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Transform Saudi institutions

July 18, 2007

Re "Iraq insurgency said to include many Saudis," July 15

The Times' piece is glaring proof that the Saudi ruling princes and their ostensible enemy, Osama bin Laden, have identical objectives in Iraq: no democracy, no majority rule, no women's or minority rights and, above all, very limited oil production, which could bring prices down and undermine the Saudi monopoly.

Winning the war against religious ideologues and terrorism will require a total transformation of Saudi institutions that conceive, hatch and nurture potential suicide bombers.

As difficult as transforming Saudi institutions may be, it is what the United States, its democratic allies and oil-consuming countries should work to achieve if future catastrophic attacks and instability in the interdependent global economy are to be averted. As long as the sources of extremism and terrorism are not eradicated, killing a few terrorists here and there will only produce more killers.

ALI H. ALYAMI

Washington

The writer is executive director of the Center for Democracy and Human Rights in Saudi Arabia.

*

It is a relief that someone is exposing Bush administration propaganda. Just one concern: The statistics in the article account for 70% of the insurgency. Where is the other 30% coming from?

JAMES ROGERS

Fayetteville, N.C.

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