Today In Fact, 20 Novmber

On this day in 1979 some 500 militant Wahhabi Islamists stormed the holiest mosque of the Islamic faith and declared the arrival of the Mahdi or redeemer. It took 6 weeks for Saudi authorities, with the help of the CIA and French military to clear the Mosque and quell the uprising.

The leader of the rebellion against the Saudi royal family was Juhaman bin Seif al-Uteibi who declared his brother-in-law, Mohammed Abdullah al-Qahtani as the Mahdi. They both died fighting in the Mosque. Osama bin laden was among the group that escaped.

– Posted by Douglas Racionzer (