Biden and justice for Khashoggi- What else did we expect?

So much happened during the chaos of the Trump years, it’s almost

forgivable to have forgotten the brutal murder of Jamal Khashoggi

at the direction of the Saudi government. For “Saudi government”,

make that the whim of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS).

Of course, Trump was a despot-loving democracy-hating admirer of

strong-men such as MBS. Add to that how Saudi Arabia has an

insatiable appetite for American arms, and the Pentagon has an

insatiable appetite for Saudi Arabian money, and the chances of

Khashoggi’s murderers being named, shamed and brought to justice,

including MBS by proxy, were slim to non-existent.

Along comes the forty-sixth president and wasn’t everything

supposed to get a whole lot better? Like milk and honey better?

Well, putting aside the federal minimum wage at fifteen dollars an

hour debacle, and the fact that the US under Biden is again bombing

targets in the Middle East, how about an intelligence cover-up

already?


On Friday just gone, the Office of the Director of National

Intelligence (ODNI) released a report identifying three Saudi

individuals, all in the inner orbit of MBS, as being complicit in some

way in the murder of Khashoggi. Yet just a few hours after

publication of the report online, it was hauled down shortly

thereafter only to be replaced with a redacted version minus the

three aforementioned culprits. What exactly is going on here?

Especially so as Biden, during his presidential campaign, made

reference to ensuring that Saudi Arabia was “called out” as the

pariah state that it is.


Saudi-American ties have been strong ever since the founding of the

oil-rich country in 1932. A strategic and economic marriage of

convenience, both Washington and Riyadh stare longingly into each

other’s geo-political eyes. The US maintains five military bases in

Saudi Arabia which, even if Biden’s declaration about identifying the

kingdom to be the pariah state that it is, are still going to be in situ

regardless. The US needs just that kind of military projection and

the murder of an increasingly forgotten journalist, no matter how

brutal the bloody deed was, is not going to change that. It’s not a

huge leap of the imagination, with all that in mind, to see how the

Khashoggi report was so quickly sanitized to no doubt excuse the

MBS and the Saudi regime.


And how quickly are the powers-that-be in Washington and the

Pentagon to overlook the further felonies of Riyadh. At least 15 of

the 19 9/11 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia. They were all of the

Wahhabi sect of a fundamental, militant and unrelenting

interpretation of Islam, sponsored by any number of Saudi

government actors and agents. Planes were flown into American

buildings, resulting in the deaths of thousands, and still back then,

Riyadh was allowed a seemingly perpetual bye from any semblance of

unilateral American military retribution, let alone international

justice.


Biden is then just the next proponent of the age-old American

hypocrisy of do as I say, don’t do as I do. Already he is bending the

American knee to the realpolitik realities of geo-politics, especially

that of the Middle East. More of the same is, then, the foreign

policy order of the Biden day.


Khashoggi was literally killed by dismemberment in the Saudi

consulate in Ankara. Lead after lead led back to MBS shortly after

the crime, but of course, Trump being Trump, that was of no

concern. Only military dollars and phony prestige. What else did we

expect? And then along comes Biden and, well, guess what? What

else did we expect?


Unless there is real change in the White House, and not just one of

two oscillating parties of permanent establishment dominance, then

America will continue to be a morally bankrupt voice of shrill

hypocrisy and duplicity that will only continue to echo bitterly

around the globe. If Biden genuinely wants the US to re-engage

with the rest of the world, including its erstwhile allies, then it

needs to start facing up to its responsibilities, such as calling out

MBS, and not just peddling the same old sorry sound-bites and

watery platitudes on the international stage.


America has the potential to be way, way better than being bury-

their-head in the sand apologists for any number of butchers in the

Middle East and the rest of the world. If only it would ever realize

that and be the beacon of freedom, and justice, that it truly should

be.

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