19 October 2003

Did the Saudis know about 9/11?

In his book 'Why America Slept: The Failure to Prevent 9/11,' Gerald Posner makes an explosive allegation: Top figures in the Saudi and Pakistani governments had been directly assisting Osama bin Laden for years and knew al-Qaida was going to strike America on Sept. 11. Posner cites two unnamed U.S. government sources, both of whom he asserts are 'in a position to know,' who he said gave him separate, corroborating reports. One source is from the CIA and the other is a senior Bush administration official 'inside the executive branch,' he told Salon in an interview.

According to Posner's account, four Saudi princes and the head of Pakistan's air force were deeply involved with Osama bin Laden for years, some of them meeting with him well after al-Qaida began its terror attacks on U.S. targets overseas in the mid-1990s. The fact that some of the figures were so highly placed makes it hard to dismiss the possibility, if the allegations are true, that the heads of the Saudi and Pakistani governments signed off on the policy.

I suspect this is going to be a huge story if Posner can make his case.

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