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Old 06-20-2004, 09:50 PM   #1
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2 Allies Aided Bin Laden

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2 Allies Aided Bin Laden, Say Panel Members

Saudi Arabia and Pakistan let terrorists flourish before 9/11, apparently in return for protection from attacks by Al Qaeda.

By Josh Meyer
Times Staff Writer

June 20, 2004

WASHINGTON — Pakistan and Saudi Arabia helped set the stage for the Sept. 11 attacks by cutting deals with the Taliban and Osama bin Laden that allowed his Al Qaeda terrorist network to flourish, according to several senior members of the Sept. 11 commission and U.S. counter-terrorism officials.

The financial aid to the Taliban and other assistance by two of the most important allies of the United States in its war on terrorism date at least to 1996, and appear to have shielded them from Al Qaeda attacks within their own borders until long after the 2001 strikes, those commission members and officials said in interviews.

"That does appear to have been the arrangement," said one senior member of the commission staff involved in investigating those relationships.

The officials said that by not cracking down on Bin Laden, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia significantly undermined efforts to combat terrorism worldwide, giving the Saudi exile the haven he needed to train tens of thousands of soldiers. They believe that the governments' funding of his Taliban protectors enabled Bin Laden to withstand international pressure and expand his operation into a global network that could carry out the Sept. 11 attacks.

Saudi Arabia provided funds and equipment to the Taliban and probably directly to Bin Laden, and didn't interfere with Al Qaeda's efforts to raise money, recruit and train operatives, and establish cells throughout the kingdom, commission and U.S. officials said. Pakistan provided even more direct assistance, its military and intelligence agencies often coordinating efforts with the Taliban and Al Qaeda, they said.

Such efforts allowed Al Qaeda's network of cells to burrow deeply into the social and religious fabric of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, enabling the organization to survive the U.S.-led demolition of its headquarters in Afghanistan in 2001, to regroup and to launch new waves of attacks — including the kidnapping and beheading of an American engineer in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, last week.



Only after Pakistan and Saudi Arabia launched comprehensive efforts to take out their domestic Al Qaeda cells — as late as last year, in the case of Saudi Arabia — did the two nations become victims of terrorist attacks. And officials in both countries acknowledge that Al Qaeda's fundraising, recruiting and training structure is now so firmly rooted that it will be extremely difficult to eliminate.

*

Rumors of Collusion

For years, there have been unsubstantiated allegations that the governments of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia intentionally ignored Bin Laden's efforts in their countries or even cut deals with him, either out of sympathy with his efforts or to protect themselves from attack. That claim is made in a lawsuit by the families of Sept. 11 victims against Saudi Arabia.

artcle here
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Old 06-20-2004, 11:43 PM   #2
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...and this is news to us?
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Old 06-21-2004, 12:05 AM   #3
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Saudi Arabia was to blame for 9/11!
Ok, not all of Saudi Arabia.
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Old 06-21-2004, 12:14 AM   #4
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Speaking of people who aided Al Qaeda

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp...ntelligence_dc

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks has been told “a very prominent member” of al Qaeda served as an officer in Saddam Hussein’s militia, a panel member said on Sunday.

Republican commissioner John Lehman told NBC’s “Meet the Press” program that the new intelligence, if proven true, buttresses claims by the Bush administration of ties between Iraq and the militant network believed responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on America. “We are now in the process of getting this latest intelligence,” Lehman said.

Commission Chairman Thomas Kean urged the administration to make any such information available to the panel quickly. “Obviously, if there is any information (that) has to do with the subject of the report, we need it, and we need it pretty fast,” Kean said on ABC’s “This Week” program. “We’ll ask for it and see.” He said the final report would be modified to take any new intelligence into account.

Lehman said the information, contained in “captured documents,” was obtained after the commission report was written that stated there was no evidence of a “collaborative relationship” between Iraq and al Qaeda. “Some of these documents indicate that (there was) at least one officer of Saddam’s Fedayeen, a lieutenant colonel, who was a very prominent member of al Qaeda,” Lehman said.

“That still has to be confirmed, but the vice president (Dick Cheney) was right when he said that he may have things that we don’t yet have,” said Lehman, a former Navy secretary.
I read a report from an investigative journo about this a few months ago, if accurate and verified I think that when the truth comes out some people may owe an apology to Cheney.
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Old 06-21-2004, 08:42 AM   #5
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer

I read a report from an investigative journo about this a few months ago, if accurate and verified I think that when the truth comes out some people may owe an apology to Cheney.
Not going to get it here...LOL
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Old 06-21-2004, 11:29 AM   #6
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As I recall, three governments on the planet recognized the Taliban government in Afghanistan. Two of them were Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. I forget the third, it was another Arabic state, I think--perhaps Yemen? After 9/11, they pulled the plug on this recognition. It was bad enough that they even recognized these bastards as a legitimate government. As we all know now they were nothing but a band of terrorist thugs.
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Old 06-21-2004, 11:34 AM   #7
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They may be a band of terrorist thugs but they gave a band of stability for the Pakistanis and a ran a neato holiday camp for the Saudis and Gulf Arabs young men.
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Old 06-21-2004, 11:50 AM   #8
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Like Iraq gave a band of stability after the Shah was trown out of Iran?
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