Our friends the Saudis

By

Steven Stalinsky of MEMRI writes about the world's fifth richest man, Saudi Billionaire Prince Al—Waleed bin Talal Abd Al—Aziz, who is also a funder of Georgetown and Harvard (Prof. Walt's employer). The Prince has a new Hate TV channel, Al—Resalah, on the way to cable and targeted at American Muslims. He already broadcasts in Saudi Arabia.

There is a lot of information here, about the way the billionaire has pretended to be a great benefactor to influential nonprofits and portrays himself as a believer in tolerance and understanding. But to Saudis and other Muslims, his media preach a different tune.

Writing in the New York Sun, Stalinsky reports:

The Saudi Gazette reported on March 7 that Prince Al—Waleed said his new channel was family—oriented and created to "counteract the misconceptions about Islam" and to project it as a religion of tolerance. The channel's advisory committee is made up of leading Saudi religious figures from the Senior Ulema Commission, Muslim World Congress, and the prince's Kingdom Holding Company, among others.

"Prince Al—Waleed, Avid Supporter of Peace" was the headline of a June article in the Middle East Times International that reported on his generosity, powerful supporters, and investments in America. The article noted the prince's $100,000 donation to New York's Institute for Middle East Peace and Development and a visit to the prince's Riyadh office by dignitaries including the recently appointed treasury secretary, Henry Paulson.

...[Saudi] Al—Resalah's excessive anti—Western content is somewhat astonishing. It is no different from any other hate—filled Saudi TV channel. Take, for example, Sheik Ahmad Al—Kubeisi, who appeared on Al—Resalah on March 15 and said: "When there is no hope for peace, there is no alternative but to resort to the gun. ... The West's conflict with Islam and the Muslims is eternal, a preordained destiny that cannot be avoided until judgment day."

On March 7, the Arab News quoted Prince Al—Waleed as saying he plans to launch an English—language channel for a Western audience. As such, guests will include Muslim Americans — whom the channel aims to influence — such as Salah Sultan, who appeared May 17.... Mr. Sultan praised a Yemeni sheik, Abd al—Majid Al—Zindani, whom the American government has categorized as a specially designated global terrorist for his loyalty to Osama bin Laden and his support of Al Qaeda. Mr. Sultan said of the attacks of September 11, 2001: "It was planned within the U.S., in order to enable the U.S. to control and terrorize the world."

Ed Lasky   6 21 06

Steven Stalinsky of MEMRI writes about the world's fifth richest man, Saudi Billionaire Prince Al—Waleed bin Talal Abd Al—Aziz, who is also a funder of Georgetown and Harvard (Prof. Walt's employer). The Prince has a new Hate TV channel, Al—Resalah, on the way to cable and targeted at American Muslims. He already broadcasts in Saudi Arabia.

There is a lot of information here, about the way the billionaire has pretended to be a great benefactor to influential nonprofits and portrays himself as a believer in tolerance and understanding. But to Saudis and other Muslims, his media preach a different tune.

Writing in the New York Sun, Stalinsky reports:

The Saudi Gazette reported on March 7 that Prince Al—Waleed said his new channel was family—oriented and created to "counteract the misconceptions about Islam" and to project it as a religion of tolerance. The channel's advisory committee is made up of leading Saudi religious figures from the Senior Ulema Commission, Muslim World Congress, and the prince's Kingdom Holding Company, among others.

"Prince Al—Waleed, Avid Supporter of Peace" was the headline of a June article in the Middle East Times International that reported on his generosity, powerful supporters, and investments in America. The article noted the prince's $100,000 donation to New York's Institute for Middle East Peace and Development and a visit to the prince's Riyadh office by dignitaries including the recently appointed treasury secretary, Henry Paulson.

...[Saudi] Al—Resalah's excessive anti—Western content is somewhat astonishing. It is no different from any other hate—filled Saudi TV channel. Take, for example, Sheik Ahmad Al—Kubeisi, who appeared on Al—Resalah on March 15 and said: "When there is no hope for peace, there is no alternative but to resort to the gun. ... The West's conflict with Islam and the Muslims is eternal, a preordained destiny that cannot be avoided until judgment day."

On March 7, the Arab News quoted Prince Al—Waleed as saying he plans to launch an English—language channel for a Western audience. As such, guests will include Muslim Americans — whom the channel aims to influence — such as Salah Sultan, who appeared May 17.... Mr. Sultan praised a Yemeni sheik, Abd al—Majid Al—Zindani, whom the American government has categorized as a specially designated global terrorist for his loyalty to Osama bin Laden and his support of Al Qaeda. Mr. Sultan said of the attacks of September 11, 2001: "It was planned within the U.S., in order to enable the U.S. to control and terrorize the world."

Ed Lasky   6 21 06