Sen. Kerrey's affidavit said it was "incorrect" for the Saudis to claim that the 9/11 Commission had "exonerated" them. "Stated simply, the 9/11 Commission did not have the time, opportunity or resources to pursue all potentially relevant evidence on that important question, and the American public deserves a more comprehensive inquiry into the issue," wrote Kerrey.
The affidavits are part of a multibillion-dollar lawsuit that has been working its way through the federal courts since 2002. Though the U.S. Justice Department has joined the Saudis in trying to have lawsuits against the Saudis thrown out of court, an appellate court said late last year that foreign nations were not immune to lawsuits under some terrorism claims, meaning parts of the Saudi case may be reheard.
Lawyers for the Saudis have moved to have the affidavits disallowed. They did not immediately respond to a request for comment from ABC News. The Saudi embassy also did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Saudis have always denied any connection to the 9/11 attacks. Fifteen of the 19 hijackers who crashed planes into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pennsylvania were Saudi.
According to Sen. Graham, open questions include possible financial support of al Qaeda by Saudi charities, and the role of a Saudi resident of California who was in contact with both the hijackers and Saudi officials. "There was a direct line," wrote Graham, "between at least some of the terrorists who carried out the September 11th attacks and the government of Saudi Arabia, and [a] Saudi government agent living in the United States, Omar al Bayoumi, provided direct assistance to September 11th hijackers Nawaf al Hazmi and Khalid al Mihdhar."
"Finally someone who knows some of the truth about 9/11 is standing up and saying 'wait a minute, we didn't give those guys the all clear' as Saudi Arabia has been saying for several years," said Sharon Premoli of Vermont, who was in the World Trade Center when it was struck. "Exonerated, I don't think so!"