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Thought of the Day:
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) saw women and slaves as people of Paradise:

"The messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) said:
I was shown paradise and I saw there the wife of Abu Talha (Umm Sulaim), and I heard someone walking there in front of me and it was Bilal." [Hadith Sahih Muslim, kitabu fadail as-sahaba radi Allahu ‘unhum]

[Comment: Umm Sulaim, r.a., was a real fighter in the Islamic struggle, and Bilal, r.a., met his former master in battle and killed him, and later became a top person in the Islamic community.]

CHECHNYA: A bomb attack in Grozny, Chechnya, forced the Russian occupiers to cancel their celebration of Victory Day against Germany in 1945. Later, May 11, a massive bomb attack by mujahideen north of Grozny brought down the entire building housing the puppet 'government' [comparable to that of Karzai in Kabul], killing at least 30 government officials and wounding another 100. Three ancillary buildings were also nearly demolished.

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA: [Breaking News.] May 12, 6 PM Eastern Standard Time [EST] first reports indicated on NPR that there had been THREE explosions in Riyadh at housing estates for westerners. A 4th explosion was reported at 6:30.

Reports on U.S. TV indicate that a serious attack has taken place. The situation is so bloody that the Saudis are not permitting media at the scene of the attack. Observers say that the Saudis are attempting to clean up the scene before permitting media coverage. SEVEN HOURS LATER, 1.30 AM., EST, the Saudis were still hiding exact information on the attack. Military forces have sealed off the area.

It's amazing that in a major Arab capital, U.S. media either do not have a representative or are unwilling to report because the report is so hurtful.

However, the reports which have come in indicate the seriousness of the attack. The U.S. ambassador in Saudi Arabia told CNN by phone:
1. The resident complexes attacked house people who are:
i. U.S. defense contractors
ii. U.S. advisers to the National Guard [internal security forces allied to the U.S.]
iii. U.S. advisers to the Saudi army [which is entirely armed and organized by the U.S.]
2. One major residence complex was reduced to rubble in the attack.
3. No casualty figures are available but at least 40 Americans have been wounded and perhaps 2 or more killed.
4. The situation is so serious that the U.S. government has issued an emergency 800 number which families of Americans in Riyadh can call.

Other reports indicate that security at the housing complexes was EXTREMELY TIGHT but the attackers apparently shot their way in and then set off the explosions including, probably, one truck bomb. One American woman told CNN by phone that she heard gun shots and hid, thinking that gunmen had entered the complex, and then the explosion went off.

The 4th explosion hit a joint U.S.-Saudi business venture. Others housed in the heavily guarded military complexes are from Britain and Germany.

One eyewitness said on phone to CNN said in bad English that he had seen ambulances carrying away the dead and the wounded over a period of an hour and a half.

BACKGROUND: A week back the Saudi authorities found a cache of weapons and were looking for 19 mujahideen. None of them have been found which indicates support for the attackers among the Arabian people.
Observers say that unless the attackers are caught soon and punished, this attack, in the Saudi capital, might be the beginning of the end of the Saudi dynasty. The emergence of Islamic power in Arabia within the next few years would change the history of the Muslim world.

2003-05-13 Tue 17:54ct