This comes only a few days after the Saudi King Abdullah leveled a similar charge against Britain. But the obvious question is: Why are they announcing this now? And for that matter, where is the evidence?
“Ex-Saudi ambassador: Kingdom could have helped U.S. prevent 9/11” (there’s some truth to that headline, though not in a way Bandar would agree with), from CNN:
(CNN) — Saudi Arabia could have helped the United States prevent al Qaeda’s 2001 attacks on New York and Washington if American officials had consulted Saudi authorities in a “credible” way, the kingdom’s former ambassador said in a documentary aired Thursday.
The comments by Prince Bandar bin Sultan are similar to the remarks this week
by Saudi King Abdullah that suggested Britain could have prevented the July 2005 train bombings in London if it had heeded warnings from Riyadh.
Speaking to the Arabic satellite network Al-Arabiya on Thursday, Bandar — now
Abdullah’s national security adviser — said Saudi intelligence was “actively following” most of the September 11, 2001, plotters “with precision.”
“If U.S. security authorities had engaged their Saudi counterparts in a serious and credible manner, in my opinion, we would have avoided what happened,” he said.
Bandar was the Saudi ambassador to Washington for nearly 22 years before he was replaced in 2005. A knowledgeable U.S. official told CNN that Bandar’s comments should be taken “with a grain of salt.”
And Saudi officials say that since 9/11, they have taken steps to ensure charitable donations do not fall into the hands of al Qaeda.
Ensure? No. Not even close.