[Rushtalk] CIA covert ops needs Saudi money

Carl Spitzer lynux at keepandbeararms.com
Thu Feb 4 18:32:27 MST 2016

CIA covert ops needs Saudi money: decades story recurring

        American Herald Tribune| January 30, 2016

For decades, America’s Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has been
relying on its partner’s money in discrete and covert operations; the
money of the Saudi oil-rich kingdom.

Citing several current and former US officials, the New York Times
reported on Jan. 23 that from the very beginning of the US operations
against the Assad government in Syria, Saudi money was largely the

The most recent example of this ‘close bond’ between the US and Saudi
Arabia has came to light in the New York Times article, which reported
that US President Barack Obama knew well the US could rely on Saudi
money when, in 2013, he secretly gave the CIA the green light to arm
militant groups in Syria that were fighting against President Bashar
al-Assad’s government.

Code-named Timber Sycamore, the deal stipulates that the Saudis
contribute both weapons and large sums of money and the CIA takes the
lead in training the rebels on AK-47 assault rifles and tank-destroying

In 2012, the US repeatedly claimed that the Timber Sycamore program was
designed to deliver what it claimed to be ‘non-lethal’ aid, yet months
later, Obama gave his approval for the CIA to begin directly arming and
training the rebels from a base in Jordan, amending the Timber Sycamore
program to allow lethal assistance.

Also, the NY Times report noticeably underlines that such a long
intelligence relationship helps explain why the United States has been
reluctant to openly criticize Saudi Arabia for its human rights abuses,
its treatment of women and its support for the extreme ideology
Wahhabism, that has inspired many of the very terrorist groups.

In the latest violation which brought uproar across the Muslim world in
particular, Saudi Arabia executed a prominent Shia cleric, Sheikh Nimr
al-Nimr, for challenging the oppression of the royal family and
demanding human rights, yet the Obama administration did not publically
condemn the action. Also, another form of Saudi human rights abuses to
which the US has had no clear condemnation is its war on Yemen that has
so far claimed the lives of more than 8,270 people including women and

The CIA covert operations in Syria began in 2013, in which more than
10,000 Wahhabi terrorists were armed, funded and trained. The trainings
were taking place inside Jordan’s territories, and estimates have put
the total cost of the ops at several billion dollars.

“They understand that they have to have us, and we understand that we
have to have them,” said Mike Rogers, the former Republican congressman
who was chairman of the House Intelligence Committee when the CIA
operation began.

The operation was described as part of the so-called “counterterrorism”
program. On this note, a former State Department counterterrorism
adviser and the author of a book on the Islamic State, William McCants
points out “The more that the argument becomes, ‘We need them as a
counterterrorism partner,’ the less persuasive it is. If this is purely
a conversation about counterterrorism cooperation, and if the Saudis are
a big part of the problem in creating terrorism in the first place, then
how persuasive of an argument is it?”

Even though the biggest contributor was Saudi Arabia, yet its allies
also had their share in the game. According to the NY Times, when Obama
signed off on arming the rebels in the spring of 2013, the Qataris,
Turkish and Saudis had been funneling weapons into Syria for more than a
year. The Qataris had even smuggled in shipments of Chinese-made FN-6
shoulder-fired missiles over the border from Turkey.

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