The Road to Russian Terror Goes Through Saudi Arabia

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Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Mr. BURTON of Indiana. Mr. Speaker, the U.S. State Department announced today that for the first time Saudi Arabia has been placed on a list of countries who have engaged in "particularly severe violations" of religious freedom, and faces possible sanctions by the United States as a result. Today's action simply underscores a point that I have made time and time again, namely, that the Saudis have been funding for many, many years madrassas where Wahhabism is taught, and Wahhabism is a radical fundamentalist Muslim religion that teaches children to hate Christians and Jews, and to perpetrate violent acts against them.

Wahhabism is also the philosophical and religious underpinning of Saudi-born Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida terrorist network. The simple fact is, wherever you find Wahhabis you will find fertile ground for al-Qaida and its supporters.

The Russian people learned this painful lesson when 30 Chechen rebels took control of a schoolhouse on the first day of school, and killed at least 338 people, half of them children who were going to school for their first day. According to the reports, 10 of those people who were terrorists were Arabs, and we believe that they were probably from Saudi Arabia. In addition, the attacks were reportly planned by Shamil Basayev, a Chechen rebel commander, and financed by Abu Omar as-Seyf, a radical Islamic Wahhabite, who is not surprisingly believed to be associated with al-Qaida.

Mr. Speaker, I commend to my colleagues an article published in the September 20, 2004, edition of the Weekly Standard and written by Stephen Schwartz, entitled "The Road from Riyadh to Beslan." The article lays out quite clearly how the Chechen separatist movement has been hijacked by the Islamist radical Jihadist movement, and makes a compelling case that we must compel Saudi Arabia to cut off funding for global Wahhabism if we are to avoid more 9/11s and Beslans. I urge my colleagues to read this article and I would like to have the text of this article placed into the Congressional Record following my statement.

[From the Weekly Standard, Sept. 20, 2004]
The Road from Riyadh to Beslan
(By Stephen Schwartz)

[article text]

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).