by Rania al-Baz
Every morning for over six years, Rania al-Baz has been the smiling face of a family program on Saudi television. She was a young, beautiful Saudi TV news anchor–the first woman to have such a job–when her abusive husband beat her into a coma and left her for dead. She remained in a coma for four days and later underwent thirteen operations to reconstruct her face. When she agreed to let horrifying pictures of her ravaged face be made public, her story sparked general criticism of Saudi culture. A month after the tragedy, the first Saudi research into domestic violence began at King Saud University in Riyadh. Rania’s story subsequently appeared in the press all over the world.