Merchant of Death
Money, Guns, Planes, and the Man Who Makes War Possible

Blood from Stones

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Press Releases

Someone Tries to Keep an Eye on Saudi Charities and Financiers
Rep. Sue Kelly, (R-NY) and head of the Congressional Anti-Terrorist Financing Task Force, continues to be one of the few in Congress willing to try to exercise oversight over the Bush administration's often-ineffective efforts to get Sauid Arabia to crack down on charitable contributions that can be used to fund radical Islamic activities. In a recent letter to President Bush, she raises several salient issues on the Saudi response (or lack thereof) to ongoing problems in this relationship. Just as importantly, unlike many in Congress and elsewhere, she does not simply accept what the Saudi government tells her, repeatedly pointing out the discrepancies between word and deed.

"We should make clear that we know Saudi officials are making some assertions about their activities to U.S. officials and members of Congress that are directly contradicted by activities the Saudi government itself is publicizing at home and abroad," Kelly wrote in her unusually blunt missive to the president. "We must get beyond the current state of affairs." The full letter is available here.

Kelly outlines specifics of problems with Saudi Arabia, including the lack of accountability for those blacklisted for funding al Qaeda, including Wa'el Julaidan, Mr. Qadi and others. As far as can be determined, they have not had their assets frozen, as required by the UN resolution that is supposed to be binding. Both continue active lives in the worlds of finance and charities.

"The apparent lack of action regarding designated terror financiers, coupled with the activities of the charities referenced above and reports of insurgents in Iraq financed by private donors in the kingdom, suggest the need for an environment of accountability for financiers of terror in Saudi Arabia," Kelly wrote. Hard to put it any better than that.
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