Saudi Arabia, United States, Saudi Embassy discussed on Slate's Political Gabfest

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Murder of dissident journalist, Jamal kashogi by team of Saudi hit-men inside the Saudi embassy in Istanbul has turned into an international crisis information seemingly leaked by the Turkish government, which has its own reasons for doing this indicates that kashogi was murdered and dismembered when he went to the embassy to pick up some documents he needed for his wedding. Other reporting suggests the murderers. Were extremely close to crown prince Mohammad bin Salman. The crown prince is of course the increasingly autocratic ruler. He's the the ruler. In fact not name of Saudi Arabia. The young prince's quite good friends with Jared Kushner. The Trump administration which has been handed pocket with 'em Bs known has contorted itself not to blame the Saudis for anything yet. They have accepted Saudi denials, more or less at face value dispatching, Mike Pompeo, the secretary of state to Saudi Arabia and then to Turkey to weigh the evidence in at least just sort of make make face, showing of of being interested in this. And the president has indicated explicitly that he does not want to disrupt the US Saudi relationship for this. So John, in some sense, the the, the attempt to keep business as usual with the Saudis is not that surprising. We haven't disrupted business as usual in the Saudis or murdering thousands of Yemenis when they broke off, relate. With Canada over a Canadian farm minister making a mild comment about human rights when they kidnapped the Lebanese Prime Minister and so on, and so on, why is the US government and in particular, the Trump administration even more than US governments in the past. So willing and eager to work with the Saudi government and to to turn a blind eye to their repeated misbehavior. Well, there's a, there's a series of different reasons some with more proof than others, and they range everything from. Military orders, the Saudis have booked, which is different than money. They've checks they've already written, but things they've said they've wanted to buy which is where the president gets his hundred. Ten billion dollar figure experts say that the numbers closer to two twenty billion, but they are big purchaser of US arms. And and when every time you sell them a plane, you're not just selling plane. You're selling them the parts and all of that. So that's the argument the president's made, it's about jobs, but the big reason the geostrategic reason is that Saudi Arabia is helping the United States with its number one priority in the in the region, and maybe it's number one priority, but probably number two to North Korea is Iran. So Saudi Arabia is is at the center of Iran focused US mission in the Middle East. And then the other reason is that the president has bragged about having interests in Saudi Arabia in the past, and his son-in-law also has interests financial. In Saudi Arabia. And so there's a web of interconnectedness at the private level, some of which is okay cake. And so that may or may not be involved here. You could imagine it not needing to be involved because of the primacy of the Iranian focus of. And that's the focus from people like Bolton and Pompeo, which who don't have, you know, financial ties to to Saudi Arabia Emily, what do you think it is about the kashogi murder? I'm just going to call it a murder because although we don't know for certain yet there's a pew preponderance of evidence and rather than have to couch it each time. I'm just going to say, what? What is it about the kashogi murder that has an inviting international outrage that all these other incidents, including the ongoing war crimes in Yemen did not? Why is it causing people to withdraw from NBS's, huge splashy Davos in the desert conference and casting doubt on whether he can even continue to be the crown prince. If you're talking about loss of life. And you're being, you know, completely rational and counting than the atrocities in Yemen are far worse and we've ignored them, you know, at our moral parallel peril for a while now. But I think first of all, Jamal kashogi had a lot of friends in Washington. He was someone who was well liked by people in the press corps. There are a lot of people with personal connections to him who are in a position to make a fuss. And I think the other thing is just the dramatic nature of this crime..

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