/ Aug 08, 2004
An article in an early July edition of the Washington Post took notice of the many Saudi Arabian Jihadists, holy warriors, returning to its “sacred” sands from Iraq, prompting the fear that they will begin to plot new attacks on the Saudi government and on Western targets that include more than 100,000 expatriates who help run that nation’s oil industry and whose military and technical support is crucial.
How dangerous are these angry young men? The butchers who beheaded Paul Johnson in June because he worked for Lockheed Martin Corporation (whose Saudi headquarters is in Riyadh) claimed they were members of the Fallujah Brigade of a larger group called the al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula.
Heading up the Saudi insurrection is Saleh Awfi, 33, who is known to have been in Iraq as a member of Ansar al-Islam. He has reportedly returned home. The Saudis have a list of the kingdom’s most wanted terrorists and Othman Amri, number 19 on the list, took advantage of the amnesty offered after, you guessed it, having spent most of last year in Iraq.
The border between Saudi Arabia and Iraq is officially closed, but many Jihadists are coming back through Yemen. That border has become such a problem the Saudis are building a 900-mile concrete barrier because guards in recent months have confiscated tons of explosives and ammunition from smugglers. When it comes to borders, however, just imagine some of the most desolate deserts and mountains to get an idea of how porous they are for anyone willing to traverse them.
With these and other Saudis returning home, there will soon by a network of native-born terrorists that will play havoc with the government and foreign nationals. This will, parenthetically, create a vacuum in Iraq that will be replaced by Iranian terrorists intent on insuring it does not become a viable democratic nation on their border. All of this is part of the greater struggle between Sunnis (Saudi Arabia) and Shi’ites (Iran) that goes back to the earliest years of Islam.
While this is a problem for the Saudis, it is also a problem for the United States. We currently import approximately 18 percent of our oil from Saudi Arabia and any disruption would presumably have a severe impact on our economy. Oil, however, is sold on the world market and the United States, for many years now, has been importing more than 50 percent of the oil we use from sources other than Saudi Arabia. Nothing would impede our purchasing oil from Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, Angola, Great Britain, Nigeria, and Norway, to take up the slack should the Saudi oil be impeded. And, then, of course, there’s all that newly freed up oil in Iraq, a nation that sits atop the Middle East’s second greatest reserves after Saudi Arabia.
There is, however, an even larger question that must be addressed. How far is the US willing to go to protect (or replace) the House of Saud? Ever since WWII, we have been sleeping with the enemy, forging a close relationship with the Saudis to insure their oil flows to us. In the 1970s, they reminded us of our dependency by causing a brief crisis when they shut off the flow. It also jacked up the cost of oil to its current levels.
Coinciding with the rise of the environmental movement, the US has failed to develop its own vast reserves of offshore and Alaskan oil reserves, nor has a single new oil refinery been built since then. The dependence on foreign oil is so great oil wells in states like Texas have actually been capped. This is so shortsighted as to constitute criminal neglect of our single greatest national security requirement, energy.
Slowly, the American public has become aware that the greatest source of the Third Great Jihad occurring around the world is none other than the House of Saud. The paradox of this will keep future historians writing books for decades to come. It has been the Saudis and their extreme form of Islam, Wahhabism that has funded madrasses and mosques all around the world to teach and preach the supremacy of Islam and its goal to be the single religion for the entire world.
The irony is, of course, that terrorism has found its way to the heart of Saudi Arabia. Since May 2003, armed insurgents have waged a series of attacks, but none have targeted members of the House of Saud. Instead, it has primarily been compounds for foreign residents that have been bombed. More than 80 people have died from bombings and shootings. The Saudis’ real fear is attacks on their pipelines and refineries.
Despite the fact that the Arabs of the Middle East have suffered defeat after defeat since the downfall of the Ottoman Empire following World War I, (its rise was called the Second Great Jihad), the vast, ignorant Islamic masses, combined with the true believers now spread widely throughout Europe and Africa, have been a fertile incubator for the attacks being experienced by both Western and Islamic nations. Funding the dream of Wahabi Islamic domination has been the House of Saud.
It is instructive, therefore, that at least 160 of the 650 detainees being held in Guantanamo, Cuba, are from Saudi Arabia. That’s almost a quarter of those picked up in Afghanistan and Iraq during the active phase of the conflicts in those two nations. They do not include the Saudis who, immediately following 9-11, were allowed to be flown out of the US, even when all other aircraft were grounded. That permission was granted by none other than Richard Clarke, the former staff member of the National Security Council who then wrote a book that criticized the Bush administration for its presumed failures.
Saudi-funded networks of terror groups operating in the United States are being rolled up in states that include Virginia and Florida, but virtually nothing is being said publicly by the Bush administration about the very obvious fact that the Saudis are, in every way other than open warfare, still waging a holy war with the US in the crosshairs.
The day is not far off when this hypocrisy, both of the Saudis and the State Department, will end. When that day comes, it may be because American military forces will have been dispatched to Riyadh, Medina, and Mecca to put down a full-scale insurrection and install yet another new, provisional government in the Middle East.
Alan Caruba is the author of “Warning Signs” and his weekly commentaries are posted on www.anxietycenter.com, the Internet site of The National Anxiety Center.
© Alan Caruba 2004
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