Monday Jan 13, 201405:02 AM GMT
Russia may hit back at KSA for Volgogard attacks
Russian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin
Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:1AM
By Finian Cunningham
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Russian intelligence has now reportedly obtained solid proof that Saudi Arabia was directly involved in the twin terror attacks on the city of Volgograd.

The attacks killed more than 32 people and injured over 100 others. Most of the victims were civilians.

According to an informed Russian official source, reported by the Fars News Agency, Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) has informed President Vladimir Putin of the Saudi link to the Volgograd massacre.

This will come as no surprise to Putin. The Russian leader was warned by the Saudi intelligence chief Prince Bandar Bin Sultan during a heated four-hour private meeting back in July that Wahhabi-sponsored terrorists based in the North Caucasus region of Russia would be targeting the Sochi Winter Olympics.

The Sochi Games are due to open on February 7. Volgograd is a key transport hub linking Moscow with the southern Russian territory and the Black Sea resort city of Sochi in particular, where the Winter Olympics are to be held.

The double bombings on Volgograd’s transport system on 29-30 December were therefore unmistakably an assault on Russia’s hosting of the Olympics. The atrocity caused the deaths of several women and children, and in the aftermath President Putin was livid in his disgust at the attacks. He said there was no justification, whatsoever, for the killing of innocent civilians and he vowed to “destroy the terrorists” behind the bombings.

This raises the onerous question: What will Putin do next if he has, in fact, been told that the authors of the Volgograd crime against humanity are connected to the Saudi rulers? This could be construed as an act of war.

There are unconfirmed reports that Putin and his senior intelligence officers have already drawn up plans to “destroy Saudi Arabia” over its systematic sponsoring of terrorism on Russian territory.

The Volgograd atrocity is just the latest in a long series of
terrorist acts connected to Saudi-sponsored radicals in the North Caucasus. Back in October, another suicide bomb on a packed bus in Volgograd left six dead.

The group believed to be behind these attacks is known as the Caucasus Caliphate, led by Doko Umarov. Saudi Arabia is a major source of funds for the Caucasus Caliphate, which espouses the same fundamentalist
ideology as the Saudi-sponsored Takfiris operating in Syria, Lebanon, Pakistan, Yemen and Iraq.

Based in Chechnya and Dagestan, Umarov has publicly stated that “all means necessary would be used to derail” the Sochi Olympics.

Previously, the same network carried out suicide bomb attacks on Moscow’s metro system in 2010 and 2011, which caused dozens of deaths.

The Caucasus extremists are known to have close logistical connection with both American and Saudi military intelligence.

Indeed, from the early 1990s following the breakup of the Soviet Union, the Americans and the Saudis redeployed their Afghan Al Qaeda tactics into the southern Russian territories as a way to further destabilize Moscow. One of the architects of this plan was former CIA chief William Casey. This US and Saudi covert operations fuelled the
two Chechen wars of 1994-95 and 1999-2000.

Although Moscow has since managed to subdue the large-scale violence, the Caucasus Caliphate remains a potent source of terrorism and sabotage, as the latest horror in Volgograd all too grimly attests.

Saudi spy chief Bandar’s earlier threat to Putin that the Sochi Games were at risk of attack from the Caucasus-based terror groups was thus no idle threat.

In retrospect his words amount to self-indictment. Bandar reportedly boasted to Putin: “We control them (the Caucasus militants).” This implies that Saudi Arabia can turn on and off the conduct of these terror groups. That places Saudi Arabia as the ultimate author of a catalogue of crimes that Russia has endured for the most part of 20
years, the latest being in the city of Volgograd.

It is not known what precise evidence Russian intelligence has lately uncovered that allegedly pinpoints Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the Volgograd massacre.

But there is already copious circumstantial evidence, as well as Bandar’s own braggadocio.

One of the suicide bombers in the Volgograd double attack has been identified as Russian national Pavel Pechyonkin (32). He reportedly traveled to Syria last year and fought in the ranks of Saudi-backed extremists trying to topple the government of Bashar al Assad.

Many other Russian nationals have also been recruited by Saudi Arabia’s terror sponsors to wage regime-change war in Syria. Perhaps it was in Syria that the Volgograd bomber was recruited for that specific mission.

If the Russians have acquired hard evidence of Saudi collusion in terrorism on their soil, there is firm legal ground for Russia to exact retaliation under the doctrine of self-defense.

In a second meeting between Bandar and Putin, the Russian leader reportedly told the Saudi in no uncertain terms that his support for terrorism was “a double-edged sword” that would eventually inflict damage on those who wield it.

For years now Saudi Arabia has gotten away with covert state-sponsored terrorism disrupting its Middle East neighbors. Syria, Lebanon and Iraq are but the latest victims. The Saudis have done this with impunity in the service of American imperialism, just as Zionist Israel has likewise functioned as an imperial crime syndicate.

But now Saudi Arabia may have swung its double-edged sword too recklessly. It has apparently been caught red-handed in an outrage against the Russian bear. Prince Bandar, we can be sure, will from now on be making extra checks beneath his car.

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Finian Cunningham (born 1963) has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. He is a Master’s graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in journalism. He is also a musician and songwriter. For nearly 20 years, he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organisations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent. Originally from Belfast, Ireland, he is now located in East Africa as a freelance journalist, where he is writing a book on Bahrain and the Arab Spring, based on eyewitness experience working in the Persian Gulf as an editor of a business magazine and subsequently as a freelance news correspondent. The author was deported from Bahrain in June 2011 because of his critical journalism in which he highlighted systematic human rights violations by regime forces. He is now a columnist on international politics for Press TV and the Strategic Culture Foundation. More articles by Finian Cunningham
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