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Bush's Best Friends Are Financing The War
For the other side, that is:

CAIRO, Egypt -- Private Saudi citizens are giving millions of dollars to Sunni insurgents in Iraq and much of the money is used to buy weapons, including shoulder fired anti-aircraft missiles, according to key Iraqi officials and others familiar with the flow of cash.

Saudi government officials deny that any money from their country is being sent to Iraqis fighting the government and the U.S.-led coalition.

But the U.S. Iraq Study Group report said Saudis are a source of funding for Sunni Arab insurgents. Several truck drivers interviewed by The Associated Press described carrying boxes of cash from Saudi Arabia into Iraq, money they said was headed for insurgents.

Two high-ranking Iraqi officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the issue's sensitivity, told the AP most of the Saudi money comes from private donations, called zakat, collected for Islamic causes and charities.

Some Saudis appear to know the money is headed to Iraq's insurgents, but others merely give it to clerics who channel it to anti-coalition forces, the officials said.

In one recent case, an Iraqi official said $25 million in Saudi money went to a top Iraqi Sunni cleric and was used to buy weapons, including Strela, a Russian shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missile. The missiles were purchased from someone in Romania, apparently through the black market, he said.

Overall, the Iraqi officials said, money has been pouring into Iraq from oil-rich Saudi Arabia, a Sunni bastion, since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq toppled the Sunni-controlled regime of Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Saudi officials vehemently deny their country is a major source of financial support for the insurgents.

"There isn't any organized terror finance, and we will not permit any such unorganized acts," said Brig. Gen. Mansour al-Turki, a spokesman for the Saudi Interior Ministry. About a year ago the Saudi government set up a unit to track any "suspicious financial operations," he said.

But the Iraq Study Group said "funding for the Sunni insurgency comes from private individuals within Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states."

Here's a picture of our president with his Saudi Arabian girlfriend, Crown Prince Abdullah.

Posted by aalkon at January 12, 2007 9:34 AM

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Comments

These friends of his didn't seem so happy about it when we told them Saddam was going to be invaded. And they can't be that happy having lost their buffer against Persian hordes.

Anybuddy heard from Bandar lately? Me neither.

Posted by: Crid at January 12, 2007 7:46 AM

I'm pretty sure George is the girlfriend in that relationship.

And here I thought we'd all be talking about the Condi Rice / Barbara Boxer incident today!

Posted by: eric at January 12, 2007 8:46 AM

> George is the girlfriend

Bush is what it is... All A-bout. Always. He makes the children sick; he makes teh crops fail; he makes the baby Jesus cry. Wild animals would never be mean except that George Bush taught them to. When it rains on your picnic, it's because of what George Bush did. He's at the concentric center of everything that's wrong with life on this planet.

When we fall asleep at night, as we dream under starlight, as we wake in the dewy dawn, we must never, ever think about anything but George W. Bush of Texas. Ever.

Posted by: Crid at January 12, 2007 9:14 AM

Why do you think it's that way, Crid? Must be a reason for it...

Posted by: Rojak at January 12, 2007 9:51 AM

Terribly convenient, ain't it?

Even during the fabulous 1975 Tour of the Americas, I didn't obsess over the Rolling Stones with the teenage enthusiasm some people bring to their hatred of Dubya.

The Stones weren't worth caring about that much, and neither is Bush.

Posted by: Crid at January 12, 2007 10:26 AM

What a load of happy horseshit that is Crid.

History is made by individuals, and history is being made at this moment. When even the Republican Senators now make comments like "the worst blunder since Vietnam" it is time to address the root of the problem.

Posted by: eric at January 12, 2007 10:37 AM

Why do you think it's that way, Crid? Must be a reason for it...

Daddy issues.

When even the Republican Senators now make comments like "the worst blunder since Vietnam" it is time to address the root of the problem.

I doubt you'd even be able to get into their houses, let alone pour out their liquor cabinets.

Posted by: Jim Treacher at January 12, 2007 10:58 AM

Crid spouting happy horseshit? Perish the thought. In this case, at least. Bush is not the reason that there wealthy Saudis have money to throw at Sunni insurgents, nor is he the reason they're happy to do so. The world's thirst for oil is the cause for the former, and the particularly fundamentalist version of Sunni Islamic thought (Wahabism) that dominates Saudi Arabia is the cause of the latter. The ninny who occupies the White House is ancillary to these forces. Of course, W's geopolitical ignorance has something to do with why we're in harms way there. But he ain't the reason why Saudis are funding Sunni terrorists; they've been doing that for a long time.

Posted by: justin case at January 12, 2007 11:10 AM

The happy horshit comment was in regards to the "Bush isn't worth caring about" comment, but you are right to get us back on subject.

Posted by: eric at January 12, 2007 11:38 AM

What are you gonna do? What are you gonna do when that man is out of the White House? It's going to be terribly disappointing for you when flowers still wilt, when children still break bones in horseplay, and dogs still run away from home.

Dubya's given a much bigger challenge to the Saudi's then Poppy Bush ever did; the lefties newfound love for Scowcroft is inexplicable.

Caring about THAT MUCH, Eric. Why you always cheating context?

Posted by: Crid at January 12, 2007 11:46 AM

Dubya's given a much bigger challenge to the Saudi's then Poppy Bush ever did

But it looks as though he's given a big present to Iran in the process. Is this a better deal for us? (This question is not rhetorical.)

Posted by: justin case at January 12, 2007 12:07 PM

Tough one to call. I'm glad to be part of the generation that tried something new. As mentinoed earlier, Bandar isn't stopping by the Pentagon for lunchtime handball with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs any more. Was Iran ever going to go well?

Posted by: Crid at January 12, 2007 12:31 PM

U.S. presidents kissing Saudi butt didn't begin with Bush and it wont end with Bush. Saudi butt kissing is a universal aspect of the U.S. presidency not of any one individual.

Posted by: winston at January 12, 2007 5:31 PM

"was iran ever going to go well"

Given that every administration since the hostage crisis has refused any sort of talks or negotiations with Iran, I would have to say no.

But then again working for peace is nowhere near as profitable as perpetuating war.

Posted by: lujlp at January 13, 2007 2:51 AM

> refused any sort of talks or negotiations

What are you will to trade?

> nowhere near as profitable

Oh, stop it.

Posted by: Crid at January 13, 2007 6:02 AM

> nowhere near as profitable

I gotta know, are you one of the guys who complained about the (smaller) percentage of un-armoured Humvees?

Posted by: Crid at January 13, 2007 6:03 AM

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