Politics - News Analysis
Questions Exploding: Did Trump Fire State Dept. IG to Cover-Up Khashoggi ‘Disappearance’ and Saudi Arms Deal?
We are all scandal fatigued and going through a crisis of generational proportions. It is hard to focus, and it is even hard for the media to survey the landscape around Trump and ascertain what is really happening. Moreover, it increasingly feels like there are forces beyond our control, perhaps foreign, keeping certain subjects out of the news. It is a lot to swallow. But even with all that, there is increasingly a belief that Trump fired the State Department Inspector General, Steve Linick, because Linick was about the blow the doors off a scandal so big that it would even take Trump down.
According to Will Bunch of the Philadelphia Inquirer, there is a very good chance that Linick was about to unleash the “defining” scandal of the Trump presidency, linking everything from 9-11, the Khashoggi murder, arms sales, and money going to Trump and Trump insiders.
It’s a pattern that started during the 2016 campaign when a veteran emissary of the Saudis and UAE showed up at Trump Tower with an Israeli psy-ops expert offering to help the GOP nominee win, and has continued for four years while the 45th president made Riyadh his first official stop and while his son-in-law-aide opened a direct WhatsApp line to MBS and has — inexplicably — still gone on after MBS’ goons killed and hacked up a Washington Post journalist and MBS himself hacked into the phone of the Washington Post’s owner (despised also by Trump), rounded up and tortured his political rivals, and continued to buy U.S. weapons to slaughter woman and children in Yemen. (In the past three years, I’ve written practically a book on the Trump Tower meeting, Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, and the Jeff Bezos affair.)
Bunch knows more about this topic than anyone I’ve read, and the overlap between the Trump administration and the murderous MBS is jaw-dropping, one crying out for investigation, especially the Jared-MBS connection, as both are about the same age, without scruples, and seemingly in cahoots on near everything. Remember Jared’s “advice” to MBS upon the Khashoggi murder? “Give it time to blow over.”
And yet somehow we have to strain to see the true meaning of the Linick firing through the pea-soup-thick fog of Trump’s nightmare presidency. And there are multiple layers. Many of the initial reports on the ouster of the State Department IG focused on other apparent probes of Pompeo’s all-around awfulness, including alleged use of a government employee to walk his dog, get his dry cleaning, etc., and lavish taxpayer-funded dinners aimed at bolstering the Kansan’s political future. Those things are bad, and easy for the typical voter to understand and get outraged over — but I’d argue they pale to the bending of the entire government to a murderous dictatorship overseas.
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There are three countries that seem to get whatever they want from the Trump administration, Russia, Suadi Arabia, and Turkey. The situation is screaming for an explanation. The explanation might well have been sitting in front of our faces all along.
The tangled U.S.-Saudi relationship combines all of the worst of this. If the pompous and lethally corrupt Saudi monarchs reigned on a rocky desert isle, America would not give them the time of day, but their endless supply of oil has made them the pusherman for our fatal addiction, and then we’ve also tossed the greed of our military-industrial complex onto the mix.
Remember Trump’s words as to why he likes the Saudis? “They pay in cash.” What an odd statement for a United States president, is it not? Why on earth would a U.S. president care how another country pays? Unless the answer is right in front of our faces. It does seem to me like Linick was about to give us the details on why it is that Saudi Arabia gets whatever they want, stuff that is sitting right in front of our faces. “Cash,” the defining scandal of the Trump administration.
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