Saudi Arabia has faced a full-fledged Islamic insurgency since May 2003. In combating this insurgency, the kingdom is hampered by the lack of loyal security forces, which seem to be penetrated by al-Qa’ida. In the beginning the regime tried the old methods of co-optation, including a generous amnesty to bring in the insurgents. However, it has recently discovered that it must go on a determined offensive, and it is this strategy that has brought several recent successes. Crushing this insurgency is Riyadh’s top priority, and it should be Washington ‘s as well–far ahead of reform or democracy.