New Potential Arises with Three Key Investigations At Once
New political possibilities lie in the fact that three related exposures of British-Saudi policies have been released at once: The Chilcot Report in the U.K.; the U.S. House Financial Services Committee report on HSBC's crimes; and now the "28 Pages," the last chapter of the 2002 Joint Congressional Inquiry on the Saudis and the 9/11 attacks.
If a full new investigation of Saudi and British policies toward Islamic extremism were to be launched as soon as Congress returns, the effect on Americans' understanding about those powers could rival the effect of the 1933 Pecora Commission hearings on the public view of Wall Street "banksters."
The House HSBC report has just begun to show how the British Treasury protected the London bank HSBC when it had been proven to be money-laundering for drug mafias and terror groups in collaboration with a Saudi bank. The Chilcot Report, whose release is politically destroying Tony Blair, and opened the history of how Blair took the Bush White House to war with Iraq which has unleashed disasters throughout the Mideast.
The "28 Pages" of the Joint Congressional 9/11 Inquiry, now declassified and released, show the Saudis protecting al-Qaeda from the United States in ways not revealed before. The final six pages of the 28 are largely previously unknown; they show that a New York FBI investigator called Saudi Arabia "useless and obstructionist," and it regularly lied to U.S. investigators about al-Qaeda terrorists. It outright refused assistance to the United States in the Summer of 2001, when U.S. officials suspected that al-Qaeda might be planning "an operation" in the United States.
"There is a May 1996 memo from the Counterterrorist Center [redaction] stating that the Saudis stopped providing background information or other assistance on bin Laden, because bin Laden had too much information about official Saudi dealings with Islamic extremists in the 1980s."
That final section also includes the finding that
"prior to September 11, the FBI apparently did not focus investigative resources on [redacted] Saudi nationals in the United States due to Saudi Arabia's status as an American 'ally'." One "high-level [redacted] officer" is quoted, when asked how 9/11 might have been prevented, "with Saudi cooperation."
There is also "previously unknown information about the actions of a powerful figure in the Saudi royal family," to quote the Guardian. According to the report, at least $15,000 went directly from Prince Bandar's bank account in Washington to the family of a Saudi expatriate suspected of being a Saudi government spy, who organized a support network in California for two of the 9/11 hijackers while they were living in San Diego in the year before the attacks.
The report also reveals that a phone log maintained by Abu Zubaydah, a senior al-Qaeda operative captured in 2002 in Pakistan, included the unlisted phone number for a Colorado company that managed affairs at Prince Bandar's home in the mountain resort city of Aspen, as well as the phone number for a bodyguard who worked under Bandar at the Saudi embassy.
Back behind these exposures lies the 1982 British-Saudi "Al-Yamamah" deal, providing Prince Bandar and other top Saudis essentially unlimited "slush funds" for covert destabilizations of nations, including by terrorism.