“Some leave to stay” was a tweet posted by the betrayed journalist Jamal Khashoggi on his Twitter account, where he also posted his saying, “Say your words and go!” Despite their few words, these two phrases sum up his tragic end at the hands of this era’s Hulago Khan, Mohammad Bin Salman and his thugs who tortured, killed, maimed, and dismembered in the worst possible ways. They removed his fingers with which he held his pen and wrote his advice out of love and fear for his country, removed his tongue with which he called for freedom, and dismembered his body as they enjoyed listening to music. Then they put him into bags and took him far away from the crime scene.
It has been 18 days since Jamal Khashoggi’s forced disappearance, and the Saudi authorities deny knowledge of his fate. They insist that he left the consulate 20 minutes after finishing his application process. The Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman also reiterated this to America’s Bloomberg news agency during an interview with them. Furthermore, the Saudi Consul General in Istanbul, Mohammad Al-Otaibi, firmly denied Khashoggi’s detention in the consulate, adding, “We are making every effort to search for him”. In an absurd scene, he took a Reuters reporter with him into the consulate to inspect it and look for Khashoggi. He opened closets and doors in search of Khashoggi as if he would find him hiding in one of them and would jump out and say, “You found me!”
Making matters even more farcical a statement was issued by Saudi Arabia 18 days after his forced disappearance, in which it admitted the death of Khashoggi after a fistfight in the consulate with 15 individuals Saudi Arabia sent to convince him to return to his country. This is after previously saying that Khashoggi wanted to return to Saudi Arabia, which refutes the argument of the 15 individuals being sent to persuade him to return to his country. In addition to this, why would the send such a large group of people, consisting of intelligence agents, security agents, the Royal Guard, and even some from the Crown Prince’s inner circle? Why would the head of Saudi Arabia’s forensic medicine and his bone saw be involved in this persuasion attempt?
Even if we were to ignore our minds, gave our conscience a forced vacation, and believe the naïve Saudi story, this wouldn’t stop us from asking several questions. Why was there a fight since the intention was noble, i.e. returning to the country? Why did he scream? What did they do to him that made scream, even though the 15 men only wanted what was best for him and had the best intentions on returning him to his country, his family, and his loved ones? A Saudi source told Reuters that something caused confusion and they were forced to gag him, leading to his immediate death.
This also raises more questions, such as how this could happen in the presence of a doctor? Why didn’t he try to stop them and give him immediate medical attention before his situation deteriorated and he died, if their intentions weren’t to kill him, as they claim? Of course, I could ask questions as silly as their story, such why they didn’t take him to the hospital immediately to save him or even to confirm his death and inform the Turkish authorities of his sudden death. Why didn’t they take the necessary measures and transfer the body to bury him honourably, as stipulated by Sharia law and traditions, if they were indeed good people who only wanted their fellow Saudi to return to his country?
This silly story fools no one except an idiot like the idiot who came up with the story and narrated it to the entire world. Jamal Khashoggi was not known to be a fighter, but rather a kind friendly man who does not fight with his muscles but with his pen. Even his pen fights were tame and peaceful, only aiming to bring about reform and to advise the country’s rulers out of love and fear for his country from foolish, reckless decisions made by the arrogant MBS. Such policies could expose the state to bankruptcy, fragmentation, and endless internal and tribal conflicts. He did not want to change the government in the Kingdom, as he could not imagine the Kingdom without Al-Saud, although he did believe that in the long run, there is a need to shift to a constitutional Kingdom, but gradually.
He also felt in need for more popular participation in parliamentary and legislative committees that have authority to make decisions to prevent anybody from having a monopoly over decision-making. He believed in democracy and thought it was the best solution to save the Arab region from the sectarian and ethnic conflicts, the oppression of its people, its underdevelopment and poverty of its people, and the lack of justice. Therefore, he was overjoyed with the Arab Spring revolution and was shocked that the counter-revolutions managed to defeat them. However, he did not lose hope in the nation’s youth and believed that waves of revolutions were coming to revive the revolutions and achieve its goals.
His murderers were not content with killing and dismembering him. His ghost still haunts them, so they decided to target his excellent reputation and career and spread the false story of him fighting with the good people who wanted him to return to his family and friends. They forgot to tell us what this 60-year-old man with super strength capable of fighting 15 men did to them. What were the injuries that he caused them?
It seems that when the writer of the Saudi story felt it was silly and realised the weakness of their argument and the world’s rejection and condemnation of it, they decided to amend it. The writer said that if Khashoggi had refused to return to the country, the plan was to take him from the consulate to an apartment in Istanbul and then to Saudi Arabia, i.e. abduct him! Instead of making it better, they made matters worse, as they incriminated themselves and proved they committed the crime of “kidnapping” from a diplomatic institution, a crime that requires immediate legal accountability.
Frankly, this is the first incident of its kind, and therefore it shook the entire world and exposed the ugly face of the Saudi rulers, who, even if they spent all the money in the world, could not erase their heinous crime and its brutal details.
Today’s Hulago, the murderous Saudi Crown Prince, spend hundreds of billions of dollars over the past two years, after staging a coup against his uncle and monopolising leadership of the country, on public relations companies and advertising in order portray him to the world as an enlightened reformist who will bring the country out of the darkness and into the light and who will combat terrorism.
However, the blood of Jamal Khashoggi has made all of this money go to waste and prove to the world that MBS is the source of terrorism and that he is a backwards-tribal man governed by his desire for revenge. He is no different from those before him who established their Kingdom through murder and theft. The billions he spends on these companies will not help him distance himself from the accusations, as his picture with the saw is on the front page of every international newspaper.
Khashoggi’s blood has killed the murderer’s dreams of sitting on the Saudi throne, even if he distances himself from all of these foolish stories that are fooling no one. The stories that claim he did not know about any of what happened and instead sacrificed a scapegoat instead of himself. The world is not naïve like his stories, and they know that not even the tiniest thing happens without his knowledge. His brother, Prince Khalid Bin Salman, Saudi ambassador to the US, said in light of Khashoggi’s disappearance, told so himself.
MBS wanted to silence one voice, and millions of voices exploded in his face, and he cannot face them with his money or authority. There are still people with live consciences, startled by what happened. There are still people who believe in values and human rights principles, as well as honourable human rights organisations that cannot be bought with Gulf money. There are still free newspapers that value the freedom of the press. All of them have considered Khashoggi’s case a symbol of defending what it believes in, regardless of his tragic end.
This issue put US President Donald Trump in an awkward position as he his a friend and defender of MBS and was forced to change his position. After having stated that he is convinced by the Saudi story and trusts Mohammad Bin Salman, he made another statement saying that the story didn’t convince anyone, especially after prominent members of the Senate and House of Representatives attacked him and his relationship with MBS. He quickly defended himself and said that he and the Crown Prince do not have a personal relationship but that he did not want the US to lose the arms deals amounting to $100 billion and what this amount could do for the Americans.
He also had to make the decision not to participate in the Davos in the Desert conference in Riyadh, which MBS had high hopes for and considered one of the initiatives of the future investment as part of the vision of Saudi Arabia in 2030. The US Treasury Secretary declined the invitation after most Western countries declined and major international companies and institutions boycotted it after the death of Khashoggi.
The Turkish authorities succeeded in transforming the Jamal Khashoggi case from an internal situation that occurred on its soil to an international issue and a world event that shook the whole world. This is an achievement that the Turkish leadership, represented by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, must be given credit for. He managed the issue with political skill and professionalism. He managed to tighten the noose around the killer’s neck until he admitted his crime, even if he blamed it on someone else. President Erdogan has said that it is Turkey’s job to advocate for the oppressed, and he did this duty in the Khashoggi case. He proved that Turkey’s values and principles take priority over cheap political deals.
Jamal Khashoggi blood was a reincarnation and a longer life for himself through which he was able to achieve much more than what he did in his first life.
Khashoggi’s blood has shaken the throne of the unjust kingdom and will overturn the corrupt rule betraying the Islamic nation even if at a later time.
You have said your word martyr journalist, but you have not yet gone. Your words are still shaking the world. Your presence is strong despite your departure because you are one of the few who you referred to who must leave to stay.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.