*What I am hearing is that one of the targets of the Riyadh bombing was the Saudi Arabian National Guard, which is headed by Prince Abdullah and which guards the royal family. It had also been hit in July, 1995, by a group connected to Usamah Bin Laden. The SA National Guard was being trained at that compound by the Vinnell Corporation, a “mercenary” group that employs ex-US military. It is said to be a subsidiary of BDM, a defense consulting firm.
These targets are typical of the ones chosen by al-Qaeda, encompassing both the Saudi royal family and its security (the local or regional enemy of al-Qaeda) and the United States (the more distant backer of the local enemy). Despite the gory success of this attack, the operation is an admission of impotence. If al-Qaeda could make a practical revolution in Saudi Arabia, it would already have done so. And, its targetting of the “distant enemy,” the US, has only brought hundreds of thousands of US troops into the region and the overthrow of two anti-American governments.