The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
 BlogviewPatrick Cockburn Archive
Saudi Arabia Plans for Us to Forget About the Murder of Khashoggi
🔊 Listen RSS
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • BShow CommentNext New CommentNext New ReplyRead More
ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
AgreeDisagreeLOLTroll
These buttons register your public Agreement, Disagreement, Troll, or LOL with the selected comment. They are ONLY available to recent, frequent commenters who have saved their Name+Email using the 'Remember My Information' checkbox, and may also ONLY be used three times during any eight hour period.
Ignore Commenter Follow Commenter
Search Text Case Sensitive  Exact Words  Include Comments
List of Bookmarks

The hideous cruelty of the murder and dismemberment of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by a Saudi death squad almost a year ago still jumps from the pages of the latest apparent transcript of the conversation between his killers as they wait for him to arrive at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

“Is it possible to put the body in a bag?” enquires Lieutenant-Colonel Maher Mutreb, a leader of the operation and a senior member of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s team of bodyguards. He later asks if “the animal to be sacrificed” has arrived at the consulate.

Mutreb speaks to Salah al-Tubaigy, the forensic pathologist in charge of cutting up the body, who calmly lists the professional challenges he will face. “No,” he replies to the query about putting body in a bag. “Too heavy, very tall too. Actually, I’ve always worked on cadavers. I know how to cut very well. I have never worked on a warm body, but I’ll also manage that easily.”

Tubaigy explains to Mutreb what should be done to Khashoggi’s corpse: “After I dismember it, you will wrap the parts into plastic bags, put them in suitcases and take them out [of the building].”

This disgusting exchange comes from a bugging device said to have been placed in the consulate by Turkey’s National Intelligence Organisation which has been systematically leaking their recordings to the Turkish press ever since the murder of Khashoggi on 2 October 2018. Some of the conversations were revealed earlier in the year to the UN investigator Agnes Callamard who confirmed in her report that Saudi Arabia was responsible for the “deliberate premeditated execution” of Khashoggi. She found “sufficient credible evidence” for the crown prince and his assets to be subjected to “targeted sanctions” until “evidence is provided and corroborated that he carries no responsibility for this execution”. US officials have said that the operation could not have been carried out without the crown prince’s knowledge. The Saudi government has said that neither he nor King Salman knew about the killing in advance. They have blamed a “rogue” operation.

As the first anniversary of the Khashoggi murder approaches in a few weeks’ time, Saudi Arabia is desperate for the impact of the crime to fade and for the kingdom to escape the pariah status it has earned in the eyes of many across the world.

The crown prince is, above all else, eager to make sure that the murder of Khashoggi is not an issue when the US presidential campaign gets under way. President Trump’s close relationship with the Saudi leader will make Trump highly vulnerable to attacks by the Democratic candidate during the election. Again and again, Trump has gone out of his way to protect his Saudi ally over bi-partisan criticism from Congress over Khashoggi, US arms supplies and the war in Yemen.

The crown prince has adopted a strategy aimed at removing the killing from the political agenda before the US presidential campaign gets seriously underway, according to a confidential report which draws its information from high level sources in the United Arab Emirates that has been published by Middle East Eye online magazine. Written for circulation among UAE leaders, it says that “it was a wise step by Riyadh to move quickly to close the case and indict those responsible before the start of the American presidential election. Otherwise the killing could have been turned into one of the presidential debate topics.”

It appears that the crown prince’s plan is to escape the legacy of the murder by first fast-tracking the trial of members of the Saudi team accused of the killing, so court proceedings are finished before the US presidential campaign heats up. The report goes on to explain that the second part of the strategy is to close down the case in a different way by persuading members of Khashoggi’s family to accept “blood money” and forego the right of revenge under sharia law. According to US press reports, Khashoggi family members in Saudi Arabia have already been given $10,000 a month and million-dollar houses by way of compensation.

The report is written by the Emirates Policy Centre which has close links to the UAE government and intelligence services. As the closest ally of Saudi Arabia until a recent rift over Yemen and Iran policy, the UAE is well positioned to know about the intentions of the Saudi leader.

The crown prince’s plan to move on from the Khashoggi killing might just succeed, but it faces a number of obstacles. Any trial conducted in Saudi Arabia will have little credibility because of its courts’ well-attested record of relying solely on evidence based on false confessions extracted by torture and threats of execution. If anything, the repression of dissent in Saudi Arabia – of which the elimination of Khashoggi was only one element – has been stepped up since his death.

At least 134 executions are known to have been carried out in the first half of this year, including 37 political activists killed en masse on 23 April according to a report by Baroness Helena Kennedy QC on the death penalty and illegal executions in Saudi Arabia. She says that the executions of the activists followed “lengthy periods of detention in solitary confinement, subjection to torture, and grossly unfair trials”.

ORDER IT NOW

A further difficulty Saudi Arabia will face in trying to reboot its image is that the Khashoggi affair has energised a wave of criticism from former friends. It was the Republican senator Marco Rubio who said that the crown prince had gone “full gangster”, an assertion echoed by another Republican senator. The Saudi bombing of Yemen has become a live political issue in a way that had never happened previously, though Saudi airstrikes have been going on since 2015. A group of Republican and Democratic senators this week sent a letter to the crown prince demanding that he fulfil Saudi Arabia’s pledge to give $750m to the UN in Yemen to provide food, fuel and medicine.

All politicians are acutely conscious of the ebbs and flows of the power of their friends and allies and are swift to abandon a listing ship. Of no politician is this more true than President Trump, who has contemptuously dismissed his national security adviser John Bolton, whose aggressive policy towards Iran was much closer to that of the Saudis than it was to that of Trump himself who these days broadcasts his wish to avoid armed conflict with Iran and do a deal.

Whatever Trump expected from Saudi Arabia when he made his triumphal visit to the country in 2017, the results are well below expectations. In the wake of the Khashoggi murder he has paid a political price for his close relationship with the Saudi leaders – and that price could get a lot costlier if the Khashoggi affair becomes an issue in the presidential election. Democratic Party candidates are notorious for their ability to miss an open goal, but even they may come to see that Trump is vulnerable over his links to the crown prince and Saudi Arabia, tainted as they are by the killing of Khashoggi.

(Republished from The Independent by permission of author or representative)
 
Hide 22 CommentsLeave a Comment
Commenters to Ignore...to FollowEndorsed Only
Trim Comments?
    []
  1. anastasia says:

    Contempt for the public are the only words I can use to describe the relationship between the U.S. and the greatest human rights violators in the world. How dare they tell us that they are “liberating” the Syrian people from a human rights violating government? They are either nodding on drugs, or they believe we are. Come to think of it, why wouldn’t they believe the American public is nodding on drugs. Our government is the one who is insuring that we are all on drugs.

  2. Yee says:

    Wall Street wants Saudi Aramco, but Saudi has been dragging its feet… The reporter probably died to persuade Saudi to list Aramco at NewYork Stock Exchange.

    I don’t think it would be difficult to put together a plan to get the Saudi crown prince to kill the reporter. Similar plan likely played on China’s Bo Xilai.

  3. A123 says:

    How can the Saudi’s “plan” for something that is 100% complete?

    The U.S. Fake Stream Media misrepresented Khashoggi as a journo for a couple weeks to smear Trump and gain some headlines. That is over now. Ask someone on the street about Khashoggi, and the most likely response will be about Kashi multigrain cereal.

    Reality shows that the ISIS-linked Muslim Brotherhood is wholly unpopular. Terrorist Brother Khashoggi and Terrorist Brother Mohamed Morsi are deceased, as “fewer terrorists = better world” the issue has no traction.

    We do however still member WSJ reporter Daniel Pearl, butchered by Islam in 2002.

    In memorium.

    • Replies: @Chris Mallory
  4. Jmaie says:

    I’d *like* to forget the Khashoggi killing, but some people insist on bring it back up, over and over and over…

    Other than as an intellectual exercise there’s no reason for anyone in the US to care that the Saudi prince eliminated a critic. Sure, had the deed been done here I’d have maybe cared (a tiny bit) more. Face it, the only reason anyone gives two shites about the killing was because MBS did the deed -> Trump has tied to MBS -> orange man bad.

    I don’t know what was worse, the faux moralistic high dudgeon or our fine media folks trying to use the “correct” pronunciation of his name.

  5. Jamal Khashoggi, rest in peace

    https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/why-jamal-khashoggi-was-killed/

    (how disgusting to see that lunatic 123 – a poor mentally ill trapped in his fantasy world – has had to come here to spread his confused mind)

    • Replies: @A123
  6. Possumman says:

    I already forgot and didn’t care when I first heard it—thats what those people do.

  7. @A123

    Can we have a memorial for Ahmed Bouchikhi, an innocent waiter working in a neutral nation and minding his own business who was brutally murdered by Israeli assassins?

    After all, Pearl went sticking his nose where it didn’t belong. Walk into a viper pit and you are going to get bit. Some times the victim really is asking for it.

    • Agree: byrresheim
  8. Khashoggi was not an American. His murder did not happen on US soil or in a US facility. His death is no business of the US government or responsibility of the American tax payer. Let the Turks and the Saudis hash it out between themselves. But if we have to do something, carpet bombing Israel is always an option.

    • Replies: @byrresheim
  9. A123 says:
    @Davidson20

    Khashoggi voluntarily joined the Muslim Terrorist Brotherhood [MTB], and like most criminal gangs leaving is prohibited. He was given an intelligence assignment by the MTB:
    — Scout targets for MTB/ISIS terror attacks.
    — Penetrate soft groups to spread pro-MTB propaganda, most notably the Fake Stream Media.

    As part of his MTB/ISIS sanctioned operation, Terrorist Brother Khashoggi was allowed to present the facade that he formally left but only supported the MTB 100% of the time from the outside. I cannot say that this is the worst cover identity in history, but it is certainly in the running.

    While Erdogan was initially outraged, he suddenly became much quieter on the issue when his investigators searched residences used by Terrorist Brother Khashoggi. No details have leaked on what Erdogan’s investigators found, but it must be quite damaging to MTB/ISIS.

    PEACE 😇

    • Agree: NoCriticHere
    • Replies: @Davidson20
    , @MEexpert
  10. @A123

    Your mind live in a world of fantasies

    You’re the guy with the most confused mind I’ve ever found on the net, and see that there are weird people in the world, but yours is a gold medal

    Your mind is sick, you’re intoxicated with fantasies

  11. zimriel says:

    I won’t forget the death of Khashoggi the Ikhwan agent. I’ll toast the execution of this enemy of humanity every weekend.

  12. Why is this intramural incident our business/ problem?

  13. @Chris Mallory

    Hope the has baristas tell you what they think of your option …

  14. MEexpert says:
    @A123

    Terrorist Brother Khashoggi

    What an appropriate term used by an Israeli ‘terrorist” agent. Only a terrorist would recognise another terrorist and will call him “brother.”

    Honestly, A123 has absolutely no clue. He just comes here to write any nonsense he an think of.

    • Replies: @A123
  15. A123 says:
    @MEexpert

    I come to share facts.

    You come to lie to infidels, the Muslim practice of Taqiyya. Your Satanic Verses of the Koran require this of you (1). As a Jihadi of the Anti-Christ Muhammad, you revere death. This is why you speak out in support of Muslim Terrorist Brother Kgashoggi.

    Give up now before you humiliate yourself further.

    PEACE 😇

    ____

    (1) http://www.freedompost.org/islam/deception/common-taqiyya-or-islamic-lies-and-deceptions-by-muslims.html

    • Replies: @MEexpert
  16. Really sure that Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in the KSA embassy?
    No body, no crime.
    The evidence comes from black & white video footage, courtesy of Turkish intelligence’s [intelligence, trained in deception and distraction] undiplomatic monitoring of the outside of the KSA embassy. People carrying trash bags, that we are told contain body parts.
    Jamal Khashoggi was a CIA foreign asset. We should care about him, why? The CIA is among the worst agencies in the USA. They do evil at home and abroad.
    Back to no body, no crime. No physical evidence. Nothing admissible in a court of law.
    Jamal is related to the deceased global arms merchant, Adnan Khashoggi.

    If one wants to go after the KSA and the House of Saud, go after their war in Yemen or their support for Islamic (Wahhabi) terror. No need for a flimsy story.

    • Agree: byrresheim, Amanda
  17. MEexpert says:
    @A123

    PEACE

    An Israeli talking about peace. Now that is a laugh.

  18. Renoman says:

    Everyone hates the Arabs and has no respect for them, K is just a brick in the wall, nothing will change.

  19. Sean says:

    Jamal Khashoggi may have known something about 9/11/ The top level order for the assassination of Khashoggi should be placed in context. Khashoggi boyhood friend of Osama bin Laden, who was made a hero by Khashoggi’s reporting from Afghanistan. Moreover Khashoggi was right hand man to Turki bin Faisal Al Saud the head of Saudi intelligence until ten days before 9/11/

    It his latter years, Khashoggi did a U turn to become was critical of Wahhabism and if there was any Saudi state involvement with 9/11 it was probably in the Wahhabite department of Islamic Affairs at the Washington Embassy. Khashoggi might know the San Diego cell of the 9/11 hijackers was benefiting from a CIA and Saudi intelligence joint effort to penetrate Al Qaeda, which is what some exFBI agents have allege., There are also some interesting associations of 9/11 hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Midharwho almost instantly established after arrival in the US in January 2000.

    The first was Thumairy, an official of Saudi consulate in Los Angeles. the other was Bayoumi who lived in San Diego where local Muslims assumed he was a Saudi intelligence agent. Bayoumi says he newly-arrived hijackers restaurant after they had seen Thumairy at the consulate. Bayoumi got them settled in San Diego, paying their apartment rent downpayment and introducing them to a radical cleric. One month after the hijackers arrived, Bayoumi’s no-show job at a Saudi associated company went from $465 to $3,700, he left the country in August 2001. There is also a third Saudi suspect whose name has been concealed up until now.

    Once Turki bin Faisal fell from favour Khashoggi became associated with Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, by far the most able Saudi, once mentioned as a future king. Khashoggi was to be head of a TV station that Alwaleed bin Talal was setting up but it was ordered to close down and later Alwaleed bin Talal was the main victim of the so called anti corruption drive in which princes were imprisoned and tortured. The arrest of Alwaleed bin Talal came days after he asked Khashoggi to return to Saudi Arabia. Khashoggi knew to much about something, that is for sure.

  20. I’d be far more impressed by efforts to stop the upcoming murder of Assange by this clowns own government.

  21. anonymous[230] • Disclaimer says:

    That Khashoggi fellow was clearly a tool of some spy network, most probably the satanic CIA. Those who live by the sword, die by it… so it is said.

    So, STFU about this guy already, and focus on all the innocents slaughtered by the mofing whiteys, around the world.

Current Commenter
says:

Leave a Reply - Comments on articles more than two weeks old will be judged much more strictly on quality and tone


 Remember My InformationWhy?
 Email Replies to my Comment
Submitted comments become the property of The Unz Review and may be republished elsewhere at the sole discretion of the latter
Subscribe to This Comment Thread via RSS Subscribe to All Patrick Cockburn Comments via RSS
Personal Classics
Full Story of the Taliban's Amazing Jailbreak
"They Can't Even Protect Themselves, So What Can They Do For Me?"
"All Hell is Breaking Loose with Muqtada" Warlord: the Rise of Muqtada al-Sadr