National Security Desk / Jul. 18, 2016

28 Pages: Saudi Arabia and 9/11

The shaky U.S.-Saudi alliance took another hit Friday.

The shaky U.S.-Saudi alliance took another hit Friday as Congress released 28 pages of previously classified information that implicates the Saudi government in the 9/11 attacks. Several government officials, including at least two in the Saudi intelligence apparatus, communicated with and/or assisted the hijackers. There were financial connections, as well, including some to the royal family itself.

However, the report failed to amalgamate two very opposing viewpoints. Some, like Rep. Adam Schiff, argue: “The Intelligence Community and the 9/11 Commission, which followed the Joint Inquiry that produced these so-called 28 pages, investigated the questions they raised and was never able to find sufficient evidence to support them.” But others, like Sen. Richard Blumenthal, say the allegations should not be taken lightly: “While the pages do not reach a conclusion regarding Saudi involvement in the 9/11 attacks, they provide more than enough evidence to raise serious concerns.”

Indeed. As Paul Sperry writes, “[T]he Saudi government’s ties to the hijackers and other al Qaeda suspects were so extensive that the FBI’s Washington field office created a special squad to investigate the Saudi angle. But this special focus on Saudi Arabia occurred belatedly, only after the 9/11 attacks, ‘due to Saudi Arabia’s status as an American "ally.”’ Astoundingly, investigative resources were not dedicated to Saudi involvement in financing and supporting terrorism prior to 9/11.“ Sperry summarily believes, "Yes, the Saudi government helped the 9/11 terrorists.” Saudi Arabia — erroneously, it would appear — claims it didn’t. About the only conclusion we can glean from Friday’s release is that this issue is nowhere near over.

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