An October demonstration by women drivers was smaller than planned. Only 60 or so women said they took part; many women sat home after the monarchy sent out stern warnings -- in the form of both threats and pleas that confrontation would only reverse any progress. As I learned in a week of conversations with scores of Saudis in Riyadh and Jeddah, on-the-ground protest -- especially in the wake of the raucous Arab Spring of 2011 -- is viewed warily even by many liberals.
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