Monday, October 29, 2007

What was the Information the Saudis sent to the UK?

King Abdullah created quite a stir on his arrival in Britain by claiming that the UK government failed to act on intelligence provided by the Saudis that could have prevented the 7/7 bombings in 2005. Spokesmen for the prime minister maintain that the intelligence provided was not material to those attacks and could not have led British authorities to the perpetrators.

I'm interested in two facets. First, let's assume that the king is being perfectly straightforward. What precisely was the information? Was it obtained from Saudi informants, say, in Pakistan, that have connections and ties to extremist groups? Was it general or specific? And how did the Saudis pass it along? In such a form that it was so general (beware second generation Pakistani Britons) as to be unactionable?

Second, and this is the larger issue. Is this a reminder that the West can't be choosy in terms of who it allies with? Abdullah's comments in London sound the same note that Putin's statements a few years ago in New York that Moscow had proposed a joint operation to finish off the Taliban in Afghanistan prior to 9/11 only to be rebuffed.

How much of this is also a smokescreen to further divert attention from the Al-Yamanah affair? (This is the starting point for Benjamin Heineman and Fritz Heinman to examine the question of corporate corruption in the current issue of The National Interest, by the way).

Hindsight is always 20/20. Easy to say after the fact how some random piece of information was the key.
Nick, how much of this is "future warning" rather than past history. All these protests in the UK, Liberal Democrat leader boycotting, Foreign Minister needs to spend time with his kids--so Abdullah is saying, you may not like us, but YOU NEED US.
Yes, they found out their fellow Saudis were raising funds to finance the London bombings, and tipped off the British a year before the attack:,,1702660,00.html

Therefore, it really is all Great Britain's fault, don't you see?

Never mind the fact that the Saudis have also been implicated in every other major terrorist attack in the past two decades:
Perfect, anonymous 9:59--straight out of the Godfather's credo about business creating more business. Saudis fund terrorism, then brief Western intelligence to keep funds coming. A complete circle.
One is to surmise then that the Saudi-inspired, manned, & financed terrorism is more tolerbale to US and UK than an independent Iran.

Really, truth from the Horse's Mouth!
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