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Better Late than Never: Appellate Court Clears the Way for 9/11 Families to Sue Saudi Arabia

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COMMENT: Two recent items are wor­thy of noting–an appel­late court has cleared the way for fam­i­lies of 9/11 vic­tims to sue Saudi Ara­bia, and the 28 pages redacted from the 9/11 Joint Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee report are once again a topic of pub­lic discussion.

If the plain­tiffs can get access to those 28 pages, things could get very inter­est­ing indeed. 

A point worth not­ing con­cerns the plain­tiffs inter­est in the role of “char­i­ties” in financ­ing the 9/11 attacks. That inves­ti­ga­tion could–conceivably–head toward Mus­lim char­i­ties linked with the Bank al-Taqwa. IF the 9/11 law­suit were to pro­ceed in the direc­tion of Youssef Nada, Bank al-Taqwa the SAAR Net­work, the Safa Trust, and the over­lap­ping Islamic Free Mar­ket Insti­tute , the inves­ti­ga­tion would ensnare some very inter­est­ing indi­vid­u­als and institutions.

Not only would Grover Norquist, Karl Rove and Talat Oth­man come under scrutiny, but the al-Taqwa inves­ti­ga­tion would go back to Fran­cois Genoud, Nada, Achmed Huber and the Under­ground Reich

Sadly, Oper­a­tion Green Quest has remained almost com­pletely buried, ignored by the major media, as well as the so-called “alter­na­tive” media. It has been delib­er­ately eclipsed by the so-called “Truther” move­ment, financed by the very inter­ests that exe­cuted the attacks.

“9/11 Fam­i­lies ‘Ecsta­tic’ They Can Finally Sue Saudi Ara­bia” by By Aaron Kater­sky and Rus­sell Gold­man [ABC News]; Yahoo News; 12/20/2011.

Fam­i­lies of the vic­tims of the Sept. 11 attacks today cel­e­brated a fed­eral court’s rul­ing that allows rel­a­tives of peo­ple who died in the 9/11 ter­ror attacks to sue Saudi Arabia.

Most of the hijack­ers who attacked the World Trade Cen­ter and the Pen­ta­gon in 2001 were from Saudi Ara­bia, and the com­plaint states that much of the fund­ing for the al-Qaeda ter­ror­ists came from Saudi Arabia.

An attempt to Saudi Ara­bia in 2002 was blocked by a fed­eral court rul­ing that said the king­dom had sov­er­eign immu­nity. That rul­ing was reversed Thurs­day by a three-judge fed­eral panel.

“I’m ecsta­tic.... For 12 years we’ve been fight­ing to expose the peo­ple who financed those bas­tards,” said William Doyle, the father of Joseph Doyle, 25, a Cantor-Fitzgerald employee who was killed in the North Tower of the World Trade Center.

“Christ­mas has come early to the 9/11 fam­i­lies. We’re going to have our day in court,” he told ABCNews.com.

The rul­ing struck down an ear­lier deci­sion that found Saudi Ara­bia immune from law­suits. The 2nd U.S. Cir­cuit Court of Appeals said it’s in the “inter­ests of jus­tice” to allow them to proceed.

Fam­i­lies who lost loved ones in the Sept. 11 attacks and insur­ers who lost bil­lions of dol­lars cov­er­ing dam­aged busi­nesses have alleged Saudi Ara­bia bankrolled al-Qaeda, know­ing the money would be used for terrorism.

The law­suit, filed a decade ago by the Philadel­phia firm Cozen O’Connor, accuses the Saudi gov­ern­ment and mem­bers of the royal fam­ily of serv­ing on char­i­ties that financed al-Qaeda operations.

“9/11 Link To Saudi Ara­bia Is Topic Of 28 Redacted Pages In Gov­ern­ment Report; Con­gress­men Push For Release” by Jamie Reno; Inter­na­tional Busi­ness Times; 12/9/2013.

Since ter­ror­ists attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001, vic­tims’ loved ones, injured sur­vivors, and mem­bers of the media have all tried with­out much suc­cess to dis­cover the true nature of the rela­tion­ship between the 19 hijack­ers – 15 of them Saudi nation­als – and the Saudi Ara­bian gov­ern­ment. Many news orga­ni­za­tions reported that some of the ter­ror­ists were linked to the Saudi roy­als and that they even may have received finan­cial sup­port from them as well as from sev­eral mys­te­ri­ous, mon­eyed Saudi men liv­ing in San Diego.

Saudi Ara­bia has repeat­edly denied any con­nec­tion, and nei­ther Pres­i­dent George W. Bush nor Pres­i­dent Obama has been forth­com­ing on this issue.

But ear­lier this year, Reps. Wal­ter B. Jones, R-N.C., and Stephen Lynch, D-Mass., were given access to the 28 redacted pages of the Joint Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee Inquiry (JICI) of 9/11 issued in late 2002, which have been thought to hold some answers about the Saudi con­nec­tion to the attack.

“I was absolutely shocked by what I read,” Jones told Inter­na­tional Busi­ness Times. “What was so sur­pris­ing was that those whom we thought we could trust really dis­ap­pointed me. I can­not go into it any more than that. I had to sign an oath that what I read had to remain con­fi­den­tial. But the infor­ma­tion I read dis­ap­pointed me greatly.”

The pub­lic may soon also get to see these secret doc­u­ments. Last week, Jones and Lynch intro­duced a res­o­lu­tion that urges Pres­i­dent Obama to declas­sify the 28 pages, which were orig­i­nally clas­si­fied by Pres­i­dent George W. Bush. It has never been fully explained why the pages were blacked out, but Pres­i­dent Bush stated in 2003 that releas­ing the pages would vio­late national security.

While nei­ther Jones nor Lynch would say just what is in the doc­u­ment, some of the infor­ma­tion has leaked out over the years.A mul­ti­tude of sources tell IBTimes, and numer­ous press reports over the years in Newsweek, the New York Times, CBS News and other media con­firm, that the 28 pages in fact clearly por­tray that the Saudi gov­ern­ment had at the very least an indi­rect role in sup­port­ing the ter­ror­ists respon­si­ble for the 9/11 attack. In addi­tion, these clas­si­fied pages clar­ify some­what the links between the hijack­ers and at least one Saudi gov­ern­ment worker liv­ing in San Diego.

For­mer Sen. Bob Gra­ham, D-Fla., who chaired the Joint Inquiry in 2002 and has been beat­ing the drum for more dis­clo­sure about 9/11 since then, has never under­stood why the 28 pages were redacted. Gra­ham told IBTimes that based on his involve­ment in the inves­ti­ga­tion and on the now-classified infor­ma­tion in the doc­u­ment that his com­mit­tee pro­duced, he is con­vinced that “the Saudi gov­ern­ment with­out ques­tion was sup­port­ing the hijack­ers who lived in San Diego…. You can’t have 19 peo­ple liv­ing in the United States for, in some cases, almost two years, tak­ing flight lessons and other prepa­ra­tions, with­out some­one pay­ing for it. But I think it goes much broader than that. The agen­cies from CIA and FBI have sup­pressed that infor­ma­tion so Amer­i­can peo­ple don’t have the facts.”

Jones insists that releas­ing the 28 secret pages would not vio­late national security.

“It does not deal with national secu­rity per se; it is more about rela­tion­ships,” he said. “The infor­ma­tion is crit­i­cal to our for­eign pol­icy mov­ing for­ward and should thus be avail­able to the Amer­i­can peo­ple. If the 9/11 hijack­ers had out­side help – par­tic­u­larly from one or more for­eign gov­ern­ments – the press and the pub­lic have a right to know what our gov­ern­ment has or has not done to bring jus­tice to the perpetrators.”

It took Jones six weeks and sev­eral let­ters to the House Intel­li­gence Com­mit­tee before the clas­si­fied pages from the 9/11 report were made avail­able to him. Jones was so stunned by what he saw that he approached Rep. Lynch, ask­ing him to look at the 28 pages as well. He knew that Lynch would be aston­ished by the con­tents of the doc­u­ments and per­haps would join in a bipar­ti­san effort to declas­sify the papers.

“He came back to me about a week ago and told me that he, too, was very shocked by what he read,” Jones said. “I told him we need to join together and put in a res­o­lu­tion and get more mem­bers on both sides of the aisle involved and demand that the White House release this infor­ma­tion to the pub­lic. The Amer­i­can peo­ple have a right to know this information.”

A decade ago, 46 sen­a­tors, led by Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., demanded in a let­ter to Pres­i­dent Bush that he declas­sify the 28 pages.

The let­ter read, in part, “It has been widely reported in the press that the for­eign sources referred to in this por­tion of the Joint Inquiry analy­sis reside pri­mar­ily in Saudi Ara­bia. As a result, the deci­sion to clas­sify this infor­ma­tion sends the wrong mes­sage to the Amer­i­can peo­ple about our nation’s antiter­ror effort and makes it seem as if there will be no penalty for for­eign abet­tors of the hijack­ers. Pro­tect­ing the Saudi regime by elim­i­nat­ing any pub­lic penalty for the sup­port given to ter­ror­ists from within its bor­ders would be a mis­take.... We respect­fully urge you to declas­sify the 28-page sec­tion that deals with for­eign sources of sup­port for the 9/11 hijackers.”

All of the sen­a­tors who signed that let­ter but one, Sen. Sam Brown­back (R-Kansas), were Democrats.

Lynch, who won the Demo­c­ra­tic pri­mary for his con­gres­sional seat on that fate­ful day of Sept. 11, 2001, told IBTimes that he and Jones are in the process of writ­ing a “Dear Col­league” let­ter call­ing on all House mem­bers to read the 28 pages and join their effort.

“Once a mem­ber reads the 28 pages, I think whether they are Demo­c­rat or Repub­li­can they will reach the same con­clu­sion that Wal­ter and I reached, which is that Amer­i­cans have the right to know this infor­ma­tion,” Lynch said. “These doc­u­ments speak for them­selves. We have a sit­u­a­tion where an exten­sive inves­ti­ga­tion was con­ducted, but then the Bush [admin­is­tra­tion] decided for what­ever pur­poses to excise 28 pages from the report. I’m not pass­ing judg­ment. That was a dif­fer­ent time. Maybe there were legit­i­mate rea­sons to keep this clas­si­fied. But that time has long passed.”

Most of the alle­ga­tions of links between the Saudi gov­ern­ment and the 9/11 hijack­ers revolve around two enig­matic Saudi men who lived in San Diego: Omar al-Bayoumi and Osama Bas­nan, both of whom have long since left the United States.

In early 2000, al-Bayoumi, who had pre­vi­ously worked for the Saudi gov­ern­ment in civil avi­a­tion (a part of the Saudi defense depart­ment), invited two of the hijack­ers, Khalid Almi­hd­har and Nawaf Alhazmi, to San Diego from Los Ange­les. He told author­i­ties he met the two men by chance when he sat next to them at a restaurant.

Newsweek reported in 2002 that al-Bayoumi’s invi­ta­tion was extended on the same day that he vis­ited the Saudi Con­sulate in Los Ange­les for a pri­vate meeting.

Al-Bayoumi arranged for the two future hijack­ers to live in an apart­ment and paid $1,500 to cover their first two months of rent. Al-Bayoumi was briefly inter­viewed in Britain but was never brought back to the United States for questioning.

As for Bas­nan, Newsweek reported that he received monthly checks for sev­eral years total­ing as much as $73,000 from the Saudi ambas­sador to the United States, Prince Ban­dar, and his wife, Princess Haifa Faisal. Although the checks were sent to pay for thy­roid surgery for Basnan’s wife, Majeda Dweikat, Dweikat signed many of the checks over to al-Bayoumi’s wife, Manal Bajadr. This money allegedly made its way into the hands of hijack­ers, accord­ing to the 9/11 report.

Despite all this, Bas­nan was ulti­mately allowed to return to Saudi Ara­bia, and Dweikat was deported to Jordan.

0Sources and numer­ous press reports also sug­gest that the 28 pages include more infor­ma­tion about Abdus­sat­tar Shaikh, an FBI asset in San Diego who Newsweek reported was friends with al-Bayoumi and invited two of the San Diego-based hijack­ers to live in his house.

Shaikh was not allowed by the FBI or the Bush admin­is­tra­tion to tes­tify before the 9/11 Com­mis­sion or the JICI.

Gra­ham notes that there was a sig­nif­i­cant 9/11 inves­ti­ga­tion in Sara­sota, Fla., which also sug­gests a con­nec­tion between the hijack­ers and the Saudi gov­ern­ment that most Amer­i­cans don’t know about.

The inves­ti­ga­tion, which occurred in 2002, focused on Saudi mil­lion­aire Abdu­laziz al-Hijji and his wife, Anoud, whose upscale home was owned by Anoud al-Hijji’s father, Esam Ghaz­zawi, an adviser to Prince Fahd bin Salman bin Abdu­laziz al-Saud, the nephew of Saudi King Fahd.

The al-Hijji fam­ily report­edly moved out of their Sara­sota house and left the coun­try abruptly in the weeks before 9/11, leav­ing behind three lux­ury cars and per­sonal belong­ings includ­ing cloth­ing, fur­ni­ture and fresh food. They also left the swimming-pool water circulating.

Numer­ous news reports in Florida have said that the gated community’s vis­i­tor logs and pho­tos of license tags showed that vehi­cles dri­ven by sev­eral of the future 9/11 hijack­ers had vis­ited the al-Hijji home.

Gra­ham said that like the 28 pages in the 9/11 inquiry, the Sara­sota case is being “cov­ered up” by U.S. intel­li­gence. Gra­ham has been fight­ing to get the FBI to release the details of this inves­ti­ga­tion with Free­dom of Infor­ma­tion Act (FOIA) requests and lit­i­ga­tion. But so far the bureau has stalled and stonewalled, he said.

Lynch said he didn’t know how the Obama admin­is­tra­tion would respond to the con­gres­sional res­o­lu­tion urg­ing declas­si­fi­ca­tion, if it passes the House and Senate.

“But if we raise the issue, and get enough mem­bers to read it, we think we can get the cur­rent admin­is­tra­tion to revisit this issue. I am very opti­mistic,” he said. “I’ve talked to some of my Demo­c­ra­tic mem­bers already, and there has been recep­tiv­ity there. They have agreed to look at it.”


5 comments for “Better Late than Never: Appellate Court Clears the Way for 9/11 Families to Sue Saudi Arabia”

  1. H.Res.428 — Urg­ing the pres­i­dent to release infor­ma­tion regard­ing the Sep­tem­ber 11, 2001, ter­ror­ist attacks upon the United States.
    113th Con­gress (2013–2014)


    Posted by Stu Kallio | December 22, 2013, 7:34 pm
  2. Posted by Stu Kallio | December 22, 2013, 11:51 pm
  3. Saudi-Sized Cracks in the 9/11 Wall of Silence
    By Russ Baker on Dec 19, 2013


    Posted by Stu Kallio | December 22, 2013, 11:56 pm
  4. http://www.thecuttingedgenews.com/index.php?article=82746&pageid=37&pagename=Page+One

    Inside the Saudi 9/11 coverup
    Paul Sperry Jan­u­ary 7th 2014
    NY Post

    Twin Tow­ers 9/11

    After the 9/11 attacks, the pub­lic was told al Qaeda acted alone, with no state spon­sors. But the White House never let it see an entire sec­tion of Con­gress’ inves­tiga­tive report on 9/11 deal­ing with “spe­cific sources of for­eign sup­port” for the 19 hijack­ers, 15 of whom were Saudi nationals.

    It was kept secret and remains so today.

    Pres­i­dent Bush inex­plic­a­bly cen­sored 28 full pages of the 800-page report. Text isn’t just blacked-out here and there in this critical-yet-missing mid­dle sec­tion. The pages are com­pletely blank, except for dot­ted lines where an esti­mated 7,200 words once stood (this story by com­par­i­son is about 1,000 words).

    A pair of law­mak­ers who recently read the redacted por­tion say they are “absolutely shocked” at the level of for­eign state involve­ment in the attacks.

    Reps. Wal­ter Jones (R-NC) and Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) can’t reveal the nation iden­ti­fied by it with­out vio­lat­ing fed­eral law. So they’ve pro­posed Con­gress pass a res­o­lu­tion ask­ing Pres­i­dent Obama to declas­sify the entire 2002 report, “Joint Inquiry Into Intel­li­gence Com­mu­nity Activ­i­ties Before and After the Ter­ror­ist Attacks of Sep­tem­ber 11, 2001.”

    Some infor­ma­tion already has leaked from the clas­si­fied sec­tion, which is based on both CIA and FBI doc­u­ments, and it points back to Saudi Ara­bia, a pre­sumed ally.

    The Saudis deny any role in 9/11, but the CIA in one memo report­edly found “incon­tro­vert­ible evi­dence” that Saudi gov­ern­ment offi­cials — not just wealthy Saudi hard­lin­ers, but high-level diplo­mats and intel­li­gence offi­cers employed by the king­dom — helped the hijack­ers both finan­cially and logis­ti­cally. The intel­li­gence files cited in the report directly impli­cate the Saudi embassy in Wash­ing­ton and con­sulate in Los Ange­les in the attacks, mak­ing 9/11 not just an act of ter­ror­ism, but an act of war. The find­ings, if con­firmed, would back up open-source report­ing show­ing the hijack­ers had, at a min­i­mum, ties to sev­eral Saudi offi­cials and agents while they were prepar­ing for their attacks inside the United States. In fact, they got help from Saudi VIPs from coast to coast:

    LOS ANGELES: Saudi con­sulate offi­cial Fahad al-Thumairy allegedly arranged for an advance team to receive two of the Saudi hijack­ers — Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi — as they arrived at LAX in 2000. One of the advance men, Omar al-Bayoumi, a sus­pected Saudi intel­li­gence agent, left the LA con­sulate and met the hijack­ers at a local restau­rant. (Bay­oumi left the United States two months before the attacks, while Thu­mairy was deported back to Saudi Ara­bia after 9/11.)

    SAN DIEGO: Bay­oumi and another sus­pected Saudi agent, Osama Bass­nan, set up essen­tially a for­ward oper­at­ing base in San Diego for the hijack­ers after leav­ing LA. They were pro­vided rooms, rent and phones, as well as pri­vate meet­ings with an Amer­i­can al Qaeda cleric who would later become noto­ri­ous, Anwar al-Awlaki, at a Saudi-funded mosque he ran in a nearby sub­urb. They were also feted at a wel­com­ing party. (Bass­nan also fled the United States just before the attacks.)

    WASHINGTON: Then-Saudi Ambas­sador Prince Ban­dar and his wife sent checks total­ing some $130,000 to Bass­nan while he was han­dling the hijack­ers. Though the Ban­dars claim the checks were “wel­fare” for Bassnan’s sup­pos­edly ill wife, the money nonethe­less made its way into the hijack­ers’ hands.

    Other al Qaeda fund­ing was traced back to Ban­dar and his embassy — so much so that by 2004 Riggs Bank of Wash­ing­ton had dropped the Saudis as a client.

    The next year, as a num­ber of embassy employ­ees popped up in ter­ror probes, Riyadh recalled Bandar.

    “Our inves­ti­ga­tions con­tributed to the ambassador’s depar­ture,” an inves­ti­ga­tor who worked with the Joint Ter­ror­ism Task Force in Wash­ing­ton told me, though Ban­dar says he left for “per­sonal reasons.”

    FALLS CHURCH, VA.: In 2001, Awlaki and the San Diego hijack­ers turned up together again — this time at the Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Cen­ter, a Pentagon-area mosque built with funds from the Saudi Embassy. Awlaki was recruited 3,000 miles away to head the mosque. As its imam, Awlaki helped the hijack­ers, who showed up at his doorstep as if on cue. He tasked a han­dler to help them acquire apart­ments and IDs before they attacked the Pentagon.

    Awlaki worked closely with the Saudi Embassy. He lec­tured at a Saudi Islamic think tank in Mer­ri­field, Va., chaired by Ban­dar. Saudi travel itin­er­ary doc­u­ments I’ve obtained show he also served as the ­offi­cial imam on Saudi Embassy-sponsored trips to Mecca and tours of Saudi holy sites.

    Most sus­pi­ciously, though, Awlaki fled the United States on a Saudi jet about a year after 9/11.

    As I first reported in my book, “Infil­tra­tion,” quot­ing from clas­si­fied US doc­u­ments, the Saudi-sponsored cleric was briefly detained at JFK before being released into the cus­tody of a “Saudi rep­re­sen­ta­tive.” A fed­eral war­rant for Awlaki’s arrest had mys­te­ri­ously been with­drawn the pre­vi­ous day. A US drone killed Awlaki in Yemen in 2011.

    HERNDON, VA.: On the eve of the attacks, top Saudi gov­ern­ment offi­cial Saleh Hus­sayen checked into the same Mar­riott Res­i­dence Inn near Dulles Air­port as three of the Saudi hijack­ers who tar­geted the Pen­ta­gon. Hus­sayen had left a nearby hotel to move into the hijack­ers’ hotel. Did he meet with them? The FBI never found out. They let him go after he “feigned a seizure,” one agent recalled. (Hussayen’s name doesn’t appear in the sep­a­rate 9/11 Com­mis­sion Report, which clears the Saudis.)

    SARASOTA, FLA.: 9/11 ring­leader Mohamed Atta and other hijack­ers vis­ited a home owned by Esam Ghaz­zawi, a Saudi adviser to the nephew of King Fahd. FBI agents inves­ti­gat­ing the con­nec­tion in 2002 found that vis­i­tor logs for the gated com­mu­nity and pho­tos of license tags matched vehi­cles dri­ven by the hijack­ers. Just two weeks before the 9/11 attacks, the Saudi lux­ury home was aban­doned. Three cars, includ­ing a new Chrysler PT Cruiser, were left in the dri­ve­way. Inside, opu­lent fur­ni­ture was untouched.

    Demo­c­rat Bob Gra­ham, the for­mer Florida sen­a­tor who chaired the Joint Inquiry, has asked the FBI for the Sara­sota case files, but can’t get a sin­gle, even heav­ily redacted, page released. He says it’s a “coverup.”

    Is the fed­eral gov­ern­ment pro­tect­ing the Saudis? Case agents tell me they were repeat­edly called off pur­su­ing 9/11 leads back to the Saudi Embassy, which had curi­ous sway over White House and FBI responses to the attacks.

    Just days after Bush met with the Saudi ambas­sador in the White House, the FBI evac­u­ated from the United States dozens of Saudi offi­cials, as well as Osama bin Laden fam­ily mem­bers. Ban­dar made the request for escorts directly to FBI head­quar­ters on Sept. 13, 2001 — just hours after he met with the pres­i­dent. The two old fam­ily friends shared cig­ars on the Tru­man Bal­cony while dis­cussing the attacks.

    Bill Doyle, who lost his son in the World Trade Cen­ter attacks and heads the Coali­tion of 9/11 Fam­i­lies, calls the sup­pres­sion of Saudi evi­dence a “coverup beyond belief.” Last week, he sent out an e-mail to rel­a­tives urg­ing them to phone their rep­re­sen­ta­tives in Con­gress to sup­port the res­o­lu­tion and read for them­selves the cen­sored 28 pages.

    Aston­ish­ing as that sounds, few law­mak­ers in fact have both­ered to read the clas­si­fied sec­tion of arguably the most impor­tant inves­ti­ga­tion in US history.

    Granted, it’s not easy to do. It took a month­long letter-writing cam­paign by Jones and Lynch to con­vince the House intel­li­gence panel to give them access to the material.

    But it’s crit­i­cal they take the time to read it and pres­sure the White House to let all Amer­i­cans read it. This isn’t water under the bridge. The infor­ma­tion is still rel­e­vant ­today. Pur­su­ing leads fur­ther, get­ting to the bot­tom of the for­eign sup­port, could help head off another 9/11.

    As the frus­trated Joint Inquiry authors warned, in an over­looked adden­dum to their heav­ily redacted 2002 report, “State-sponsored ter­ror­ism sub­stan­tially increases the like­li­hood of suc­cess­ful and more ­lethal attacks within the United States.”

    Their find­ings must be released, even if they for­ever change US-Saudi rela­tions. If an oil-rich for­eign power was capa­ble of orches­trat­ing simul­ta­ne­ous bulls-eye hits on our cen­ters of com­merce and defense a dozen years ago, it may be able to pull off sim­i­larly dev­as­tat­ing attacks today.

    Mem­bers of Con­gress reluc­tant to read the full report ought to remem­ber that the 9/11 assault missed its fourth tar­get: them.

    Paul Sperry is a Hoover Insti­tu­tion media fel­low and author of “Infil­tra­tion” and “Mus­lim Mafia.”

    Posted by Vanfield | January 8, 2014, 11:57 am
  5. It’s worth not­ing that the 9/11 vic­tims’ fam­i­lies who won the right to sue the gov­ern­ment of Saudi Ara­bia over its role in the 9/11 plot lost that right last month

    The Inde­pen­dent
    US judge rules 9/11 vic­tims’ fam­i­lies can­not sue Saudi Ara­bia over alleged links to ter­ror attack
    15 of the 9/11 attack­ers came from Saudi Arabia

    Rose Troup Buchanan
    Tues­day 6 Octo­ber 2015

    A US judge has told the fam­i­lies of those killed in the 9/11 ter­ror attacks they can­not sue Saudi Ara­bia over claims the coun­try helped Al Qaeda carry out the atrocity.

    Man­hat­tan Dis­trict Judge George Daniels said that because Saudi Ara­bia enjoys sov­er­eign immu­nity, which means a state can­not com­mit a legal wrong and there­fore can’t be pros­e­cuted in either crim­i­nal or civil cases, any attempt to sue the king­dom would be “futile”.

    He said that, despite the best efforts of fam­i­lies to pro­vide addi­tional evi­dence against the coun­try, their claims would not “strip defen­dants of sov­er­eign immunity.”

    “The alle­ga­tions in the com­plaint alone do not pro­vide this court with a basis to assert juris­dic­tion over defen­dants,” Daniels wrote on Tuesday.

    Fam­i­lies, as well as insur­ers that cov­ered losses from the build­ings and local busi­nesses, had secured tes­ti­mony from Zacarias Mous­saoui, a for­mer al-Qaeda oper­a­tive impris­oned for his actions.

    But this effort proved fruit­less as Judge Daniels refused to con­sider the case in Manhattan.

    Lawyers from both par­ties declined to on com­ment on the situation.


    In the years fol­low­ing the tragedy, civil action against Saudi Ara­bia has pro­ceeded in fits and starts.

    So that’s pretty unfortunate.

    And in other inter­na­tional legal lia­bil­ity news...:

    The Wash­ing­ton Post
    If you keep say­ing Saudi Ara­bia is like ISIS, you might get sued

    By Adam Tay­lor
    Novem­ber 26, 2015

    Author­i­ties in Saudi Ara­bia have long been annoyed that every­one keeps sug­gest­ing they are any­thing like the Islamic State. Sure, they say, per­haps some of the laws on the books may look sim­i­lar to the pun­ish­ments in the extrem­ist orga­ni­za­tion, but the Saudi king­dom is a sov­er­eign state that abides by the rule of law and uses these pun­ish­ments with discretion.

    Now, reports in the Saudi press sug­gest that author­i­ties have a new tac­tic for those who com­pare them to the Islamic State: tak­ing them to court. Accord­ing to a report in pro-government news­pa­per Al Riyadh, the Saudi jus­tice min­istry is plan­ning to sue a Twit­ter user who sug­gested that a death sen­tence recently handed out to a Pales­tin­ian artist for apos­tasy was “ISIS-like.”

    “Ques­tion­ing the fair­ness of the courts is to ques­tion the jus­tice of the King­dom and its judi­cial sys­tem based on Islamic law, which guar­an­tees rights and ensures human dig­nity,” a source in the jus­tice min­istry told the news­pa­per, accord­ing to a trans­la­tion by Reuters. The min­istry would not hes­i­tate to sue “any media that slan­dered the reli­gious judi­ciary of the King­dom,” the source added.

    It is unclear who the Twit­ter user in ques­tion is, though his or her com­ments would have referred to the case of Ashraf Fayadh. Accord­ing to Human Rights Watch, doc­u­ments show that Fayadh was inves­ti­gated for blas­phemy, spread­ing athe­ism and hav­ing an illicit rela­tion­ship with women, based on pic­tures found on his phone. After ini­tially being sen­tenced to 800 lashes and four years in prison, he was retried and on Nov. 17 was sen­tenced to death.


    How­ever, the com­par­i­son to the Islamic State appears to be a par­tic­u­lar bone of con­tention for the Saudi king­dom. Speak­ing to NBC News ear­lier this year, Inte­rior Min­istry spokesman Maj. Gen. Man­sour al-Turki jus­ti­fied the use of cap­i­tal pun­ish­ments such as behead­ings in the king­dom by say­ing the country’s Shariah-based legal sys­tem ensures fair­ness. “ISIS has no legit­i­mate way to decide to decide to kill peo­ple,” Al-Turki said, adding that “the dif­fer­ence is clear.“

    “ISIS has no legit­i­mate way to decide to decide to kill people...the dif­fer­ence is clear.“
    Yep, the dif­fer­ence between ISIS and Saudi jus­tice sys­tem are like the dif­fer­ence between night and day (dur­ing a per­ma­nent solar eclipse). In ret­ro­spect, it’s dif­fi­cult to imag­ine how any­one could see any­thing but dif­fer­ences between the two. What a new fun game.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | November 30, 2015, 10:28 am

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