In the past 24 hours, the latest 9/11 bombshell ripped through the media: Zacarias Moussaoui, the so-called “20th hijacker” has claimed that members of the royal Saudi family provided financial support to the Al Qaeda operatives involved in the attacks.
The French national, who is currently serving a life sentence in federal prison for his role in the terrorist plot, made the allegation during a deposition in an ongoing class-action lawsuit against Saudi Arabia by 9/11 victims, families and others, like Federal Insurance Co. According to the attorneys handling the case, Moussaoui’s testimony is not the only information pointing to the Saudis. The AP reports:
The lawyers filed documents in Manhattan federal court to buttress claims Saudi Arabia supported al-Qaida and its leader at the time, Osama bin Laden, prior to the attacks. They have always said “the Saudi government directly and knowingly assisted the 9/11 hijackers,” but now say facts and evidence supporting the assertion “are compelling.”
They said an “expansive volume” of new evidence — including U.S. and foreign intelligence reports, government reports and testimony from al-Qaida members — support lawsuits seeking billions of dollars from countries, companies and organizations that aided al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.
As startling as Moussaoui’s accusations are and this “compelling” evidence is, it’s not really new. Journalists, authors and conspiracy theorists alike, started questioning the link between the bin Laden family and Al-Qaeda days and weeks after 9/11. Naturally, public outrage began bubbling up when it was reported that most of the hijackers were Saudis and that members of the bin Laden family were evacuated by the FBI and reportedly given clearance to fly during the FAA’s blanket travel ban on all flights. In 2004, filmmaker Michael Moore took the Saudi narrative one step further and popularized the historically close relationship between the Bush family and bin Laden family in his film Fahrenheit 9/11.
According to the New York Times, there’s still dozens of pages from a congressional report that haven’t been declassified and there’s bipartisan support to have that information made public:
A still-classified section of the investigation by congressional intelligence committees into the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks has taken on an almost mythic quality over the past 13 years — 28 pages that examine crucial support given the hijackers and that by all accounts implicate prominent Saudis in financing terrorism.
“I think it is the right thing to do,” said Representative Stephen F. Lynch, Democrat of Massachusetts and an author of a bipartisan resolution encouraging President Obama to declassify the section. “Let’s put it out there.”
Responding to the latest allegations, attorneys representing the Saudi government vehemently denied involvement to CNN: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia had no role in the attacks of September 11, 2001.”
The White House says it will review the classified documents and rule on whether or not to release them to the public.
(Photo: 9/11 Photos)