FINANCING TERRORISTS (15203/05)
Letter from the Chairman to Rt Hon Hazel
Blears MP, Minister of State for Policing, Security and Community
Safety, Home Office
Sub-Committee F (Home Affairs) of the House
of Lords Select Committee on the European Union considered this
document at a meeting on 1 February. The Committee cleared this
document from scrutiny.
The Communication is based on the assumption
that prevention of terrorist financing is an important weapon
in the fight against terrorism. The Committee is not convinced
that such initiatives would prevent the worst terrorist incidents.
The Final Report of the 9/11 Commission states that "the
9/11 plotters spent somewhere between $400,000 and $500,000 to
plan and conduct their attack" (section 5.4 of the report).
The Madrid and London bombings have been shown to have had only
a very modest financial input.
In particular, paragraph 3.1 of the Communication
emphasises the importance of anti-money laundering initiatives.
We draw to your attention a statement by Dr Anthony H Cordesman,
a former director of intelligence assessment in the Office of
the US Secretary of Defense who, in as address last month to the
Royal United Services Institute Conference on Transnational Terrorism,
said bluntly: "Money laundering initiatives are largely a
waste of time".
2 February 2006