8 September 2005

Saudi Oil Income Fighting Terror?!

If any of you ever need to teach a course in media bias, I'd definitely recommend getting a subscription to The Washington Times. The paper seems to produce a howler or two in just about every issue. On the front page of their September 7th issue, for example, we find an article by Rasheed Abou-Alsamh delightfully titled, "Surge in Saudi oil income seen aiding fight on terror." The gist of the article is that the rise in oil prices will help Saudi Arabia find jobs for young restless Saudi men and fewer will therefore be encouraged to become terrorists.

Let's think about this for a second. For starters, we should point out that Saudi Arabia has always had plenty of jobs. So many, in fact, that it has imported foreign workers (who make up about a fifth of the population) to do virtually everything that doesn't involve sitting in a government office sipping coffee. Since non-Saudi's are already engaged in every conceivable field of work, I imagine the extra money will simply allow Saudi citizens to farm out even more labor. Instead of having foreigners drive them around, cook their meals, and clean their houses, they'll now be able to import another group of foreigners to wipe their asses after they take a shit.

The article also seems to imply that Saudis are turning to terrorism due to a lack of money. Hmmm. Osama bin Ladin, el numero uno terrorist at the moment, didn't seem to lack money. For that matter, most of the Saudis bouncing around Europe and America in preparation for the 9/11 attacks probably weren't unemployed Bedouins. And if some of the connections pointed out by researchers (e.g., in House of Bush, House of Saud) are true, there were probably members of the Saudi royal family directly involved in sponsoring the 9/11 terrorists (I won't mention some Texas oilmen who were also intimate with this group).

In short, all of the article's premises are complete hogwash. And you know, it's damn disappointing when the journalistic standards of major papers aren't even on par with the average blog. Journalists, after all, are getting paid to write. Of course, the problem here isn't so much that the article's wrong (we all have our bad days) but rather that it's simply propaganda. In essence, we're being told (on page one!) that even though Shrub's policies have led to the stripping of our domestic infrastructure, the gutting of environmental policies, and a war for oil that has led to us paying more for oil (as well as a deadly quagmire), it's all okey-dokey because (try to keep a straight face, please) the Saudi's are getting richer and that'll surely stop terrorism!


Deb said...

The Washington Times is owned by "Reverend" Sun Myung Moon, and therefore it is tainted with madness as are his other organizations:


Thanks for blogging about the insanity gripping this nation.

Karlo said...

That explains a lot. I've written a number of posts on Washington Times articles.