In his 2003 book, Sleeping with the Devil, Baer traces the Saudi government’s finance of Takfiri terrorism in Chechnya.
“After I left the CIA, I found my answer in a batch of Russian intelligence reports that drew a convincingly direct link between the Saudi government and the Chechen rebels. It was not a question of Saudi charity money finding its way to the Chechens,” writes Baer.
In June 1998, he said, forty Chechens were “quietly brought to a secret military camp located seventy-five miles southeast of Riyadh” to undergo military training for four months.
“A lot of time was set aside for indoctrination into Wahhabi Islam. [Prince] Salman, the governor of Riyadh and the full brother of [then Saudi ruler] King Fahd, was the camp’s sponsor,” writes Baer.
Baer, who spent 21 years with the Central Intelligence Agency, said Saudi Arabia was “directly sponsoring terrorism.”
He noted that the money US pays for crude oil supplied by Saudi Arabia serves terrorist activities.
“For American arms makers, Saudi Arabia is an industry subsector all its own, with its own peculiar rules. We buy oil from Saudi Arabia, refine it, and put it in our automobiles, and a certain small percentage of what we pay for it ends up funding terrorist acts against America and American institutions at home and abroad,” wrote Baer.
He said the center of the global economy is a “kingdom built on thievery, one that nurtures terrorism, destroys any possibility of a middle class based on property rights, and promotes slavery and prostitution.”
Baer makes it clear in the book that the US has ignored Saudi Arabia’s support for terrorist groups like al-Qaeda in a bid to keep business afloat with the oil-rich monarchy.
He referred to the 9/11 attacks in the US, saying the wife of then Saudi Ambassador to the US Prince Bandar bin Sultan had been sending money to the plane hijackers.
“One report sent to the United Nations Security Council indicated that Saudi Arabia transferred half a billion dollars to al-Qaeda in the ten years beginning 1992. Old assumptions are off the table. And the new realities are far from comforting,” wrote Baer.