There are a lot of bad 9/11 conspiracy theories out there, but the one where the Saudis had more of a hand in it than they want to let on seems to have some substance to it. Some of it may be a “six degrees of Kevin Bacon” kind of connection that looks very bad but doesn’t actually denote foreknowledge or direct complicity. And I don’t discount that parts of the plot were designed to implicate Saudis since the attacks were intended to create a rift between our two countries.
But, still, there are those 28 pages from the congressional investigation that the public has never been allowed to see. And now the Saudis are so spooked about a Senate bill that would allow them to be sued for 9/11 (with the accompanying discovery provisions) that they’ve threatened to sell billions of dollars of assets to prevent them from potentially being seized by judges. That sounds like an admission of guilt to me, or at least a lack of confidence in their ability to defend themselves in court.
It’s probably an empty threat, but they felt the need to deliver it personally.
The Obama administration has lobbied Congress to block the bill’s passage, according to administration officials and congressional aides from both parties, and the Saudi threats have been the subject of intense discussions in recent weeks between lawmakers and officials from the State Department and the Pentagon. The officials have warned senators of diplomatic and economic fallout from the legislation.
Adel al-Jubeir, the Saudi foreign minister, delivered the kingdom’s message personally last month during a trip to Washington, telling lawmakers that Saudi Arabia would be forced to sell up to $750 billion in treasury securities and other assets in the United States before they could be in danger of being frozen by American courts.
President Obama is headed to Saudi Arabia soon for a diplomatic visit and he’ll want to thank them for taking in more Yemeni prisoners from Gitmo.
The U.S. detainee count at Guantanamo Bay is down to 80 after nine Yemeni men were released into the custody of Saudi Arabia on Saturday, Reuters reports. The population at the detention facility is now the lowest it has been in 14 years as the Obama administration continues to try and close the prison and fulfill one of the president’s inaugural promises.
There are therefore some practical reasons why the administration doesn’t want to upset the Kingdom at the moment, but I do wish we could know the truth about their role in creating this unending War on Terror.
I also wish they didn’t have an iron grip on Mecca and that the only likely alternatives to them weren’t ISIS-types who would be even worse.