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Huffington Post -- Saudi Government Extremism and the U.S. Response

January 26, 2010

Washignton DC- The Huffington Post today published the following op-ed written by commissioners Imam Talal Eid and Nina Shea.


Terrorists are not born, they're made. Extremist indoctrination is the first step in this process, an indisputable fact accepted by security experts and terror cell leaders alike. Administration officials have openly acknowledged this, noting that the growing list of Americans accused of terrorist acts are being inspired by "al-Qaeda and radical ideology."

One such ideology comes from Saudi Arabia and is based on the Saudi government's interpretation of the Hanbali school of Sunni Islam. It has been described as kindling for Osama bin Laden's match by some prominent terrorism experts, though of course the vast majority of those who are exposed to this ideology never go on to commit terrorist acts. Saudi Arabia's role in inspiring terrorists has caused the Obama Administration to designate the country this week as one of 14 countries whose nationals will face enhanced security upon entering the United States. In addition, Saudi Arabia has been on the State Department's religious freedom blacklist for engaging in egregious violations since 2004, yet the U.S. has invoked a national interest waiver on any actions (which could include sanctions) every year since then, in effect, giving Saudi Arabia a free pass.