Kim Philby Meets King Salman

A Photo showing Harold “Kim” Philby, the famed British intelligence officer turned Soviet KGB spy being introduced by his father, equally famed intelligence officer and Arabian explorer, Harry St. John “Abdullah” Philby (shown wearing white Arabian headdress with no glasses in the middle) to the 24 years old prince Salman, future & current king of Saudi Arabia at an Aramco exhibition in Riyadh in 1958.
Driven largely by personal conviction in views that were often in contradiction with British Government official policy that had ultimately led to his dismissal, Philby the elder, a life long anti-imperialist leftist, had played an important role in laying the foundation of modern Saudi Arabia, both in his official capacity as London’s special envoy to Central Arabia during WW I, and, following his dismissal, as a close, informal advisor to his friend, King Ibn Saud, the founder of the present kingdom.

The photo was published yesterday by the Saudi government-run King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives(Darah) in its official twitter account. The tweet,in Arabic,speaks only of “a historial photo of King Salman visting a petroleum exhibition in Riyadh in 1958”. Significantly, the tweet makes no mention by name of either Philby in the photo,although the caption printed under the latter indicates its source as “Abdullah Philby Collection”. It’s ALNADWAH that identifies the two Westerners concerned as Kim Philby and his father.

Photo Credit: “Abdullah Philby Collection”, King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives(Darah) at:

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