Carmen Buy the Book

My Life Within the Kingdom
by Carmen Bin Laden

A sister-in-law of Osama Bin Laden who fled her marriage in 1988, Carmen Bin Ladin describes what it was like to live in the gilded cage of her wealthy Saudi Arabian family. "It was only after September 11 that my 14-year fight for freedom from Saudi Arabia made sense to the people around me," she writes. "Before that, I think no one truly understood what was at stake—not the courts, not the judge, not even my friends. Even in my own country, Switzerland, I was perceived, more or less, as just another woman embroiled in a nasty international divorce. But...my fight went far deeper than that. I was fighting to gain freedom from one of the most powerful societies and families in the world—to salvage my daughters from a merciless culture that denied their most basic rights."

Bin Ladin's story is a courageous one. To stand up as a woman and share her personal experiences and feelings, although quite subjectively, about the Bin Laden family's daily life in Saudi Arabia is surely a bold and possibly consequential act. Carmen Bin Laden lived in southern California with Bin Laden's brother prior to her time in Saudi Arabia when a supposed vacation basically turned into captivity for her and her daughters. An inside look at how this oil-rich kingdom functions when it comes to dominating the women within their society.

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