The Call – inside the global Saudi religious project (Krithika Varagur):

Iran is a useful cover”, said Bruce Riedel, a former CIA station chief and National Security Advisor to four US presidents. “Saudi’s don’t like to be called leader of the counterrevolution in the Arab world, but that’s what they are.”

It must be noted, CGR are responsible for publishing some brilliant investigative reporting as of late. These medium sized “novella” editions by the likes of Bethany McLean, William Wheeler, Erin Banco & others, themed as “original on-site reporting from around the globe”, have delivered excellent journalism on specialized subjects. One of the latest endeavours in the series is the incredibly demanding study into Saudi Dawa or foreign influence operations from Krithika Varagur. It concentrates mostly on three regions among countries most stricken with the Kingdoms intervention & tampering – Nigeria, Indonesia (including West Papua) & Kosovo (Pakistan, Yemen, Chechnya, Egypt, Somalia & Sudan are off the list, as is Afghanistan which only appears as footnotes). So soft power conversion to Wahhabi/Salafi ultraconservative Islam, funded by tremendous oil-wealth from an absolute monarchy, hard-line sharia theocratic dictatorship. Can this possibly end well?

Krithika goes on to describe a massive campaign of proselytization via islamic institutions, many of which operate with considerable -or even complete – autonomy form the actual countries they function in. beyond Wahhabi promulgation & conversion, Saudi dawa also provides the opportunity to garner access & influence, along with the platform to recruit assets to further Saudi interests & ideology. Students are encouraged to accept funding, study in Saudi Arabia, then return – thoroughly indoctrinated – to there respective countries with significant benefits from there Saudi patrons.

Wahhabism – a totalitarian offshoot/ aggressively fundamentalist interpretation of Sunni Islam – remains a paradox. forged on not simply intolerance but “persecution, expansion & conquest”, this violent, bigoted & hard-line ideology receives little criticism or attention &, extraordinarily, tacit acceptance & support in the West. Even in an era of conspicuous Islamophobia, Wahhabism, by far the most radical & extreme variety, seems to escape persecution whilst the more moderate pluralities of Islam are freely attacked & disrespected with abandon. In tandem with this contradiction is the fact that the Kingdom itself, for all its bluster about being the ultimate guardian of Islam, seems completely unperturbed by the anti-Islamic insults & abuse spewing from its Western allies.

Death Dawa – “The persecution of non-Sunni Muslims has been central to Saudi state-sanctioned religion and foreign policy. Wahhabism centers on prosecuting other Muslims as not Muslim enough or not Muslim at all.”

What did Saudi Arabia displace when it became leader of the Muslim world, with Western support, in the 1980s? Arab nationalism, socialism, secularism, progressivism. Saudi Arabia bet on religion and political quietism instead of progressive Muslim organizing and thus reshuffled the religious landscaper of the Muslim world. Saudi foreign policy helped sublimate the revolutionary anti-imperialist energies of the post colonial world into the region.”

In West Papua, we here how “Saudi money is facilitating one of the most troubling religious developments in Indonesia today” through Papua Dakwah, setting up salafist “Islamic boarding schools” for local children in this conflict & poverty aggrieved region. In Nigeria, a country ravaged by the brutal Wahhabi terrorist syndicate Boko Haram, Saudi dawa has a huge presence. Indeed – “Boko Haram overtook ISIS as the worlds deadliest terror group in 2015. But it did not emerge in a vacuum. The founder of Boko Haram studied with the most prominent Saudi-educated Salafi in Nigeria, Jafar Mahmud Adam, and even sought refuge, like many Islamists under fire, in Saudi Arabia itself.” – “Our society is full of holes now.”

The US actively encouraged the Saudis to fund Islamist militants against their shared enemies of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the USSR. Washington saw the kindom’s lack of financial transparency as an advantage.”

Dawa also thrives under the vizard of charity & humanitarian aid. Kosovo demonstrates this example perhaps more than anywhere else & is provided a full chapter here under “Rebuilding Kosovo”. Perversely, insecurity & destitution are often the very foundation that provides dawa with a justification & point of entry to exert Saudi meddling.

keep in mind that Saudi revenues flow directly to the royal family and are not reported to anyone, and that most of the subsidiary organs’ budgets are self-reported, so all figures related to their figures must be taken with a grain of salt.”

is it not, one of the most brain-bending examples of hyper-hypocrisy & cardinal paradox that Saudi Arabia is treated with such “exceptionalism” by the West? As with it’s evil twin Israel, the regime represents the absolute zenith of “special interest anomaly” at its maximum overdrive.

The UK government has consistently put arms company interests ahead of the rights and lives of people in Yemen. The government has proven that it cannot be trusted to implement its own rules.”

On the 21st of last month (June), the Guardian’s Jamie Doward detailed how the UK was continuing it’s openly illegal, murderous criminality & gross violation of international law by continuing to sell arms to Saudi Arabia a full year after a ban on such procedures as they were being routinely used on civilians & civilian targets/infrastructure in complete violation of international law & the rules of engagement.

The ruling barred the government from approving any new licences to Saudi Arabia and forced it to review the decisions on existing ones, a process the Department for International Trade said would take it “up to several months”.

But, a year on, these licences continue to operate, allowing for the export of fighter jet components and aircraft maintenance.”

so we can add “wilful defiance” to the UK governments swelling roster of war crimes, genocide, mass murder, crimes of aggression, crimes against humanity, illegal arms trafficking & aiding & abetting terrorists, all of which has led to “the worlds worse humanitarian crisis” according to the UN in the ongoing illegal siege of Yemen.

The king and the royal family hold the reins. They can arrest or push out the ulema whenever they want. It’s an extremely powerful and unaccountable state.”

The immunity continues.

The 838-page-long Joint Enquiry into the 9/11 attacks published in 2002 contains a 28-page section on Saudi financing that was never declassified. American politicians that were allowed to read it have said it is damning. Former senator Bob Graham said, “They point a very strong finger at Saudi Arabia being the principle financier. Laurent Murawiec, a RAND corporation analyst, said in a statement typical of that era, that Saudi Arabia is “the kernel of evil, the prime mover, the most dangerous opponent” of the United States.”

The king and the royal family hold the reins. They can arrest or push out the ulema whenever they want. It’s an extremely powerful and unaccountable state.”

Krithika Varagur, 2020, Colombia Global Reports, 193 pages

“Where America is strong, Wahhabism is also strong.”