Bob's Links and Rants

Welcome to my rants page! You can contact me by e-mail: Blog roll. Site feed.

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Riddle Me This, Billmon

That's right: Billmon's back and Bush is gonna be in trouble! The riddle he poses is why, "in yesterday's attacks in Al Khobar, as in the attack earlier this month in Yanbu, the terrorists went after people, not infrastructure?"

He goes on to point out that if the terrorist's goal were either a massive disruption of the world economy or the overthrow of the corrupt Saudi government, a direct hit on the many far-flung elements of the oil infrastructure--wells, pipelines, pumps, storage tanks, loading docks--would be both much more effective and easier to carry out than killing or kidnapping a few engineers. Billmon concludes:
So why is Al Qaeda still fooling around with these attacks on foreign workers? Is it because they don't want to alienate Saudi popular opinion by destroying the goose that lays the petroleum eggs? Are they hoping to inherit the oil infrastructure intact once they take power? Do they have a implicit deal with the royal family (or some faction within it) to limit their attacks to the infidel devils and leave the valuable stuff alone?

I could see the House of Saud offering such a deal (and trusting that the clueless Americans will never find out about it), but what motive would Al Qaeda have for abiding by it?

I don't have any obvious answers to this riddle - or at least, none that aren't wearing silly tinfoil hats. But think about it the next time you fill up your tank, because it's probably the only thing standing between you and a $6 gallon of gas.