In December 1967, Saudi King Faisal bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud added a new responsibility to his younger brother Prince Salman's duties as the governor of Riyadh: raise funds to support Palestinians resisting the Israeli takeover of Jerusalem. The funding was part of a broader change in Saudi foreign policy 50 years ago that put the kingdom on a collision course with the United States. Changes in American policy toward Jerusalem could do it again.
The 31-year-old prince took up his new mission with zeal and found an enthusiastic audience among Saudis — royals and the general public — eager to support the Palestinian resistance after the humiliation of the 1967 war. The Popular Committee for Aiding Martyrs, Families and Mujahedeen in Palestine raised tens of millions in the kingdom and is still at work today.