October 10, 2018


Saudis are said to have lain in wait for Jamal Khashoggi (Loveday Morris, Souad Mekhennet and Kareem Fahim, October 9, 2018, Washington Post)

As Jamal Khashoggi prepared to enter the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2, a squad of men from Saudi Arabia who investigators suspect played a role in his disappearance was ready and in place. 

They had arrived from Riyadh, the Saudi capital, early that morning and checked in at two inter­national hotels in Istanbul before driving to the consulate in the leafy Levent neighborhood, said two people with knowledge of the investigation. One of them, the Mövenpick Hotel Istanbul, is a few minutes from the consulate by car.

By the end of the day, a 15-member Saudi team had conducted its business and left the country, departing on planes bound for Cairo and Dubai, according to flight records and the people familiar with the investigation. 

Turkish officials have previously said they believe that Khashoggi, a prominent journalist and critic of the Saudi government, was killed inside the consulate.

Trump says Saudi King wouldn't last 'two weeks' without US support (Tamara Qiblawi, 10/03/18, CNN)

Jamal Khashoggi affair highlights what happens when America abdicates role as free press defender (Trudy Rubin, 10/10/18, phillynews.com)

Here's the most astonishing thing about the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi journalist-in-exile and Washington Post columnist, who entered his country's consulate in Istanbul a week ago and never came out.

Whoever gave the order to snatch him - and all bets are that it came from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman -- assumed a renowned journalist could be kidnapped or killed with few repercussions.

In the capital of a foreign country.

This stunning assumption tells you much about the growing threats to independent journalism in an era of conspiratorial websites, populist hysteria, and dictatorial crackdowns - and the constant Trumpian drumbeat that critical journalists are the "enemy of the people."

Posted by at October 10, 2018 4:07 AM