Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Final Battlefields?

Crown Prince Abdullah is today going to open a "Conference on Islam and Terrorism Today" being held in Riyadh. While this may sound innocuous, when this is set alongside Amir Taheri's column from yesterday's NY Post, you get the feeling that the authorities in Riyadh are really beginning to feel the heat.

The Saudi government is now finding that the blind eye it turned to Islamic terrorism is coming back to haunt them. Taheri quotes an al Qaeda ideologist's book that proclaimed Iraq & Saudi Arabia are the "final battlefields". Today's conference is clearly part of an attempt to promote a less militant version of Islam in Saudi Arabia. Unfortunately for Abdullah some of his own government ministers (especially his half-brother, Nayef) are not in agreement with him.