RealNews

Counterterror Chief Stands Up for Saudis

President Bush’s counterterrorism chief said Tuesday that the administration is satisfied Saudi Arabia’s government is doing all it can to clamp down on militants despite a surge in attacks against westerners there. “Clearly, the terrorists have taken their operations to a new level” in the kingdom, said the official, Fran Townsend, whose formal title is assistant to the president for homeland security. She spoke in an interview with The Associated Press on the same day as the second deadly shooting of a westerner in the kingdom in three days. But, Townsend said, Saudi security forces are “obviously having some success,” too. Most of the recent violence directed at Americans has come in the form of gun attacks, rather than massive bombings like the 1996 truck bombing of the Khobar Towers dormitory that killed 19 U.S. military personnel, she said. Full Story

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