Sunday, October 21, 2018

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Kick Khashoggi Killers Out

Anthony McIntyre thinks the Dublin government should close the Saudi embassy in Dublin and expel the staff.


The petrodollar stops with MBS, as Salman’s called. He’s responsible for a gruesome murder just as Henry II was responsible for the murder of Thomas Becket when he said, “Who will rid me of that meddlesome priest.” In this case, a meddlesome journalist. -
Christopher Dickey

The Saudi state murder of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi in its Turkish consulate has thermally imaged the heart of darkness that drives toxic blood through the arteries of the hideous Wahhabi kingdom. Despite the massaging of the image of its brutal leader Mohammed bin Salman, or MBS as he is often referred to in modernistic intonations, the regime is a despot-led syndicate. Allowing women to drive beginning in June this year is hardly proof of serious progress, although it does help the Western backers of MBS promote their myth that he is a modern man hauling his country into a modern era. No better than Videla, Pinochet, Aaada or Netanyahu, we should not feign surprise that Western states find him fit for purpose, their purpose.

Khashoggi was a writer for more than thirty years and "one of the most prominent Saudi and Arab journalists and political commentators of his generation." During his active years he developed a reputation for "pushing the boundaries of debate within Saudi society", a necessary and hardly controversial function of journalism. Much of his writing gave the lie to MBS as a genuine reformer, writing a piece titled "Saudi Arabia wasn't always this repressive. Now it's unbearable".  As recently as last month he had hit out at the brutal Saudi war on Yemen where, according to the UN Human Rights Council, civilians have repeatedly been the victims of "unrelenting violations of international humanitarian law".  Khashoggi eventually moved to the US after being told to shut up.

In Istanbul less than three weeks ago he was finally shut up - chopped up to be exact - but far from shut out as his name and what he stood against continues to echo volubly around corridors of power and human rights organisations on a global scale:
In the extraordinary 19 days since his disappearance and death, the fate of the 59-year old columnist and critic has steadily been pieced together. What happened inside the consulate walls has been traced to the doors of the Saudi royal court, sparked revulsion around the world, exposed the kingdom like no other event since the twin terror attacks of 9/11, and seen Washington and Riyadh shamelessly concoct a cover-up to protect their mutual interests and attempt to shield the powerful heir to the throne, Mohammed bin Salman.
According to information reportedly gleaned by the Turkish authorities who were spying on the Saudis:
Khashoggi was killed during seven horrific minutes in which he was first tortured, then mutilated, injected with a sedative, and finally dismembered.
Reportedly his fingers were hacked off before he was beheaded. The behaviour of a progressive modern state or a medieval theocracy?

The Saudis have resorted to blowing smoke every which way and the most receptive ass to date belongs to the odious Donald Trump who finds the Saudi explanation that Khashoggi died during a fist fight credible.  The International Federation of Journalists said:

It is increasingly clear the Saudi government is engaged in weaving a carefully orchestrated tissue of lies to cover up their role in Jamal’s killing. The idea that it takes days for the Saudi regime to find out what happened inside their own consulate is unbelievable - it is an embarrassing charade.
The arrogance of brazen denial of the obvious, the sense of entitlement to immunity from criticism, the display of  imperviousness to accountability all serve to underscore just how loathsome and dangerous the Saudi regime is. 

There is a Saudi embassy in Dublin which simply should not be there. On Health & Safety grounds alone it should be closed and its staff expelled. It is simply not safe for any citizen, Irish or otherwise, to enter it. 

A few years back I was involved in a protest at the embassy about the draconian state executing 47 people including journalists. I guess we could count ourselves lucky staff did not run out and haul us inside never to be seen again. The haughty sense of entitlement and impunity could easily have allowed it to happen.

And yet Ireland continues to permit the monstrous embassy to do business in Dublin. Time for gloves off, boots on, and kick the misbegotten and misogynistic mafia out.


Anthony McIntyre blogs @ The Pensive Quill.

Follow Anthony McIntyre on Twitter @AnthonyMcIntyre


23 comments :

marty said...

Don't know whats worse, the govts doing fuck all ,or feeding us that pathetic crap of an explanation re that murder then doing fuck all .

Michael Mahoney said...

AM

This is an important moment, one of serious choices, and as you stress here, the Republic of Ireland needs to stand up to Saudi Arabia. Our former republic, now the American oligarchy, cannot do a damn thing as long as Lockhead, Boeing, and Trump are in charge. The mealy-mouthed comments of Agent Orange on what any reasonable, sentient person knows was a cold-blooded murder (complete with bone saw) gives license to similar acts by despots the whole world over. Or as you write, "The arrogance of brazen denial of the obvious, the sense of entitlement to immunity from criticism, the display of impervious to accountability all serve to underscore just how loathsome and dangerous the Saudi regime is."

Incredibly, the president of the United States praised a Montana "cowboy" for body slamming a journalist as the Kashoggi murder dominated the headlines. But really who's surprised anymore by his shamelessness. Ireland may not throw around the weight of the red, white, and blue behemoth, but it can stand up for decency in this moment. It can stand up for journalists, for the rule of law, for a check on greed, and for republican principles. The Republic of Ireland once beat Saudi Arabia on the world stage, 3-0. It can do even better now.

Christopher Owens said...

If Britain were all too happy to cut off ties to Libya following the murder of Yvonne Fletcher, it should stand to reason that any country that prides itself on democracy should do the same thing to send a message to the Saudis that such behaviour is abhorrent and will not be tolerated. The Ireland Saudi Arabia Business Council should also be disbanded in protest.

Niall said...

Seriously people, time to take a reality pill....Erdogan has done in a few journo's on his way to establishing his little dictatorship, the Israeli's have been killing 'khasshoggis' blatantly for years and so has every other junta, dictatorship and 'democracy' around the globe....if we were to close every embassy for acts such as this we would have no need of a diplomatic service as there wouldn't be any embassies!

I think it is much more interesting that Erdogan pushed it until it blew up in the Saudi's faces...what's he up to? He could have sat back and played it down but he didn't. Is it a straight forward case of a revenge being a dish best served cold for the attempted coup against him or what?
Does anyone really believe that Erdogan cares about Khossoggi or any other journalist to be honest!

AM said...

Niall - which completely missed the point of the article. It has nothing to do with Erdogan or opposing all the other embassies on political grounds. It is about a journalist being gutted and chopped up inside a consulate. It is the embassy, not merely its political mission, that poses a threat. If ever there was a health and safety case for getting rid of an embassy it is this one.

DaithiD said...

The vast majority of Saudi embassies do not execute attendees. The rogue actions of 18 bad apples should not reflect on those Embassy staff that chose not to kill and dismember the millions that pass through their grounds. Lets use this moment to train all staff in ways to safely restrain a violent person, so this never happens again.

Niall said...

AM
The Saudi embassy here poses no more a threat to the people here than it's embassy in London does to the people of London. Location is very important here in this story. They probably believed that they would get away with it in Turkey a hell of a lot easier than in Europe and that was down to the current political climate in Turkey under Erdogan.
They've never chopped up anyone at any other embassy or even came close to trying it....closing the embassy here is not the answer.
The answer should be severe condemnation followed by completely closing off all diplomatic ties.
But that is never going to happen due to the potential backlash from Irish companies working in the Persian Gulf.
It's all about commercialism and how to condemn without impacting on it...the moral aspect is the least of their worries for they have just as bloody skeletons in their own closets.

Barry Gilheany said...

Anthony

Very well put. I have long felt Saudi Arabia should be treated by the democratic, progressive world like apartheid South Africa was. Mind you, let us be under no illusions as one of the consequences of concerted action by democracies against the House of Saud - a 1973 style hike in the price of oil. But for a low usage motorist like myself this would be a price well worth paying for the greater moral good.

Oh and btw, where is the Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions campaign against Saudi Arabia?

DaithiD said...

PS if I was Assange or advising him , I would get out of that embassy ASAP, with this and Marinova’s death, perhaps kites are flying, reactions being gauged. Would go someone way to repairing the rifts between the administration and the security services if Trump gave his blessing to what Clinton proposed (then exposed in wiki leaks).

AM said...

DaithiD - very true. Just as the vast majority of priests do not rape children. But when the institutional imprimatur is on the act, as it seemingly is in this case, then the issue is not about the staff of one embassy or another. So retraining needs to start at the top, not the bottom.

AM said...

Niall - location is less important than chain of command.

If the embassy is closed here that would be a suspension of diplomatic ties. It would also constitute the severe condemnation you suggest. How are diplomatic ties to be cut off if the embassy is allowed to stay open? The defining feature of cutting diplomatic ties is that countries will no longer have embassies and ambassadors with each other.

AM said...

Barry - it is a barbaric regime. A BDS campaign should not be applied to one gang of war criminals and not another. The children of Yemen have to be as important as the kids of Gaza.

Niall said...

Closing the embassy does not constitute cutting diplomatic ties..it simply moves it on to a different diplomatic plain...would the Saudi's reciprocate..I doubt it...Khashoggis murder is no different to the murder of Mahmoud Al-Mabhouh by the Israelis and all the world complained about was the use of false passports...I just think we need to be realistic here...condemn it as much as possible but realistically commercialism will prevail over morals

AM said...

there can be no cutting of diplomatic ties without closing the embassy ... we do need to be realistic and we hardly expect the embassy to be closed ... much as we don't expect Kissinger to be tried for war crimes in Vietnam and Cambodia. That does not prohibit us from stating what should happen rather than staying within the bounds of what the powerful tell us will happen.

DaithiD said...

AM, your energy and enthusiasm for crowbarring the bestial actions of Catholic priests into every topic on the site is unquestioned at this stage. I’m amazed the sites name has escaped becoming “The Pensive Quill And Romish Priests Diddle Kids” (or words to that effect) by now.

AM said...

DaithiD - I thought is was a case of stating that not all of them rape kids, much in agreement with your point. Or have I read you wrong and you feel that they all do rape kids?

Niall said...

AM,
I agree with what you state and never stay within the bounds of the powerful as it wouldnt be long before the spaghetti monsters are real but sometimes I feel we shoot too high in our condemnation taking us outside the bounds of eality.

DaithiD said...

AM (Catholic priests rape kids),
I (Catholic priests rape kids)
didn’t (Catholic priests rape kids)
introduce (Catholic priests rape kids)
them (Catholic priests rape kids)
into (Catholic priests rape kids)
the (Catholic priests rape kids)
topic (Catholic priests rape kids),
so (Catholic priests rape kids)
whether (Catholic priests rape kids)
I (Catholic priests rape kids)
think (Catholic priests rape kids)
some (Catholic priests rape kids),
all (Catholic priests rape kids),
or (Catholic priests rape kids)
none (Catholic priests rape kids)
behave (Catholic priests rape kids)
that (Catholic priests rape kids)
way (Catholic priests rape kids)
is (Catholic priests rape kids)
a (Catholic priests rape kids)
moot (Catholic priests rape kids)
point (Catholic priests rape kids) .

AM said...

DaithiD - that's a whole lot of priests raping kids. And there was me thinking you only thought Muslims raped them.

AM said...

Niall - strategy is the art of the possible and politics the art of deceit. By strategically asking the question we invite the political answer and we might find out why a proposal is not possible and discover that it has little to do with right or wrong.

DaithiD said...

And I thought it the rhetorical equivalent of a persistent turd, which necessitates finding the linguistic wire coat hanger with which to portion the offending item, lest it lodges in Bates and Wilkes on its way out!

AM said...

DaithiD - The D must stand for Diarrhea - I sort of like that even if we anglicise it we can give it the twist of Diarrhea Davy!!!

kevonz1 said...

Kick them out and kick them off the UN Human Rights Council where the head choppers are hiding in plain sight.
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/saudi-arabia-human-rights-council-un-yemen-lawyers-shrouded-in-secrecy-a8188511.html