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Timeline: Saudi Arabia (1871 - 2003)
BBC ^ | November 9th, 2003

Posted on 11/09/2003 5:31:37 AM PST by Sabertooth

Timeline: Saudi Arabia

A chronology of key events:

1871 - The Ottomans take control of the province of Hasa.


The Rub al-Khali or Empty Quarter

Shifting sands: demand could exceed supply

The Rub al-Khali is one of the largest deserts in the world

The name means "empty quarter"

One of the driest places on earth

1891 - The Al Sa'ud family are exiled to Kuwait by the Rashidi family.

1902 - Abd-al-Aziz Bin-Abd-al-Rahman Bin-Faysal Bin-Turki Bin-Abdallah Bin-Muhammad Al Sa'ud (often known as Ibn Sa'ud) takes control of Riyadh bringing the Al Sa'ud family back into Saudi Arabia.

1912 - The Ikhwan (Brotherhood) is founded based on Wahhabism; it grows quickly and provides key support for Abd-al-Aziz.

1913 - Hasa is taken from the Ottomans by Abd-al-Aziz.

1921 - Abd-al-Aziz takes the title Sultan of Najd.

1924 - Mecca regained.

1925 - Medina retaken.

Brotherhood trouble

1926 - Abd-al-Aziz is proclaimed King of the Hijaz in the Grand Mosque of Mecca.


The Grand Mosque in Mecca during the Hajj

Millions of Muslims converge on Mecca every year

Muslims believe Mecca was founded by the Prophet Ibrahim

The first pilgrimage was led by the Prophet Muhammed in 628

1928-30 - The Ikhwan turn against Abd-al-Aziz due to the modernisation of the region and the increasing numbers of non-Muslims. They are defeated by Abd-al-Aziz.

1932 September - The areas controlled by Abd-al-Aziz are unified under the name Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Abd-al-Aziz is proclaimed King.

1933 - King Abd-al-Aziz's eldest son, Sa'ud, is named Crown Prince.

1938 - Oil is discovered and production begins under the US controlled ARAMCO (Arabian American Oil Company).

1953 November - King Abd-al-Aziz dies and is succeeded by the Crown Prince Sa'ud Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Sa'ud. The new King's brother, Faysal is named Crown Prince.

King Sa'ud deposed

1960 - Saudi Arabia is a founding member of OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries).

1964 November - King Sa'ud is deposed by his brother, the Crown Prince, Faysal Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Sa'ud.

Jiddah skyline
Jiddah skyline

1970 - The OIC (Organization of the Islamic Conference) is founded in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia.

1972 - For the first time, Saudi Arabia gains control of a proportion (20 per cent) of ARAMCO lessening the control of the Americans over Saudi's oil.

1973 - Saudi Arabia leads an oil boycott against the Western countries that supported Israel in the October War against Egypt and Syria leading to the quadrupling of oil prices.

King Faysal assassinated

1975 March - King Faysal is assassinated by his nephew, Faysal Bin-Musa'id Bin-Abd-al-Aziz; he is succeeded by his brother, Khalid Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Sa'ud.

Former Saudi leader King Faysal
Assassinated: King Faysal

1979 - Saudi Arabia severs diplomatic relations with Egypt after it makes peace with Israel.

1979 - Extremists seize the Grand Mosque of Mecca; the government regains control after 10 days and those captured are executed.

1980 - Saudi Arabia takes full control of ARAMCO from the US.

1981 May - Saudi Arabia is a founder member of the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).

King Khalid dies

1982 June - King Khalid dies of a heart attack and is succeeded by his brother, Crown Prince Fahd Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Sa'ud.

1986 November - King Fahd adds the title "Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques" to his name.

1987 - Saudi Arabia resumes diplomatic relations with Egypt (severed since 1979).

1990 - Saudi Arabia condemns the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait and asks the US to intervene; it allows foreign troops, the Kuwaiti government and many of its citizens to stay in Saudi Arabia but expels citizens of Yemen and Jordan due to their governments' support of Iraq.

Saudi attacks Iraq

1991 - Saudi Arabia is involved in both air attacks on Iraq and in the land force that went on to liberate Kuwait.

1992 March - King Fahd announces the "Basic System of Government" emphasising the duties and responsiblities a ruler has for his people and proposed the setting up of a Consultative Council (majlis al-shura).

 Islamic dissident Usamah Bin-Ladin
Dissident: Usamah Bin-Ladin

1993 September - King Fahd decrees the division of Saudi Arabia into thirteen administrative divisions.

1993 December - The Consultative Council (majlis al-shura) is inaugurated. It is composed of a chairman and sixty members chosen by the King.

1994 - Islamic dissident Usamah Bin-Ladin is stripped of his Saudi nationality.

King Fahd ill

1995 November - King Fahd has a stroke; the day to day running of the country is entrusted to Crown Prince Abdullah Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Sa'ud.

1996 February - King Fahd resumes control of state affairs.

Bomb damage at US military complex in Dhahran
Bomb damage: US military complex in Dhahran

1996 June - A bomb explodes at the US military complex near Dhahran killing 19 and wounding over 300.

1997 July - King Fahd increases the members of the Consultative Council (majlis al-shura) from sixty to ninety.

1999 October - Twenty Saudi women attend the session of the Consultative Council (majlis al-shura) for the first time.

2000 September - The London-based human rights group Amnesty International describes Saudi Arabia's treatment of women, particularly foreign domestic workers, as "untenable" by any legal or moral standard.

2001 March - Several British workers are arrested in Riyadh after a series of blasts in which a British and an American national are killed.

2001 April - Saudi Arabia and Iran sign a major security accord to combat terrorism, drug-trafficking and organised crime.

2001 December - King Fahd calls for the eradication of terrorism, saying it is prohibited by Islam; government takes the unprecedented step of issuing identity cards to women.

2002 February - A British man arrested in Riyadh in March 2001 after a series of blasts which killed a British and an American national claims the Saudi authorities tortured him and forced a confession. The man, Ron Jones, had been released after being allowed to retract his confession.

2002 May - New criminal justice system comes into force. Revised criminal code includes ban on torture and right of suspects to legal representation, but human rights campaigners allege that violations continue.

Relations with US

2002 August - Saudi investors reported to have withdrawn funds from the US in protest at a lawsuit filed by relatives of some September 11 victims alleging Saudi collusion with terror; Saudis allege defamation.

2002 October - Border crossing with Iraq reopens for the first time since Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990.

2002 November - Saudi foreign minister says his country will not allow the US to use its facilities to attack Iraq, even in a UN-sanctioned strike.

2003 April - US says it will pull out almost all its troops from Saudi Arabia, ending a military presence dating back to the 1991 Gulf war. Both countries stress that they will remain allies.

2003 May - Suicide bombers kill 10 Americans and many others at housing compounds for Westerners in Riyadh hours before US Secretary of State Colin Powell flies in for a planned visit.

Signs of dissent

2003 September - More than 300 Saudi intellectuals - women as well as men - sign petition calling for far-reaching political reforms.

2003 13 October - Saudi Arabia hosts its first-ever human rights conference. Government announces that elections for 14 municipal councils are to be held within a year - these will be the first elections of any kind to take place since the creation of the desert kingdom in 1932.

2003 14 October - Police break up unprecedented rally in centre of Riyadh calling for political reform. More than 270 people are arrested on suspicion of having taken part in the demonstration.

2003 9 November - Apparent suicide bomb attack on Muhaya housing compound in western Riyadh leaves several dead and scores injured.

TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Russia; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; binalden; binladen; mecca; opec; opecplus; ramadan2003; riyadh; russia; saudi; saudiarabia; ukraine; worldhistory
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1 posted on 11/09/2003 5:31:38 AM PST by Sabertooth
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To: Sabertooth
I keep hearing rumors of present day in-fighting and 'suicides' against various factions of the House of Saud. Anyone have anything concrete? What a stable little country.
2 posted on 11/09/2003 5:41:05 AM PST by DeuceTraveler ((wedgie free for all))
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To: CheneyChick; vikingchick; Victoria Delsoul; WIMom; kmiller1k; mhking; rdb3; Travis McGee; GOPJ; ...
Saudi princes grapple with change
Roger Hardy
By Roger Hardy
BBC Middle East analyst

Saudi Arabia's ruling princes find themselves fighting several fires.

The crown prince is in charge of the day-to-day running of the country
Crown Prince Abdullah has committed himself to reform
Even as they confront pressures for political and economic reform, they are cracking down on suspected al-Qaeda cells in the kingdom, while pledging to eliminate intolerance from the mosque and the classroom.

The debate about reform has official backing. Over the past few years, Crown Prince Abdullah, who has run the country's day-to-day affairs during the prolonged illness of his half-brother, King Fahd, has publicly committed himself to political and economic reform.

As a result, the state-guided media have become freer in debating where the country is going. Journalists are reporting with a new candour on issues such as crime, drugs, Aids and domestic abuse which in the past were ignored or downplayed.

This year alone, the Crown Prince has received a succession of petitions setting out agendas for reform. The signatories have been writers, academics and business people and have included women as well as men, and members of the country's Shia minority as well as its Sunni majority.

Spectre of violence

The debate intensified following the multiple suicide attacks in Riyadh on 12 May. Thirty-five people were killed when Islamic militants, suspected of links to al-Qaeda, attacked compounds housing foreigners.

Saudis refer to 12 May as their own 9/11.

Partial elections for municipal councils are planned for next year
An embryonic parliament, the majlis al-shura, has been established
Liberal reformists like Jaafar Shaib argue that the government should have seen the writing on the wall.

"Many intellectuals warned of such actions earlier," he says. "Part of it was the result of the education system, part of it the result of the domination of one ideology that leaves room for only one interpretation of Islam."

That ideology is Wahhabism, the austere form of Sunni Islam which is practised by the Saudi religious establishment and enables the ruling family to lay claim to an Islamic legitimacy.

Mr Shaib belongs to the country's Shia minority, which has long complained of discrimination by hard-line Wahhabis.

But, contrary to Western perception, Sunni Islam in Saudi Arabia is not monolithic. A hard core disputes the legitimacy of the ruling House of Saud and is sympathetic to Osama Bin Laden's brand of violent jihad, or holy war.

The government should evolve into a constitutional monarchy, with an elected parliament of men and women
Abdullah al-Hamid, Sunni reformist
But a larger body of Sunnis, while socially conservative, is against violence and in favour of reform.

"It's time for everyone to wake up in this country, and that includes the society and the rulers," declares Abdullah al-Hamid, a former university professor who in the past was jailed for campaigning for human rights and is now an influential Sunni reformist.

"The government should evolve into a constitutional monarchy, with an elected parliament of men and women and an independent judiciary," he says.

"The whole world has advanced to this level, and we are the only ones who are lagging behind."

Not all Sunnis would agree with him [two of the most divisive issues are the rights of women and of the Shia], but his views suggest that some Sunni intellectuals are moving in new and interesting directions.

Liberal coalition

The Sunni religious intellectuals retain a powerful voice in Saudi Arabia, one which the House of Saud cannot ignore.

In contrast, the "liberal coalition" of Western-educated academics, Shia, women's rights activists and others has much less clout.

Police cars patrol a street in Riyadh
There has been a strong police presence following demonstrations and terror warnings
Their most recent petition, in September, antagonised Islamists by accusing Wahhabism, without naming it, of fostering terrorism and intolerance.

The government's response to pressures for reform has been to promise greater political participation, but as a gradual process.

Without adequate preparation, says Abdel-Mohsin al-Akkas, a member of the majlis al-shura, the country's embryonic parliament, elections would be a leap in the dark.

The authorities are accordingly planning to start at the grass roots, with partial elections for municipal councils next year.

Unofficial sources say that, in three years' time, citizens would be able to elect a third of the 120 currently appointed members of the majlis al-shura.

But will this be enough?

Ordinary Saudis complain of unemployment and economic hardship, which they contrast with princely power and privilege.

In October, popular anger spilled over into the streets. Hundreds of Saudis demonstrated for political reform in the heart of Riyadh, and the following week only a heavy police presence thwarted further demonstrations in several cities.

Demonstrations are illegal in Saudi Arabia, but part of the population seems to feel it has nothing to lose by taking to the streets.

Professor al-Hamid believes that petitions are not enough, and that without popular pressure, from academics, from the religious scholars, and from businessmen, the government is unlikely to embark on serious reform. And without that, he warns, the country will face incalculable dangers.

BBC - November 6th, 2003

3 posted on 11/09/2003 5:41:11 AM PST by Sabertooth (No Drivers' Licences for Illegal Aliens. Petition SB60.
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To: Sabertooth
Saudi royals face extremist threat (al Qaeda coming home)
      Posted by Sabertooth
On 11/09/2003 5:04 AM PST with 2 comments

BBC ^ | November 9th, 2003 | Paul Wood
By Paul Wood BBC Middle East correspondent Dozens were killed in May's suicide bombings Saturday night's suicide bombing is only the latest sign of the increasingly open struggle between the Saudi authorities and Islamic militants. Just six months ago the Saudi authorities liked to maintain there was no al-Qaeda activity whatsoever within the kingdom. Then came two devastating suicide bombings in May killing 35 people. That marked the beginning of a campaign by the Saudi authorities with a string of raids leading to the seizure of weapons, around 600 arrests and in some cases gun battles between police and...
Deadly blast hits Saudi capital
      Posted by Sabertooth
On 11/09/2003 4:48 AM PST with 5 comments

BBC ^ | November 9th, 2003
Rescuers worked through the night looking for survivors A suicide bombing on a housing complex in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, has caused heavy casualties. Two people have been confirmed dead but diplomats believe many more were killed in the blast which happened at midnight (2100 GMT) on Saturday. The manager of the compound, which houses mainly Arab foreign workers, said 100 people had been wounded, including many children. Saudi officials say the attack bears the hallmarks of al-Qaeda. I heard screams of the children and women Compound resident "This is a crime against innocents which is in the style...
Suicide Car Bomb Rocks Saudi Capital
      Posted by The Raven
On 11/09/2003 2:05 AM PST with 15 comments

Reuters/Drudge ^ | Nov 9, 2003 | DONNA ABU-NASR
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - Three explosions rocked a residential compound in the Saudi capital Saturday night, killing at least two people and wounding 86, in what a government official said was a suicide car bombing. The attack came a day after the U.S. Embassy warned that terror attacks could be imminent in the tense Gulf kingdom, and America's three diplomatic missions in Saudi Arabia were closed Saturday as a result. Just before the midnight blasts, an unknown number of attackers broke into the upscale compound of about 200 villas, a Saudi official said, and gunfire was heard. An Interior...
Suicide bomber kills at least five, wounds scores at Riyadh housing compound
      Posted by Brian S
On 11/08/2003 10:41 PM PST with 18 comments

AFP ^ | 11-09-03
Sunday November 9, 1:45 PM At least five people died and some 100 were wounded in a midnight suicide car bomb attack on a residential compound west of Riyadh, six months after similar blasts hit three complexes in the Saudi capital, officials said. The blast came on the same day the United States closed its missions in Saudi Arabia for a security review after warning of possible terror attacks during the holy month of Ramadan, and which have been echoed by other Western states. An official said Saturday night's carnage bore the hallmarks of the al-Qaeda network headed by Saudi-born...
US Riyadh Embassy Tells Staff to Restrict Movement
      Posted by yonif
On 11/08/2003 11:29 PM PST with 1 comment

Wired News ^ | November 09, 2003 | Reuters
RIYADH (Reuters) - The U.S. embassy in Riyadh advised its personnel and dependants Sunday not to leave their compound after a suicide bomb attack by suspected al Qaeda militants on a residential complex killed up to 30 people. "Because of the bombing at a Riyadh residential compound, the embassy is advising the American community in Riyadh that it currently remains closed to the public," the embassy said in a statement on its Web Site. "In addition, embassy personnel and their dependants are restricting their movements and will remain in the diplomatic quarter pending further assessment of the security situation. The...
Saudi official blames Riyadh attacks on al Qaeda
      Posted by swilhelm73
On 11/08/2003 9:09 PM PST with 30 comments

CNN ^ | 11/9/03 | CNN
(CNN) -- Terrorists stormed past security guards into an affluent, heavily secured residential neighborhood in the Saudi capital Saturday and set off three explosions, journalists and officials in Riyadh said. The attack came one day after the U.S. Embassy announced it would close temporarily over concerns of rising terror threats. A senior official in the Saudi Interior Ministry said his government was certain the attack was planned and carried out by al Qaeda using the same suicide car bombing strategy employed in the May 12 attacks in Riyadh. The triple bombings in May targeted apartment complexes housing Westerners. Those bombings...
Riyadh’s Night of Terror
      Posted by swilhelm73
On 11/08/2003 7:54 PM PST with 23 comments

Arab News ^ | Sunday, 9, November, 2003 | Raid Qusti
RIYADH, 9 November 2003 — Terrorists struck in the heart of the capital late last night, the official Saudi Press Agency reported. At least one, and perhaps as many as three, explosions rocked a residential compound in western Riyadh. Eyewitnesses reported one big explosion, followed by two smaller ones 15 seconds apart. Smoke could be seen rising from the area of the blast. The streets were crowded when the blasts took place with late-night shoppers because of Ramadan. At least 50 people were injured in the explosion. “So far there are 50 injured,” Health Minister Hamad Al-Manie told Saudi TV....
Gulf On Terror Alert As Blast Hits Riyadh
      Posted by blam
On 11/08/2003 6:40 PM PST with 2 comments

The Guardian (UK) ^ | 11-9-2003 | Martin Bright
Gulf on terror alert as blast hits Riyadh Smoke seen rising near expatriate compound in Saudi Arabian capital Martin Bright, home affairs editor Sunday November 9, 2003 The Observer An explosion rocked the Saudi capital Riyadh late last night. Smoke could be seen rising from an area in the western part of the city, and there were reports that it was at a residential compound housing foreigners. The blast came a day after the United States warned of the likelihood of terrorist attacks and shut its missions in Saudi Arabia. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has also warned Britons not...
Saudi officials deny blast claims; only one residential compound in Riyadh was bombed
      Posted by Brian S
On 11/08/2003 5:49 PM PST with 5 comments

AFP ^ | 11-09-03
From correspondents in Riyadh November 9, 2003 A SAUDI official said early Sunday that only one residential compound in Riyadh was bombed Saturday night, denying a US account that three residential complexes were hit by explosions. "There may have been two or three blasts in the al-Muhaya compound, but there were no explosions in three (different) compounds," the official said, requesting anonymity. The State Department said Saturday that three residential compounds housing Westerners in the Saudi capital were hit by explosions and gunfire. "We have initial reports that there were explosions and gunfire at three compounds in Riyadh that house...
At least 100 wounded in Riyadh bombing: compound manager
      Posted by jonatron
On 11/08/2003 5:39 PM PST with 44 comments

yahoo (AFP) ^ | 1//9/03
At least 100 people, mostly children, were wounded when a bomb rocked the al-Muhaya residential compound west of Riyadh toward midnight (2100 GMT), the compound's manager told AFP. "There are no less than 100 wounded, most of them children," Hanadi al-Khandakli said, adding she could not immediately tell whether there were any fatalities. Khandaqli, who was in the compound at the time of the attack, said "there was gunfire followed by a blast, and a second blast minutes later." She said the complex comprised 200 villas, four of which are inhabited by Western families, including two German and one French.
Large explosion hits Saudi capital
      Posted by Sabertooth
On 11/08/2003 3:19 PM PST with 15 comments

BBC ^ | Noivember 9th, 2003
Many people were out late at night because of the holy month of Ramadan A powerful explosion has hit Saudi Arabia's capital, Riyadh. The blast, at about midnight (2100 GMT), hit the Muhaya residential compound, which houses mainly Saudi workers - as well as foreigners - in the west of the capital. One eyewitness said there were many casualties - but there has been no confirmation of this. A spokesman for the Saudi interior ministry described the blast as a terrorist explosion in comments carried by the Saudi press agency (SPA). The explosion, near Riyadh's diplomatic quarter, comes a...
Explosion Rocks Saudi Capital
      Posted by Tumbleweed_Connection
On 11/08/2003 2:07 PM PST with 6 comments

TBO ^ | 11/8/03 | Donna Abu-Nasr
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - Three explosions rocked the Saudi capital Riyadh around midnight Saturday, and smoke could be seen rising from the area of the blast, diplomats said. The diplomats said there was one big explosion at about midnight, followed by two smaller ones 15 seconds apart. Police cars raced toward the direction of the blasts, which appeared to have happened in the western part of the city. An American Embassy spokeswoman confirmed the explosion, but said it was not in the diplomatic quarter. The extent of the damage was not immediately clear, and it wasn't known if there...
Blast heard in diplomatic quarter of Riyad, Saudi Arabia
      Posted by Tree of Liberty
On 11/08/2003 1:33 PM PST with 564 comments

Fox News Channel | November 8, 2003
A diplomat just informed Fox News that a blast was heard in the diplomatic quarter of the city. No further information was given.
Saudis arrest 3,000 Iraqi infiltrators
      Posted by knighthawk
On 11/08/2003 6:02 AM PST with 22 comments

Washington Times ^ | November 08 2003 | UPI
BEIRUT, Lebanon, Nov. 8 (UPI) -- Authorities in Saudi Arabia have arrested 3,000 people who tried to cross clandestinely from Iraq smuggling weapons and drugs, a report said Saturday. The Saudi daily al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper, monitored in Beirut, quoted Washington-based "well-informed sources" that the smugglers were arrested over the past three months. They said the infiltrators were smuggling drugs and weapons on a scale never witnessed before.
U.S. Warns of Terrorist Attacks in Saudi Arabia, Closes Embassy
      Posted by Tumbleweed_Connection
On 11/07/2003 1:24 PM PST with 3 comments

NewsMax ^ | 11/7/03 | wires
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia – The United States will close its missions in Saudi Arabia on Saturday for an undetermined period because of "credible" information that terrorists are about to carry out attacks, the U.S. Embassy said Friday. A warden message posted on the embassy's Web site said the missions would assess their "security posture." They will then advise the American community when the review is completed and when the U.S. missions in Riyadh, the seaside city of Jiddah and Dhahran in the Eastern province plan to resume normal operations. The embassy said it had received "credible information that terrorists in...
US Closing Embassy in Saudi Arabia
      Posted by Kaslin
On 11/07/2003 11:09 AM PST with 8 comments

FNC ^ | Friday, November 07, 2003 | Mike Emanuel, Teri Schultz and Associated Press
The U.S. Embassy will close its offices to review security procedures on Saturday, while embassy officials said terrorists are close to launching an attack in the desert kingdom.The embassy in Riyadh and the U.S. Consulates General in Jeddah and Dhahran will be closed, according to a warden message issued by the embassy on Friday. "The embassy continues to receive credible information that terrorists in Saudi Arabia have moved from the planning to operational phase of planned attacks in the kingdom," stated the message. "The embassy strongly urges all American citizens in the kingdom to be especially vigilant when in any...
Terror attack close at hand in Saudi Arabia
      Posted by TexKat
On 11/07/2003 10:45 AM PST with 17 comments

Fox News | 11/7/03
Dayside was just interrupted in President George W. Bush's visit to a technical college with breaking news regarding a nearing terror attack in Saudi Arabia
SAUDI TERROR ALERT (U.S. Closing Embassy in Saudi Arabia)
      Posted by areafiftyone
On 11/07/2003 10:27 AM PST with 203 comments

Sky News ^ | 11/7/03
Terrorists are close to carrying out attacks in Saudi Arabia, the US Embassy has said. More to follow...
US To Close Embassy in Saudi Arabia
      Posted by Leatherneck_MT
On 11/07/2003 10:30 AM PST with 22 comments

Foxnews ^ | 11/07/2003
No details, just a banner on breaking news on Fox

4 posted on 11/09/2003 5:46:33 AM PST by Sabertooth (No Drivers' Licences for Illegal Aliens. Petition SB60.
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To: Sabertooth
5 posted on 11/09/2003 5:52:58 AM PST by PGalt
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To: Sabertooth

1979 - Extremists seize the Grand Mosque of Mecca; the government regains control after 10 days and those captured are executed.

Here is more info:
On 1 Muharram AH 1400/21 November, the first day of the 15th Islamic century, fanatics led by students of the Theological University of Medina attempt to promote one of their group as Mahdi and thus fulfill a certain prophetic Hadith: "A man of the people of Medina will go forth, fleeing to Mecca, and certain of the people of Mecca will come to him and will lead him forth against his will and swear fealty to him between the rukn (Black Stone corner of the Kabah) and the Maqam Ibrahim." They hold the Haram of Mecca against the army for two weeks. Sixty-three of the 300 fanatics are captured alive, the mosque is recovered, and the conspirators are all put to death.
6 posted on 11/09/2003 6:14:25 AM PST by AdmSmith
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To: Sabertooth
Nice summary.

Here's a nice history of Arabian oil production.

7 posted on 11/09/2003 6:18:16 AM PST by beavus
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To: Sabertooth
In 1740, Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahhab (his father was a judge) called
on Muslims to return to the original form of Islam (in accordance with his
understanding) but the scholars of the Islamic state at that time (i.e. of
the Ottomani Khilafah) rejected some of his views because they appeared to
contradict the divine texts and the views of the classical scholars of the
main (Mazaahib) schools of thought in Islam i.e. those of Hanafi, Maliki,
Shafi'ie and Hanbali. Then he started to abuse the Islamic schools of
thought and labeled those who disagreed with him as Murtadd (apostate), or
Mushrik (polytheist). Initially he was disciplined by the scholars and was
to face prosecution. He then sought protection in the town of Diriyah,
which was ruled unlawfully by the rebellious Muhammad Bin Saud, head of
Al-A'nnza tribe and a member of the prominent Al-Saud family, an enemy of
the Ottomani Khilafah. The partnership between these two men eventually
led to the foundation of so-called Saudi Arabia today.

1740-1747, Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahhab was preaching his views and
severely criticising and attacking the Ottomani Khilafah. This continuous
attack was beautiful music to the ears of the rebellious Muhammad Bin

In 1747, The Amir Muhammad Bin Saud declared full support and adoption of
Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul-Wahhaabs ideas and views. This led to the
formulation of a tribal authority (Imaarah Qabaliyyah) under the political
leadership of the rebellious Muhammad Bin Saud and the Spiritual
leadership of Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul-Wahhaab. The Sheikh was calling
for and teaching his views i.e. the Wahhabi Mazhab or School of thought,
while the rebellious Muhammad Ibn-Saud was ruling and judging with them.
(The scholars refer to this alliance as the Wahhabi Movement).

1747-1755, The Wahhabi movement spread its authority under the leadership
of the rebellious Muhammad Bin Saud. They raided and controlled many
villages while forcing the Wahhabi views.

In 1755, British forces tried to occupy Kuwait but failed.

In 1757, the rebellious Muhammad Bin Saud defeated the Amir of Al-Ihsaa
city and controlled the Whole of Diriyah.

In 1765, The rebellious Muhammad Bin Saud died; his son Abdul-Aziz
succeeded him.

In 1765, Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad, became the pirate leader of Al-Diriyah
and head of the A'nnza tribe.

.In 1767, The Wahhabi movement started to move towards controlling Arabia.

In 1786, British forces tried to occupy Kuwait again but failed due to the
tactical defending of the army of the Ottomani Khilafah.

In 1787, Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad In a large public gathering chaired by
Sheikh Muhammad bin Abdul-Wahaab, formed a new type of inherited authority
(Wilayat ul-A'hed) based on the Wahhabi views and declared himself leader
of the Muslims (while the true leader was the Khaleef who was in
Istanbul). Then the pirate leader Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad appointed his
son Saud as the Khalifah after him. Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul-Wahaab
agreed to this illegitimate pirate authority and passed his illegitimate
Fatwa of Jihad against the Ottomani Khilafah.

In 1788, The pirate leader Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad with the military help
of the British prepared a huge army of Wahhabis with British forces,
attacked Kuwait and occupied it (this was offered as a gift to Britain who
had failed many times in this task). The Al-Saud family ruled much of the
Arabian Peninsula.

1788-1791, The Army of The pirate leader Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad i.e. the
Wahhabi movement attacked most of the Muslims who differed with their
views. They waged a war of so-called Jihad against the governors and
soldiers of The Islamic State (Ottomani Khilafah). Thereafter they
succeeding occupying Medinah, Kuwait, Iraq and part of Damascus ( and
thousands of innocent Muslims were killed because they were Shi'a, Hanafi
or followers of other Islamic Mazahib: The irony was that those Muslims
were labeled as Mushriks whilst most of the forces with the Wahhabi
movement were British crusaders!).

In 1792, Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul-Wahhaab died. His son succeeded him as
the Spiritual leader of the Wahhabi movement.

1792-1810, The Wahhabi movement with the help of the British forces
controlled many countries up to Damascus. This rise to power alarmed the
Ottomani Khilafah which was already facing massive attacks from western
and eastern forces in different parts of the world. However, because of
the huge conspiracy of the Wahhabi movement and Aal-Saud and their scale
of attacks against Islam and Muslims it left the Ottomani Khilafah with no
choice but to send forth its armies to contain the influence of the
Wahhabi movement and their alliance.

In 1811, The army of the Ottomani Khilafah under the command of the
governor of Egypt, Muhammad Ali paasha declared war against Abdul-Aziz Bin
Muhammad and his Wahhabi movement. The governor of Egypt sent armies with
his son Tosoun paasha to liberate Medinah.

In 1812, Tosoun paasha defeated the army of Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad and
liberated Medinah.

In 1815, The governor of Egypt sent armies under the command of his second
son: Ibraheem paasha to liberate Damascus, Iraq and Kuwait.

In 1816, The army of Ibraheem paasha defeated the army of Abdul-Aziz Bin
Muhammad and the Wahhabi movement in Medinah, Iraq and Kuwait and
liberated them.

In 1817, The army of Ibraheem paasha chased the soldiers of the Wahhabi
movement up to their pirate capital Al-Diriyah.

In April 1818 the army of Ibraheem paasha surrounded the last stronghold
of Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad and the Wahhabi movement in Al-Diriyah for the
whole summer until the 9th of September 1818 when the Wahhabis surrendered
themselves. Ibraheem paasha ordered his soldiers to destroy the whole city
of Al-Diriyah and they did it. However the Aal-Saud family and the head of
the A'nnza tribe Abdul-Aziz Bin Muhammad were protected by the British
soldiers in Jeddah. Most of the Wahhabis including the son of Sheikh
Muhammad Bin Abdul-Wahhab ran away to Riyadh. The Soldiers of the Islamic
state (Ottomani Khilafah) ultimately captured Al-Diriyah, thus ending the
first phase of the rebellion of Al-Saud in 1818.

1824-1864, The remaining followers of the Wahhabi movement built
themselves up and rose again under the leadership of Abdul-Rahman Bin

1865-1891, The Wahhabi movement under the leadership of Abdul-Rahman bin
Abdul-Aziz tried to get power over all tribes in Riyadh in order to fight
the governor (Aal-Rasheed) of The Islamic State (Ottomani Khilafah). They
tried to get political power in Riyadh, which was located close to their
old stronghold Al-Diriyah. But this uprising caused unrest which led to
tribal warfare which lasted for over 25 years and resulted in the governor
of the Islamic State (Ottomani Khilafah) Aal-Rasheed resisting this
internal uprising while the British and western forces were still
hammering against the Ottomani Khilafah..

In 1891, The governor of The Ottomani Khilafah forced Abdul-Rahman and
Al-Saud into exile. Al-Saud and the rest of the Wahhabi movement lived on
the borders of the desert of the Empty Quarter (Al-Rebi' Al-Khaali) before
settling in Kuwait.

1892-1900, Abdul-Rahman died, and his son Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman and
the rest of the Wahhabi movement lived in Kuwait.

In 1901, Twenty-one-year-old Abdul Aziz Bin Abdul Rahman Al-Saud left
Kuwait, determined to fight along-side the British forces against the
Islamic state in order to get power over all of the territory once
occupied by his pirate forefathers and to extend his occupation over the
holy cities of Makkah and Medinah.

In 1902, The Exiled Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman Al-Saud and his gangsters
(the Wahhabi movement) stormed Riyadh and shot and killed the Wali (the
governor of the Khilafah:Aal-Rasheed) as another gift for Britain. This
event marked the beginning of the formation of the pirate kingdom of Saudi

1902-1913, After establishing Riyadh as his headquarters, Abdul Aziz
proceeded, over the following decades side to side with the British
soldiers to loot and kill the soldiers and supporters of The Ottomani
Khilafah and he succeeded in many cities.

In 1914, Britain started to send a stream of agents (including William H.
Shakespeare, Harry St. John Philby and Percy Cox) to woo and encourage
Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman in her task on the Arabian front. Abdul-Aziz
Bin Abdul-Rahman's campaign was one of sabotage and stabbing in the back,
it was never face-to-face confrontation.

In 1915, Britain dispatched an agent by the name of William H. Shakespeare
as a close advisor to Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman. The soldiers of the
Khaleefah killed William alongside some Wahhabi conspirators.

In 1915, Britain dispatched another agent by the name of Harry St. John
Philby, who soon appeared in full Arab dress on top of a camel with
Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman as a saudi warrior. Philby was called by
Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman the "new star of Arab firmament". Philby in
return described Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman as the Arabs "man of destiny"
however Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman was the arch political sell-out, many
times offering to sell himself to the British. He once said to Philby, "If
anyone offered me a million pounds I would give him all the concessions he

In December 1915 the Anglo-Saud friendship treaty was concluded. This
treaty made the house of Saud an outpost of the British Empire. Britain
was given trading privileges and was superintendent of Saudi foreign
policy. A guarantee of British military protection and arms supplies ended
the Khaleefah's authority in central Arabia.

In 1916, Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman received from the British 1300 guns,
10,000 rupees and 20,000 pieces of gold in cash.

1917-1926, Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman and his organised Wahhabi gangsters
in military style and with the help of the British soldiers succeeded in
controlling the Whole of Arabia i.e. Najd and Hijaz.

In On 8 January 1926 Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman ( Known as Ibn-Saud) was
self-proclaimed king of Arabia. King Abdul-Aziz was embroiled in
discussions with the British representative, Percy Cox, for the
determination of the borders of the new entity. The British Public Records
described king Abdul-Aziz's demeaning stature at these meetings "like a
naughty schoolboy" in front of Cox. When Cox insisted it was his decision
as to the frontiers between Kuwait, "Ibn-Saud almost broke down and
pathetically remarked that Sir Percy was like his father and mother who
made him and raised him from nothing... and he would surrender half his
Kingdom, nay the whole, if Sir Percy ordered. Cox took out a map and
pencil and drew a line of the frontier of Arabia". Surely no Muslim can
ever read such a statement except with abject shame at the way the sacred
sites of Makkah and Medinah and the land of Hijaaz were put in the hands
of a family with such debased and dishonorable pedigree.

1926-1932, King Abdul Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman (Ibn-Saud) courted the British
unashamedly, showing sublime affection towards Britain's envoys. He
offered to put Arabia under their control. For his loyalty to the British
crown, like so many other British agents, Ibn Saud was awarded a
knighthood (presented to him by his self-proclaimed "father and mother"
Percy Cox) and British documents referred to him as "Sir" Abdul Aziz Bin
Saud for many years afterwards.

In On September 23, 1932 the self appointed king, Sir Abdul-Aziz Bin
Abdul-Rahman replaced the names of Najd and Hijaaz by the Kingdom of Saudi
Arabia and he laid the foundations of the current Pirate state.

In 1953, The pirate king Abdul-Aziz Bin Abdul-Rahman died.

In 1953, Saud the eldest son of Abdul Aziz Succeeded the throne upon his
father's death and became king.

In 1957, King Saud made the first trip by a Saudi monarch to the United

In 1962, Saudi Arabia by special request of the British government
sponsored an international Islamic conference, which fostered the Muslim
World League, which has its headquarters in Makkah.

In 1964, King Saud Bin Abdul-Aziz died.

In 1964, Faisal Bin Abdul Aziz became king.

In 1971, King Faisal by special request of the British government was a
central force behind the establishment of the Organization of the Islamic
Conference (the OIC) in Jeddah.

In 1975, King Faisal Bin Abdul Aziz was killed by his brother Fahd (The
current king).

In 1975, Khalid Bin Abdul Aziz became king.

In 1982, King Khalid was poisoned by his brother Fahd (The current king)

In 1982, Fahd became king.

1982-2003, Until today King Fahd Bin Abdul-Aziz is the pirate ruler of the
pirate state of so-called Saudi-Arabia.
8 posted on 11/09/2003 6:56:51 AM PST by Alouette (I have 9 kids)
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To: Sabertooth
9 posted on 11/09/2003 7:00:57 AM PST by lainde
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To: Sabertooth
There is an interesting article in the October 2003 edition of National Geographic on Saudi Arabia. Including a photo of a rather strange juxtaposition of camels and SUVs during a "camel beauty contest." Interesting article about a strange nation.
10 posted on 11/09/2003 7:13:28 AM PST by SamAdams76 (198.8 (-101.2))
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To: Sabertooth
Good summary. Bump.

I found OIL, GOD AND GOLD: The Story of ARAMCO and the Saudi Kings by Anthony Cave Brown (a Brit) in the 'bargain bin' a year ago. Interesting take on the development of the current House-of-Saud-run state.

11 posted on 11/09/2003 7:16:38 AM PST by DoctorMichael (Thats my story, and I'm sticking to it.)
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To: Sabertooth
Makes me curious about the administrations game plan regarding Saudi Arabia. If what I suspect is in the works it's a very astute game plan, and the way things are shaking out, it's going along with what I suspect.

Saudi is a very sticky tar baby and the way it is being handled looks like another brilliant stroke on the part of the administration yet again.
12 posted on 11/09/2003 7:17:54 AM PST by MissAmericanPie
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To: Sabertooth
Thanks for posting this.

On this day 11/9/53 Abdul-Aziz ibn Sa'ud founder of Saudi Arabia, dies (born c 1880)
13 posted on 11/09/2003 7:50:56 AM PST by Valin (We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.)
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To: MissAmericanPie
I am of the opinion that we won't have to DO much about our "good friends" the Saudis, if we are successful in Iraq.
14 posted on 11/09/2003 7:55:34 AM PST by Valin (We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.)
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To: Alouette
That timeline you presented shouldn't come without a link to the homepage where it's hosted. It might put things in a bit of perspective.
15 posted on 11/09/2003 8:26:22 AM PST by inquest ("Where else do gun owners have to go?" - Lee Atwater)
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To: inquest
You shouldn't complain when gangsters eat their own.
16 posted on 11/09/2003 8:29:34 AM PST by Alouette (I have 9 kids)
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To: Sabertooth
Thanks for posting the timeline and the links.
17 posted on 11/09/2003 10:07:35 AM PST by AzJohn
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To: Valin
I am of the opinion that we won't have to DO much about our "good friends" the Saudis, if we are successful in Iraq.

The primary worship of the House of Saud is money and power and not Islam. With al-Qaeda and OBL and the terrorist associated Sadaaaam Baaaathist party removed, the House of Saud will most likely be very happy selling the world oil and controlling and modifying its jihadists. That is most likely what was talked about several years ago in Crawford and that is most likely what is being watched for by the current administration.

Any princes who left the reservation, who are found to have funneled money directly to OBL or other terrorist groups should be dealt with when the time comes on an individual basis.

There will be no overworked U.S. armies marching into S.A. and there will be no glass parking lot explosion fields in Mecca.

18 posted on 11/09/2003 10:53:42 AM PST by FreeReign
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To: Sabertooth

Pressure mounts on tribal monarchy to change
By Shaheen Chughtai
Sunday 09 November 2003, 10:40 Makka Time, 7:40 GMT

Worldês largest oil exporter has 26%
of all known reserves

With one of the most strictly controlled societies in the world, Saudi Arabia has changed from an underdeveloped tribal state into an oil-rich power in just a few decades.

The desert kingdom owes its importance not only to its vast oil wealth ? it is the worldês largest petroleum exporter ? but also to its religious significance. The country is the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad and the cradle of Islam.

But in recent years, conflicts outside its borders and calls for political reform from within have increasingly challenged the countryês stability. Meanwhile, its oil-dependent economy remains extremely vulnerable to market shocks and price changes.


Although people have settled in the area for more than 5000 years, the modern state covering most of the Arabian peninsula has its roots in the eighteenth century.

Around 1750, a tribal ruler in the central region of Najd, Muhammad bin Saud, joined forces with an influential religious leader, Muhammad Abd al-Wahhab.

Bin Saud agreed to adopt and promote al-Wahhabês austere and literalist interpretation of Islam in return for the latterês stamp of religious approval.

Todayês monarchy still receives much of its legitimacy from a commitment to the Wahhabi approach to Islam.

Key facts

  • Language Arabic
  • Religion Islam
  • Population 24.2 million
  • Area 2,149,690 sq km
  • Climate Hot dry desert
  • Capital Riyadh
  • Government Absolute monarchy
  • Suffrage None
  • GDP per capita US$8,584 (2002)

The Saud family saw its fortunes rise and fall over the next 150 years as heads of the tribe clashed with Egypt, the Ottoman Empire, and other Arabian clans. The family was even expelled at the end of the nineteenth century and exiled briefly in Kuwait.

Then in 1902, the young Abd al-Aziz al-Saud (known in the West as Ibn Saud) dramatically rode into Riyadh, with a few dozen horsemen and recaptured the ancestral Saudi capital and its surrounding area.

Hoping to avoid the fate of his ancestors, Abd al-Aziz sought to consolidate Saudi dominance over the territory's tribes, through military conquest, political marriages and the protection of foreign powers (initially the British).

By 1932, most of the peninsula was unified under his control and Abd al-Aziz crowned himself king.

Oil economy

Oil was discovered in Saudi Arabia in the late 1930s. A joint venture with an American oil company led to the creation of Arabia American Oil Company or Aramco.

Saudi Arabia started by owning 52% of the company. The Saudi share increased gradually until 1976 when the Riyadh government owned the firm entirely.

Today, Saudi Arabia has the worldês largest petroleum reserves (26% of the known total) and produces roughly 8.5 million barrels per day.

Crown Prince Abd Allah faces
internal and global challenges

Production grew steadily in the decades after the Second World War. But the kingdom only began to enjoy major oil wealth after it and other Arab oil-producers started raising prices in the early 1970s and Saudi Arabia found new, vast petroleum reserves.

After the 1973 Arab-Israeli war and the Arab oil boycott of the US and the Netherlands (over their support of Israel), soaring petrol prices sent oil revenues rocketing.

Large numbers of immigrants came to support the flourishing economy while native Saudis led heavily-subsidised lives, enjoying free healthcare, free education and no taxes.

But Saudi Arabia suffered sharp drops in its oil revenues as prices fluctuated and declined in the 1980s and 1990s. Attempts to diversify the oil-reliant economy largely failed: the petroleum sector still accounts for about 75% of budget revenues and 90% of export earnings.

The slowing economy, together with high birth rates in recent decades and continuing dependence on foreign labour have resulted in rising unemployment among young Saudis in particular. Up to 20% of Saudis - some dissidents say more - are jobless.

Government and politics

The constitution is framed according to Sharia (Islamic law). A Basic Law that details the government's rights and responsibilities was introduced in 1993.

The legal system is similarly based on Islamic law, though several secular codes have also been introduced. Commercial disputes are handled by special committees.

Key dates

  • 1932 Abd al-Aziz declares himself king
  • 1938 Oil discovered in kingdom
  • 1953 Abdul Aziz dies, succeeded by son Saud
  • 1964 King Saud abdicates in favour of half-brother Faisal, who stresses economic development
  • 1975 King Faisal killed by nephew, succeeded by half-brother Khalid. Kingdom grows richer
  • 1982 Khalid dies; Fahd, another son of kingdomês founder, becomes king
  • 1990-91 King Fahd joins US-led coalition and encourages Arabs to help expel Iraq from Kuwait
  • 1995 Fahd suffers a stroke. By late 1997, Crown Prince Abd Allah is running the government
  • 2003 Amid increasing crackdown on suspected extremists, Riyadh bombings kill 34 people in May 

The large Saudi royal family has kept a tight rein on the administration.

Virtually all key posts are occupied by one of the hundreds of Saudi princes. Other senior officials are appointed.

There is no elected legislative assembly. Instead, the king is advised by a consultative council or shura of 90 members and a chairman appointed by the monarch to serve for four years at a time.

There are no political parties or official opposition. But the struggling economy has fuelled popular dissatisfaction with the US-backed regime and fed demands for political reform and greater democracy, mainly from political dissidents, often based abroad. 

The 9/11 attacks on America and the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq have placed fresh pressures on the kingdom.

Many in the US have increasingly criticised their Saudi allyês relationship with certain Middle Eastern armed organisations.

Conversely, many religious Saudis feel the regime has betrayed its Islamic roots by allying with a country that supports Israel and attacks or helps suppress Muslim societies.
Al Jazeera - November 9th, 2003

19 posted on 11/09/2003 1:10:43 PM PST by Sabertooth (No Drivers' Licences for Illegal Aliens. Petition SB60.
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To: Sabertooth
Thanks for the heads up!
20 posted on 11/09/2003 1:28:39 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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