The evidence showed up last month in Riyadh, where drivers woke up to find leaflets stuffed into the handles of their car doors and in their windshields. They were promoting the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, which has grabbed the world’s attention by seizing parts of northern Iraq. The militant group is also using social media, such as Twitter and YouTube, to recruit young Saudi men.
Already at war with the governments of Iraq and Syria, ISIL also poses a potential threat to the Al Saud family’s rule over the world’s biggest oil exporter. Saudi authorities gained the upper hand in their battle with al-Qaeda, which targeted the kingdom a decade ago, yet analysts said the latest generation of militants may be harder to crush.