Sorry for the break in tradition for IST on weekends but some stories are too important to wait.
Back in 2018 the Saudi government murdered a journalist because he was a staunch critic of the Saudi royals…….
Pres. Biden has done something that Trump refused to do and released the intel report that points the finger at the crown prince of KSA as the instigator of the murder.
The US released an intelligence report on Friday that directly implicates Saudi Arabia’s crown prince in the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The central conclusion of the report was widely expected given that intelligence officials were said to have reached it soon after the brutal killing of Khashoggi, a critic of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s authoritarian consolidation of power, per the AP. Still, since the finding had not been officially released until now, the public assignment of responsibility amounted to an extraordinary rebuke of the 35-year-old crown prince. US intelligence officials concluded that bin Salman approved the operation that led to Khashoggi’s killing, per the Washington Post. (The US-based Khashoggi was a columnist for the Post.) The move could escalate pressure on the Biden administration to hold the kingdom accountable.
The report was released one day after a later-than-usual courtesy call from President Biden to Saudi King Salman, though it wasn’t clear whether they discussed the killing. On the day of his death, Khashoggi visited the Saudi consulate in Turkey to pick up documents for his wedding. Once inside, he died at the hands of more than a dozen Saudi security and intelligence officials who had assembled ahead of his arrival. Surveillance cameras had tracked his route and those of his alleged killers in Istanbul in the hours leading up to his killing. A Turkish bug planted at the consulate reportedly captured the sound of a saw dismembering Khashoggi’s body within an hour of his entering the building. His remains have not been found. The prince said in 2019 he took “full responsibility” for the killing since it happened on his watch, but denied ordering it.
Read a summary of the report for yourself….
Now we have the culprit responsible brutal murder of Khashoggi……;what did Biden do?
US sanctioned Saudi officials over the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi after the release of a US intelligence report that said Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known as MBS, ordered the killing. Although MBS, the de facto leader of Saudi Arabia, was absent from the list of blacklisted Saudis.
In response to the report, the State Department announced a new visa restriction called the “Khashoggi Ban.” The ban allows the US to impose visa restrictions on individuals who engage in “extraterritorial counter-dissident activities” against journalists or activists. Khashoggi was killed inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
The first Khashoggi Ban restrictions were implemented on 76 Saudis. The State Department described them as “individuals believed to have been engaged in threatening dissidents overseas, including but not limited to the Khashoggi killing.”
The Treasury Department also announced sanctions on Saudi operatives believed to be responsible for Khashoggi’s death. The measures targeted members of Saudi Arabia’s Rapid Intervention Force that were sent to kill Khashoggi.
The Treasury Department also targeted Ahmad Hassan Mohammed al Asiri, the former deputy head of Saudi Arabia’s General Intelligence Presidency, who the US says was assigned to carry out the Khashoggi hit.
The Biden administration is facing calls from Congress to take action against MBS for the killing. A Biden administration official told Politico that the White House decided against sanctioning MBS, fearing that it would put the US in an extremely “hostile” position with Saudi Arabia.
For their part, Saudi Arabia said it “completely rejects” the US intelligence assessment. Riyadh’s story has been that Khashoggi was killed by rogue operatives and that MBS had no knowledge of the plan.
The Biden administration has said it will reevaluate the US-Saudi relationship. Besides the sanctions, President Biden has also announced an end to US support for Saudi Arabia’s “offensive” operations in Yemen. The US suspended some Saudi arms sales, and a report from Reuters on Friday said the administration is considering stopping sales for “defensive” weapons as well.
NOTHING for the culprit, MbS……why?
Just another incident that we are kowtowing to the Saudis for some damn reason….and I thought it was pathetic the way we do that with Israel but now we have another nation that we feel we must massage their egos to keep them buying stuff from our defense industries.
Once again we care nothing for human rights as long as we keep our hand in their pockets.
It is a pathetic response….and I expect more of the same from the Biden administration.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”