is brought up and what social values are given them.
    Spreading such videos will not result any positive outcome.

  9. salue says:

    I worked as customer service one and met alot of people like that, even tho not only Kuwaiti but also from other Arabian Nationalities ( Lebanese/Syrian/Jordan/Palestine) also non Arabs, but the majority goes on the Arabian Gulf people ( since I am living Kuwait, I met and worked with lot’s of people like that) .

  10. dfine says:

    Unfortunately it is well know and common reputation that Kuwaiti are rude and not nice to people of lower status than themselves. I have witness on many occasions a superior attitude towards others and to myself. Difference I know how to put them in their place, but others fear them for a good reason. Deportation.

    Are all like this no, of course not. No fingers are the same. But is it common yes it is. Do I blame them, yes and no. I blame them because it is thought from parents to child.. Children do not know better, but the parents do. At the same time there isn’t many good role models to follow.

    Do I lose my patience with service staff in kuwait, Oh yes I do a lot. Hence why I am happy Al Shaya cleaned up and gave them proper training.

    There is an example to follow.

  11. Pete says:

    Well if there’s anything I’ve learnt from reading this, is that Kuwaiti’s are very polite! The fact that some of you considered NOT sharing this, to protect what’s important is astounding and you should be proud!

  12. ghada says:

    yeah, don’t distribute the video , put your heads in the sands as usual !
    these incidents need to be addressed not ignored !
    don’t turn the blind eye on racism !

  13. Neo says:

    Haven’t seen the video. But if she’s mentally unstable , she needs to be institutionalized before she hurts somebody or gets hurt by someone in retaliation for the abuses.

  14. Mona says:

    Unfortunately, this is more common than you might think. I’ve worked in the restaurant industry in Kuwait since 2010 and the amount of times my employees have been shouted at, told, “I could have you deported if I wanted to”, or even had pagers thrown across the host stand at them is appalling. This behavior has nothing to do with mental illness. It’s a severe lack of respect.

    To be fair, I’ve also met some of the kindest guests. Just sad it’s often once side of the pendulum or the other.

  15. Ash says:

    while her wild dramatic behavior is crazy, I don’t really think she is. Crazy, that is. I feel she is just acting like an entitled Kuwaitia. I’m not saying all Kuwaitis act this way, but there is the mentality in some Kuwaiti nationals that they deserve EVERYTHING served on a silver tray and everyone should be honored to grovel at their feet.

    That said, thank God most Kuwaitis are great people😊

  16. Mustufa Metwaly says:

    its obvious she is mentally unstable, that egyptian employee’s replies were disrespectful too which show no understanding of basic customer service principles and how you treat different kinds of customers to calm them down.

    ur title and post is unnecessary and i think it only will eventually lead to abuse in comments and God helps u as a moderator of posts u will spend a long night

  17. Yousef says:

    “Please people I need more attention and drama on my blog come on start insulting each others, I need more kuwaities vs. non-kuwaities action on my blog”

    • mungeeman says:

      Was at a local eatery recently where a kuwaiti man and his wife asked for an item and were told it would take 20 minmutes to make. the woman got angry but ordered it anyways. The man came back 15 minutes later and cancelled the order – the staff said but we are already making it – he refused to pay and on top of that made a bit of a scene.

      I’d like to think it’s not the majority of people – but there are still a heck of a lot of them Mark. They don’t pay if they don’t want to – it happens with the rough kids who walk onto the bus and then harrass everyone, happens with them throwing stones at taxis and happens with fully grown adults with well known family names – even for those whose english is fluent!

      Talked to the staff at the coffee shop and they said – what can we do? The only people that cause a scene have been kuwaitis.

      Again not all Kuwaitis – OF COURSE – but only kuwaitis!? something needs to change

    • Malik says:

      And you saying this to mark?

      • James says:

        Sure looks like it. Yousef (or whatever his real name is) seems to be missing the point. Unless the person in the video is unstable mentally, this is despicable behavior and while I do not think discussing this video here is going to lead to any real change, I do think Yousef is offended that Kuwaitis are being shown in bad light.

        On the other hand, what I’m surprised about is, that Mark and others seem to see this as an exception. I regularly see this behavior from “stable” locals – towards health workers in hospitals, towards their maids and nannies, towards expats on the road while driving (personally experienced it with a man in uniform today morning!) So lets call it what it is and not call this an exception.

  18. stanley philip says:

    well she is definetly a frustrated kuwaiti… cant deny her representation of kuwait….. with a screwed up attitude…. to make her feel better can classify as one with a mental disorder…..:)))

  19. stanley philip says:

    It depends how your kids are broght up… you r a reflection of y9our parents…..money cant buy charecter… There is more to life than facebook n twitter… kids nowadays think they own the world if they get likes n comments for their social media participation…..

  20. Ash says:

    If you’re not gonna post the video, then why didn’t you blur out her face genius? She can still sue you.

  21. Yousef says:

    Lol….I rest my case

    P.s. My real name is yousef “James”!!!

  22. Ali AlSharekh says:

    She’s a typical schizophrenic, has a file in the psychiatric hospital and suspecting random people to be spies is very normal for patients. I think its unfair that this video is distributed in this way and I don’t think it will aid in her recovery at all.

  23. Nawar says:

    Well, can we know what is the consequences if some other non-Kuwaiti man/woman had done this ??
    Will the people start giving excuses “which is a good thing to avoid the people who have really good excuses” or they will start blaming his country and spread the hate?

  24. mishal says:

    bunch of fukng morons in here i tell you.

    bitch genuinely thinks she is a superior human being period.

    i did not even watch the video. look at how the fuk she is dressed. she is on some straight gangbangin shiet. whatever her dr gave her.

  25. mishal says:

    she is even claiming they are spies. i say she is shrooming.

  26. sami says:

    Customer Rage. I’ve seen it happen in the most civilized countries.

    • mungeeman says:

      yea no not really. Never seen it happen in Canada or the UK. Im not saying customers dont get angry, I’m saying that in civilised countries, even angry people stick to cultural norms. Cultural norms in Kuwait involve shouting and yelling until you get your way and shame the other person. If that doesn’t work start a fight.

  27. meh says:

    I find her behavior a bit exaggerated but mostly normal. Maybe her over the top behavior does not represent Kuwaitis, but the thinking behind it does represent most Kuwaitis who happen to keep it to themselves or react in a less extravagant fashion.

    But anyways let’s do another expat loves Kuwait music video.

  28. ahmed says:

    The climate in general in Kuwait is what encourages people like her to act the way they act. Every day we open the newspapers and TV or radio and there is some new proposal about some law or fine that involves deporting expats. Combine that with the way workers and lower class expats are treated here and the way they get pushed around and shouted at from the moment they arrive until they leave kuwait. You have no idea how many times I have seen some poor worker in the airport, gas station,jam3iya, hospital or mall being screamed at by locals. Its heartbreaking and its very common…..

  29. Nixon says:

    Too many political posts Mark! :( I tend to ignore but damn…

  30. Just says:

    I sometimes want to do the same when I clearly say no pickles in my quarter punder and then I find pickles.

  31. lemd says:

    On the threat of deportation, teachers are often threatened by parents. More bark than bite mostly, but does leave you uneasy as one a**hole may just have wasta to do it.

  32. o says:

    It seems that only the anti-Kuwait comments are accepted by the moderator

    the pro-Kuwaitis comments are systematically rejected

    • Mark says:

      No it’s just your comments that are being rejected. I already warned you before and you ignored me so I’m no longer approving any of your comments.

      • o says:

        When did you warn me? In what way did I ignore you?

        In the domestic workers post, I asked you why you’re not accepting my comments and you told me it’s because I’m repeating the same comment over and over again. I didn’t repeat any comments in this post.

        Look back at my comments in this post, I didn’t repeat anything or violate any of the blog’s rules.

        Ali Al-Sharekh says the woman is diagnosed with schizophrenia and has a file at a psychiatric hospital, maybe it’s time to lock this post.

      • o says:

        You didn’t warn me.

        In the domestic workers post, I asked you why you’re not accepting my comments. That was your response: https://248am.com/fajer/law/kuwait-law-domestic-workers-rights/#comment-823678

        That’s the only time we’ve communicated this year and it doesn’t sound like a warning.

  33. o says:

    I’m not a troll or spammer. I spend alot of time and energy working on these comments. It hurts to see all my effort go down the drain

    Granted, I did make redundant comments about the Alwan Live Art Festival and Global Art Forum in the ‘What to do this Weekend’ post. I repeated one comment several times in the Kuwait Towers drone post, but that’s only because I was trying to see if a change in my IP address will result in direct acceptance of the comment.

    Come on, there have been commenters here who have said horrible things about you and your personal life. There are many commenters who are blatantly racist or rude. I’ve been polite to other commenters. I’ve never used profanity or derogatory tone. Some of my comments are useful contributions with great insight and they’re validated by reliable sources.

    I’m very sorry for making redundant comments. It’s harsh to ban my comments altogether, including the comments that are useful contributions. I didn’t comprehend your comment in the domestic workers post as a warning (it didn’t sound like a clear warning). Please give me a chance. There have been commenters here who’ve done much worse and they’ve been given second chances.

    • Mark says:

      ALL your comments are redundant. You have a habit of coming into a post and copying and pasting your replies to everyone. I told you to stop repeating your comments over and over. Rephrasing your comment doesn’t mean you’re not spamming.

  34. moe80s says:

    Seriously I read the comments, first of all this is just a woman insulting a person and being racist! this is not the first time or the last time, you all know that! it happens everywhere not only in Kuwait. So stop fighting over this.. Kuwaitis who wants a better Kuwait should stop these racist people and defend expats when they see such behavior. I know expats fought hand in hand with Kuwaitis during the 90s war and what happened afterward? hate.. sad!

  35. Halyoosha says:

    You can come across customers in a scenario like that in any other country, and it happens often. This is not just a “kuwaiti” thing as some comments make it seem.

    • bask says:

      U are right, it happens everywhere and the media shares it, society condemns it and law enforcement gets her arrested and prosecuted. this is called justice and this is how people are protected and offenders are deterred.

      This is the difference.

      • sami says:

        Arrested and prosecuted? what is the crime?

      • 7amani says:

        Kuwaiti society condemned the woman and the media shared the video, that video went viral

        Law enforcement won’t do anything to the woman because that video isn’t enough evidence to arrest her and the woman is probably mentally ill

        • Marc Gonzalves says:

          If she is mentally ill, she should be locked up indefinitely in a Mental Institution or at home, not left to roam around insulting others and probably endangering herself and others.

  36. Joe says:

    Excuse me, but you will see many nationals like this. Especially ladies. They thing so high of them selfs, i dont understand what do they really mean by ” Anaaa Kuwaiti” . Once a lady told me this when her car hit mine and i was asking her why she was so careless. She became so frustrated that an expat asked her this question and she says ” Anaa Kuwaiti” , so i replied back and said “Anaaa Insaan”. What do these people think of themselfs? what they trying to boast about? something that no one knows or something that everyone knows. I truly respect those kuwaiti families who are so down to earth and respectful, not for their wealth but for their simplicity and humbleness they carry around. But for sure such classless people who think they are something while actually nothing will spoil the name of this country.

  37. joe says:

    First of all, she should understand that she is just a kuwaiti and not GOD. thats it..

  38. TJC Films says:

    I wish people would not be so hostile with one another on here. It is simple and comes down to one issue. This happens everywhere and with all races. People are just trying to make a living and support themselves or their loved ones. We are all the same wherever you come from or how much money you have or don’t have. A filmmaker from America working in Kuwait is no different than a customer service rep from the Phillipines worming in Kuwait. Sure we have different jobs and come from other parts of the world but we are just trying to make a buck. Everyone should treat others the same and not be cruel just because they can. In the end hatred is just a black cloud that casts a shadow over your whole life. Let it go and be nice.

  39. mocman says:

    Nouveau riche

  40. Longhorn In Kuwait says:

    Look like the one on Seaside Rd Mahboula. I have witnessed rude arabs belittling workers there as well.

  41. Shrejmann says:

    she is from filipino origins …she said couple of tagalog words at the end

  42. sala6a says:

    Just got a spoof of this video done by a guy. I posted it.

  43. superfailz says:

    According to reliable sources, she is not Kuwaiti, she is sent to Kuwait by the americans LOL XD

  44. Bo Ahmad says:

    In fact she “loudly” debunked the covert feelings of considerable segment of Kuwaiti society, This is an evident encroachment to expatriate. why you are surprised this happened daily while the police watching, Why the MOI don’t take action?!

    please read this (REAL) story: I know an Arab/American man who faced the same situation when a Kuwaiti lady tried to turnover on U-tern in double “parallel” way and blocked his vision and when he launched his vehicle horn she spat upon him, yes she did it in front of his wife and kids…

    He toke her car-plate number and went to a near police station to complain, and they thought he is an Arabian guy… so the asked him to “simply” leave, because she is a lady, then he raised his American passport, saying to the officer: I am now going to my embassy, and surely they will re-act, imagine what happened?! the whole scene was flipped-over immediately and they called her to attend, after a while she came along with her father and brother and she was forced to apologize to my the man in front of his wife and children. (Thanks to American citizenship).

    Finally do you think such scenarios might happen in Dubai?

  45. Blah says:

    Are you insane? She is A PHILIPPINE WOMAN.

    The one dress in Kuwaiti flag, I have friend who is half Philippine translated words for me.

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