"History is philosophy teaching by example." (Lord Bolingbroke)

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Monday, November 08, 2004

The Saudi Money Trail
How much have the Saudis spent in the the world for Dawa, the sacred duty of each individual to spread Islam? In 1982 "King Fahd issued a directive that no limits be put on expenditures for the propagation of Islam." Oil revenues skyrocketed after the 1973 embargo and for the next two decades the kingdom established hundreds of Islamic colleges and centers, 1,500 mosques and thousands of schools for Muslim children in non-Muslim countries, and in 1984, the king built a $130 million printing plant in Medina devoted to producing Saudi-approved translations of the Koran, and by the year 2000, the kingdom had distributed 138 million copies worldwide. The estimated expenditure is "north od $75 billion" from a special account created from revenue from as much as 200,000 barrels of oil a day -- $1.8 billion a yeae at 1980s oil prices.

Instead of using that oil-windfall money to develop industries, create jobs, and generally improve the lives of Saudi citizens or even raise the Palestinians out of misery, all that money is being uses to export Wahhabism, the fundamentalist, extremist brand of Islam in which bin Laden believes and is a basis for the Jihad against the West.

In the United States, the Saudis have spent their millions on Mosques, Muslim centers and schools, and Middle Eastern Studies programs at universities, and for lobbyists in Congress, and paid consultants, U.S. textbook committees, teacher programs, and generally have spead around millions of dollars to create an image of Islam that can not be bourne out in history. Thus, history must be told from the Muslim point of view in funded schools and universities.


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