Patterico's Pontifications

11/15/2018

Saudi Prosecutor: OK, Fine, Khashoggi Was Murdered — but MBS Wasn’t Involved! Really!

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:04 am



Incredibly, it turns out that Jamal Khashoggi was murdered and dismembered in the consulate, just like all rational people already believed.

Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor released the findings of a long-awaited investigation of the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Thursday, saying that a team of Saudi agents who had been dispatched to Istanbul with orders to bring him home alive had instead killed the journalist and dismembered his body.

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince had no knowledge of the operation, Shaalan al-Shaalan, a spokesman for the prosecutor, said at a news conference in Riyadh, the Saudi capital.

He said that 11 suspects had been indicted and that authorities were seeking the death penalty for five of them. The order to kill Khashoggi, who had criticized the Saudi monarchy over the past year, had come from the leader of the Saudi team in Istanbul, Shaalan said without naming any of the suspects.

I was repeatedly told that this couldn’t be true because the evidence came from Turkey and Turkey can’t be trusted. But while it’s true that Turkey can’t be trusted, the evidence was still clear. People need to develop the habit of looking at evidence for what it is, and not discounting clear conclusions with corroborating evidence just because they don’t like the source.

By the way, if you believe the Saudi prosecutor’s version of events, or think that Mohammed bin Salman did not give the order, you a chump sucka.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

49 Responses to “Saudi Prosecutor: OK, Fine, Khashoggi Was Murdered — but MBS Wasn’t Involved! Really!”

  1. we just don’t do due process anymore it’s not part of the zeitgeist these days

    i kinda think that’s something of a pity, but it’s the hot new thing what can you do

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  2. Bin Salman’s denial is as believable as Trump’s comments about vote fraud, that “when people get in line that have absolutely no right to vote and they go around in circles. Sometimes they go to their car, put on a different hat, put on a different shirt, come in and vote again.”
    The US government is perpetuating bin Salman’s sham denial by sanctioning 17 Saudis, none of whom are bin Salman.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  3. happyfeet (28a91b) — 11/15/2018 @ 7:33 am

    Actually, theocratic monarchies run by an absolute despot are kind of a throwback to a few millenia ago.

    Rule of law is “the hot new thing”, being only a couple hundred years old.

    Dave (9664fc)

  4. Why should Americans care about MBS?

    Expected answer: Human Rights.

    Response: So what about Cuba and China?

    Expected answer: Blah, Blah, I don’t care about whataboutism.

    rcocean (9d9291)

  5. 4. These days, the almighty dollar seems to trump (no pun intended) human rights abuses. China and Saudi Arabia are shining examples.

    Gryph (08c844)

  6. Its not merely about money, its this political posture of erdogan thanim and the sepah for islamism, you’ll see apologist for Qatar (soufan) erdogan, most everyone and Iran (daraghi)

    narciso (d1f714)

  7. These days, the almighty dollar seems to trump (no pun intended) human rights abuses. China and Saudi Arabia are shining examples.

    These days, we have a president who praised the Tiananmen massacre, “fell in love” with the last Stalinist dictator on the planet and says our country is morally equivalent to Putin’s Russia.

    It’s all part of being great again, you see.

    Dave (9664fc)

  8. Its been the same complaint against the shah somoza it al, you know had this story goes.

    narciso (d1f714)

  9. Why should Americans care about MBS?

    Expected answer: Human Rights.

    Response: So what about Cuba and China?

    Response: That worked so well in Iran in 1978.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  10. The Saudi-Israeli-US alliance is important. We are NOT going to derail it over unprovable suspicions that MBS was involved.

    As I said last month, the Saudis will round up the team that did it, and their boss (mostly for being incompetent and getting caught), then convict and execute them, saying this was the extent of the conspiracy.

    And the US will agree to believe them. End of story, unless someone comes up with solid evidence that MBS ordered the hit. I haven’t seen that yet.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  11. Note the Saudi story — this team was supposed to bring him back to Saudi Arabia alive, to face “justice.” That is the point where MBS’s deniability starts — he may well have wanted this guy dead, but these were not the tactics he wanted. Bring him back, give him due process, then behead him legally, not this cowboy stuff.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  12. “People need to develop the habit of looking at evidence for what it is, and not discounting clear conclusions with corroborating evidence just because they don’t like the source.”

    I heard there was a story involving Saudi intelligence, Turkish intelligence, and journalists but I can’t think of any other three classes of people whom decent men would prefer not to get involved with.

    “By the way, if you believe the Saudi prosecutor’s version of events, or think that Mohammed bin Salman did not give the order, you a chump sucka.”

    Yes, secret police agencies in foreign countries with broad authority to enact capital punishments under shifting tribal alliances unquestionably follow the orders of their public leaders in all things, and have absolutely no designs of their own, which is why all the US needs to do is instill the right dictator or benevolent president or whatever and all the local intel agencies will be models of transparency and probity ever after.

    I am a knowledgable man and this seems like a smart take.

    Izzet (b87abe)

  13. Here’s another bone-stupid Trump trial balloon, appeasing Islamist Erdogan by kicking Gulen out of the US and potentially extraditing him to Turkey. Mr. Gulen has a green card. Michael Flynn must be smiling.

    Paul Montagu (d70e62)

  14. Here’s another bone-stupid Trump trial balloon, appeasing Islamist Erdogan by kicking Gulen out of the US and potentially extraditing him to Turkey.

    Did he try to buy cereal without an ID?

    Dave (9664fc)

  15. 7. Looking the other way while the Saudis and the Red Chinese s**t on their respective citizenries didn’t start with Trump. It really didn’t start in my lifetime (40+ years ago for those who may be wondering). To think of this as a Trump issue kind of misses the point.

    Gryph (08c844)

  16. R.I.P. Roy Clark, guitar master

    Icy (52ddd9)

  17. kicking Gulen out of the US

    This is stupid in so many ways, both in the short-run and the long. The US has had a tradition of keeping opposition figures safe from tyrants, if only for our narrow imperial interests. Stabbing people in the back to curry favor is cowardly, at best.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  18. Gulen is like Trotsky, he made erdogans reign possible, now in the irony column, the fellow who facilitated the fatwa against rushdie, majerani, now lives in London, perhaps this is why they won’t let asia bibi into the country,

    narciso (d1f714)

  19. Turkey is still saying it went down alittle bit differently than what Saudi Arabia now says. Saudi Arabia says his body was given to a “local collabrator” but Turkey (I think) says his body was dissolved in acid (like Czar Nicholas Romanov)

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  20. I’ve always wanted to believe Richard III was innocent of actually ordering the deaths of the Princes in the Tower, too, but I wouldn’t think it likely I’d win a bet about it if more evidence was about to emerge.

    That said, I think Izzet’s explanation above is also plausible, but I wouldn’t bet my own money either way there, either.

    And as far as tolerating evil goes, while I wouldn’t wish Khashoggi’s fate on anyone, his history of shilling for the Muslim Brotherhood doesn’t exactly make him a spotless innocent. That doesn’t make his death deserved, but there really is a lack of morally acceptable options in that region of the world.

    Stephen J. (c9e1a2)

  21. this was the story, I was referring to:

    https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2018/nov/15/jamal-benomar-defendant-in-hacking-case-shielded-b/

    benomar was spying on briody, who was associated with the uae and Israel,

    narciso (d1f714)

  22. I don’t think that I’m going to believe NBC about Gulen, anymore than I believe VPN troll-bots that troll here with a new handle every other day.

    nk (dbc370)

  23. Yes those sources are likely brennan price haddad and a fourth player to be named later.

    Narciso (6cccd7)

  24. I don’t think that I’m going to believe NBC about Gulen…

    You can believe the State Department, though they’re denying the part about Trump wanting to barter Gulen in exchange for Turkey cooling it on Khashoggi. This is all kinds of stupid by Trump.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  25. Those words you are using montagu, …

    Narciso (6cccd7)

  26. I can’t get too worked up about one extremist Islamist whacking another extremist Islamist somewhere other than here. It’s what they do.

    Gary Hoffman (7ec1de)

  27. The State Department is supposed to evaluate extradition requests. It’s its job.

    Nauert said the U.S. has received multiple requests from the Turkish government related to Gulen, and the U.S. continues to continues to evaluate the materials that the Turkish government presented. The case, Nauert said, is being handled out of the Justice Department.

    Of course, we must spin it in the worst possible light for the guy who defeated our good friend Hillary, whose daughter we had given a $27,000/hour job on the expectation that Hillary would become President.

    nk (dbc370)

  28. VPN troll-bots that troll here with a new handle every other day.

    VPN exit points are well enough known that they can be blocked. Probably a WordPress script for that.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  29. The State Department is supposed to evaluate extradition requests. It’s its job.

    Right, nothing suspicious about that, especially right after the NBC report. The State Department has already gone over Gulen multiple times. Nothing has changed since the inept coup attempt on Erdogan, except for that assassination on Turkish soil of a Saudi national and US resident.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  30. Erdogan is the one whose economy is screaming, now I admit that the brotherhood now has a martyr and will act accordingly.

    narciso (d1f714)

  31. 28… yes. One less Islamist, deed done off-shore… sounds like any day ending in “Y”…

    A win-win.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  32. Khashoggi was not a U.S. resident. He worked for the Washington Post on a temporary worker’s visa, likely an 0-1 or H-1B. Not that it makes a difference to me, but you seem to think worth mentioning.

    nk (dbc370)

  33. Yahoo just offered me this restrained headline

    Trump Mulls Letting Turkey Kill U.S. Resident to Help Saudis Get Away With Killing U.S. Resident

    From a site that calls itself the Intelligencer.

    kishnevi (5f8436)

  34. There is a bigger story than this truly epic fustercluck, I mean this kind of screwup throws you into dr. Evils volcano lair. It’s about the dominance of the three parties mentioned earlier over the west and istael.

    Narciso (6cccd7)

  35. We have enough real things to fuss over when it comes to Trump. We don’t need to make up stuff.

    nk (dbc370)

  36. It’s not as bad as the Russian in bruges team, which failed to get the main target e entirely and killed random people. They have probably been fed to bears.

    Narciso (6cccd7)

  37. Khashoggi was not a U.S. resident.

    He was a US resident.

    Khashoggi was living in the United States on an “O” visa, according to his employer the Washington Post. Also known as the “genius” visa, the O offers individuals of “extraordinary ability and achievement” temporary residence for up to three years. Three of Khashoggi’s children are US citizens, and he is believed to have been applying for a legal permanent residence in the US, also known as a green card.

    I don’t know why you’re trying to spin his US residency into something less.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  38. I don’t know if anything will come of this:

    https://mobile.twitter.com/RandPaul/status/1063171072298807297?p=v

    narciso (d1f714)

  39. Green light at Nazare for the big wave tour. If you want a rush look up Nazare.

    mg (9e54f8)


  40. Khashoggi was not a U.S. resident.

    He was a US resident.

    Khashoggi was living in the United States on an “O” visa, according to his employer the Washington Post. Also known as the “genius” visa, the O offers individuals of “extraordinary ability and achievement” temporary residence for up to three years. Three of Khashoggi’s children are US citizens, and he is believed to have been applying for a legal permanent residence in the US, also known as a green card.

    I don’t know why you’re trying to spin his US residency into something less.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18) — 11/15/2018 @ 7:38 pm

    Do you even read what you copy and paste?

    nk (dbc370)

  41. So the point of this exercise for the last month has been to push the icg narrative, which is firmly Islamist and anti Israel

    Narciso (6cccd7)

  42. Do you even read what you copy and paste?

    Yes, do you? He was a US resident under a visa that gave him three years of US residency.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  43. An O-1 is a non-resident visa. Look it up, Google is your friend. The spin is in calling him a resident.

    nk (dbc370)

  44. An O-1 is a non-resident visa. Look it up, Google is your friend. The spin is in calling him a resident.

    Yes, Google is my friend, and the answer is that it’s more complicated because it depends on whether he met the Substantial Presence Test (link). Since his three children are US citizens, I would say that the reporting that he is a US resident is accurate.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

  45. Yes, Google is my friend, and the answer is that it’s more complicated because it depends on whether he met the Substantial Presence Test (link).

    From your own link:

    Resident Alien or Non-Resident Alien for Tax Purposes
    The Substantial Presence Test
    A resident alien for tax purposes is a person who is a U.S. citizen or a foreign national who meets either the “green card” or “substantial presence” test as described in IRS Publication 519, U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.

    Seriously, sir, read what you copy and paste. The Substantial Presence Test is for tax purposes.

    Since his three children are US citizens, I would say that the reporting that he is a US resident is accurate.

    I would call that “your spin”.

    nk (dbc370)

  46. Seriously, sir, read what you copy and paste. The Substantial Presence Test is for tax purposes.

    Indeed, which means you can define US resident as broadly or narrowly as you prefer. You chose narrow. Ho hum.

    Paul Montagu (70fe18)

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