SEVERE WX : Flood Warning View Alerts

When Khashoggi mystery is solved, the story doesn't end

There are two versions of the story in the Looking Glass world surrounding ...

Posted: Oct 15, 2018 5:34 AM
Updated: Oct 15, 2018 5:34 AM

There are two versions of the story in the Looking Glass world surrounding the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi. No overlap. No agreed facts but different interpretations, no room for reasonable doubt.

Using selective leaks spiced with speculation and technobabble, Turkey has presented a scenario in which the Washington Post columnist was lured into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, murdered and perhaps even dismembered.

Continents and regions

Jamal Khashoggi

Middle East

Middle East and North Africa

Misc people

Saudi Arabia

Turkey

Turkish officials have shown video and audio evidence of this attack to Western intelligence agencies and their descriptions have been passed on by sources to CNN, among others.

Turkish media have suggested this evidence was obtained from Khashoggi's Apple Watch -- which is technically unlikely. This may be a smokescreen if, as some have speculated, the consulate was bugged by Turkish intelligence.

There have been lurid references to bone saws, dismemberment and nighttime burial on a far-flung coastline.

Inconsistencies inevitably leave room for reasonable doubt.

In diplomacy, doubt is good. It leaves room for backtracking and apology. An opportunity to say sorry, blush and move on.

The Saudi version leaves no room for error. It is being echoed from Riyadh to Abu Dhabi.

Khashoggi wasn't murdered, that version goes. Worse still, the whole saga has been made up by Saudi Arabia's rivals to stain the reputation of the kingdom.

A statement released through the state-run Saudi Press Agency quoted none other than Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, the interior minister.

In the statement, he "affirmed the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's condemnation and denunciation of the false accusations circulated in some media on the Saudi government and people against the background of the disappearance of the Saudi citizen Jamal Khashoggi." Reports circulating "about orders to kill him are lies and baseless allegations against the government of the Kingdom," the statement added.

United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash, usually a man of considerable tact, had already joined the fray, tweeting grave threats.

"There is a need to show the reality of the human dimension of the situation as the repercussions of the political targeting of Saudi Arabia will be dire for those who fuel it."

Those who "fuel it" are, according to numerous columnists and commentators in Saudi-owned or -backed news organizations, the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar, plus Turkey's government.

These are the groups, they say, behind what Prince Abdulaziz calls the "lies and baseless allegations."

"The Muslim Brotherhood, which was also drum-beating falsehoods related to Khashoggi's disappearance, was exposed when the Saudi journalist's family reaffirmed their confidence in the measures being taken by the Saudi government," trumpeted commentator Nader Al-Enizi on the Saudi-owned news site Al-Arabiya.

A lawyer for the Khashoggi family had earlier been quoted by Al-Arabiya as saying they had complete faith in the Saudi government's investigation of Khashoggi's disappearance.

Qatar is under a blockade by Saudi Arabia and the UAE for its alleged support of the Muslim Brotherhood, and for funding the Al Jazeera channels which the other Gulf states claim are mouthpieces for the Brotherhood.

Turkey supports Qatar and has ridiculed Saudi Arabia's claims to be a force of moderate Islam.

And so there is a standoff over the disappearance of Khashoggi -- not over details of the story, but over the entire narrative.

That, above all, is potentially dangerous for Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. He's been the major power in the kingdom for more than two years.

If evidence is presented publicly that suggests Khashoggi met with a violent end, or was abducted by Saudi agents, the kingdom has no version of the story that could accommodate this.

Bin Salman is the author of an economic and social reform program that has seen women being allowed to drive and opening up Saudi Arabia to cinemas and other entertainment. He also ordered the incarceration of about 200 people, including 17 princes at the Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh, during an "anti-corruption" drive for months.

They were released upon payment of over $100 billion in "settlements" earlier this year -- none were subjected to a formal judicial process.

Bin Salman has been seen as both visionary and volatile. And he no doubt has rivals within the country who believe they could do a better job. They might say, if he's stigmatized by what has happened to Khashoggi, that he should have taken the advice given to Alice by the Duchess in Wonderland: "And the moral of that is -- 'Be what you would seem to be.'"

West Lafayette
Overcast
55° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 55°
Kokomo
Overcast
56° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 56°
Rensselaer
Overcast
50° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 50°
Fowler
Overcast
50° wxIcon
Hi: 60° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 50°
Williamsport
Overcast
53° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 53°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
57° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 57°
Frankfort
Overcast
57° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 57°
Delphi
Overcast
51° wxIcon
Hi: 60° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 51°
Monticello
Overcast
51° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 51°
Logansport
Overcast
55° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 55°
Near Record Heat On The Way
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 150664

Reported Deaths: 4008
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion24697784
Lake13220352
St. Joseph8877159
Elkhart8469132
Allen7880222
Hamilton5962113
Vanderburgh559360
Tippecanoe354714
Monroe320738
Hendricks3183130
Johnson2995128
Porter297848
Clark285461
Delaware282074
Vigo252637
Madison229593
Cass222021
LaPorte215557
Warrick188464
Kosciusko176823
Floyd174867
Howard158866
Bartholomew139758
Dubois135125
Marshall132526
Henry122628
Grant120939
Wayne119327
Boone118848
Hancock114145
Noble113533
Jackson108713
Morgan92240
Dearborn91628
Daviess84033
Gibson83411
Clinton81616
Shelby79429
Lawrence78534
LaGrange76715
Harrison74024
Putnam71016
Knox70310
DeKalb69411
Posey6796
Steuben6008
Fayette58517
Miami5845
Montgomery57222
White56815
Jasper5624
Greene51837
Scott50813
Decatur49839
Adams4725
Clay4346
Whitley4316
Sullivan42812
Ripley4228
Wells4155
Starke3937
Wabash3919
Orange38725
Huntington3785
Spencer3706
Franklin36525
Jennings36013
Washington3592
Randolph3398
Fulton3362
Jefferson3305
Pike31913
Carroll31413
Perry29514
Jay2876
Fountain2863
Tipton26823
Parke2203
Newton21811
Vermillion2181
Rush2044
Owen2021
Martin1950
Blackford1923
Crawford1491
Pulaski1471
Brown1303
Ohio1227
Benton1070
Union1040
Switzerland890
Warren751
Unassigned0233

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events