By Ben Kamisar
Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzIs Georgia turning blue? Five takeaways from money race Club for Growth: Anti-Trump spending proved to be 'good call' MORE (R-Texas) praised Michelle ObamaMichelle ObamaIs Georgia turning blue? Obama promises not to twerk at WH concert Ex-Arizona governor: Hispanic Dems 'don’t get out and vote' MORE on Twitter Wednesday for not wearing a head covering while visiting Saudi Arabia on Tuesday.
“Kudos to @FLOTUS for standing up for women &refusing to wear Sharia-mandated head-scarf in Saudi Arabia. Nicely done” Cruz tweeted from his campaign account, along with a link to an Associated Press story about how Obama’s trip shed light on the different restrictions local women face, compared to visiting Westerners.
The Obamas traveled with the administration’s delegation to pay condolences after King Abdullah’s death. The Saudi King had been an American ally since he came to power in 2005.
Neither Michelle Obama, nor any other woman who visited as part of the official delegation, appears in any pictures wearing a customary head covering. Saudi Arabian women typically wear loose robes and a headscarf that covers the entire head and face, called a niqab.
But the Yahoo article tweeted by Cruz notes that “covering one's head is not required for foreigners, and some Western women choose to forego the headscarf while in Saudi Arabia.”
While some, like Cruz, have praised Obama’s action as one of defiance, others in the Muslim world criticized her with the Twitter hashtag #ميشيل_أوباما_سفور , which reportedly translates to #Michelle_Obama_unveiled according to The Washington Post.