The French Connection er en uforglemmelig krim med Fernando Rey og Gene Hackman i hovedrollene. Den foregår på en tid der Algerie er nær Frankrike og New York er langt borte. Heroinen er det nye betalingsmiddelet. Derav navnet på filmen.

I dag er det global jihad som er the name of the game, og Connection ligger i Saudi-Arabia. Det har den vestlige verden svært vanskelig for å innse, og saudierne gjør alt for at Vesten ikke skal orke å ta et oppgjør. Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.

I en uhyre velskrevet artikkel i worldaffairsjournal.org beskriver Carol E. B. Choksy and Jamsheed K. Choksy både Saudi-Arabias satsing på å spre wahhabisme og global jihad og Vestens unnfallenhet. Det er en luksus Vesten ikke lenger kan koste på seg.

ANNONSE

Når man studerer wahhabismens oppkomst på midten av 1700-tallet, ser man at den er runnen av samme strøm som IS. Det er bare gradsforskjeller. Når derfor «konservative» imamer hevder de kan være bolverk mot IS, bløffer de. Det er riktig at IS nå også truer kongedømmet, men det er en sen erkjennelse hos saudierne, og det får dem ingenlunde til å justere sin religion eller nedtrappe byggingen av moskeer og kultursentra i utlandet. Ei heller får det dem til å slakke på tøylene i hjemlandet. Tvertimot.

saudi.gründer.Abdul_Aziz_Ibn_Saud

Foto: Al Saud (the Saudi royal family) were a minor tribal rulers in Najid in 18th century. Later after winning a series of wars of conquest Al Saud’s leader Abdulaziz established the modern kingdom of Saudi Arabia. King Abdulaziz bin Al Saud started his military and political campaign in 1902 and in between 1902-1932 he unified various, tribes, sheikhdoms, emirates and kingdoms in to one big kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Abdul Aziz bin Saud kept the throne for two decades till he died in 1953.

Saudi-Arabia har lært seg hva Vesten liker å høre. Hvordan vestlendinger kan smigres. De har holdt på så lenge at Vesten ikke tør å bryte med denne etiketten omfangsformen har resultert i.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not have problems with other creeds or sects,” then Prince (now King) Salman claimed in a conversation with outgoing US Ambassador James C. Oberwetter in March 2007. Salman went on to stress: “Terrorism and fanaticism have done more harm to Islam than anything else.” This is the party line of the House of Saud—that, in the words of its last king, Abdullah, Saudi Arabia stands “in the face of those trying to hijack Islam and present it to the world as a religion of extremism, hatred, and terrorism.” Such statements are meant to reassure, but they ring hollow in the face of evidence that the roots and spread of violent Sunni jihad lead back to Saudi Arabia and its Wahhabi-centered clerical establishment.

Man kan ikke la være å tenke på president Barack Obama som fortsatt hevder at islam ikke har noe med IS å gjøre. Dette er ikke lenger en «feil» hos presidenten, det er en strategisk feilvurdering av første klasse.

Hvis man tror dette er det mye man ikke forstår.

Saudi-Arabia er ikke alene. Jihad som bevegelse omfatter mange land. Men saudierne er dens spydspiss.

The Saudi kingdom’s inseparability from the Wahhabi form of Sunni Islam, first espoused in 1744 and the fundamental creed of Saudi Arabia since its modern founding in 1932, has ensured that fundamentalism shapes domestic and foreign policies. Saudi Arabia is not the only source of resources for jihadism—public and private entities in Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and more recently Turkey have also been linked to collection and transfer of funds supporting terror groups. But the Saudis have been the most persistent source of support for global jihad by spreading Wahhabism abroad to radicalize foreign Muslims and then giving financial support to their violent struggles in countries as far-flung as Afghanistan, Syria, and Libya.

Global jihad drepte redaksjonen i Charlie Hebdo. Al-Qaida-ververe rekrutterte Kouachi-brødrene og al-Qaida på den arabiske halvøy påtok seg æren. Disse jihadistene trives som fisken i vannet i landet som bygger stormoskeer i Europa, blant annet i Sarajevo, hvor imamene sa det var Vesten selv som sto bak for å ramme muslimer.

Man må se på kreftene, intensjonene, pengene og hvordan hjulene griper inn i hverandre. Målene er de samme: jihad.

The Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris in January, and those terrorists’ links to Islamist cells across Europe, show how far these tentacles spread. The killers—the French-born Kouachi brothers of Algerian descent—were radicalized by al-Qaeda operatives living in the city’s 19th Arrondissement, at a local mosque by an al-Qaeda preacher, Farid Benyettou, and even in a French prison by an al-Qaeda recruiter, Djamel Beghal. While incarcerated, Chérif Kouachi met Amedy Coulibaly, a Malian-Frenchman also being groomed by Beghal. The Kouachis eventually launched their attack in the name of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, which is based in Saudi Arabia and Yemen, while Coulibaly, who attacked a Jewish grocery store in Paris the same week, did so in allegiance to the Islamic State, based in Iraq and Syria, to take “vengeance” for alleged insults to Islam. Both al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, trumpeted the attacks. Weapons and ammunition used by the Paris attackers have been traced back to jihadis in Bosnia, where preachers at the King Fahd Mosque in Sarajevo who were trained and funded with Saudi support declare those attacks were staged by the West as an excuse to discriminate against Muslims.

Samme dag som Omar Abdel Hamid el-Hussain angrep Krudttønden og synagogen i København, sverget han troskap til IS. Det var samme dag Ansar al-Sharia offentliggjorde videon av 21 kristne som ble henrettet på stranden i Libya.

On that same day, the Ansar al-Sharia, a Wahhabi group whose spiritual guide is the Arabian preacher Abu al-Baraa al-Azdi (a.k.a. Muhammad Abdullah) and which had recently allied itself to the Islamic State, released images of themselves decapitating 21 men on a Mediterranean beach in Libya for being “people of the cross, followers of the hostile Egyptian [Coptic] church.”

«De som følger korset». Hvilke reaksjoner har dette utløst hos kirkene og kristne ledere i Europa?

Vesten er opptatt av Rauf Badawi som er idømt 1.000 piskeslag. Men Vesten er ikke opptatt av begrunnelsen og at hans forsvarsadvokat er idømt 15 års fengsel. Saudiernes ideologi bygger på det samme som IS: Badawi var en frafallen og forsvareren har drevet subversjon.

To be sure, Saudi Arabia condemned the Paris crimes as un-Islamic and denied any association with the purpose, planning, or execution of the attacks. Yet, just one day later, its Wahhabi-controlled judiciary delivered the first 50 of 1,000 lashes to a blogger—who also was sentenced to 10 years in prison—for “insulting Islam,” the same alleged crime committed by Charlie Hebdo staffers. That blogger was subsequently brought up on a previously dismissed charge of apostasy from Islam, which carries the possibility of capital punishment. The blogger’s attorney, a Saudi human rights monitor who was merely defending a client, received a 15-year prison term as well last year for challenging royal and clerical authority—allegedly for “antagonizing international organizations against the kingdom” and “inciting public opinion against authorities.”

I stedet for å granske disse sammenhengene, hefter Vesten seg ved saudiernes forsikringer om at IS-grusomhetene ikke har noe med islam å gjøre, og at IS truer dem vel så mye.

It is all part of a familiar game in which diplomatic words intended for non-Muslims—shortly before his death in December, King Abdullah denounced the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamic State for “hijacking Islam and presenting it to the world as a religion of hatred”—diverge sharply from actions directed at Muslims worldwide and emanating from the Wahhabi-Saudi alliance. These diplomatic words are also given the lie by claims—said to be recorded in the still-classified portion of the US Congress’s 9/11 report, and more recently echoed by imprisoned al-Qaeda terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui—that Saudi Arabia’s ruling elite distributed millions of dollars to Sunni extremists, including those within the US, in the run-up to the September 11th attacks, under the guise of support for Islamic charities.

Wahhabismen tåler ingen andre

Helt fra begynnelsen har wahhabismen utmerket seg ved en usedvanlig intoleranse og brutalitet. Dens historie minner sterkt om IS’ fremmarsj.

The Wahhabi movement that animates Saudi policy from behind the scenes was founded by Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab (1703–92), a Sunni theologian who called for a return to austere practices supposedly followed by the Salaf, or earliest Muslims, during the 7th century. He regarded images, saints, shrines, communal festivals, and secular lifestyles, with music, dance, and socializing, as distractions from true piety. Thus he rejected all changes since early Islam as bid‘ah, or heretical innovations and idolatry. He composed the “Kitab al-Tawhid” or “Book of God’s Uniqueness,” which became the guiding text for his followers, who consequently speak of themselves as Muwahhidun (total monotheists) or as Salafis (followers of the ways of the first Muslims). So as not to detract from those absolutist ideals, they usually do not even refer to themselves as Wahhabis or followers of Wahhab.

Wahhab’s calls for puritanical reform and his attacks on the tombs of early Muslims led to expulsion from his hometown of Uyaynah, 19 miles northwest of modern-day Riyadh. He found refuge at Diriyah, a city then ruled by Muhammad ibn Saud. There the two leaders established a religio-political pact during the year 1744 under which the Wahhabis aided the king in battle in exchange for imposition of Wahhabism as the official form of Islam. Diriyah, on the outskirts of Riyadh, became the center of Wahhabism; from there missionaries were dispatched to convert other Muslims in Arabia, the Persian Gulf, and Syria to the new sect. Jihad, or holy war, was initiated against Muslims in Arabia who refused to adopt the old Salafi ways as re-prescribed by Wahhab and upheld by King Saud, who was presented as Allah’s chosen monarch to whom all Muslims had to pledge baya, or absolute allegiance, so as not to face annihilation as foes of god.

Madrassas and preachers funded by the House of Saud instilled Wahhabism across the Arabian Peninsula after Saud’s troops gained control of much of the region and established the first Saudi kingdom. Between 1744 and 1818, Wahhabi preachers and fighters embedded their tenets and institutions into Arabian society so deeply that even the return of moderate Sunni ideas to the region when the Ottoman Empire demolished Saudi power did not eradicate extremism. Wahhabism survived and provided the ideological basis for the Saudi return to power as the Emirate of Nejd between 1824 and 1891, with the capital city at Riyadh, and as the third Saudi kingdom starting in 1932.

Da Midtøstens nye nasjoner valgte sekulære løsninger, panarabisme eller sosialisme, eller den spesielle Baath-varianten – oppfattet saudierne det som en trussel. Deres variant var den religiøse, sharia. Som beskytter av de to helligste stedene skulle wahhabisme bli Saudi-Arabias misjon i verden.

Wahhabism served Saud’s descendants in the ruling family as a bulwark against Arab Nationalist rivals like Egypt, Syria, and Iraq, who were turning to the Soviets during the 1960s and 1970s. Faced with that rise of secularism and fueled by oil money, King Faisal ibn Abdulaziz al-Saud (ruled 1964–75) decided the propaganda of Wahhabism, which proclaims the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as the sole rightful defender of Islam, would become the long-term strategy for the monarchy’s survival.

Fordi Vesten ikke forstår eller har oppdaget jihad som drivkraft, forsto den heller ikke Saudi-Arabias motiv for å kaste seg inn i kampen mot sovjeterne i Afghanistan. Det var ikke frigjøring slik Vesten forsto det, det var jihad. Men Vesten så bare at mujahedin ga Sovjet en blodig nese og ignorerte fanatismen som spirte i deres spor.

When Afghanistan, another largely Sunni country nearby, moved from Soviet influence to Soviet control, in 1979, the House of Saud saw an opportunity to project itself as the global defender of Muslims. This view coalesced with the Cold War aims of the US, which saw the Saudi desire to weaponize Islamist ideology as tactically useful in the West’s struggles against the Soviet Union. As later described in testimony before the US Senate Judiciary Committee, and listed on the late King Fahd’s website, Saudi Arabia spent $4 billion per year on mosques, madrassas, preachers, students, and textbooks to spread the Wahhabi creed over the next decades. Thousands of Muslim centers sprang up along Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan and then in Afghanistan itself—training not scholars but jihadis equipped with Wahhabi ideology and American weapons. The madrassas in Arabia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan produced al-Qaeda and the Taliban. The US did not foresee that foreign fighters drawn to the Afghan jihad might carry violence back to their native lands as al-Qaeda affiliates spread across the Middle East, the Balkans, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and South Asia.

Krigen i Afghanistan ble oppfattet som hellig krig, og deres seier som bevis på at jihad var den riktige måten å spre islams herredømme på.

The successful anti-Soviet campaign in Afghanistan came to be seen as divine confirmation of jihad as necessary for Islam’s global ascendance. Wahhabism in turn emerged as the “indispensable ideology”—as noted in the record of the US Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security—not just for the Saudi state but also for groups such as al-Qaeda, which took up the mission to enforce a purified form of Islam upon the world. According to the Saudi monarchy’s official websites, Wahhabi charities and royal trusts, including that of another Saudi ruler, the late King Fahd, spent millions of dollars recruiting students to more than 1,500 mosques, 210 Muslim centers, 202 Islamic colleges, and 2,000 madrassas and on staffing those institutions with nearly 4,000 preachers and missionaries in non-Muslim nations in central, southern, and southeast Asia, as well as in Africa, Europe, and North America. Adherents to Wahhabism used Saudi control of four-fifths of all Islamic publishing houses around the world to spread their fighting words into faraway places.

Noe lignende skjer i dag i Afghanistan. IS-krigere allierer seg med Taliban for å innta Kunduz. Det er ikke, slik Kristian Berg Harpviken og NRK fremstiller det, Taliban som rykker frem fordi folk like gjerne lever under Taliban som Kabul, slik Harpviken formulerte det tirsdag. Det er fordi det er jihad som aldri gir seg.

Ahmed Rashid, en fremtredende ekspert på islamske militante, sier disse krigerne er alliert med Den islamske stat, og at de slår seg sammen med afghanske og pakistanske Taliban-grupper langs grensen mellom Afghanistan og Tajikistan.

– Kampene har endret karakter, sier generalløytnant Murad Ali Murad, nestkommanderende i staben til den afghanske nasjonale hær. Stridene i Badakhstan, i Kunduz, skjer under ledelse av utenlandske krigere. De ønsker å knytte seg til sentralasiatiske terrorister og mafiagrupper. Derfor er Kunduz så viktig for dem.

Jihad i USA

Wahhabismen er også til stede i USA og Europa, selv om det ikke er populært å snakke om det.

Indeed, 80 percent of the 1,200 mosques operating in the US were constructed after 2001, more often than not with Saudi financing. As a result, Wahhabi influence over Islamic institutions in the US was considerable by 2003, according to testimony before the US Senate. Hundreds of publications, published by the Saudi government and its affiliates, and filled with intolerance toward Christians, Jews, and other Americans, had been disseminated across the country by 2006, according to a report by Freedom House, a Washington-based NGO. That report concluded that “the Saudi government propaganda examined reflects a totalitarian ideology of hatred that can incite to violence.” By 2013, 75 percent of North American Islamic centers relied on Wahhabi preachers who promote anti-Western ideas in person and online through their sermons and through the Saudi-produced literature.

Og i Frankrike, der leder for Det muslimske rådet nylig foreslo at de kunne omgjøre 2.500 «tomme» eller lite brukte kirker til moskeer.

Since 2011, between 100 and 150 new mosques are at various stages of planning and construction across France. The Muslim Council of France claims that less assistance for such expansion comes from “foreign organizations,” but US government sources suspect that much of the funding is actually funneled from Saudi sources through difficult-to-track chains of bank accounts and person-to-person cash transfers. In Bosnia, too, Saudi financing has been central since the end of the civil war, in 1995, for construction of new mosques and cultural centers, such as the King Fahd Mosque in Sarajevo. Saudi and Qatari Wahhabi charities controlled  60 percent of mosques in Italy by 2009. In Kazakhstan, the Mecca-based Muslim World League, long associated with disseminating Wahhabism, is funding construction of mosques. The intelligence service of India estimates more than $244 million has been spent by Saudi Wahhabis during the past decade to set up 40 new mosques and four new madrassas and take over hundreds of others across the subcontinent, from Kashmir in the north to Maharashtra in the west and Kerala in the south.

Samtidig preker og rekrutterer predikanter nye følgere til wahhabismen.

Marginalized European Muslim immigrants and their descendants, like the Kouachi brothers, who lived in the blighted banlieues, or French suburbs, have become favorite face-to-face targets of Wahhabi proselytizers and radicalizers, as documented in an extensive report by the Institut Montaigne, a French think tank. The laundering of funds from Saudi and other donors runs through the accounts of mosques to imams who then make distributions to organizations and individuals. Once radicalized in their Western and Asian towns, budding jihadis are sent to organizations like al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the Islamic State—groups which US and EU intelligence services regard as being financed by Saudi Arabian assets and continuing to draw upon the most extreme interpretations of Wahhabism.

Vestlig etterretning vet alt om finansieringen og påvirkningen. Problemet er politisk: politikere og medier som ikke vil vite. Hvis de måtte anerkjenne hvordan det forholdt seg, ville publikum kreve at moskeene ble stengt og imamene utvist. Det våger de ikke.

 Vesten har utkjempet kriger i muslimske land uten å forstå de underliggende drivkreftene og agendaene. Forsøket på å bygge demokrati i Irak var dømt da USA trakk seg ut. Det ville hatt små sjanser selv med amerikansk nærvær. Nå fikk IS nesten fritt spillerom.

I 1991 var Saudi-Arabia allierte med USA i å drive Saddam ut av Kuwait. Men 12 år senere er ikke saudierne like begeistret selv om Saddam ble styrtet. Kongehuset har helt andre agendaer, eller: de ser muligheter som åpner seg og bryr seg katten om USAs målsetninger; demokrati og den slags. Demokrati i Irak vil tvertom være en trussel mot kongedømmet.

When US-led coalition forces moved into Afghanistan and Iraq, in 2001 and 2003 respectively, the conditions had already been laid for them to be battled to the death by local and foreign fighters committed to the Wahhabi ideology. When Western troops withdrew, the ideologues attacked recently installed governments with renewed “substantial and sustained” Saudi support, in the words of Richard Dearlove, former head of MI6, Britain’s foreign intelligence service. The goal seems to be that of ensuring Sunni groups loyal to Wahhabism and allied to Saudi Arabia will control both those nations as well as neighbors wracked by unrest like Pakistan and Syria. Consequently, such countries become training grounds for al-Qaeda–affiliated groups and the Islamic State. Thus, over the past three years, in Yemen, Iraq, Syria, and most recently Lebanon, the Saudi state has been able to utilize jihadis to launch a “proxy Sunni-Shia war” aimed specifically against Iran and its Shiite and Alawite allies, according to US Vice President Joe Biden. Saudi action was initially directed by Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the kingdom’s former ambassador to Washington and ex–intelligence chief, who had warned Dearlove, even prior to 9/11, that “the time is not far off, in the Middle East when it will be literally, ‘God help the Shia.’ More than a billion Sunnis have simply had enough of them.”

Vesten gikk hodeløse inn i Irak og Afghanistan. Nå agerer de like hodeløse på hjemmebane, ved å late som om hjelpen til syriske flyktninger kun handler om humanitet. Andre ser det helt annerledes. Menneskesmuglerne, jihadistene og wahhabist-influerte regimer som Tyrkia og Golf-landene har mange andre motiver. De ser gjerne Vesten svekket. Hvordan er det mulig at Vesten har innlatt seg med disse landene, militært, strategisk, økonomis, og nå også demografisk, uten å spørre: Cui bono? Hvem tjener på det?

Man skulle antatt at en læring ville funnet sted. At det nå var akkumulert nok kunnskap til at denne analysen presenterer ville vært allmenn. I stedet blir IS fremstilt som aparte, makaber og grotesk.

Selv om tusenvis av vestlige har strømmet til jihad, vil vi ikke se at jihad også utspiller seg i våre egne land, og at disse krigerne høyst sannsynlig vil ta med seg krigen hjem.

The full extent of resources that flowed from Saudi Arabia and its Gulf partners to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, and to the Syria-based al-Qaeda affiliate Nusra Front, is difficult to determine. But Biden estimated the illicit resource transfer to jihadis from Saudi Arabia at “hundreds of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of tons of weapons.” In addition to ideology and training, for instance, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is reported to have provided $20,000 in cash directly to the Paris terrorists.

Funds for equipment and fighters also come from private donors and charitable endowments. Lax banking regulations, traditional money-transfer networks, and influential sympathizers on the Arabian Peninsula have been vital to subsidizing Sunni militants in the ongoing conflicts of Iraq and Syria. Fundraising is conducted in public for the most part within the Saudi kingdom by organizers soliciting contributors at dinners and auctions to make zakat (“purified”) donations to jihad. As with officially derived funds, the privately raised monies too are used to train militants who flock to Sunni jihadi-controlled areas of Syria and Iraq from across the world—Canadians, Americans, Europeans, Algerians, Malians, Nigerians, Somali, Kenyans, Israeli Arabs, Chechens, Kazakhs, Afghans, Pakistanis, Indians, Chinese, Malaysians, Indonesians, and even Australians. Those human resources are considerable: More than 11,000 Wahhabi-radicalized foreigners had joined the Syrian jihad by September 2014, with French and British citizens predominating recruits from Europe. It costs on average only $2500 to train each jihadi, fundraisers proudly inform potential donors when urging them to give more. After being bloodied in battle, many jihadis slip back into their native countries, just as one or both Kouachi brothers did after time in Yemen. 

Mønstret er helt tydelig, men du finner det bare ikke våre egne medier. Hører det ikke fra politikerne eller ekspertenes munn:

According to US intelligence officials, in September 2013 “hundreds of millions” of dollars were still flowing to Muslim terrorists from private donors in the Arabian Peninsula. Those monies have impacted not only the Middle East’s ongoing religio-political struggles: Their effect was felt indirectly in the desecration of Sufi Muslim shrines in Timbuktu, Mali, by Ansar Dine militants, just as the Taliban earlier had blown up Buddha statues at Bamiyan, and in the kidnapping of Christian schoolgirls to be wives and sex slaves by Boko Haram in Chibok, Nigeria, copied by the Islamic State with Yazidi women in Sinjar, Iraq, a few months later.

Nettet

Donorer i Saudi og Golfen sprøyter penger inn i jihad og spredning av troen. Jihad har gitt «misjonen» en ny dimensjon:

According to US intelligence officials, in September 2013 “hundreds of millions” of dollars were still flowing to Muslim terrorists from private donors in the Arabian Peninsula. Those monies have impacted not only the Middle East’s ongoing religio-political struggles: Their effect was felt indirectly in the desecration of Sufi Muslim shrines in Timbuktu, Mali, by Ansar Dine militants, just as the Taliban earlier had blown up Buddha statues at Bamiyan, and in the kidnapping of Christian schoolgirls to be wives and sex slaves by Boko Haram in Chibok, Nigeria, copied by the Islamic State with Yazidi women in Sinjar, Iraq, a few months later.

Ved en skillevei

Saudi-Arabia har den senere tid blitt klar over at IS representerer en trussel også mot dem selv. De husker al-Ikhwan-styrkens forsøk på erobre Den store moskeen i Mekka i 1979. Kongedømmet har forsøkt å innføre kontroll med pengestrømmen ut av landet, til såkalt veldedige formål.

Men dette ønsket kolliderer med et annet, som er å dempe forventningen om reform på hjemmebane. Saudi-Arabia har en ung befolkning som er «innlogget» og har forventninger. Også til deltakelse og åpenhet.

Dette skremmer vannet av kongefamilien. I stedet for sosial infrastruktur, har den svart med å styrke de religiøse. Det er som å helle bensin på bålet.

Meanwhile, however, in an attempt to quiet the 2011 Arab Spring’s impact upon discontent within his own kingdom, the recently deceased King Abdullah began allocating $350 million for Islamic institutions and authorities—funds over and above the approximately $100 billion expended during the previous four decades. These expenditures immediately began cushioning the monarchy from internal criticism by reinforcing its ties to Wahhabi leaders, who reciprocated by denouncing all displays of protest against the ruling class as “un-Islamic” and punishable by lashing, imprisonment, or death.

Den sosiale kontrakten

Saudi-Arabia har en egen sosial kontrakt: borgerne nyter en høy levestandard mot å gi avkall på politisk frihet.

The grand bargain made by the House of Saud and the champions of Wahhabism, to provide citizens a high standard of living in return for absolute power in the secular and religious domains, is fraying. Oil revenues—the backbone of Saudi expansionism not just economically but dogmatically—are tumbling, forcing an 18 percent cutback in domestic spending. The kingdom’s increasingly well-educated and globally savvy population, especially the youth who constitute 64 percent, are chafing at their lack of say in governance and resource allocation. Increasing numbers of ordinary Saudis, while not ready to reject a national religion, are ready for one more in line with modern lifestyles.

Ethvert tronskifte er en sjanse til å skifte kurs. Men den nye kongen, kong Salman, ser snarere ut til å stå for mer av det samme: Han var fundraiser for jihad i Afghanistan og Bosnia. Det første han gjorde var å sparke to mildt moderate ministre og innsette en prins som er kjent for sin anti-amerikanske holdning.

Not surprisingly, one of Salman’s first official acts as monarch was to dismiss two influential officials who had opposed Wahhabi clergymen—a reform-minded minister of justice and a relatively tolerant chief of the religious police. And he sought to placate the public by promising financial bonuses rather than political reform. Moreover, by appointing the anti-democratic Muhammad bin Nayef as both crown prince and as interior minister, an office that controls the internal and external intelligence agencies, Salman sent another chilling message. Other recent Saudi cabinet appointees include three descendants of Wahhabism’s founder, who will likely work toward ensuring the kingdom continues its absolutist adherence to this intolerant form of Islam.

Ballen ligger derfor på USAs banehalvdel. USA må kreve en slutt på Saudi-Arabias destruktive politikk.

The issue is less what the Saudis will do than how the US will react to an extremism whose consequences can no longer be denied by strategic considerations. For decades, US administrations have tolerated Saudi Wahhabism and the jihad, instability, and death it has fueled across the globe.

Saudi-Arabia anklager USA for å ha sviktet en gammel alliert. Men mye tyder på at partnerskapet var over for lenge siden.

 

 

Carol E. B. Choksy is an adjunct lecturer on strategic intelligence at Indiana University’s School of Informatics and Computing, as well as the CEO of IRAD Strategic Consulting, Inc. Jamsheed K. Choksy is a distinguished professor at Indiana University and a member of the US National Council on the Humanities at the National Endowment for the Humanities.

 

http://www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/saudi-connection-wahhabism-and-global-jihad

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