“The King Fahd Academy in Bonn,” according to Newsweek, provoked an uproar two months ago when German television reporters infiltrated its classrooms and videotaped a teacher inciting a holy war ‘in the name of Allah’ and advocating martial-arts training–including the use of crossbows–for young students. Local German officials announced their intention to shut the school down after receiving intelligence reports that Muslim militants from throughout Germany–some of them with suspected terrorist connections–were flocking to the area to send their children to the academy.”
However, the school was not shut down. German authorities, in a sharp example of their awareness of their burgeoning identity as dhimmis, backed off: “But after expressing its own alarm, the German government quickly changed its tune. German Interior Minister Otto Schily recently praised the King Fahd Academy as an ‘important cultural institution’ and denounced the media campaign against the school as a threat to Saudi-German relations.”
What brought about this new flowering of German dhimmitude? “The reason for the change, sources tell NEWSWEEK, was hardball diplomatic pressure from Riyadh. In early October, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder made an official visit to Saudi Arabia where he met with the ailing King Fahd and Crown Prince Abdullah, the country’s de facto ruler. During the trip, Schroeder told Saudi officials that the teaching of hard-core jihadi ideology at the King Fahd Academy ‘must be stopped,’ according to German press reports.
“The Saudis pledged to curb extremism and fire any radical teachers.”
That’s fine, if it’s true. But the Germans caved in the most short-sighted, craven way to another pressure tactic: “But they also quietly passed along another message to Schroeder: that schools attended by the children of German diplomats and businessmen in Saudi Arabia could face similar harassment or even closure if the King Fahd Academy was shut down. As a result, the Schroeder government promised to back off any plans to close the King Fahd Academy for ‘foreign-policy reasons,’ a German official told NEWSWEEK.”
Nor is the school in Bonn a singular case. “The German experience underscores a broader concern among U.S. and other Western intelligence officials about the role that Saudi-funded mosques and schools are playing in the fomenting of radical Islamic ideology. The Saudi government pumps tens of millions of dollars every year into such institutions around the world–including Islamic centers, mosques and schools named for King Fahd in Los Angeles, Moscow, Edinburgh and Malaga, Spain. These schools are known for spreading Wahhabism–the puritanical, hard-core brand of Islam that is the official Saudi state religion and, in its more extreme versions, can be difficult to distinguish from the radical Islamic thought preached by Osama bin Laden and his followers, some intelligence officials say.”
Meanwhile, as the Saudis make promises to crack down on extremism, “a prominent Saudi dissident, Mai Yamani, daughter of that country’s former oil minister, Sheik Ahmed Zaki Yamani, said the Saudis are incapable of true reform. She described the Saudi royal family as ‘deeply connected’ to the country’s hard-core Wahhabi clerics and says the family has given them vast power over the country’s schools and mosques in exchange for religious legitimacy. ‘Not only has the state embraced the hard-liners,’ she said, ‘the hard-liners are the state, fully embedded in its structure.'”
Oh, and as for Germany: in Berlin, “the German capital’s first mosque has just opened and there are plans for a dozen more.” But of course everyone knows that no Islamic radicalism will ever be taught in these places.