Wayne Barrett of the Village Voice has an eye-opening story on Rudy Giuliani's bizarre relationship with the royal family of Qatar which is one of the oil-rich microstates in the Persian Gulf where enthusiasm for al Qaeda runs rampant:
Three weeks after 9/11, when the roar of fighter jets still haunted the city's skyline, the emir of gas-rich Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifah al-Thani, toured Ground Zero. Although a member of the emir's own royal family had harbored the man who would later be identified as the mastermind of the attack--a man named Khalid Sheikh Muhammad, often referred to in intelligence circles by his initials, KSM--al-Thani rushed to New York in its aftermath, offering to make a $3 million donation, principally to the families of its victims. Rudy Giuliani, apparently unaware of what the FBI and CIA had long known about Qatari links to Al Qaeda, appeared on CNN with al-Thani that night and vouched for the emir when Larry King asked the mayor: "You are a friend of his, are you not?"
Al-Thani isn't just any old Arab shiek. He is one of the primary founders and largest shareholders in the Arab news network al-Jazeera. We all remember the stories of how George Bush threatened to bomb al-Jazeera headquarters in Qatar over its coverage of the Iraq War.
But it is Giuliani's close relationship with another Qatari shiek, Abdallah bin Khalid al-Thani, minister of Islamic affairs, that is even more bizarre:
The contradictory and stunning reality is that Giuliani Partners, the consulting company that has made Giuliani rich, feasts at the Qatar trough, doing business with the ministry run by the very member of the royal family (Abdallah bin Khalid al-Thani) identified in news and government reports as having concealed KSM--the terrorist mastermind who wired funds from Qatar to his nephew Ramzi Yousef prior to the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, and who also sold the idea of a plane attack on the towers to Osama bin Laden--on his Qatar farm in the mid-1990s.
What's most shocking is that Abdallah al-Thani has been widely accused of helping to spirit KSM out of Qatar in 1996, just as the FBI was closing in on him. Robert Baer, a former CIA supervisor in the region, contends in a 2003 memoir that the emir himself actually sanctioned tipping KSM. The staff of the 9/11 Commission, meanwhile, noted that the FBI and CIA "were reluctant to seek help from the Qatari government" in the arrest of KSM, "fearing that he might be tipped off." When Qatar's emir was finally "asked for his help" in January 1996, Qatari authorities "first reported that KSM was under surveillance," then "asked for an alternative plan that would conceal their aid to Americans," and finally "reported that KSM had disappeared."
I encourage you to read Barrett's entire story.
Haven't Americans had enough of politicians who have overly cozy friendships with the mega-millionaire Arab oil shieks who profess to be our friends in public while they support the terrorists who want to burn our country to the ground in private? Giuliani demonstrated extremely poor judgment by getting into bed with Abduallah al-Thani. I submit that this disqualifies him for the office of President (among many other compelling reasons).
Don't you get the feeling that the wheels are starting to come off the Giuliani campaign?
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