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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

February 05, 2003

Our Friends the Saudis

A chilling report via James Taranto (WSJ) on the duplicity within the U.S. as perpetrated by the Saudis.
While Riyadh claims to be an ally in America's war against terrorists, a Washington Post report this morning suggests that the Saudis are obstructing justice here in America. "The Saudi embassy quietly provided the wife of a terror suspect a passport and transit out of the United States in November, after she was subpoenaed to testify before a federal grand jury in New York investigating her husband's possible links to the al Qaeda terrorist network," the Post reports.

"Federal law enforcement officials were outraged by the Saudi action," the Post reports, while State Department officials expressed surprise (they must've been shocked, shocked). Nonetheless, Adel al-Jubeir, the well-groomed Saudi spokesman, insists "the idea that someone would say we are not cooperating is simply not true. There is full cooperation."

Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal (link for WSJ.com subscribers) has a chilling report on Warith Deen Umar, a New York-based Wahhabi imam who until his retirement in 2000 "helped run New York's growing Islamic prison program, recruiting and training dozens of chaplains, and ministering to thousands of inmates himself." Here are Umar's views on the Sept. 11 massacre:

The hijackers should be honored as martyrs, he said. The U.S. risks further terrorism attacks because it oppresses Muslims around the world. "Without justice, there will be warfare, and it can come to this country, too," he said. The natural candidates to help press such an attack, in his view: African-Americans who embraced Islam in prison.

And who's behind this? Read on:

Imam Umar--born Wallace Gene Marks and later known as Wallace 10X--twice has traveled to Saudi Arabia for worship and study at the expense of the Saudi government and its affiliated charities, part of an extensive program aimed at spreading Islam in U.S. prisons. . . .

Prison dawa, or the spreading of the faith, has become a priority for many Muslim groups in the U.S. and the Saudi Arabian government, which runs what spokesman Nail Al-Jubeir calls a "prison outreach" program. The Islamic Affairs Department of its Washington embassy ships out hundreds of copies of the Quran each month, as well as religious pamphlets and videos, to prison chaplains and Islamic groups who then pass them along to inmates.

The Saudi government also pays for prison chaplains, along with many other American Muslims, to travel to Saudi Arabia for worship and study during the hajj, the traditional winter pilgrimage to Mecca that all Muslims are supposed to make at least once in their lives. The trips typically cost $3,000 a person and last several weeks, says Mr. Al-Jubeir, the Saudi spokesman.

This of course is the same Saudi government that has hosted U.S. troops for 12 years to protect it from Saddam Hussein. This is yet another reason why it's urgent to eliminate the Iraqi threat. With friends like the Saudis, who needs--indeed, who can afford to have--enemies?