Their Oil Is Thicker Than Our Blood*

By Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld
Wednesday, December 14th, 2011 @ 3:56AM

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* First published in Saudi Arabia & the Global Islamic Terrorist Network, Chapter 10, pp-123-151, PalgraveMacMillan, November 2011.

On December 12, 2011 Iran’s Intelligence Minister Haydar Moslehi met with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince Nayef in Riyadh. Two days later, at the OPEC meeting in Vienna, the Iranians reveled that the Saudis agreed not “to replace Iranian crude if Iran faces any sanctions.”

Accommodating their supposedly biggest enemy – the radical Shiite regime in Iran – while betraying their self-proclaimed ally – the United States, is a long held Saudi strategy.  Support of radical Islamic regimes and groups helped keep the House of Saud in command.

“Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for Al-Qaeda, the Taliban, LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba) , and other terrorist groups, including Hamas,” read a cable dated December 30, 2009, from United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, This was one of the cables published by Wikileaks in late November 2010.[1]

Another leaked cable, sent from the US Embassy in Riyadh in February 2010, stated that the Saudi interior ministry “remains almost completely dependent on the CIA to provide analytic support and direction for its counterterrorism operations.”[2]

The leaked cables only stated the obvious. Yet the obvious starkly contrasts with the more optimistic story on Saudi counterterrorism efforts, as publicly told by successive American administrations.

Overview: Saudi Arabia— as an Ally in the War on Terrorist Financing

For decades US officials publicly heaped praise on Saudi counterterrorism efforts, while the Saudis continued to fund terrorism.

In a 2003 interview, then-Secretary of State, Colin Powell, said that the American government had expressed its appreciation to the Saudi government for its actions in support of the global war on terrorism.[3] In 2005, during her confirmation hearing to the position of Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice commented that the United States previously “didn’t understand, really, the structure of terrorist financing very well.

We didn’t understand the role of non-governmental organizations that sounded like they were for good purposes but were, in fact, carrying out or funding terrorist activities. Others didn’t understand that, in the Muslim world, like the Saudis. And we have made, I think, great strides in doing that.”[4]

In 2007 US President George Bush certified the Saudi cooperation “with efforts to combat international terrorism.”[5] The Obama Administration followed suit. In July 2009, on a visit to Saudi Arabia, Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner lauded the Saudi government for having “taken important steps to combat financing for terrorist groups” and “to deter and disrupt those who support violent extremism.”[6]

However, some dared to disagree. In September 2007, US Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Stuart Levey told ABC News, “If I could somehow snap my fingers and cut off the funding from one country, it would be Saudi Arabia.”[7]

While Mrs. Clinton’s leaked memo did not directly accuse the Saudi government of supporting radical Muslim groups, it noted, “Riyadh has taken only limited action” to interrupt money transfers to Taliban- and LeT-affiliated groups that have been carrying out attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India.[8]

Americans started targeting Saudi Arabian terrorist financing after the 9/11 attacks, when it was established that 15 of the 19 plane hijackers were Saudi9 and that Saudis had provided substantial financial support for the worst terrorist attack in American history.[9] The Kingdom was persuaded to cooperate on some counterterrorism efforts only in 2003, and a combined task force was established. After the terrorist attack in Khobar, which the Saudis attributed to a local al-Qaeda cell in May 2004, new legislation and harsh domestic anti-terrorist financing measures were put in place.[10]

Saudi Arabia criminalized money laundering and terrorist financing in 2003 and enforces it to prevent domestic terrorism. It also banned some Saudi-based charitable organizations[11] from transferring money internationally until additional regulations could ensure that the transferred funds would not be funneled to terrorist groups.[12] According to the new banking regulations, all international transaction over $15,000[13] need the approval of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) [14]- the Kingdom’s central bank. In addition, new regulations were enacted to control cash courier. As part of their US-coordinated counterterrorism strategy, the Saudi authorities also agreed to publicly condemn terrorism.[15]

Since 2005, the Saudi king, government officials, and the Saudi grand mufti have publicly condemned violence and extremism, promoted international cooperation in the fight against terrorism, and extolled the virtues of moderation.[16] However, the Saudis directed their counterterrorism campaign mostly to squelch domestic opposition.

The Saudis created its Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) in 2003,[17] and despite its legendary lack of transparency it was welcomed into the international Egmont Group (an international informal organization of FIUs)[18] The Saudis participate in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF),[19] and is the leading country of the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council, with Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE)), which participates in MENAFATF, which is an associate member of FATAF.[20]

In 2007 Saudi Arabia became a signatory to the United Nation’s’ International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.[21] Still, a September 2007 Congressional Research (CRS) Report addressed “Saudi laxity in acting against terrorist groups”[22] and in the Act implementing the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, the 110th US Congress noted that “Saudi Arabia has an uneven record in the fight against terrorism, especially with respect to terrorist financing.”[23] According to the 2009 State Department International Narcotics Control Strategy Report on money laundering, Saudi Arabia “continues to be a significant jurisdictional source for terrorist financing worldwide.”[24] Indeed, as Mrs. Clinton’s leaked cable pointed out, al-Qaeda, Hamas, and other jihadist groups continue to “raise millions of dollars annually from Saudi sources, often during Hajj and Ramadan.”[25]

In April 2010 the top council of Saudi clerics issued a fatwa (Islamic religious ruling) declaring terrorist financing a violation of Islamic law, and General David H. Petraeus, then Commander of theUnited States Central Command (USCENTCOM) was quick to praise the issuing council for its “courageous decision” to issue the fatwa against terrorist-financing.[26]

While the Saudis’ new counterterrorist financing and new financial monitoring regulations looked good on paper, Mrs. Clinton’s leaked cable noted that “Donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide.”[27] Her cable also stated it an “ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist financing emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority.”[28] Although the new cash courier regulation implementation continues to be inconsistent, the more Saudis, including terrorism financiers, seem to increase their use of hawala, a system of monetary transfers through anonymous intermediaries that leaves no paper trail.

A 2009 General Accounting Office (GAO) report on Saudi efforts to stop terror financing noted that Saudi donors are the major funders of radical Muslim organizations. The report further stated that Saudi financial institutions demonstrated a continued unwillingness to freely share information with Western authorities.[29] Clearly, when it comes to Saudi international counterterrorism measures, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose. Indeed, little has changed since Under Secretary Levey stated before Congress in July 2006, “On terrorist financing …there has been a real lag between what [the Saudis] say they were going to do and what they do.”[30]

As mentioned earlier, the Saudi royal family fears domestic terrorist groups, especially the Yemen-based branches of the al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula  (AQAP) group. Most of AQAP members are Saudi whose aim is to topple the royal family. The March 2011 Congressional Research Service (CRS) report on Saudi Arabia details the Kingdom’s progress on its domestic al-Qaeda terrorists cells, [31] confirming the 2009 GAO’s finding that “U.S. and Saudi officials report progress on countering terrorism and its financing within Saudi Arabia.” However, the GAO report noted that there was hardly any efforts to prevent “funding for terrorism and violent extremism outside of Saudi Arabia” (Emphasis added).[32] Again, little has changed since Under Secretary Levey testimony before the Senate Finance Committee in 2008 that Saudi Arabia is “serious about fighting Al Qaeda in the kingdom…[but] the seriousness of purpose with respect to the money going out of the kingdomis not as high.”[33]

In 2010 the Saudis dismantled 19 AQAP cells in the Kingdom. The operation included the seizure of 2.24 million riyals (over $600K) and the detention of 149 cell members—including 25 from other Arab, African, and South Asian countries.[34] The arrests foiled at least ten attacks by AQAP on government and military targets, and officials, according to the Saudis. [35] In June 2010 after exposing a 60-person fundraising cell for AQAP, the Saudis announced that they were reviewing their terrorism strategy.[36]

With self-preservation in mind, the Saudi intelligence services tipped off the American, British, and German governments of AQAP planned terror attacks in late 2010. In October after the burqa ban was enforced in France, the Saudis warned of a possible al-Qaeda attack on the country.[37] In November the Saudis scored political points and public recognition for revealing that AQAP had planted explosives on European cargo planes bound for the United States.[38]

However, the State Department’s leaked cables confirmed the GAO’s 2009 conclusion that the Saudis showed “progress on countering terrorism and its financing within Saudi Arabia, but noted challenges, particularly in preventing alleged funding for terrorism and violent extremism outside of Saudi Arabia.”[39]


Ongoing Saudi Support for Terrorism by Direct Means


The angry form of Islamism and Wahhabism in Saudi Arabia today is the soil in which anti-Western and anti-American terrorism grows.[40]

—Former CIA director R. James Woolsey

Saudi efforts to bring Wahhabi Islam to global dominance began in earnest in 1962, with the establishment of the first international Saudi charity, the Muslim World League (MWL). Influenced by exiled Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood members, then-Crown Prince Faisal bin Abdul Aziz used the growing oil revenues to fund MWL, which in turn established many other Islamic charities and nonprofits that helped create the global jihadist movement we are facing today.

According to a report submitted to the president of the UN Security Council in December 2002, “One must question the real ability and willingness of the [Saudi] Kingdom to exercise any control over the use of religious money in and outside the country.”[41] In the year 2000 alone, Saudi citizens’ contributions to various Islamist groups amounted to $500 million. Most of the money went to cover expenses such as salaries, pensions, and “terrorcare” services that included hospitals and schools—especially (religious teachers) and madrasas.

Saudi Arabia is a theocracy dominated by Wahhabi power figures that (despite Saudi protestations to the contrary) control both governmental and non-governmental sectors of the country. The government/ruling family makes or breaks the wealth of all its subjects. Moreover, successive Saudi kings have created ”charitable” organizations to fund the worldwide spread of Wahhabbism and have on occasion organized several national campaigns encouraging citizens to support Sunni terror organizations outside the country.[42] Thus it would be wrong to distinguish between contributions to radical Sunni organizations by the ruling family, the Saudi government, and wealthy Saudi subjects.

Afghanistan’s financial intelligence unit FinTraca reported in May 2010 that Saudi contributors have funneled over $1.5 billion to Afghanistan through Pakistan since 2006. Most of the money has entered Afghanistan through Pakistani tribal areas, especially through North Waziristan, which is known as “al-Qaeda’s heartland.” Mohammed Mustafa Massoudi, the director general of US-trained Afghan intelligence in Kabul, said, “We can trace it back as far as an entry point in Waziristan” the uncontrolled tribal border area between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Then went on, “Why would anyone want to put such money into Waziristan? [for] Only one reason: terrorism.”[43] The likely destination of the money was thought to be the Taliban and al-Qaeda.

Since 2006, these groups have killed at least 1,525 American soldiers in Afghanistan and maimed thousands more.[44] As former Under Secretary Levey declared in his April 2008 testimony before the Senate Finance Committee, “Saudi Arabia today remains the location from which more money is going to terror groups and the Taliban—Sunni terror groups and the Taliban—than from any other place in the world.”[45]

The Saudis also support Pakistan’s Laskhar-e Taiba (LET), a terrorist group most known in the West for perpetrating the Mumbai attacks in 2008, which killed over 200 people and injured over 300 more.[46] Pakistani police reported in 2009 that the Saudi al-Haramain Foundation—a charitable organization designated as a terrorist sponsor by both the US and Saudi governments[47]—gave $15 million to jihadists, including those responsible for suicide attacks in Pakistan and the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.[48]

The Saudi-based International Islamic Relief Organization’s (IIRO) Philippines branch, which was run until his death in 2007 by Muhammad Jamal Khalifa, Osama bin Laden’s brother-in-law until his death in 2007, was designated a terrorist sponsor by the US Treasury in August 2006 “for facilitating fundraising for al Qaida and affiliated terrorist groups.”[49]

This apparently did not stop Saudi support for the al-Qaeda-affiliated Abu Sayyaf Group. A Wikileaks-released cable from the US Embassy in Riyadh described the US Government’s concerns with the IIRO’s continuing Saudi funding of al-Qaeda-affiliated group in the Philippines.[50] Dated February 24, 2007, and classified as “secret,” the cable detailed a February 6, 2007 private meeting between US assistant to the president for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Francis Fragos Townsend and Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal. Townsend asked the foreign minister to stop the “involvement of the Saudi ambassador to the Philippines Muhammad Amin Waly in terrorism facilitation,” noting “his intervention to get two members of IIRO out of prison.” Prince Saud declared a belief that Waly’s actions “may have involved bad judgment rather than intentional support for terrorism” and Waly remained in his position until October 2009.[51]

Despite evidence of IIRO funding to radical Muslim groups the world over, the US Government has refrained from designating the IIRO in its entirety as a terrorist organization. As a result, the IIRO obtained membership in the United Nations’ Department of Public Information (DPI) in August 2010. This membership provides the IIRO the perfect cover from which to expand its reach.[52]

Saudi funding to the US-designated Muslim Brotherhood Palestinian branch, the terrorist organization Hamas, has never stopped.[53] In March 2007 Israel notified the US that Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh transferred a $1 million contribution he received in Saudi Arabia to Hamas’ “armed wing,” the Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades.[54] On December 16, 2009, while Hamas was shelling Israeli civilians from the Gaza Strip, Haniyeh told Al-Jazeera that he passed $1 million in funding from a Saudi donor to Hamas’ “armed wing.”[55]

In January 20, 2009, even before Israel concluded Operation Cast Lead,[56] its defensive operations to stop terrorist attacks from the Gaza Strip, Saudi Arabia pledged $1 billion for the reconstruction of Gaza.[57]

As documented in my book Funding Evil: How Terrorism is Financed—and How to Stop It, several Saudi financial institutions openly funded terrorist groups throughout the 1990s and early 2000s. In September 2000, Saudi Arabia conducted two telethons for the specified purpose of raising funds for the families of Palestinian homicide bombers, including members of Hamas and the al-Aqsa Martyr Brigades.[58] Saudi Arabia also created the Saudi Committee for the Support of the al-Quds Uprising, based in Riyadh and run by interior minister Prince Nayef. This committee “reported the transfer of $55.7 million mostly to the families of suicide bombers and to the families of imprisoned or injured Palestinian militants.” Records found in the offices of the Tulkarm Charity Committee detail the payments to 102 Hamas terrorists who were killed in “martyr operation[s].”[59] In 2002 the Saudi Arabian International Islamic Relief Organization donated $280,000 to Palestinian organizations that the US has linked to Hamas.[60]

Non-Compliance with Counterterrorism Treaty Obligations

In 2007 Saudi Arabia ratified the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. The treaty requires that signatories cooperate “with one another in conducting inquiries,” including those on “the movement of funds relating to the commission of [terrorist financing].”[61]

Yet in January 2010, the Al Rajhi Bank, the largest Islamic bank in the Gulf Cooperation Council and the third largest commercial bank in Saudi Arabia, refused to comply with a subpoena issued in the terror financing trial of US operative of the Saudi based international al-Haramain Foundation (AHF), Dr. Peter Seda.[62] The evidence provided by the prosecution showed that a Saudi bank branch accepted $151,000 in traveler’s checks deposited in March 2000 in the name of the AFH.[63] The US Treasury Department designated the AHF in 2008 as sponsors of terrorism, stating: “Today’s action targets the entirety of the AHF organization, including its headquarters in Saudi Arabia. Evidence demonstrates that the AHF organization was involved in providing financial and logistical support to the al Qaida network and other terrorist organizations designated by the United States and the United Nations.” [64]The Saudis claim they have shut it down.  But in 2009 the GAO reported it as still active.[65]

After the bank converted the dollars into Saudi riyals, the money was smuggled out of Saudi Arabia, possibly to Chechen mujahedeen (Muslims engaged in jihad (holy-war) against the infields).[66]

In addition to refusing to cooperate with an ongoing criminal investigation in the United States, Al Rajhi took the unorthodox step of suing to dismiss the administrative subpoena it received from the US Attorney’s office for the District of Oregon in July 2009. The bank is insisting that the office had no authority to issue the subpoena, that providing the records would violate Saudi law, and that the information was not requested using “appropriate diplomatic channels.”[67]

The Saudis blatant violation of the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism did not stop the conviction of AHF’s  US operative. However, the US Government did not openly challenge the Saudi government and no known sanctions have been taken against the bank.

Saudis Funding of and Fighting in the Iraqi Insurgency

Saudis have had a major hand in providing funds and fighters to the Iraqi insurgency. In February 2009, Abu Ahmed, one of the founders of the Iraqi insurgency who now works with American forces, revealed to Newsweek that he had been bankrolled by Saudi donations.[68] In 2006, it was reported that millions of Saudi riyals, often collected in the form of zakat (compulsory charity), were smuggled to Iraq to pay for missiles and other weapons.[69] The Associated Press revealed that in 2006, one Sunni cleric alone had received $25 million from Saudi Arabia, which he used to purchased arms.[70]

Through 2008, Saudis consistently comprised the largest proportion of foreign forces warring against Americans in Iraq. In 2005 NBC reported that 55 percent of foreign fighters in Iraq were Saudi;[71] in 2007 the New York Times revealed that at 41 percent representation, Saudis still accounted for “the largest number of fighters listed on the records by far.”[72] As of 2008, when foreign fighters started to flee Iraq, Saudis still comprised a significant chunk of anti-American forces.[73]

In November 2010, the Iraqi insurgency had reemerged in a series of attacks that killed more than 100 people and injured over 200.[74] It remains to be seen how many Saudi nationals will continue to participate in Iraqi Sunni insurgency attacks. The Wikileaks cable that singled out the Saudis as the primary backers of Sunni terrorist groups, including al-Qaeda, indicates that Saudi support continues to play a vital role in the Iraqi insurgency.[75]

Saudi Terrorist Financing at the Grassroots

The foregoing facts show that Saudi counterterrorism efforts are lackluster at best. Saudi financial support continues as one of the major bloodlines of international terrorism, and Saudi nationals are active within the deadliest terrorist groups.

But Saudi support for terrorism extends much beyond direct deposits to openly radical elements. Direct financing of terrorist activities is but one of several means to further their agenda.

The Saudi aim at spreading Wahhabi Islam globally. To advance their goal they are said to have invested well over $1 trillion thus far. The money has gone toward the establishment of Saudi cultural and political influence in the West. Generous funds went to build mosques, to nonprofit Islamic organizations engaged in dawah (proselytization for Islam), to create a well-developed network of charitable organizations that provide financial aid to prisoners (including non-Muslims) in Western jails, as well as to fund academic chairs in Middle East Studies in universities around the world, and to lavishly fund student-exchange programs, to mention but a few.

In 2002 the Saudi government English weekly Ain-al-Yaqeen bragged that the royal family and the Saudi Kingdom have spent billions of dollars “to spread Islam to every corner of the earth.”[76] According to Ain-al-Yaqeen, the Islamic Center in Brussels, Belgium, received a total of more than $5 million; the Islamic Center in Geneva, Switzerland, receives annual support of close to $7 million; and the biggest Islamic Center in Europe, which the Saudis built in Madrid, Spain, received close to $8 million in total. The Saudi Kingdom’s efforts, under the leadership of King Fahd bin Abd al-Aziz, has been astronomical, amounting to many billions of Saudi Riyals.[77] “According to official Saudi information, Saudi funds have been used to build and maintain over 1,500 mosques, 202 colleges, 210 Islamic Centers wholly or partly financed by Saudi Arabia, and almost 2,000 schools for educating Muslim children in non-Islamic countries in Europe, North and South America, Australia and Asia.”[78]

Saudi Arabia has “fully or partially financed Islamic Centers in Los Angeles; San Francisco; Fresno; Chicago; New York; Washington; Tucson; Raleigh, N.C. and Toledo, Ohio as well as in Austria, Great Britain, France, Spain, Italy, Germany, Russia, [and] Turkey.”[79] The Saudis also continue an aggressive global campaign to promote Islamic fundamentalism by generously funding initiatives for Islamic outreach and indoctrination to Wahhabi fundamentalism in Asia, the former Soviet republics and Africa.[80] They face growing competition from Iran, which is also engaged in an effort to proselytize the locals in these same areas to the radical Shiite version of Islam.[81]

From 1973 to the end of 2002, the Saudi Kingdom’s spending to promote Wahhabism worldwide (lately particularly in the West and especially in the US) was estimated by Reza F. Safa, the author of Inside Islam, at $87 billion.[82] As we shall see, Saudi investments continue at full throttle.


Saudi spending on religious and educational institutions in the United States and Europe went into high gear after the 9/11 attacks on the US.

Europe, the cradle of Western civilization, is home to more than 6,000 mosques,[83] many of which propagate radical Sunni views. For instance, a 2007 Times investigation revealed that the Deoband Islamic movement controlled almost half of the United Kingdom’s mosques and 17 of its 26 Islamic seminaries at the time.[84] Tablighi Jamaat (TJ), an offshoot of the radical Sunni Pakistan-based Deoband Islamic movement, has chapters in 120 countries.[85] The Saudis are major funders of this group.[86]

Ostensibly a peaceful missionary movement, Tablighi Jamaat is connected to the London Underground Bombings, an attempted bombing in Spain, and several attacks in the United States.[87] It serves as a recruiting ground for al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups[88] and also as a funder of terrorist groups such as the Pakistan-based Harakat ul-Mujahideen (HUM, a.k.a. Jamiat ul-Ansur),[89] which was designated by the US as a terrorist organization in 1999 and had ties to the abduction and murder of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in January–February 2002.[90] It also funds Harakut ul-Jihad-I Islami (HUJI), which operates in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and India and was designated a terrorist organization in August 2010 by the US Department of State.[91]

By the end of 2008, the Saudis had poured over $700 billion into the Balkans. Conscious of the radicalizing influences of mosques and Islamic cultural centers, some European countries have taken a stand against Saudi-financed Islamic projects.[92] The IIRO has been identified as one of the most active organizations in the Saudi Balkan effort.[93]

In March 2010 the Sunday Times reported that the Saudis are transferring hundreds of millions of dollars to the Balkans to spread Wahhabism by funding a series of mosques, community centers, and charities.[94] Some are currently under investigation for terrorist ties.  Also in 2010, the Norwegian government blocked the construction of a Saudi-financed mosque in Oslo and halted the construction of the planned mosque in Tromsoe in the Arctic Circle after a Saudi businessman pledged approximately 2.5 million Euros to the project.[95] In 2007 Tablighi Jamaat’s plans to build Europe’s biggest mosque near the site of the 2012 Olympics in London stalled after a public outcry[96]—an online petition against the construction drew over 255,000 signatures from the United Kingdom.[97] The plans to build the 12,000-person complex were finally aborted in January 2010 after the UK branch of the Pakistani Tablighi Jamaat failed to submit the required paperwork.[98]

The United States, where freedom of religion is protected by the Constitution, self-preservation instincts have been slow to develop. In his 2003 testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security, Stephen Schwartz, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, estimated that approximately 80 percent of the 1,200 American mosques at that time received Saudi funding and were under Wahhabi control.[99] In August 2010 the Washington Post estimated that the US had more than 2,000 mosques, but it did not provide information on Saudi direct and indirect funding.[100]

In New York City, news of the prospective construction of a mosque a few hundred yards from Ground Zero, has stoked months of tension and dispute.[101] One of the leading figures promoting the controversial Islamic Cultural Center is Imam Abdul Faisal Rauf, a self proclaimed moderate Muslim, who has a number of suspicious connections to Muslim Brotherhood fronts in the United States, Malaysia, the Gulf, and Saudi Arabia.[102] Rauf heads the American Society for Muslim Advancement and is a board member of the Malaysia-based Cordoba Initiative.[103]

One of Rauf’s partners in the Cordoba Initiative, Jamal Barzinji, was among the founding members of the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT),[104] the Muslim Brotherhood’s forefront think-tank in the US, which “had been demonstrated by the Justice Department to be an unindicted coconspirator” in the Hamas front, the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) terror financing trial.[105] Barzinji, who leads IIIT, is considered “closely associated” with terrorist organizations such as Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.[106] He is also a trustee of the Saudi-funded North American Islamic Trust (NAIT), which was named an unindicted coconspirator in the HLF terror financing case as well.[107] NAIT holds the deed to the terror-linked Dar al-Hijra Mosque,[108] whose development Barzinji authorized.[109]

Rauf has drawn Saudi support in the past. Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Foundation who owns many shares in American businesses, lavishly funds Muslim Brotherhood offshoots in the US,[110] such as the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA),[111] also donated $300,000 to Rauf’s American Society for Muslim Advancement.[112] Ironically, Talal has gone on record as opposing the construction of Cordoba House so close to Ground Zero. Nevertheless, Rauf has insisted that the project proceed and,[113] in an effort to smooth public sensibilities, Cordoba House is now being referred to instead as the Park51 Islamic Center.[114]

The Ground Zero mosque controversy is hardly the only debate raging on mosque construction in the United States. Many other mosques are planned for the United States, and some already exist.[115]

The state of Tennessee may soon hold three large Islamic complexes in the cities of Murfeesboro,[116] Antioch,[117] and Memphis. While Staten Island, in New York, recently scrapped unpopular plans for a mosque,[118] Brooklyn, New York, will soon be home to an Islamic Cultural Center.[119] Atlanta, Georgia, opened a $10 million mosque complex—the largest mosque in the state—in 2008.[120]

The Boston neighborhood of Roxbury, in Massachusetts, welcomed a $22 million, 60,000-foot Islamic Cultural Center with known radical ties in 2009.[121] Saudi financing is confirmed in the case of the Roxbury mosque,[122] which is run by the Muslim American Society,[123] another important Saudi-financed Muslim Brotherhood front in the United States.[124]

Other multimillion – dollar structures are constructed in or slated for construction in Sheboygan, Wisconsin;[125] Temecula Valley, California;[126] and Florence, Kentucky.[127] The sources of funding for these mosques are not known. But given the Saudis’ active role in Islamic promotion worldwide, and their special interest in influencing the US, it is likely that Saudi money is playing a major role in most of these mosque constructions.


Saudi money heavily influences academic institutions in the United States. Saudi donations to American universities have been going on for decades. Lately, however, the Saudis have signed agreements, worth at least $25 million each, with several major universities to help with the development of academic curriculums for the new King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in the Kingdom.[128] Such agreements were signed in 2008 with the University of Texas at Austin; the University of California, Berkeley; and Stanford University.[129] In September 2010 the Kingdom’s General Investment Authority (Sagia) signed the Georgia Institute of Technology to build a center to provide applied science degrees to students in Saudi Arabia.[130]

In the meantime, the Saudi government sponsors foreign study programs for approximately 60,000 Saudi nationals worldwide.[131] Since 9/11, the number of Saudis studying in the United States has spiked markedly, from 3,000 to over 30,000.[132] Of all Middle Eastern countries, Saudi Arabia sponsors the highest number of students in the United States.

In addition to fostering institutional partnerships, Saudis have donated millions of dollars to American schools, buying sway over the way Islam and Middle Eastern Studies are taught in the US. Saudi tentacles are even more deeply sunk into British universities. A 2008 report by Britain’s Centre for Social Cohesion shows that Saudi Arabian and Muslim organizations have poured over $460 million into British universities including Oxford, Cambridge, and the London School of Economics.[133] Oxford alone received over $39 million from the late Saudi King Fahd for its Centre for Islamic Studies.[134]

Billions of dollars worth of investments in Western campuses have reaped the Saudis’ massive dividends, rewriting the Middle East narrative in curricula of universities around the world and intimidating critical assessment of Islam and Muslims. Britain’s University and College Union has repeatedly tried to launch an academic boycott of Israel while Middle East studies–related activities at premier universities in the UK and the US are often fiercely anti-Israel.[135]

The radicalization of the young, wealthy and lonely Nigerian student Omar Farouk Abdulmutallab happened in the Islamic Society at University College London, which he attended, and in the London mosque he frequented, which was funded by the Saudi MWL. Abdulmutallab, better known as the 2009 failed Christmas underwear bomber, travelled to Yemen and was later recruited to al-Qaeda.[136] Further investigation by Britain’s counter-extremism think tank Quilliam Foundation revealed that members of the Islamic Society at London’s City University, a Wahhabi hotbed, are urging violence and preaching fundamentalist Islam.[137] Another UK survey showed that 60 percent of active members in Britain’s universities’ Islamic societies agree that killing in the name of religion can be justified, and that nearly the same number supports the imposition of a global caliphate.[138]


As with other contagious diseases, to successfully fight the spread of virulent Islamic radicalism, one must identify the origins of the outbreak (Saudi Arabia), as well as the contributing factors to its spread (Saudi oil revenues).

While Western cultures place a premium on coexistence, negotiation, compromise, and multiculturalism, Islam does not. Sharia—law—requires the subjugation or destruction of all non-Muslims. Its adherents value only the sharia, and join the jihad for its global domination, to create the ummah (Islamic nation). Exposing sharia and its radical proponents, be they states, organizations, or individuals, is crucial to our ability to protect ourselves and to take the necessary measures to curtail the spread of radical Islam.

Successive US Administrations have demonstrated willful blindness and recklessness vis-à-vis Saudi Arabia’s cultivation of Islamic radicalism and terrorism financing activities. The United States still trusts the Saudis to self-report on the progress of their counterterrorist financing efforts. When it comes to Saudi investments or contributions in the United States, the American government does not disclose information, making it difficult to discover the true extent of the Saudi financial, political, educational and social influence in America.

CAIR, ISNA, and other Saudi and Muslim Brotherhood organs enjoy ties to the American political establishment and are often portrayed in the media as religiously moderate and socially positive advocacy organizations. Legitimizing radicals as if they are moderates fosters the spread of terrorism throughout the world, including the new phenomenon of “homegrown” terrorism in the United States.

Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the Virginia-born psychiatrist, massacred 13 people at Fort Hood in 2009.[139] Eyebrows were raised when Pennsylvania native and Muslim convert Colleen LaRose, a.k.a. “Jihad Jane,” pled guilty in 2011 for plotting to murder Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks because he had lampooned the prophet Muhammad in one of his cartoons.[140] In upstate New York, the “Lackawanna Six” were local Yemeni-Americans who had attended al-Qaeda terrorist training camps in Kandahar prior to September 2001; they pled guilty to supporting terrorism in Buffalo two years later in a case that received little public attention.[141]

FoxNews reported in March 2011 that data compiled by the Department of Justice indicated “there has been a class-one terrorism case with a direct link between U.S. citizens … and foreign terrorist groups on average every two weeks since January 2009.”[142]

The mosques, Islamist NGOs and advancing homegrown terror starkly symbolize the depth of Saudi penetration into American civic life. Yet, because the US is so dependent on Saudi oil, little has been done to stop this penetration, and it is unlikely to be addressed anytime in the foreseeable future. The media, public and Congress should demand full transparency from the government and full disclosure of Saudi investments in and contributions to the US.

I.  The US must impede the growth of the Saudis’ radicalizing influence on American education, business and politics. An important step towards achieving this most difficult task should be the ban of contributions to American educational institutions, nonprofits – including religious and charitable organizations from countries that prohibit religious freedom.

The 2010 annual report of the US Department of State on International Religious Freedom,[143] and the 2011 annual report of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom,[144] designated countries that have “engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom” as Countries of Particular Concern (CPCs).[145] The list includes Iran, Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Pakistan, Egypt, Eritrea, Afghanistan, China, to name a few.[146] There is an additional Watch List of countries where the government engages in serious violations of or that tolerate violations of religious freedom.

While Saudi Arabia is the only country on the CPC list that enjoys “indefinite waiver of Presidential actions under section 407(a)(2) of IRFA,” it is also the largest contributor to US educational institutions, charities and non-governmental institutions (NGOs).[147] Direct and indirect large contributions are also sent by the United Arab Emirates, Iran and Kuwait.

The influence of Saudi and Gulf largesse on the radicalization of their American recipients has been widely documented, but no attempts have been made to stem the flow of the money that advances the agendas of regimes, which openly oppose the fundamental democratic freedoms provided by the US Constitution. Moreover, such contributions fund the development of subversive elements that use our First Amendment rights to undermine those rights.

The US would not be the first to ban such contributions. In November 2010, when the Norwegian government halted construction of that Arctic Circle mosque due to the Saudi pledge, the foreign ministry spokeswoman explained, “It would be paradoxical and unnatural to approve financing coming from a country where religious freedom does not exist.”[148]

Following in Norway’s footsteps, the US Congress should pass a bill that would require the disclosure of all contributions in cash and in kind to US charities, NGOs, educational and religious institutions from countries listed by the State Department as prohibiting religious freedoms or severely discriminating against religions other than the official religion. To deter Americans from receiving and/or soliciting such contributions, the US Justice Department should impose large fines and publish the violators’ names. This would be an important step towards curbing Islamic radicalization and influence.

II.  The proposed Justice Against Terrorism Act (JASTA), an important bill to deter terrorism and provide justice for victims, was first introduced in December 2009 by Senators Arlen Specter (D-PA) and Charles Schumer (D-NY). The bill proposed removing the existing prohibition against suing foreign states or foreign officials civilly for damages related to acts of terrorism. JASTA would “expand the liability of foreign states for tortuous acts committed against U.S. citizens during a terrorist act and allow civil actions against a foreign state” and its officials, as well as “impose liability on any person who aids and abets an act of international terrorism, provides material support or resources to terrorist organizations, or conspires with terrorists.”[149]. Increasing the courts’ jurisdictional reach would allow plaintiffs to sue for appropriate damages and help deter individual or corporate entities from transacting with terrorist groups.[150] This critical bill never became a law, and, as of this writing, has yet to be reintroduced in Congress.

III.  Saudi and Gulf terror financiers use libel laws and suits, mostly, but not only, in the UK, to silence investigations into their funding of radical Muslim organizations. After the 9/11 attacks, this tactic of lawfare known as libel tourism successfully chilled freedom of speech in the US and the world over.[151] By pressing frivolous and extortionate libel suits in British courts, one Saudi billionaire, Khalid bin Mahfouz, alone managed to muzzle over 45 major media outlets and authors, including many Americans.[152]

The threat of libel tourism to American authors and publishers ended in the summer of 2010. This was accomplished under costly and difficult personal efforts. The unwavering support from the Board of Directors of the American Center for Democracy, which I head—in particular, R. James Woolsey, Michael Mukasey, and Nicholas Rostow—and my brilliant, patient and generous attorney, Daniel Kornstein, made my struggle more tolerable. And the perceptive Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee with their dedicated staff, and many other supporters, made the passage of the SPEECH Act possible.

Rather than caving in after being threatened with a libel suit in London in 2005, I sued in New York, to block the enforcement of the English default judgment in the United States and then engaged in a multiyear campaign to pass remedial legislation at both the state and federal levels. New York, Illinois, Florida, California, Utah, Tennessee, Maryland and Louisiana all passed laws to protect against the enforcement of libel tourist suits. These, along with the federal SPEECH Act which became law in August 2010, provide protection to all American authors and publishers in print and on the Internet from frivolous libel suits abroad.[153] No longer intimidated by the threat of foreign libel judgments, American investigative researchers are now free to take advantage of the uniquely strong protections for freedom of speech and expression guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.

IV. To curtail the frivolous libel suits in the US, by Saudi-linked organizations such as Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) file against their critics, Federal Anti-SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) legislation is under consideration in Congress.[154] Together with the SPEECH Act, the anti-SLAPP legislation will deter frivolous libel suits within and outside the US and help secure the free speech rights Americans need to protect their freedom of expression.

V.  But the battle does not stop there. In addition to following the Saudi money trail, Americans should be encouraged to openly criticize and pressure their own government’s obfuscation of Saudi Arabia’s role as the world’s primary sponsor of radical Islam and Islamic terrorism. As the Wikileaks cable on Saudi Arabia shows, this cover-up rises to the highest levels of government—American presidents, their Cabinet members, government officials, and diplomats continue to publicly praise Saudi Arabia while fully aware of its role as the primary global terrorism funder.[155]

VI.  Cutting off the money lifeline to terrorists requires effective and evenhanded enforcement of counterterrorism and finance regulations. Instead, the US Government uses a selective process that allows activities of known terrorism fronts to continue. While authorities have arrested several members or affiliates of the primary Islamist organizations, the organizations remain open.

The terror ties of CAIR—a documented Muslim Brotherhood front—have long been laid bare in numerous court cases, the most recent of which is the aforementioned 2009 Holy Land Foundation (HLF) case.[156] That case exposed HLF as a Hamas fundraising front, declared ISNA “one of the chief conduits through which the radical Saudi form of Islam passes in the United States,”[157] and implicated both ISNA and CAIR as unindicted co-conspirators of HLF.[158] At least 15 CAIR officials have been identified in terror investigations, including CAIR founder, Ghassan Elashi.[159]

As the primary endorser of chaplains of the Muslim faith assigned to federal prisons, ISNA hand-picked imams to preach to inmates until the Bureau of Prisons discovered ISNA’s true agenda during the course of an investigation into the spread of radical Islam in American prisons and suspended the organization.[160] CAIR and ISNA should be shut down.

The US Treasury should freeze the assets of such groups and similar seemingly nonprofit organizations that are, in actuality, tools for spreading fundamentalist Islam through cultural influence and the sponsorship of terrorism. Such organizations include a host of Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated entities, such as the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), the Muslim World League (MWL), and the Muslim Student Association (MSA). [161]

Congress should also demand an explanation of why the government allowed the reopening of an office of a terrorism front—the Florida office of the International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO), designated as a terrorist organization by the US Department of the Treasury. Another disturbing example was described in the September 2010 testimony of attorney Eric Lewis before the House Committee on Financial Services regarding the possible laundering of up to $1 trillion(!) through the United States by “the Money Exchange,” a Saudi-based remittance company.[162]

Spearheaded by Maan al-Sanea, the chair of Saad Group and a major stakeholder in HSBC Bank, the Money Exchange operated internationally through a series of shell companies and correspondent banks, funneling billions of dollars annually through American bank accounts. The nature of the business and its transactional volume should have triggered close monitoring by US banks. Yet Lewis’s testimony reveals an utter lack of due diligence on the part of US financial institutions and the resulting silence on the part of the press and the American government.[163]

Such silences, if unchallenged, will jeopardize the national security of the US and lead to the suppression the freedom and democracy that are unique to America. Saudi and other radical-Islam promoting regimes’ direct and indirect involvement in and support of terrorism must be fully exposed and addressed if we are to maintain our security protect our liberty.

Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld is the Director of the New York–based American Center for Democracy (ACD)[164] and the Economic Warfare Institute (EWI)[165] She has authored hundreds of articles and several books on terrorist financing and political corruption.





[1] Paul Handley, “US Cables: Saudi ‘Critical’ Finance Base for Qaeda, Taliban,” Middle East Online, December 5, 2010. See original at Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton, “Terrorist Finance: Action Request for Senior Level Engagement on Terrorism Finance” (Secret State Department Cable 131801), December 30, 2009,

[2] Ibid.

[3] “Excerpt From An Interview With Secretary of State Colin Powell, July 30, 2003,” in “Congressional 9/11 Report Missing Pages: Saudis Ask for Full Disclosure,” The SUSRIS Project – Saudi-US Relations Information Service, July 31, 2003,

[4]“Transcript – Confirmation Hearing of Condoleeza Rice,” New York Times, January 18, 2005,

[5] Agence France Presse, “Bush certifies Saudi Arabia as ‘war on terror’ ally,” The Daily Star, October 20, 2007,

[6] United States Department of the Treasury, “Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner’s Speech at Jeddah Chamber of Commerce: The State of the Global Economy and the Relationship between the United States and the Gulf Region,” press release, July 14, 2009,

[7] Brian Ross, “U.S.: Saudis Still Filling Al Qaeda’s Coffers,” ABC News: The Blotter, September 11, 2007,

[8] Handley, “US Cables: Saudi ‘Critical’ Finance Base for Qaeda, Taliban.”

[9] Associated Press, “Official: 15 of 19 Sept. 11 hijackers were Saudi,” USA Today, February 6, 2002,

[10] CNN, “Saudis blame al Qaeda for attack,” May 30, 2004,

[11] David G. Savage, “Saudi Arabia-based charities still funding terrorists, GAO says,” Los Angeles Times, September 30, 2009,

[12] Congressional Research Service, Saudi Arabia: Terrorist Financing Issues (RL32499, September 14, 2007), by Christopher M. Blanchard and Alfred B. Prados, CRS-23,

[13] Abeer Allam,. “Terrorism funding remains a concern,.” Financial Times,. April 19, 2010,. <,dwp_uuid=f39ffd26-4bb2-11da-997b-0000779e2340,s01=2.html#axzz1Sa2n8lpS>

[14] Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency,

[15] United States General Accounting Office, Combating Terrorism – U.S. Agencies Report Progress Countering Terrorism and Its Financing in Saudi Arabia, but Continued Focus on Counter Terrorism Financing Efforts Needed (GAO-09-883, September 24, 2009),

[16] Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Public Statements by Senior Saudi Officials and Religious Scholars Condemning Extremism and Promoting Moderation, May 2008.

[17] “Saudi Arabia,” IBA Anti-Money Laundering Forum, last updated February 17, 2009,

[18] “List of Members,” The Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units,

[19] “Mutual Evaluation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” Financial Action Task Force (FATF), June 25, 2010,,3343,en_32250379_32236963_45537790_1_1_1_1,00.html.,3343,en_32250379_32236963_45537790_1_1_1_1,00.html.

[20] FATAT Watch, “MENAFATF members,”

[21] United Nations General Assembly, Resolution 54/109, “International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism,” December 9, 1999,

[22] Saudi Arabia: Terrorist Financing Issues, September 2007 CRS Report.

[23] “Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007,” Public Law 110–53, 121 Stat. 266, August 3, 2007,

[24] United States Department of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, “2009 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report,” February 27, 2009,

[25] Handley, “US Cables: Saudi ‘Critical’ Finance Base for Qaeda, Taliban.”

[26] Donna Miles, “Petraeus Lauds Saudi Fatwa Condemning Terrorism Financing,” United States Department of Defense, May 22, 2010,

[27] Clinton, Secret State Department Cable 131801.

[28] Ibid.

[29] Combating Terrorism, September 2009 GAO Report.

[30] The Terror Finance Tracking Program: Hearing Before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations (H.R. HTG, 109–105), 109th Congress (July 11, 2006),

[31] Congressional Research Service, Saudi Arabia:Background and U.S. Relations (RL33533, March 10, 2011), by Christopher M. Blanchard,

[32] Combating Terrorism, September 2009 GAO Report.

[33] Anti-Terrorism Financing: Progress Made And Challenges Ahead: Hearing Before the Senate Finance Committee (S. HRG. 110–1034), 110th Congress (April 1, 2008) (statement of Hon. Stuart A. Levey, Under Secretary, Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, United States Department of the Treasury),

[34] “Saudis trumpet al-Qaeda arrests,” BBC News, November 26, 2010,

[35] Massoud A. Derhally and Zainab Fattah, “Saudi Arabia Says Al-Qaeda Arrests Prevented Attacks,”Bloomberg BusinessWeek, November 26, 2010,

[36] Richard Spencer, “Saudi Arabian mother becomes the First Lady of al-Qaeda,” Daily Telegraph, June 25, 2010,

[37] “France: Saudis warn of new al-Qaeda threat,” BBC News, October 17, 2010, and Associated Press, “France’s burka ban ruled constitutional,” CBC News, October 7, 2010,

[38] Eric Schmitt and Scott Shane, “Saudis Warned U.S. of Attack Before Parcel Bomb Plot,” New York Times, November 5, 2010,

[39] Combating Terrorism, September 2009 GAO Report (emphasis added).

[40]R. James Woolsey, “World War IV,” speech, National War College, November 16, 2002,

[41] Rachel Ehrenfeld, “The Saudi Connection,” National Review Online, June 1, 2004,

[42] Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, “Dollars For Terror,”, August 12, 2004,

[43] Anthony Loyd, “Terror link alleged as Saudi millions flow into Afghanistan war zone,” Times (London), May 31, 2010,

[44] iCasualties – Operation Enduring Freedom website,

[45] Testimony of Under Secretary Levey at the Hearing Before the Senate Finance Committee.

[46] Jayshree Bajoria, “Backgrounder: Lashkar-e-Taiba (Army of the Pure) (aka Lashkar e-Tayyiba, Lashkar e-Toiba; Lashkar-i-Taiba),” Council on Foreign Relations, last updated January 14, 2010,

[47] United States Department of the Treasury, “Treasury Designates Al Haramain Islamic Foundation,” press release, June 19, 2008,

[48] James M. Dorsey, “Saudis fail to halt terrorism funding despite minor gains,” ed. Rob Mudge, Deutsche Welle, December 20, 2009,,,5019025,00.html.

[49] United States Department of the Treasury, “Treasury Takes Additional Measures to Combat Iranian WMD Proliferation Iranian Nuclear & Missile Firms Targeted,” press release, August 3, 2006,

[50] Joyce Pangco Pañares, “Saudi envoy in Manila linked to terror group,” Manila Standard Today, December 7, 2010,

[51] “APHSCT Townsend February 6 Meeting with Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal” (Secret Embassy Riyadh Cable 367), February 24, 2007,

[52] Muhammad Ibrahim, “IIRO-Saudi Arabia gains membership in UN body,” Arab News, August 1, 2010,

[53] “Terrorist Organizations,” Osen LLC,

[54] Adam Entous, “Haniyeh gave Saudi cash to Hamas armed wing: Israel,” Reuters, April 1, 2007,

[55] Ismail Haniyeh, interview by Zeina Awad, Talk to Al Jazeera, Al Jazeera English, December 16, 2009,

[56] “Operation Cast Lead,” Global,

[57] Nissan Ratzlav-Katz, “Saudis Pledge to Cover Over Half of PA War Costs,” Arutz Sheva, January 20, 2009,

[58] Rachel Ehrenfeld, Funding Evil: How Terrorism is Financed—and How to Stop It (Chicago: Bonus Books, 2005), 108-109,

[59] “Israeli Report Details Saudi Funding for Palestinian Militants,”, July 4, 2002,

[60] Attachment to Letter from Mustapha Dib to Yasser Arafat, January 9, 2001, Captured Document E5, translated in “Arafat: Where Did the Saudi Aid Money Go? (Transferred to the Hamas…),” Appendix E of Large Sums of Money Transferred by Saudi Arabia to the Palestinians are Used for Financing Terror Organizations (particularly the Hamas) and Terrorist Activities (including Suicide Attacks inside Israel), (Israel Defense Forces Document TR2-350-02), May 6, 2002,

[61] UN General Assembly, “International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.”

[62] “Saudi Bank Refuses to Cooperate in U.S. Investigation into Terrorist Financiers,” For The Record—The IPT Blog, The Investigative Project on Terrorism, January 26, 2010,

[63] Stephen I. Landman, “Day Four in United States v. Seda,” For The Record—The IPT Blog, The Investigative Project on Terrorism, September 3, 2010,

[64] On Agust 1, 2011, Treasury’s website stated: “the page you are looking for may have been removed.” see

[65] Combating Terrorism, September 2009 GAO Report.

[66] Landman, “Day Four in United States v. Seda.”

[67] Jordan Weissmann, “Saudi Bank Asks Court to Stop Patriot Act Subpoena,” The BLT: The Blog of LegalTimes, January 20, 2010,

[68] Scott Johnson, “Portrait of a Shadow,” Newsweek, February 14, 2009,

[69] Associated Press, “Saudi Citizens Funding Iraq Insurgents,” CBS News, February 11, 2009,

[70] Salah Nasrawi, “Saudis Reportedly Funding Iraqi Sunnis,” Washington Post, December 8, 2006,

[71] Lisa Myers & the NBC Investigative Unit, “Who are the foreign fighters in Iraq?,” NBC News Investigates on NBC Nightly News, June 20, 2005,

[72] Richard A. Oppel Jr., “Foreign Fighters in Iraq Are Tied to Allies of U.S.,” New York Times, November 22, 2007,

[73] Jim Michaels, “Foreign fighters leaving Iraq, military says,” USA Today, March 21, 2008,

[74] Babak Dehghanpisheh, “Iraq Bombings Could Herald New Deadly Phase,” Newsweek, November 3, 2010,

[75] Clinton, Secret State Department Cable 131801.

[76] “The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Ibn Abdul Aziz Directs the Distribution of Hundreds of Thousands Quran to the Pilgrims. Huge Saudi Efforts in the Field of Establishing Islamic Centers, Mosques and Academies All Over the World. Tunisian, Arab and Muslim Newspapers Lauds the Kingdom’s Services to the Pilgrims.,” Ain-Al-Yaqeen, March 1, 2002,

[77] Ibid.

[78] Mark Silverberg, “The Wahhabi Invasion of America,” February 27, 2003,

[79] Ibid.

[80] Stephen Schwartz, “Defeating Wahabbism,” Islam Daily, August 4, 2004,

[81] Congressional Research Service, Islam in Africa (RS22873, May 9, 2008), by Hussein D. Hassan, CRS-4-5,

[82] Paul Sperry, “U.S.-Saudi oil imports fund American mosques,” WorldNetDaily, April 22, 2002,

[83] Soeren Kern, “Europe’s Mosque Wars,”, August 18, 2010,

[84] Andrew Norfolk, “Hardline takeover of British mosques,” Times (London), September 7, 2007,

[85] Dr. Joseph Lumbard and Dr. Aref Ali Nayed, eds., The 500 Most Influential Muslims 2010 (The Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre, 2010), 58,

[86] Alex Alexiev, “Tablighi Jamaat: Jihad’s Stealthy Legions,” Middle East Quarterly 12, no. 1 (Winter 2005): 3-11,

[87] Fred Burton and Scott Stewart, “Tablighi Jamaat: An Indirect Line to Terrorism,” STRATFOR, January 23, 2008,

[88] Susan Sachs, “A Muslim Missionary Group Draws New Scrutiny in U.S.,” New York Times, July 14, 2003,

[89]. Alexiev, “Tablighi Jamaat: Jihad’s Stealthy Legions” and “Listing of terrorist organizations: Jamiat ul-Ansar,” Australian National Security, last modified November 29, 2010,

[90] “Harakat ul-Mujahedin (HUM),” Global,

[91] United States Department of State, “Designations of Harakat-ul Jihad Islami (HUJI) and its Leader Mohammad Ilyas Kashmiri,” press release, August 6, 2010,

[92] Sean O’Neill, “Lessons in hate found at leading mosques,” Times (London), October 30, 2007,

[93] Dan Bilefsky, “Islamic Revival Tests Bosnia’s Secular Cast,” New York Times, December 26, 2008,

[94] Bojan Pancevski, “Saudis fund Balkan Muslims spreading hate of the West,” Sunday Times (London), March 28, 2010,

[95] Agence France Presse, “Arctic mosque plan on ice over Saudi funding,” Khaleej Times, November 8, 2010,

[96] Fiona Hamilton and Ruth Gledhill, “Islamic sect’s plan to build mega-mosque next to Olympics site collapses,” Times (London), January 18, 2010,

[97] “No 10 site in mosque petition row,” BBC News, July 17, 2007,

[98] Agence France Presse, “London mosque near Olympics site aborted,” Al Arabiya News, January 18, 2010,

[99] Stephen Schwartz, “Wahhabism & Islam in The U.S.,” National Review, June 30, 2003,

[100] Edward E. Curtis IV, “Five myths about mosques in America,” Washington Post, August 29, 2010,

[101] Dave Evans, “Frustration, anger grows over proposed mosque,” WABC-TV: Eyewitness News, August 18, 2010,; “Protesters rally against, for planned Islamic center in New York,” CNN, August 22, 2010,

[102] Alyssa A. Lappen, “The Ground Zero Mosque Developer: Muslim Brotherhood Roots, Radical Dreams,” Pajamas Media, May 14, 2010, and “GZM Imam’s Malaysia Connections,” IPT News—The Investigative Project on Terrorism, September 24, 2010,

[103] “American Society for Muslim Advancement: Financial Statements For the year ended June 30, 2009,”

[104] “Ground Zero mosque modeled after notorious 9/11 mosque?,” WorldNetDaily, August 22, 2010,


[106] Andrew C. McCarthy, “International Institute of Islamic Thought and the Muslim Brotherhood,” National Review, July 24, 2010,

[107] Paul Sperry, “Sami’s Guardian Angel,”, December 9, 2005,

[108] “Dar al-Hijrah Mosque,” The Investigative Project on Terrorism,

[109] Sperry, “Sami’s Guardian Angel.”

[110] “Mosque’s Saudi Patron,” Investors Business Daily—IBD Editorials, August 26, 2010,

[111] “ISNA Uses Saudi Money For Fellowship Program,” The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report, September 27, 2009,

[112] John Cook, “News Corp’s number-two shareholder funded ‘terror mosque’ planner,” The Upshot (blog), Yahoo! News, August 20, 2010,

[113]. David B. Caruso, “Imam unmoved by Saudi criticism of NYC mosque,” Boston Globe, October 29, 2010,

[114] Dan Amira, “Ground Zero Mosque Gets Less Muslim-Invasion-Sounding Name,” New York Magazine, July 14, 2010,

[115] Erick Stakelbeck, “Mega Mosque Plans Target America’s Heartland,” CBN News, August 22, 2010,

[116] Lucas L. Johnson II, “Order to halt Murfreesboro mosque denied,” Knoxville News Sentinel, November 18, 2010,

[117] Diane Macedo, “Plans to Build Massive Islamic Centers Raise Concerns in Tennessee,”, August 9, 2010,

[118] Paul Vitello, “Heated Opposition to a Proposed Mosque,” New York Times, June 10, 2010,

[119] Ned Berke, “Sheepshead Bay Mosque Receives Permits To Build,” Sheepshead Bites (blog), August 20, 2010,

[120] “Atlanta’s Largest Mosque Opens,” CBN News, August 19, 2008,

[121] “Boston Mosque: the Rise of Radical Islam,” CBN News, November 16, 2004,, posted by “missyme,”

[122] Jeff Jacoby, “The Boston mosque’s Saudi connection,” Boston Globe, January 10, 2007,

[123] Michael Paulson, “Formal opening of Roxbury mosque, two days of events set for this month,” Boston Globe, June 14, 2009,

[124] “The Massachusetts Mega Mosque: A Success for the Muslim Brotherhood, Failure from Media & Government,” video, 14:00, June 8, 2010,

[125] Jake Miller, “Rural Sheboygan County residents shook up by possibility of Muslim mosque in their community,” WITI-TV FOX6 News, March 8, 2010,,0,3267768.story.

[126] Phil Willon, “Planned Temecula Valley mosque draws opposition,” Los Angeles Times, July 18, 2010,

[127] Responsible for Equality And Liberty (R.E.A.L.). Organization, “Kentucky: Mosque Protest Efforts in Florence,”, August 16, 2010,

[128] Andrew England, “Saudi Arabia’s billion-dollar education boost,” Financial Times, September 22, 2009,

[129] Tamar Lewin, “U.S. Universities Join Saudis in Partnerships,” New York Times, March 6, 2008,

[130] Abeer Allam, “Saudi Arabia takes westward academic turn,” Financial Times, September 27, 2010,

[131] Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Washington, DC, “Saudi Students in U.S. Graduate from Scholarship Program,” press release, July 7, 2009,

[132] James B. Smith, “US-Saudi Educational Partnerships Flourish,” Saudi Gazette, November 29, 2010,

[133] Robin Simcox for the Centre for Social Cohesion, A Degree of Influence: the funding of strategically important subjects in UK universities, (Wallington: SS Media Limited, March 2009), and Rachel Rogosnitzky, “News And Views From Europe,” The Jewish Press, April 30, 2008,

[134] Duncan Robinson, “The shame of Britain’s universities,” The Staggers (blog), New Statesman, March 9, 2011,

[135] Danna Harman, “Israeli diplomat flees British anti-Israel demonstrators,” Haaretz, April 29, 2010, and Cinnamon Stillwell, “Target Israel,”, June 15, 2010,

[136] Mark Hosenball, “The Radicalization of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab,” Newsweek, January 1, 2010,

[137] “Quilliam Launches Training and Consultancy Services in North America,” Quilliam Foundation,

[138] John Thorne and Hannah Stuart for the Centre for Social Cohesion, Islam on Campus: A survey of UK student opinions (Trowbridge: Cromwell Press, July 2008),

[139] Peter Slevin, “Rampage kills 12, wounds 31,” Washington Post, November 6, 2009,

[140] Ed Pilkington, “’Jihad Jane’ pleads guilty to murder attempt on Swedish cartoonist,” Guardian, February 2, 2011,

[141] Roya Aziz and Monica Lam, “Profiles: The Lackawanna Cell,” Frontline, October 16, 2003,

[142] “Special Report’s Contrasting Previews Of The King And Durbin Hearings On American Muslims,” Media Matters for America, March 29, 2011,

[143] United States Department of State, “2010 Report on International Religious Freedom,” November 17, 2010,

[144] United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, “Annual Report 2011,” May 2011,

[145] “Frequently Asked Questions: IRF Report and Countries of Particular Concern,” United States Department of State,

[146] United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, “USCIRF Identifies World’s Worst Religious Freedom Violators: Egypt Cited for First Time,” news release, April 28, 2011,;view=article&amp;id=3595.

[147] USCIRF Annual Report 2011.

[148] AFP, “Arctic mosque plan on ice over Saudi funding.”

[149] Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, S. 2930, 111th Congress (2009-2010),

[150] Evaluating The Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, S. 2930: Hearing Before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs, 111th Congress (July 14, 2010) (Testimony of Lee S. Wolosky, Partner, Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP),

[151] Rachel Ehrenfeld, “Free Speech In A Non-Free World,” Big Peace, April 5, 2001, and United Nations General Assembly, Resolution 2200A (XXI), “International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,” December 16, 1966,

[152] Bin Mahfouz Information,

[153] Copies of the state and federal legislation referred to herein may be found at “Legislation,” American Center for Democracy,

[154] “The Anti-SLAPP Resource Center,” First Amendment Project,

[155] Clinton, Secret State Department Cable 131801.

[156] “Backgrounder: The Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development,” Anti-Defamation League, May 28, 2009,

[157] Aaron Klein, “Obama religion adviser linked to unindicted co-conspirator,” WorldNetDaily, July 26, 2010,

[158] “DOJ: CAIR’s Unindicted Co-Conspirator Status Legit,” IPT News—The Investigative Project on Terrorism, March 12, 2010, and McCarthy, “International Institute of Islamic Thought and the Muslim Brotherhood.”

[159] “Why does Fox News promote terror-tied, FBI-shunned group?,” WorldNetDaily, January 11, 2010, and Art Moore, “CAIR leader convicted on terror charges,” WorldNetDaily, April 14, 2005,

[160] United States Department of Justice, Office of the Inspector General, “A Review of the Bureau of Prisons’ Selection of Muslim Religious Services Providers,” April 2004,

[161] Islamic Extremism in Europe: Hearing Before the House International Relations Subcommittee on Europe and Emerging Threats (H.R. HRG. 109–34), 109th Congress (April 27, 2005), and “The Muslim Students Association and the Jihad Network,”, May 08, 2008,

[162] A Review of Current and Evolving Trends in Terrorism Financing: Hearing Before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations (H.R. HRG. 111–161), 111th Congress (September 28, 2010) (testimony of Eric L. Lewis, Esq.),

[163] Ibid.

[164] American Center for Democracy,

[165] Economic Warfare Institute,

Categories: Terrorist Financing, U.S. Policy

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