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September 1, 2016 / 28 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Saudi’

Bill Letting 9/11 Victims Sue Saudi Arabia Passes Senate

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

The Senate on Tuesday approved by a voice vote the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act allowing families of Sept. 11 victims to sue the Saudi government—disregarding a veto threat by the White House. In his recent visit to the Kingdom, President Obama suffered unprecedented humiliation from Saudi officials, presumably hinting at what would come next should he expose them to a torrent of 9/11 litigation. The Saudis have also threatened to move billions of dollars out of the US economy, so there won’t be any assets to freeze when they lose in court.

Sponsored by Senators John Cornyn, R-Texas, and Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., the bill recognizes the right of victims’ families to sue in US court for the role that Saudi government personnel played in the 2001 attacks on New York, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania. Cornyn said that the United States “will combat terrorism with every tool we have available, and that the victims of terrorist attacks in our country should have every means at their disposal to seek justice.”

The Obama administration is yet to declassify and release US intelligence on Saudi involvement in the attacks, despite repeated pleas from victims’ families.

Irish investigative journalists Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan were contacted by an unnamed counter-terrorism official in 2011 and told there are 80,000 9/11-related documents being kept secret by the FBI, which may not all concern the Saudi family, but many suspect that reclassifying them would expose the truth about the conspiracy, namely that it was driven by elements in the Saudi royal family.

Senate Democrats went against the wishes of the Obama administration, which warned the bill could expose Americans overseas to legal risks.

Schumer had no doubt the Senate had the 67 votes needed to override a presidential veto. “We don’t think their arguments stand up,” he told reporters at a news conference after the vote.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., chairman of the Armed Services Committee, warned that the legislation, if passed, would alienate Saudi Arabia and undermine the US’ longstanding relationship with a critical ally in the Middle East. Of course, once said ally starts attacking your civilian population, you may need to re-think the relationship.

New Jersey resident Terry Strada, whose husband, Tom, died in the attacks, was in Washington with her daughter Caitlin to await the vote’s results. She told CNN, “We’ve waited long enough. We’ve waited 15 years. We shouldn’t have to wait any longer. It’s good policy to hold accountable any nation that aids in a terror attack on U.S. soil and that aids in the death of US citizens.”

David Israel

Israel: Also Be Wary of the Saudi Evil

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016

I wonder if the American administration would ever care to rein in Saudi Arabia, one of the two key centers of radical Islamism in the Middle East, the other being Iran . Knowledgeable sources say Saudi religious establishment and some Gulf charities have invested billions of dollars into like-minded organizations around the world in order to wipe out the pluralism of original Islam and install in its place some dark order . In the 9/11 episode 15 of the 19 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia. Several thousand Saudis have of late joined the Islamic State . The Saudi government has allegedly funded some notorious Islamic State’s fighters too.

More importantly, the Kingdom has always functioned as a terror entity to its own citizens, women and minorities in particular. It extends to its minorities no rights in the state. In its continuing crime against humanity , the Kingdom conducted the mass execution of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr and 46 others in January this year. Riyadh carried out at least 157 executions in 2015, with beheadings reaching their highest level in the country in two decades.

The sources say Washington is unlikely to act against Saudi Arabia. In the second half of the twentieth century the semi-feudal Saudi Arabia emerged as an “economic power without any military strength.” Since then the successive American administrations have treated its security as “crucial” . Besides, the administrations have found the Saudi regime by its side on several important international issues .During his war on the dictatorial Saddam Hussein regime, American President George W Bush had Saudi support.

Presently, Washington seems to calculate new Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud and his son and Defence Minister Mohammed bin Salman Saudi Arabia may be useful in its diplomacy towards Syria . In the recent past U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter repeatedly emphasized the U.S. was looking for “the rest of the world to step up” and for the “Gulf countries to do more” in solving the Syrian crisis. He must have appreciated when, speaking to CNN on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference (February 12-14), Saudi Foreign Minister’s Adel al-Jubeir announced: “We are saying we will participate within the U.S.-led coalition, should this coalition decide to send ground troops into Syria, that we are prepared to send special forces with those troops.”

Also, Washington might be aware of the importance of the Saudi clout with other Gulf states. It may be recalled that when the Saudis decided severing its ties with Iran after Iranian demonstrators set afire its embassy in Tehran in protest over the execution of the Shiite preacher, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Sudan all followed suit . Washington might also have liked that in the current Syrian crisis the Saudis have been ready to send fighter jets to support the U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition in Syria. The Saudis (along with the Emiratis, Qataris, and Bahrainis) also pledged to send their own ground forces.

I hope Israel would not gloss over the fundamentals in the foreign policy behavior of Saudi Arabia (and its close allies) and take all appropriate measures to defend itself. It must bear in mind constantly that the very existence of Saudi Arabia depends upon the spread of Wahhabi Islam under its leadership around the world. And that means the continued Saudi and allies’ support, overt and covert, to Wahhabi terror groups against Israel– and all other liberal democracies.

Knowledgeable sources warn Israel against entertaining any false hope out of the recent reports of hostility between Saudi Arabia and Iran. Recently, the 22- member Arab League took a decision in Cairo to brand Hezbollah a terrorist organization (Only Lebanon and Iraq expressed “reservations” over the decision) . The Cairo decision may have been taken in view of their fear of Iran. Iran-supported Hezbollah has been supporting President Bashar al-Assad in Syria. This has pitted Hezbollah against Gulf states which backing the rebels in the region. The two confront each other to some extent in Yemen, too.

The sources say the Sheikhs are veterans in pure power politics. Back in the 1960s and 70s, they were aligned with Iran’s Shah against radical Arab nationalists led by Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser and the pan-Arab Ba’ath party in Syria and Iraq. They may be calculating now that after the overthrow of the Shah in 1979, the Khomeini regime has promoted a mix of Shi’ite empowerment and broader Islamic opposition to the ruling conservative pro-Western Sunni Arab regimes. Since the end of the Saddam Hussein regime in 2003, Iran’s power projection has grown in the region – in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen, among disaffected Shi’ite populations in Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province (who constitute 10-15 percent of the country’s total population), Bahrain and Kuwait. Iran has also proceeded with its nuclear program. Given its age-old imperialist aspirations, Iran may seek to subdue Saudi Arabia and allies in the future.

The fearful mind of Riyadh and allies can be discerned in what Bahrain’s Foreign Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa reportedly said in an interview with Saudi Arabia’s Al-Arabiya TV the other day. Al Khalifa said that Iran was currently the coastal kingdom’s “biggest problem.” He even indicated that he considered Iran today as ” more dangerous than Israel to the Gulf states.” He said, “We wish to have good relations with both, but under the current circumstances and challenges, the Iranian danger is what we see before our eyes.”

The sources suggest Jerusalem should not expect anything also from the Saudi Arabia- U.S joint action (April 2, 2016) against two groups and four individuals suspected of supporting al-Qaida and the Taliban in their operations in Pakistan and Afghanistan and the Lashkar-e-Taiba that targets India. Jerusalem must constantly bear in mind there is hardly any dilution in Saudi Arabia’s role as a radical Islamic leader in the world.

The terror strikes at Brussels’ airport and metro station last month may serve as yet another reminder to Israel and the world as to the kind of damage the religious radicalism that emanates from Saudi Arabia can do to our civilization. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Brussels strike and various other attacks across the world. This group derives its ideological sustenance from the Saudi-backed Wahhabi version of Islam.

 

Jagdish N. Singh

White House Explains Why Saudi King Didn’t Really Snub Obama

Thursday, April 21st, 2016

The White House denied reports that the fact that Saudi King Salman failed to greet President Barack Obama at the airport, after greeting Gulf State representatives just before Obama landed, meant US-Saudi relations are in a crisis. Administration officials are insisting the president and the king “really cleared the air” in their Wednesday meeting afterwards.

When he arrived, the president was greeted at the airport by the governor of Riyadh, and the event was ignored by Saudi TV. That same day, King Salman bin Abdulaziz and senior officials were seen on state TV greeting the leaders of neighboring Gulf states who were arriving for Thursday’s summit of the Saudi-dominated Gulf Cooperation council, which Obama will address.

Eventually, King Salman did greet Obama in the al-Auja palace, where they posed for a photo-op, where they said, “The American people send their greetings and we are very grateful for your hospitality, not just for this meeting but for hosting the GCC-US summit that’s taking place tomorrow,” and, “I and the Saudi people are very pleased that you, Mr. President, are visiting us.”

In the background of this obvious rude treatment of Obama is the Congressional bill allowing lawsuits against the Saudi government in American courts for the Sept. 11, 2001 crimes against humanity. The Saudis are threatening to sell their US assets if Obama signs that bill into law, making the kingdom liable for multiple billions of dollars in damages from the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

Former Saudi Intelligence Chief Prince Turki Al-Faisal told CNN his country plans “a recalibration of our relationship with America. How far we can go with our dependence on America, how much can we rely on steadfastness from American leadership, what is it that makes for our joint benefits to come together.”

Out of the 19 hijackers of the 9/11 attacks, 15 were Saudis. The Saudis sponsored the Taliban in Afghanistan (although, to be fair, the CIA started training mostly Saudi extremists to fight the Soviets there). It is highly probable that ISIS, too, receives financial support from elements in Saudi Arabia.

David Israel

Israeli Online Course Attracts Egyptian, Syrian and Saudi Students

Friday, December 20th, 2013

The Apartheid State just won’t quit…

While the American Studies Association (ASA) has voted to boycott Israeli academic institutions this week–a boycott initiated in 2005 and coordinated by the Palestinian BDS National Committee, the Israel Institute of Technology (Technion) has been successfully reaching out to the Arab-speaking world both within and outside Israel.

Thousands of students from Arab countries have signed up for Haifa’s Technion’s first online course taught in Arabic as well as in English. Even before officially opening, the Israel Institute of Technology’s nanoscience course, which begins in March 2014, has drawn more than 32,000 views from all over the world, including from Arabic-speaking countries. The syllabus has had thousands of views which include 5,595 in Egypt, 1,865 in Kuwait, 1,243 in Saudi Arabia, and 1,243 from Syria.

The course, covering nanotechnology and nanosensors, will be taught in Arabic by Technion Professor Hossam Haick of the Faculty of Chemical Engineering. Professor Haick, a native of Nazareth, pioneered innovative cancer detection via breath tests, with a device he invented known as the Na-Nose.

Professor Haick’s course is backed by Associate Professor Miri Barak from the department of Education in Science and Technology and doctoral students Abeer Watted, Meital Segev and Nasreen Shehadah.

Thus far, more than 16,000 students have applied for the English edition of the course and close to 3,000 students have signed up for the course in Arabic. There have been more than 700 applicants from Saudi Arabia, 600 applicants from Egypt, and some 400 applicants from Syria.

In Israel, 3,730 have signed up for the nanoscience course, which features high quality learning materials and various assessment tools, as well as numerous illustrations and animation clips.

According to the Technion’s Spokesperson Office, the Technion academics involved in planning the course stated that “We are hopeful that this course will contribute, if only slightly, to science and engineering education for populations around the world and maybe even help bring people closer together through collaborative tasks and common challenges.”

Arab students make up 20% of the Technion’s student body. This year’s valedictorian was 27-year-old Muslim medical student, Mais Ali-Saleh, who graduated from the Technion’s medical school. Ali-Saleh grew up in a small village near Nazareth and has stated that BDS actions “don’t achieve any of its purported objectives.”

In a report by The Tower Magazine in July, Ali-Saleh was quoted as saying that because she did medical research, the boycott did not negatively impact her work, but sooner or later, she said it will impinge upon the academic researchers she knows, both Jews and Arabs alike.

Anav Silverman, Tazpit News Agency

Saudi Blogger Faces Jail and 600 Lashes For Insulting Islam

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

Only 600 lashes? The libs will say that is progress. The question is, how many lashes can any human being withstand? I think beheadng is more …. humane.

“We believe that when public speech is deemed offensive, be it via social media or any other means, the issue is best addressed through open-dialogue and honest debate,” said US State Department spokeswoman

As for the State department’s hollow remarks, I submit that the State Department should cease meeting with the OIC in Washington in order to impose restrictions on speech in accordance with the blasphemy laws under the sharia. I submit that the State Department should withdraw the Secretary of State’s remarks. I submit that the Department of Justice should withdraw its vow to criminalize postings on social media that offend Muslims. I submit that Obama should cease blaming youtube and freedom of expression for murderous attacks on Americans in Benghazi and beyond. I submit that Obama should stop championing the adoption of anti-free speech resolution by the UN.

“Saudi Blogger Raif Badawi Faces Jail and 600 Lashes For Insulting Islam” IBTimes, July 31, 2013

An international outcry was triggered by a Saudi Arabian court that handed a seven-year jail and 600 lashes sentence to the editor of a liberal website for violating Islamic values.

Raif Badawi has been in detention since 2012, after being arrested on cyber-crime charges related to Free Saudi, the website he founded which hosted discussions on religion in the ultraconservative Islamic kingdom.

The US and France expressed deep concerns at the punishment also slammed by human rights groups.

“We believe that when public speech is deemed offensive, be it via social media or any other means, the issue is best addressed through open-dialogue and honest debate,” said US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki.logger makes a mockery of Saudi Arabia’s claims that it supports reform and religious dialogue,” said Nadim Houry, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.

“A man who wanted to discuss religion has already been locked up for a year and now faces 600 lashes and seven years in prison.”

Judges at Jeddah criminal court reportedly dropped the heaviest charge of apostasy – which carries an automatic death sentence – after Badawi, gave assurances he was a Muslim.

“The judge asked Raif, ‘Are you a Muslim?’ and he said ‘Yes, and I don’t accept anyone to cast doubt on (my belief)’,” Badawi’s wife, who moved abroad in 2012 with her children, tweeted.

However, the court found Badawi guilty of insulting Islam and ordered the closure of the website, Al-Watan newspaper reported.

Judges also gave Badawi an additional three months in jail for disobeying his father, a crime in Saudi Arabia. The two allegedly had numerous public confrontations over the years.

Part of prosecutors’ evidence consisted in postings by Badawi and anonymous members of his site critical of senior Saudi religious figures, HRW reported.

Badawi’s troubles with the authorities started shortly after he started Free Saudi in 2008.

He was forced to leave the country in May that year, after authorities charged him with “setting up an electronic site that insults Islam”.

As the charges were dropped he returned to his homeland but continued his online activity, HRW said.

In March 2012 he was designated as an “unbeliever and apostate” by a well-known cleric Sheikh Abdulrahman al-Barrak.

Al-Barrak reportedly claimed Badawi was guilty of saying “that Muslims, Jews, Christians, and atheists are all equal”.

In accordance with a strict interpretation of Islamic law, Saudi courts implement a series of corporal punishments, of which flogging is considered the most lenient. 

Visit Atlas Shrugs.

Pamela Geller

French-Jewish Mother in Custody Battle with Saudi prince Dies in Fall

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

A Jewish mother from France locked in a custody battle with a Saudi prince fell to her death from an apartment window in Paris.

Candice Cohen-Ahnine died last week, less than a month before she was to see her 11-year-old daughter for the first time in four years.

It is unclear whether Cohen-Ahnine’s death was accidental or the result of foul play, according to the Daily Telegraph, which reported that French media have suggested Cohen-Ahnine had slipped and fallen to her death “as if she was escaping something dangerous.”

A Paris criminal court ruled in January in favor of Cohen-Ahnine’s plea to have her daughter, Haya, returned to her. Cohen-Ahnine claimed that Haya was being held captive by the girl’s father, Prince Sattam al-Saud, a member of the Saudi royal family, since September 2008. The court also ordered Sattam to pay child support.

Sattam continued to refuse to turn the girl over after the ruling, but had agreed to next month’s visit.

Cohen-Ahnine alleged that when she agreed to visit Sattam with her daughter in 2008 after the couple had separated, she was swiftly locked up in a Riyadh palace and separated from Haya. Accused by authorities of being a Muslim who converted to Judaism — a capital crime in Saudi Arabia — Cohen-Ahnine was able to escape to the French Embassy and return to France. Haya remained behind and the two reportedly spoke occasionally by phone.

Cohen-Ahnine, 34, met Sattam in London when she was 18. Despite their differences in religion and nationality, the couple continued their relationship, and Haya was born in 2001. But the couple separated in 2006; the prince allegedly said he would have to marry a cousin and could only keep Cohen-Ahnine as a mistress or second wife.

Cohen-Ahnine published a book in French about the ordeal with the literally translated title “Give me back my daughter” (l’Archipel).

JTA

Video: Al Qaeda’s Underwear Bomb Maker A Top Concern

Friday, May 11th, 2012

Ibrahim Hassan Tali al-Asiri is a 28 year old Saudi citizen now living in Yemen who is expert at creating bombs that can elude detection and penetrate airport security. He is the maker of two near miss underwear bombs as well as other hidden small devices including a bomb placed in his own brother’s body that was detonated in a suicide bombing attempt to kill Saudi security chief, Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef. The Prince was not harmed because the bomb was detonated too early. However, al-Asiri’s brother was killed in the attempt, the explosive penetrated security and could have killed its target if detonated a moment later. al-Asiri is said to be training a team of bomb makers in a special workshop of his own design creating the potential for a deadly legacy even if he himself is removed from the battlefield. In the following video from FoxNews, Rand senior analyst Seth Jones discusses security concerns related to Al Qaeda’s underwear bomb maker.

Further reading on the background and origins of al-Asiri can be found on the BBC Middle East page.

Yocheved Seidman

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/video-al-qaedas-underwear-bomb-maker-a-top-concern/2012/05/11/

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