Saudi Clerics Use Social media to Funnel Funds to Syria Rebels
Jonathan Schanzer VP Research
Foundation for Defense of Democracies
Jon Schanzer, VP for Research and Steven Miller, a Research Associate at the Washington, DC-based Foundation for the Defense of Democracies have their latest report on how Jihadis are using social media to raise funds for Syrian rebels via al Qaeda-linked terrorist conduits. Schanzer and Miller recently authored the monograph Facebook Fatwa: Saudi Clerics, Wahhabi Islam & Social Media (FDD Press 2012).
None of this would be particularly bad (especially considering Washington continues to sit on the fence), except that one of the conduits for the Saudi donations is the Revival of Islamic Heritage Society of Kuwait, which was designated by the United States (2008) and the United Nations (2002) as a terrorist entity for arming and financing al Qaeda. The group's involvement is particularly alarming in light of reports that al Qaeda's presence among the Syrian rebels is growing fast.
The campaign to support the FSA extends well beyond the borders of Saudi Arabia. The clerics, via social media, are encouraging international deposits to bank accounts in Kuwait, Egypt,Lebanon,Turkey, Qatar,Bahrain, and Jordan. The accounts even extend outside of the Middle East, including in Switzerland, Germany, and the United Kingdom.
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Now, Bureik exhorts his followers to take action against Assad. To inspire them, he began trumpeting the stream of donations coming in to the campaign on his Facebook page. On May 30, he announced that he and his family were donating around $25,000 to the FSA, and that one of his sons was traveling to Kuwait (where the RIHS is based, incidentally) to deliver the money in person. He even relayed the touching story of a cancer-stricken woman who selflessly donated more than $1,000 to the Syrian rebels.
Shimon Peres, stated in an interview yesterday that The Arab League must step up and take responsibility to take steps to protect Syrian citizens from their leader Assad.
Yes, they should, but it doesn't look like that is going to happen anytime soon.
The Arab League, if it is so inclined, would much rather the U.S., other Westerners or the UN do it on their dime.
Time and again, the Arab League or even a few Muslim nations have failed or refused to take any action on behalf of the murder of innocent Muslims in other Muslim nations and instead either give the thumbs up or down to the West taking such action.