Someone Just Dropped a Bombshell About Saudi Crown Prince’s Role In Killing Of Khashoggi
During a closed meeting with Lawmakers on Tuesday, CIA Director Gina Haspel accused Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of being responsible for the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
Corker was one of several lawmakers who emerged from a small briefing with the CIA director appearing convinced of the prince’s responsibility for the killing. The murder has become a lightning rod, dividing the White House and a usually supportive Republican-led Senate.
Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said after a briefing with Haspel that the prince, known as MBS, “ordered, monitored, the killing” of the father of four.
“And if he (MBS) were in front of a jury, he would be convicted of murder in about 30 minutes,” Corker added, according to CNN.
Donald Trump, however, continues to ignore the facts by focusing on Saudi Arabia’s contribution to the US economy, signaling that he cares more about money than human rights, and giving MBS a free pass for any role he may have played in the killing.
This could greenlight similar operations down the road, because high-ranking officials — especially those who do significant business with the United States — won’t think you’ll actually punish them. You will be giving foreign leaders license to kill.
After Haspel’s briefing, the groundswell of certainty and disgust will likely complicate the administration’s efforts to protect the prince and its relationship with Saudi Arabia, even as lawmakers remain divided about how to respond.
“I left the briefing with high confidence that my initial confidence is correct,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, who said he is highly confident that the prince is responsible for the murder.
The Virginia resident disappeared after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. After several weeks of changing explanations, the Saudi government finally admitted that his killing was premeditated and carried out by a team of government officials, many within the prince’s inner circle.
Trump has argued there is no “smoking gun” tying the prince to the murder, but Corker said Haspel presented the senators with information they hadn’t heard before.
“There’s not a smoking gun,” said Graham, who then referred to reports that the Saudi team included a forensic expert who arrived with equipment to dismember Khashoggi’s body. “There’s a smoking saw,” Graham said.
Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said that CIA Director Gina Haspel should meet with the full Senate after holding a closed-door briefing with roughly 10 senators earlier that day.
“While I will not discuss the content of the Haspel briefing, it reinforced the need for a strong response to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi,” Schumer said in a statement. “CIA Director Haspel should brief the full Senate without delay.”
Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, also called for Haspel to meet with the entire chamber to brief lawmakers on the death of Khashoggi, who was a U.S. resident and Washington Post contributor.
“Every Senator should hear what I heard this afternoon,” Durbin said in a statement. “CIA Director Haspel must brief the full Senate immediately.”
Both Schumer and Durbin attended Tuesday’s closed-door briefing with Haspel, who made the trip to Capitol Hill about a week after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary James Mattis briefed the full Senate.
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