Saturday, June 27, 2015

WikiLeaks Exposes Saudi Liquor Runs

It comes as no surprise that Sunni Saudi Arabia, which views Shiite Iran as its greatest regional rival, would take an interest in the spread of Shiite Islam. But some observations go into a startling level of minutiae.
Saudi diplomats are careful to estimate, for example, how many Eritrean students are studying abroad in Iran (40) and the number of Shiite Muslims in Mauritania (50,000). They were also concerned when a public debate was held between Shiite and Sunni Muslims near the Philippines' Al-Dahab mosque in Manila. Even though Shiites make up less than 1 percent of the Muslim population in the Philippines, a memo dated Feb. 4, 2010 appears to express alarm that the religious minority's message "managed to get out of its secretive circle to the public."
"It is obsessive," said Toby Matthiesen, the author of a book about religious politics in Gulf Arab states and a research fellow at the University of Cambridge. "It proves the theory that Saudi foreign policy is at least in part sectarian and seeks to contain Shiism and not just Iran." Read Full

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