Excuse my ignorance, perhaps I'm not "getting" something here, but this entire story that's been touted by the extreme left AND right seems like nothing more than a red herring to me.
Let's say it was true, that a group of Saudi citizens were flown out of the country shortly after 9/11. Two possibilities are then the explaination:
1. That our government was somehow involved, either actively or passively, in "covering up" some link between themselves and the terrorists. That is to say, this story of Saudis being whisked away shortly after 9/11 is only the TIP of some kind of global conspiracy that would make even Fox Mulder himself shudder.
2. The government, more specifically, President Bush realized that these people probably felt uncomfortable in the US after the worst terrorist attack in our nations history. In his desire (perhaps misplaced, but an HONEST desire) to maintain good relations with SA, he allowed the royal family members to leave. The reports of their early departure were denied, simply because his honest desire to maintain good relations with SA WOULD be twisted into some kind of government conspiracy, or pure incompetence on his part, or both, JUST as it is now.
I think the rational conclusion is #2. Kind of disappointing, that he (Bush) wouldn't put enough faith in his supporters to tell the truth about it, but hardly proof of a national conspiracy (or international), which, (and this is an important point to consider):
IF WE REJECT #2, THEN WE CAN ONLY BE LEFT WITH #1!
So, why believe in something so bizzare, so Orwellian, as option #1, if we don't have to? Why worry about something like that, when a perfectly reasonable explaination exists otherwise?
No reason at all, unless one permits conspiracy theories to substitute for facts.
Assuming the only choices are the two you presented.
At this point, I think it's too early to conclude anything because we still don't have all the facts.
As I wrote before, these are not the only two possibilities.
A third is raised in the WND article I posted above. That the Saudis royals were whisked, as you say, from the country to prevent them from being detained as material witnesses.
"At the time the members of the Saudi elite were allowed to leave, the Bush administration was preparing to detain Muslims in the U.S. as material witnesses to the attacks."
Your premise that if "you reject #2 you must support #1" is a distant break from logic but that is not really the point.
This is the sort of thing that is being trumpetted to get ready for the US debut of Moore's film Farenheit 911. The premise of the entire film is that the Bush family have been arm-in-arm buddies with the Saudi royal family since before WWII. This news piece is intended to demonstrate that the friendship between Bush and the Saudis is so strong that he made sure that they were taken care of when Americans had to go without air service and other conveniences.
This is going to be a major theme of the Dem's attack this fall.
This also speaks to the belief that Prsident Bush has about Islam: "Islam means peace" and "We know that Islam is fully compatible with liberty and tolerance".
Perhaps he believes that all those who he percieves as moderate or nominal Muslims actually have a western world-view.
Every ATC controller out there would say "They must have permission, don't they"?