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Book details Saudi scorched-earth defense

May 9, 2005 at 6:42 PM   |   Comments

LOS ANGELES, May 9 (UPI) -- A new book details what it portrays as a scorched-earth plan developed by Saudi Arabia to prevent its oilfields from falling into foreign hands.

According to an item on Arianna Huffington's "Huffington Post" blog, the Saudi Arabian officials have a plan to destroy the nation's oil wells and infrastructure using not only conventional explosives, but also radioactive "dirty bombs."

The plans reportedly were originated during the 1979 ouster of the Shah of Iran, which author Gerald Posner said left other Persian Gulf rulers wondering if the United States could be counted on if they were ever invaded.

The Saudis decided to give their plan some teeth by using nuclear radiation to render the oil facilities useless for years to come. Posner said some intelligence officials opined the Saudis exaggerated their plan in order to light a fire under western spies they suspected were eavesdropping.

The book "Secrets of the Kingdom: Inside Story of the Saudi-U.S. Connection" goes on sale May 17.

© 2005 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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