Reports Link Stones and Terrorism

Diamond trading is a source of revenue for al Qaeda, the terrorist organization suspected of masterminding the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, the Washington Post reported recently. A Nov. 16 article in the Wall Street Journal cited the tanzanite trade as another source of al Qaeda funding, and shortly after that article appeared, QVC Inc., an international leader in electronic retailing, became the first major retailer to suspend sales of tanzanite. The Post story, quoting European and U.S. intelligence officials, said that "there is a strong indication that al Qaeda, perhaps anticipating its accounts would be frozen after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States, sought to protect its money by sinking it into gemstones, a commodity that can be easily hidden, holds its value, and remains almost untraceable. … U.S. and European intelligence officials … realized on
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