This page contains excerpts from government reports, signed by elected officials.
Decided Jul 22, 2004
Report: the 9/11 Commission Report
Source: The 9/11 Commission Report, p.374
Saudi Arabia is a troubled country. Although regarded as very wealthy, in fact per capita income has dropped from $28,000 at its height to the present level of about $8,000. Social and religious traditions complicate adjustment to modern economic activity and limit employment opportunities for young Saudis. Women find their education and employment sharply limited.
President Clinton offered us a perceptive analysis of Saudi Arabia, contending that fundamentally friendly rulers have been constrained by their desire to preserve the status quo. He, like others, made the case for pragmatic reform instead. There are signs that Saudi Arabia’s royal family is trying to build a consensus for political reform, though uncertain about how fast and how far to go.
Crown Prince Abdullah wants the Kingdom to join the World Trade Organization to accelerate economic liberalization. He has embraced the Arab Human Development Report,
which was highly critical of the Arab world’s political, economic, and social failings and called for greater economic and political reform. Cooperation with Saudi Arabia against Islamist terrorism is very much in the U.S. interest. Such cooperation can exist for a time largely in secret, as it does now, but it cannot grow and thrive there. Nor, on either side, can friendship be unconditional.
Recommendation: The problems in the U.S. -Saudi relationship must be confronted, openly. The United States and Saudi Arabia must determine if they can build a relationship that political leaders on both sides are prepared to publicly defend—a relationship about more than oil. It should include a shared commitment to political and economic reform, as Saudis make common cause with the outside world. It should include a shared interest in greater tolerance and cultural respect, translating into a commitment to fight the violent extremists who foment hatred.
- Topic: Foreign Policy
- Headline: Expand Saudi relations from oil to anti-extremism
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participating in 04-911-03
||s1s||WA Republican Senator (Former)|
||s1s||NJ Former Republican Governor (1982-1989)|
||s1s||IL Former Republican Governor (1977-1990)|
participating in 04-911-03
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