Why Isn’t Qatar Named as a State Sponsor of Terrorism?

April 24 2017

On Saturday, Secretary of Defense James Mattis visited the Gulf emirate of Qatar, home to a large and sophisticated American air base crucial for U.S. operations in the Middle East. Jonathan Schanzer hopes that Mattis exerted pressure on Qatar to crack down on the terrorist financiers who operate in its borders with impunity. And, serious as this problem is, it is not the only one:

Qatar harbors the bad guys, too. In 2015, two senior Taliban officials traveled in and out of Qatar to meet members of the notorious Taliban Five—high-level prisoners from Guantanamo Bay who were traded to Qatari custody by the Obama administration for the American prisoner Bowe Bergdahl. The Qataris facilitated the swap through the Taliban embassy they helped set up in Doha. Leaked cables show U.S. officials have long worried about how the Taliban and others may “exploit Qatar as a fundraising locale.”

There is also the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, which enjoys safe haven in Qatar and also raises plenty of cash. Outgoing leader Khaled Meshal has long operated out of Doha. The Hamas military official Saleh Arouri—suspected of masterminding the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens, sparking the 2014 war between Hamas and Israel—is [also] now reportedly in Qatar after being booted from Turkey. . . .

Despite all this, officials in Washington often turn a blind eye. . . . Neither George W. Bush nor Barack Obama punished the Qataris for terrorism finance. Indeed, Qatar should have been designated as a state sponsor of terrorism by the State Department. It never was.

Get unlimited access to Mosaic: Subscribe now

Welcome to Mosaic

Register now to get two more stories FREE.

Register Now

Get unlimited access to Mosaic: Subscribe now

Welcome to Mosaic

Register now to get two more stories FREE.

Register Now

Read more at New York Post

More about: Al Qaeda, Hamas, Politics & Current Affairs, Taliban, U.S. Foreign policy, War on Terror

Europe Dithers While Iran Enriches

Jan. 20 2020

In May, when Tehran announced that it would no longer abide by the limits set by the 2015 nuclear agreement on its enrichment of uranium, Europe found legal excuses not to react. When, earlier this month, the Islamic Republic went a step further, renouncing any limits on enrichment, the EU—led by France and Germany, both parties to the deal—at last initiated a formal process that might lead to the re-imposition of sanctions. Bobby Ghosh comments on the dangers of European apathy:

Sign up to read more.

You've read all your free articles for this month. Sign up now for unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture and politics.

Register Now

Sign up to read more.

You've read all your free articles for this month. Sign up now for unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture and politics.

Register Now

Read more at Bloomberg

More about: European Union, France, Germany, Hassan Rouhani, Iran, Iran nuclear program