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Friday, June 13, 2003
And if that doesn't work, baptize 'em

Good news from Saudi Arabia: they're now telling al-Qaida members directly that they're bad Muslims:

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia - Saudi investigators are using an unusual tactic in their interrogations of al-Qaida suspects arrested after last month's suicide bombings here: They're bringing in clerics to lecture the militants on the nature of Islam.

The clerics are telling the prisoners that they have strayed from their religion and that they must atone by confessing to everything they know about plans for future terrorist attacks, according to a Western diplomat and a Saudi official.

The article goes on (as articles are wont to do) to say that this tactic may or may not work:

Some analysts question whether the presence of clerics during interrogations would have any impact on militants who are convinced that their radical brand of Islam is the only true form, and that other Muslims who disagree with them are infidels who should be killed.

"I am not sure that religious debate would work with some of these people," said Khalil al-Khalil, a professor of education at the Imam Mohammed bin Saud Islamic University in Riyadh. "They have been brainwashed to a point of no return."

But hey, it's worth a shot. Let's hope it's a sign that Saudis are finally and truly becoming less and less willing to make excuses for the terrorists in their midst.

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