This isn’t surprising, of course…
“Terrorist funding emanating from Saudi Arabia remains a serious concern.” So states a cable prepared for the visit of U.S. Special Envoy Richard Holbrooke to the kingdom earlier this year.
It is one of several that have appeared on the WikiLeaks site to indicate that despite some progress, the flow of cash to extremist groups in Pakistan and Afghanistan from individuals and charities in the Gulf has certainly not been halted.
The cable, written by U.S. Ambassador James B Smith, says that the Saudis are “cooperating more actively than at any previous point to respond to terrorist financing concerns raised by the United States, and to investigate and detain financial facilitators of concern.”
It says the Saudi Ministry of Interior had begun to detain individuals involved in funding networks for groups such as Lashkar e-Tayyiba (LeT), an extremist Pakistani group that carried out the Mumbai attacks in 2008, the Taliban, and Hamas.
But it says donors in Saudi Arabia “continue to constitute a source of funding to Sunni extremist groups worldwide, especially during the Hajj and Ramadan.” And it adds the kingdom remains “almost completely dependent on the CIA to provide analytic support and direction for its counterterrorism operations.”