<h3><strong>Al Oudah's <\/strong><strong>son uses Khashoggi vehicle & network of fellow travelers to obscure his father\u2019s record<\/strong><\/h3>\r\nIn late September, Washington Post, where Jamal Khashoggi was a columnist before his death in\u00a02018,\u00a0 was\u00a0the first major US publication to\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www.washingtonpost.com\/world\/middle_east\/khashoggi-dawn-arab-democracy\/2020\/09\/29\/70de57a2-025e-11eb-b92e-029676f9ebec_story.html">introduce<\/a>\u00a0"DAWN MENA", (Democracy for the Arab World Now), a non-profit inspired and planned by Khashoggi, among many others that he had discussed and passed on\u00a0through\u00a0his acolyte and associate, a\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www.arabnews.com\/node\/1746401\/saudi-arabia">radical ISIS supporter<\/a>\u00a0turned "political comedian" and Canadian asylee Omar Abdulaziz. On the surface, the goal of the organization is to promote democratic developments and the strengthening of civic institutions in Arab societies. In practice, the project dreamed by the Muslim Brotherhood ideologue Khashoggi is just another thinly veiled front for an alliance of Islamist revolutionaries, radical leftists, Qatar-funded opportunists, and various fellow travelers looking for the second coming of the Arab Spring among some of the Arab monarchies and other traditional societies.\u00a0 Who is on the board of this august institution?\r\n\r\nThe list includes Abdullah\u00a0AlAoudh, the son of the radical Al Qaeda-affiliated preacher\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/t.co\/Plfa0gGEpV?amp=1">Salman Al Ouda<\/a>, educated in the US and now on the quest to clear the name of his father. Another luminary gracing the board of directors is Sari Bashi, a human rights lawyer deeply concerned with Israeli activity in Palestinian territories, another cause dear to Khashoggi\u2019s heart. Sarah Leah Whitson, an activist who has embraced assorted radical causes, and a former Human Rights Watch MENA division executive director, has earned criticism from diverse countries ranging from Morocco to the members of anti-Terrorism Quartet, to Azerbaijan, for managing to be vocally one-sided and unabashedly partisan on every major security issue of concern to those countries, and inevitably and by sheer coincidence to the benefit of the adversaries of those countries.\r\n\r\nAnother one of the participants is EsamOmeish, a surgeon and a Libyan American Islamist known for his lobbying activities and connections to assorted Muslim Brotherhood fronts, who has played a large role in defending the Islamist elements of the Government of National Accord in Libya. Nihad\u00a0Awad, the Executive Director and co-founder of CAIR, a well-known Muslim Brotherhood shill organization best known as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorist charity trials is also connected to DAWN. Then there are non-resident\u00a0fellows, including Doha-based British professor, Marc Owen Jones, known for his takedown of Saudi accounts he claims to be bots, and tied into dubious human rights campaigns targeting Saudi Arabia and other countries, through a network of digital labs, including Citizen Lab, which appear to coordinate on amplifying their attacks, and which at various times have been\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/besacenter.org\/perspectives-papers\/amnesty-international-qatar\/">exposed<\/a>\u00a0for engaging in fraudulent Qatar-backed campaigns. There is a pattern to the type of individuals in this close-knit network, clearly reflecting the values and vision of Khashoggi.\r\n\r\nOne of the first campaigns the newly formed organization launched was an attempt to\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/dawnmena.org\/expressing-cynicism-about-the-governments-achievements-ksa-imprisons-salman-alodah-a-popular-scholar-advocating-for-reform\/">clear<\/a> Salman Al-Ouda, following in the footsteps Abdullah has been already taking on his own. The hagiography provided by DAWN alleges that al-Ouda's\u00a0first arrest in the 1990s was due to his criticism of the Saudi government.\u00a0 He is painted out to be a peaceful advocate for Saudi Arabia\u2019s transition to a constitutional monarchy at the height of the Arab Spring in 2011, and a petitioner for the release of \u201cprisoners of conscience\u201d in 2013.\u00a0 It further alleges that Al\u00a0Ouda\u00a0had been detained by the Saudi government shortly after the ascent of the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and held in various prisoners under a long list of charges, some of which, DAWN alleges appear related to terrorism and financing and support for the Muslim Brotherhood and others include charges for insulting particular officials or questioning the government\u2019s achievements.\r\n\r\nThe central problem with this article is that it not only leaves out details of Al\u00a0Ouda\u2019s\u00a0biography that would most certainly justify investigations and security-related detention, but that it fails to link to any Saudi document pointing to the circumstances of his arrest, detention, or the correct list of charges.\u00a0 As any good propaganda outfit, the list includes plausible charges as well as statements that sound like they could be true to na\u00efve Westerners who listen to well-meaning organizations like DAWN and who believe KSA is a totalitarian regime, with no due process of any sort, where any criticism of government policies can result in an indefinite detention. The authors make no attempt to substantiate their allegations. Instead, they have presented Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0as a reformer and a critic of the Saudi government corruption and of the alleged monopoly of public wealth.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n<strong>Who is Salman Al\u00a0Oudah?<\/strong>\r\n\r\nThe truth about Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0is far less flattering. Starting out as a local preacher, in the 1980s Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0joined the Al\u00a0Sahwa\u00a0(Islamic Awakening) movement which came to spread radicalism and dogma supporting terrorism. It was eventually shut down in the 1990s by the Saudi government, which is what lead to Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0first arrest.\u00a0 Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0was a member of that movement and inculcated anti-Semitic and anti-Western ideology to his growing followers. Upon the dissolution of the\u00a0movement\u00a0he was banned from preaching, but disregarding the sentence, continued to spread this ideology to the public through sermons, eventually ending up in prison for five years. Following his release, Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0claimed to have renounced the path of violence and intolerance and created an image of a changed man. He became a media celebrity, a reform success and deradicalization story, who gained a massive following by dominating talk shows and popular programs across the country.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\nFollowing the 9\/11 terrorist attacks, he appears to have condemned Bin Laden, and his fan following grew. He soon became an established figure on social media and YouTube as much as in the traditional press. But he used his newfound popularity to develop contacts with the Muslim Brotherhood, the Qatar-based International Union of Muslim Scholars and assorted terrorist organizations. Youssef\u00a0Qaradawi\u00a0boasted of a close friendship with Al\u00a0Oudah.\u00a0 Indeed, it appeared that Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0had been deceiving both his followers and the Saudi government since his release. As Hussein Al Ghawi reveals, Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0network of terrorist associates grew along with his mainstream and seemingly moderate appeal. As a Wikileaks cable showed, at\u00a0one point\u00a0Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0came perilously close to being blacklisted on terror-related charges by the United States; however, the French intelligence\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www.youtube.com\/watch?v=zoHlYGlLYTo&list=PLlXFGsvF5INboHuDsFLlCFS7OjNcZcg9c&index=17&t=0s&app=desktop">intervened<\/a>\u00a0and Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0was cleared at the time. What happened?\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\nIn an exclusive interview with the author, the intelligence and counterterrorism expert CD Wells explained that Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0became not only an enormously popular public figure but a \u201cmoney man\u201d who had managed to make friends in high places all over the world, and had free entry into \u201chigh society\u201d. He became a connector among various circles and interests. He knew how to find funding for just about anybody who wanted it. Most importantly, he became the\u00a0highest level\u00a0liaison between Hezbullah and Hamas.\u00a0THanks\u00a0to his uncanny ability to maneuver with ease among seemingly disparate groups, he was raking in money from the terrorist charities, drug trafficking, and various organized schemes, and a significant portion of this ill-begotten wealth funded and benefited the French government. While from the US perspective, this arrangement appeared to be nothing more than thinly veiled government corruption, CD Wells explained, Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0was an invaluable asset for the French intelligence, and so they prevailed upon their American allies to let Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0off the hook.\r\n\r\nWith a newfound sense of impunity, Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0quickly started showing his true colors. By the time the Arab Spring came around he was operating in his element, among\u00a0ISlamists, who were being sold to the United States by Western intelligence agencies and the Obama administrations, as moderates and true voices of the Muslim people.\u00a0 Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0appeared to be right on board with the scheme of Qatar-funded opposition members to bring down the Al Saud family and\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/besacenter.org\/perspectives-papers\/qatar-islamists-saudi-arabia\/">to weaken the Kingdom<\/a>\u00a0by installing a constitutional figurehead monarch who would be controlled by the Brotherhood.\u00a0 Far from being a peaceful democratic activist gesture, Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0push for the \u201creform\u201d of the monarchy, was in fact, a seditious move dictated by Doha and its Islamist counterpart.\u00a0 That particular maneuver did not work out; however, as CD Wells pointed out, Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0had other opportunities. When Mohammed bin Naif came to power, a coterie of corrupt officials with Islamist sympathies, who came to be known as \u201cFalcons of Naif\u201d infiltrated the Saudi Ministry of Interior, and with the assistance of the corrupt chief of intelligence Saad Al Jabri, who was later charged with embezzling $11\u00a0billion\u00a0of public money and who fled to Canada reportedly thanks to the assistance of Turkey\u2019s MIT through his Islamist ties, people like Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0found a welcoming ground for their ideology. Al\u00a0Oudah, as a media personality, soon found himself in the same circles as other operatives on the rise in that time period, such as Jamal Khashoggi and his backers. He networked aggressively building a foundation for making himself indispensable to influential personalities, who shared or tolerated his views.\r\n\r\nAl\u00a0Oudah\u00a0became increasingly outspoken,\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/t.co\/CXI8DuUczt?amp=1">calling for jihad in Syria<\/a>\u00a0and refusing to warn even the young and na\u00efve followers of the dangers of following that path. He said: \u201cHe said: \u201cThere are those who go with the intention of overthrowing this oppressive ruler, but some may have developed goal to establish an Islamic state, for instance, and it is certain that the situation in Syria, Iraq, or any other country, there is no agreement on such a goal, and there is no agreement among all parties. This is an interim goal that can be achieved even after a while. In other words, the resistance fighters and the jihadis must safeguard the shared target, which is to bring down this unjust regime.\u201d He also called for\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/t.co\/fEIpHP0qDx?amp=1">jihad everywhere<\/a>. In a 2004 interview with the\u00a0Ida\u2019at\u00a0TV show, Al-Ouda\u00a0said that when he spoke of jihad, he did not urge the Saudi youth to go for jihad. He added that he urged the residents of Iraq or the countries invaded by enemies to fight their enemy. He said in the same interview: \u201cThe resistance \u2013 as it is called \u2013 or jihad in Iraq, Palestine, Chechnya, or in any country occupied by the military force of an external party. I believe this country has the right to resist this enemy.\u201d\r\n\r\nAl\u00a0Oudah\u00a0also appeared to be a\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/salman_alodah\/status\/486486773598396417">supporter of jihad<\/a>\u00a0in Gaza. His tweet stated: \u201c\u00a0A steadfast faith with modest capabilities\u2026 this proves that jihad is a determination\u2026 The Ummah (nation) needs you more than you need it\u2026 May God be with them and grant them victory.\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/hashtag\/Gaza?src=hashtag_click">#Gaza<\/a>\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/hashtag\/GazaUnderFire?src=hashtag_click">#GazaUnderFire<\/a>" .\r\n\r\nHe also\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/salman_alodah\/status\/363037797566775297">called for Jihad<\/a>\u00a0on other occasions, tweeting that \u201c\u00a0One of the purposes of jihad is the protection of the oppressed and the resistance of tyrants. You have a right to provide support.\u201d He\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/salman_alodah\/status\/54211619189833728">justified<\/a>\u00a0acts of violence and physical battle in advancement of jihad, stating \u201cDespite that the jihad concept is broader than fighting, it remains clearer to say: Islam recognizes fighting when it is an imposed option \u2013 \u201cFighting is enjoined on you, and it is an object of dislike to you.\u201d [2:216]\u201d and further explicitly supporting violent jihad in such comments as \u201c21 - I am not against jihad, but I read into reality, what surrounds it, and its influence in a manner that makes me inclined towards this opinion.\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/hashtag\/JusticeForOurChildrenInIraq?src=hashtag_click">#JusticeForOurChildrenInIraq<\/a>".\r\n\r\nHe\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/twitter.com\/salman_alodah\/status\/383629399792578561">justified violence<\/a>\u00a0against the Egyptian government, saying \u201cWe must welcome everyone who declares war on the present tyranny even if they had different ideologies.\u201d and also indicating his willingness and ability to work with any movement, organization, and group of people who shared the same aims of bringing down traditional governments in the Arab world, even if the agendas ultimately differed. This sort of ideological\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/besacenter.org\/perspectives-papers\/turkey-is-building-a-geopolitical-alliance-between-sunni-and-shiite-islamists\/">flexibility and willingness<\/a>\u00a0to work with diverse movements is prevalent among both Shi\u2019a Islamists such\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/besacenter.org\/perspectives-papers\/houthi-khums-tax-iran\/">as Khomeinists<\/a>\u00a0and Muslim Brotherhood affiliates. Far from being repelled by differences in theology, these groups frequently work together on sharing best practices,\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www.jpost.com\/opinion\/why-did-the-obama-administration-support-morsis-muslim-brotherhood-563641">influence each other<\/a>\u00a0ideologically, adopt new ideological streams, and\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/herald.report\/shia-sunni-islamists-make-common-cause-to-undermine-us-national-security\/">support the same political causes<\/a>\u00a0in the West. This statement may offer an indirect insight into Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0emerging role as the nexus between Shi\u2019a and Muslim Brotherhood affiliated organizations, just as well as other groups and organizations he made contact with.\r\n\r\nAl\u00a0Ouda\u00a0grew more brazen with time, and his sermons which had attracted and radicalized many young Saudis, earned the attention and approval of Osama bin Laden. Al\u00a0Ouda\u00a0was no moderate, and despite many years of changing his colors according to the circumstances, his actions did not escape the scrutiny of the Saudi government. For the last three years, the Khashoggi fan network had spent advocating on Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0behalf to the West, and claiming that this moderate preacher was facing unfair persecution by the Saudi authorities for benign criticism of the government. However, in the past several months, the calls for the US intervention on his behalf increased and became the spotlight of the\u00a0network's\u00a0activities, with his son leading the charge.\r\n\r\n<strong>What is the importance of Salman al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0case to the pro-Islamist network and why now?<\/strong>\r\n\r\nA convergence of factors brough this story to the surface. First, since the death of Jamal Khashoggi, there has been an ongoing aggressive campaign involving to various extent all of the\u00a0above-mentioned\u00a0actors, in attacking the Saudi government and placing the blame for Khashoggi\u2019s demise on the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. The movement had lost important financial and ideological backers following the corruption probe of 2017; the motivation to retaliate against the person responsible for this blow is self-evident.\r\n\r\nTherefore,\u00a0any issue that could be used to generate pressure in Western countries concerned with human rights, but lacking the tools to navigate the Saudi society and legal system had been thrust into the spotlight, including Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0who is considered one of the ideological pillars of this network. If Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0can no longer freely engage in his activities, it undermines the goals of the movement; therefore, his case became a double-edged sword, a move to attack the\u00a0government but\u00a0also a necessary cause to return to open operations. The case took on more urgency after Mohammed bin Naif was placed under arrest and the government released the information about Sa\u2019ad\u2019 Al Jabri\u2019s unpalatable activities. These moves undermined the system that the Qatari-Islamist network had been building; the former Crown Prince and his counterpart in the intelligence had served an important function in providing Western intelligence agencies, media, and assorted NGOs\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/besacenter.org\/perspectives-papers\/corrupt-islamists-saudi-arabia\/">with access, funding, and a sense of purpose<\/a>.\r\n\r\nThe increasing integration of the Middle East through normalization agreements between Israel and two of the Gulf countries are a grave concern to Qatar, which may lose leverage in the region in the event of a new security block that would be opposed to Doha\u2019s sponsorship of Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, Houthis, and Hezbullah.\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/www.thenational.ae\/world\/mena\/qatar-s-funding-for-hezbollah-threatened-us-troops-report-claims-1.1059604">Revelations<\/a>\u00a0about Doha\u2019s support for Hezbullah directly endanger Al\u00a0Oudah\u2019s\u00a0sensitive work; if he is not available to mitigate the damage from the release of this information, the network faces the danger of increased scrutiny and unraveling.\r\n\r\nWhile the son may have initially spearheaded the campaign for sentimental reasons, when Abdullah\u00a0Alaoudh\u00a0joined forces with CAIR, Qatar\u2019s digital campaign mastermind Marc Owen Jones, and others, the issue quickly turned from familial to political. For\u00a0Alaoudh, who studied in Western universities, saying anything that might let him bring his father out of the line of danger may seem like a natural personal inclination; however, the moment he joined the Khashoggi caboose, he married himself to the cause. According to CD Wells, however,\u00a0Alaoudh\u00a0may never have been the innocent son divorced from his father\u2019s projects and ideology. CD Wells points out that none other than Ali Soufan, the former FBI Special Agent considered to be a heroic counterterrorism operative, and who now works for Qatar in various capacities, including as a senior security contractor and as a propagandist, who had\u00a0<a href="https:\/\/republic-underground.com\/confronting-the-myths-about-saudi-arabias-role-in-9-11-terrorist-attacks\/">spearheaded<\/a>\u00a0the perception of the Kingdom\u2019s responsibility for the 9\/11 attacks due to the 15 terrorists being Saudi nationals, is the younger\u00a0Alaoudh\u2019s\u00a0mentor.\u00a0 Thanks to his contacts at CAIR, says CD Wells,\u00a0Alaoudh\u00a0is also close to two of the Islamist members of the US Congress, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.\r\n\r\nWhether\u00a0Alaoudh\u00a0himself is ideologically inclined to align with the Khashoggi fellow travelers, the timing of the uptick in activity on this front is quite obvious.\u00a0The\u00a0Qatar-backed crew has been consistent in attacking Donald Trump frequently aligning with radical leftist groups in the US in choice of extreme rhetoric and relentless criticisms of both the foreign and domestic policy. The timing of the official entry of DAWN into the Washington scene a little over a month before the elections is not coincidental. The Al\u00a0Oudah\u00a0case could be one of the contributing factors in swaying the results of the elections against Donald Trump and in favor of Joe Biden who has demonstrated his willingness to work with CAIR, Linda Sarsour, and other associates of the network, as has his running mate Kamala Harris, who is perceived to be close to CAIR. This is also an opportunity to bring in leftist\u00a0intersectionalist\u00a0crowd onboard with the cause. Abdullah\u00a0Aloudh\u00a0has implausibly claimed that his father went to prison for his defense of human rights for homosexuals; in fact, a video linked in the Arab News Preachers of Hate profile for Al\u00a0Ouda, points to the opposite \u2013 Al\u00a0Ouda\u00a0had harshly attacked homosexuals and homosexuality; every word in his defense by his son and others had been a lie.\r\n\r\nAl\u00a0Ouda\u2019s\u00a0political controversies and tweets have not been presented at all to the Western public, relying on general disinterest, lack of due diligence or inclination to corroborate the media, and stereotypes about Saudi Arabia.\r\n\r\nEvery member of\u00a0Alaoudh\u2019s\u00a0association sees Donald Trump and Republicans as standing in the way to complete the infiltration and\u00a0takeover\u00a0of American institutions.