Saudi admission of Khashoggi death leaves turmoil in Riyadh, fallout on Saudi-US relations

The Saudis cannot hope to lay to rest the upsets in the royal house and commotion in Washington by their disclosure on Saturday, Oct. 20 that the journalist Jamal Khashoggi died after a fistfight with intelligence agents sent to abduct him. Neither will the vibes subside after royal decrees  were issued to sack the crown prince’s associate, Deputy intelligence chief Ahmed Al-Asiri, court adviser Saud Al-Qahtani and three other intelligence officers, or 18 arrests in the ongoing investigation.

President Donald Trump saw this when he said: “Saudi Arabia has been a great ally, but what happened is unacceptable. It’s a big first step, only a first step.” He also announced he would work with Congress on the response.

There are too many fingers in the pie and open questions for the scandal to die down any time soon. For one, what happened to the body of the dead journalist? The Saudis now report that it was handed to an unnamed “local collaborator.” This mysterious person either got away, was smuggled out of Turkey by Saudi agents or is no longer alive. This may explain the sweep Turkish police have been conducting in the woods near the consulate and other parts of Istanbul.

King Salman’s appointment of a ministerial committee, headed by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to restructure the country’s General Intelligence agency and issue the results of its work within a month, was intended as a vote of confidence in Prince Mohammed (MbS) who has taken most of the international flak over the Khashoggi mystery. The monarch was clearly trying to put the running of the kingdom back to normal.

Abductions and assassinations by clandestine agencies of traitors, enemies, double agents or regime opponents  are not uncommon in the shady underworld of many nations. But even when they are botched and lead to unplanned deaths of the objects or even their assailants, such cases are rarely admitted by officialdom or reach the public domain. Yet the Khashoggi case hit world headlines, fed day after day by vividly morbid details, from the moment he failed to come out of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, because three parties had an immediate interest in fanning the flames of outrage.

  1. The crown prince’s rivals at home, who saw their chance to topple him. The official announcement on Saturday will not end the infighting in Riyadh, but rather intensify the struggle waged against him for some months by high-ranking princes, army commanders, intelligence agents and rich Saudis.
  2. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan seized the affair with both hands as a vehicle for climbing up to the top of the international and Muslim power ladder in the guise of a seeker after justice and truth.
  3. Donald Trump’s political foes at home, who saw an opening for getting at him through the friendship between his son-in-law Jared Kushner and the Saudi crown prince. In this respect, the president’s decision to send Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Riyadh and Ankara to get to the bottom of the affair and take the heat off the White House did more harm than good. Trump would have been better served by standing aloof from the scandal. Now he hopes to get rid of the hot potato by his decision to work with Congress on Washington’s response to the embarrassing Saudi crisis.
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30 thoughts on “Saudi admission of Khashoggi death leaves turmoil in Riyadh, fallout on Saudi-US relations

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 12:45 at 12:45
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    Khashoggi was a terrorist, NOT a journalist!
    The USA and the mideast can NOT afford to break with Saudi King MbS. He is a staunch ally and Khashoggi was a criminal deserving of execution. PRAISE Saudi and MbS, dont punish!

    • Oct 20, 2018 @ 13:12 at 13:12
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      What is your definition of Terrorist? This guy was Journalist, man of knowledge, he worked for world’s biggest newspaper The washington post. He wrote columns and books. So thats why you define him as terrorist. He wrote nothing wrong about human rights and dignity in saudi and arab world. You must be so ignorant not knowing the blood thirsty moron called mbs is the real opressor and terrorist mate.

      • Oct 20, 2018 @ 15:44 at 15:44
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        Before he came to the Washington , only a few years ago when Saudi Arabia began to reform, he was an associate of bin Laden and met with him personally. he was a member of the muslim brotherhood and worked to prevent reform and keep Saudi Arabia a muslim 7th century kingdom. He was a proponent of a worldwide caliphate and the subversion and conquest of the west as per muslim brotherhood doctrine. He was deeply opposed to reform of Islam and the modernization of Saudi Arabia and other mid-east countries, which is why he fled when reformers like Saudi Arabia’s new ruler MbS came to power. The real question is how he got into the US and why the Washington Post hired a known terrorist sympathizer.

      • Oct 21, 2018 @ 8:21 at 8:21
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        Julius Streicher was also a journalist. However, he was hanged by the sentence of the Nuremberg Tribunal.

    • Oct 20, 2018 @ 15:31 at 15:31
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      You might investigate before you castigate. Khashoggi may have been a champion of human rights, as all of the Left claim to be, but he was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood. That organization has faint use for ‘human rights!’

      Khashoggi is NOT innocent as the driven snow. And the Washington Post for which he worked is a left-wing ideological instrument owned by a Trump-hating billionaire Jeff Bezos, and as politically neutral as their idols the Clintons and the obamas. This entire incident – whatever the catalyst – is being exploited for POLITICAL damage to the Trump Administration.

      My proof? The murder of four real Americans in Benghazi in 2012 didn’t get half the attention of this incident, and manufactured outrage by the left towards President Trump is a sight to behold. One happened under Hillary Clinton’s watch…the other under President Trump’s. You draw the conclusion, if your prism of leftist eyesight can handle truth!

    • Oct 22, 2018 @ 21:13 at 21:13
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      My feelings exactly.. Sometimes, even the Saudi’s can do the World a favor.

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 13:35 at 13:35
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    Fistfight? Yeah, queensbury rules, first they chop the typing fingers off…

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 13:54 at 13:54
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    ‘There are too many fingers in the pie ….’

    They put him in a pie? i know they are cannibals, but i thought it was just the children

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 14:46 at 14:46
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    There are no good guys in the Islamic world. It is about gaining snd holding power and then conquering and crushing adversaries. The sooner the world takes off its rose-colored glasses, the smarter we will be to deal with them as they deal with us.

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:29 at 10:29
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      “There are no good guys in the Islamic world. It is about gaining snd holding power and then conquering and crushing adversaries. The sooner the world takes off its rose-colored glasses, the smarter we will be to deal with them as they deal with us.”

      Rose-colored glasses are the hottest selling commodity throughout the European Union!

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 15:53 at 15:53
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    I have a great idea for a skit for Saturday Night Live

    Here is an idea for an ad.

    A man goes into an Arab embassy to pick up a document and finds a number of men waiting for him with knives and swords and holding the document.

    The caption of the ad is, “Next time, use FedEx.”

    • Oct 20, 2018 @ 23:06 at 23:06
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      I love it…but the SNL writers are now politically-correct morons who only make bad jokes about Trump.

      They could also get some great material from the Woman-who-would-be-Squaw, Elizabeth Warren, and the Woman-who-would-be-Liar, Christine Blasey Ford.

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 17:07 at 17:07
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    Given the fact that in my eyes he was an enemy combatant, . . . he was a casualty of the war. He chose the side he wanted to be on, . . . and did not make out when the action started.

    Yes he was a reporter, . . . and a writer, . . . Hitler was a painter and a writer. Both got what they deserved.

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 18:05 at 18:05
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    All roads lead to the Mo Bro contingent in the Saudi family.

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 19:06 at 19:06
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    Being a member of Muslim Brotherhood attracts extra judicial execution in Saudi?

    What a shame on!!!!

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:42 at 10:42
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      “Being a member of Muslim Brotherhood attracts extra judicial execution in Saudi?

      What a shame on!!!!”

      Actually, being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood is in it’s self a matter of shame!

  • Oct 20, 2018 @ 19:18 at 19:18
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    Bin Salman’s daddy has to drop back and change his boy’s diapers again.

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 0:57 at 0:57
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    Arab = Idiot
    Arab eaders are either osychpaths like saddam hussein , Mbs or moron , clown
    like Ghaddafi , mubarak , El SISI

    very soon wil Iran wil take the entire of the middle east

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:48 at 10:48
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      “Arab = Idiot”

      You left one out: Abbas ( you know: the one who resides in Ramallah) !

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 1:31 at 1:31
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    All 9/11 terrorists were also Saudis and the US did nothing. The Saudis pay off the US politician whorers and are free to do whatever they want. Whorers can also be traitors.

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 4:07 at 4:07
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    This fiasco really makes ApartheidIsrael’s best buddies in the region look smoove!

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:59 at 10:59
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      “This fiasco really makes ApartheidIsrael’s best buddies in the region look smoove!”

      @ “No more Debka Censorship!”,

      Such a comment is proof positive that Liberalism is a mental illness (as DR. Michael Savage always rightfully stated on his Savage Nation radio broadcasts).

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 14:06 at 14:06
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      Israel is a country under constant threat and subject to constant attacks from within and from neighboring Gaza and Judea- Samaria. This is because Israel is not an Apartheid state and, unwisely, has invited and accepted barbarians to live with Israeli citizens.

      Where we do find widespread Xenophobia, Apartheid, Terorism, Totalitarianism, Slavery, Misogyny, and antisemitism among other forms of hate is throughout the Islamic world.

      So get some psychological help to figure out the difference between truth and lies, Mr. Censorship.

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 4:59 at 4:59
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    There was democratic vote, not “fistfight” and Khashoggi lost with 15-0.
    Fethullah Gülen would have lost in the same way.
    Democracy is dangerous.

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:09 at 10:09
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    The Saudis could have resolved all the controversy surrounding this affair by doing just one thing: blaming Israeli Mossad agents for his death and claiming that Saudi Arabia had nothing to do with it: it was all Israel’s fault. Then, all that would remain to be done is for the Saudis to buy (and or coerce) the necessary votes at the UN General Assembly for a condemnation of Israel.
    At that point: case closed for the Saudis!

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:16 at 10:16
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      Just another note: the Arab League (with all the “integrity” associated with that organization) would be all too happy to go along with this and get the Saudis off the hook!

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 10:28 at 10:28
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    I understand that they are still looking for Kashoggi’s body.

    Mrs. Lovett’s Pie Shop has just opened a branch next to the Saudi Arabian embassy, in Ankara.

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 11:04 at 11:04
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      Good one!

    • Oct 21, 2018 @ 14:45 at 14:45
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      I hear that there is a special on Muslim Brotherhood liver in Riyadh butcher shop today.

  • Oct 21, 2018 @ 22:14 at 22:14
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    As others have said kashoggi was not just a journalist. He was a sympathiser of muslim brotherhood. He was once an insider of the saudi regime. He supported a front against israel. He was not just a journalist. He was an activist.

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