The Trump Doctrine and the US’s Abdication of the Pursuit of Justice for the Extra-Judicial Execution of Jamal Kashoggi

Yesterday the President issued a factually inaccurate, morally bankrupt screed dressed up as his official statement, and therefore the official position of the United State’s, regarding the extra-judicial execution of Jamal Kashoggi.  The President’s statement referenced the nowhere near finalized Saudi offer to buy US weapons to outfit the Saudi military. An offer that if it were ever actually finalized, is actually a horrible deal for the US. Jared Kushner, negotiating on behalf of the President, negotiated a huge discount on the arms sale that favors the Saudis and agreed to Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman’s demand that 50% of the weapons would be manufactured in Saudi Arabia. The manufacturing portion of the agreement is not going to either protect or create manufacturing jobs in the US.

Yesterday, during his impromptu press gaggle as he was departing the White House to once again go on vacation to Mar a Lago, the President referenced not only the arms sales that haven’t been finalized, but also oil prices.

This morning he once again referenced the price of oil, Saudi oil production, and why it is good for the US.

Like so many of his statements regarding Saudi Arabia, US arms sales to Saudi Arabia, and the facts surrounding the extra-judicial execution of permanent legal US resident Jamal Kashoggi by agents of not just the Saudi government, but of the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, the President’s statements yesterday and his tweet this morning about Saudi Arabia and the price of oil are also factually inaccurate. It also demonstrates the steady state of his ignorance; he clearly has no idea how the global petroleum market works or what Saudi Arabia is actually doing in regard to petroleum production. It also shows his willingness to disregard the best analysis of the US intelligence community, as well as his contempt for it.

What we’re seeing with the President’s official response, which is now the US’s official response, to the extra-judicial execution of Jamal Kashoggi is the Trump Doctrine in action. As a refresher, the Trump Doctrine, first delineated by me in April 2016, is:

America’s allies are taking advantage of our treaty and other obligations in the national security space; America’s allies and peer competitors are ripping the US off through our trade agreements; the US should go it alone if it can’t renegotiate better deals; and only a President Trump could guarantee that the US would be treated fairly – or else. That only a President Trump could guarantee that the US would be treated fairly, whether in national security arrangements or global trade, was simply an extension of one of the major, if not the major theme of his campaign: Donald Trump would be treated fairly or else and only Donald Trump could guarantee that Americans, especially the forgotten men and women as he phrased it, would be treated fairly or else.

That the US will be treated fairly or else, and that only a President Trump could guarantee that happening became the central, unifying theme of his national security and foreign policy approach was actually a stroke of strategic communication genius. A significant amount of the President’s initial strategic communication approach was through tying his primary opponents, the Republican National Committee, and the broadcast and cable news networks in knots about treating him fairly. This included trying to get Megyn Kelly removed from debate moderation after he felt she treated him badly, as well as actually dropping out of a GOP primary debate on Fox News and holding a competing charity event for veterans because he did not like that Fox wouldn’t comply with his demands. And if they failed to do so he’d deal with them harshly. Then candidate Trump threatened his fellow primary opponents and the RNC by making it clear that if he didn’t feel he was being treated fairly by them, then the “or else” would be his running as an independent candidate, thereby splitting the Republican vote for president, and handing the election to the then presumed Democratic front runner Hillary Clinton.

By making this the dominant theme of his national security and foreign policy approach, he was able to make a singular through line for his campaign – “I, Donald Trump, will be treated fairly or else by the GOP, the RNC, and the news media; only I, Donald Trump, can guarantee that you the forgotten men and women of America are treated fairly in regards to both domestic politics and foreign policy; and only I, Donald Trump, can guarantee that the US will be treated fairly or else there will be serious and severe repercussions for the GOP, the RNC, the news media, elected and appointed officials, and America’s allies, partners, and peer competitors”. Here was the simple through line to connect Make America Great Again both domestically and internationally by placing America first. It is also the essence of the real Trump Doctrine: President Trump and by extension the forgotten men and women of America, as well as America itself, will be treated fairly or else.

The Trump Doctrine, and the President’s application of it, is actually making the world less safe for everyone, including Americans. As I wrote back in October 2018:

As long as the President places being treated fairly, and specifically his subjective understanding of being personally treated fairly, as the central consideration of US policy, we will see more of this type of behavior from the authoritarians, autocrats, despots, tyrants, neo-nationalists, and neo-fascists that the President finds so admirable. During his 60 Minutes interview with Lesley Stahl, he all but gave Putin a green light, and anyone else who was paying attention and might have similar interests, to keep assassinating people – from political rivals to opposition figures to journalists to defectors from Russia’s intelligence services – as long as they’re not American citizens and the wet work doesn’t take place in the US.

While there is an old political science/international relations axiom that state’s don’t have friends, they have interests, the Trump Doctrine has turned the US into a transactional state. A transactional state being run by the head of an ongoing white collar criminal and organized criminal enterprise. It is no surprise that authoritarians and aspiring authoritarians like Muhammad bin Salman are developing strategies that leverage the treat the President fairly part of the Trump Doctrine to get away with whatever they want in order to avoid the “or else” response.

The Trump Doctrine is the gift that keeps on giving to the President, his family, his businesses, his family members’ businesses, and the autocrats, authoritarians, tyrants, despots, and dictators that have figured out that it is in their best interests to treat the President fairly rather than receive an “or else”. Jamal Kashoggi was just the most prominent casualty of the Trump Doctrine to date even if he wasn’t the first. And he most certainly won’t be the last. But as long as the President feels like he’s being treated fairly, what is the US to do? If I was Fethullah Gulen or anyone connected to him residing in the US, I’d be looking into seeking asylum in Canada as soon as possible.

We are off the looking glass and through the map!

Open thread.






96 replies
  1. 1
    TenguPhule says:

    It also demonstrates the steady state of his ignorance

    Of all the descriptors of Trump’s ignorance you could have used and you picked steady?

  2. 2
    A Ghost To Most says:

    It has been alluded to previously, but if/how does the $100 million transfer from KSA to US play here, and where did those $$ go?

  3. 3
    TenguPhule says:

    But as long as Trump feels like he’s being treated fairly, what is the US to do?

    Trial, conviction, sentencing, execution and his fucking head preserved on a pike in front of the White House Lawn to serve as a warning throughout the ages that nobody is above the fucking law.

  4. 4
    M31 says:

    Yesterday the President issued a factually inaccurate, morally bankrupt screed

    an accurate statement on any day except Trump’s first day in office

  5. 5
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @TenguPhule:
    Absolute Zero is steady state.

  6. 6
    TenguPhule says:

    $54, was just $82. Thank you to Saudi Arabia, but let’s go lower!

    Its amazing how Trump manages to ignore that oil prices fell into the $30’s during President Obama’s terms while they only spiked during Bush’s regime of error.

    They’re climbing back up now because two major oil producers are cut off from the market and OPEC is trying to get back to the good old days of dictating terms.

  7. 7
    TenguPhule says:

    @M31:

    an accurate statement on any day except Trump’s first day in office

    Except?

  8. 8
    Paul W. says:

    For real though, what can Congress (and more specifically the House) do to try and help embarrass Trump enough to take action against MBS?

  9. 9
    germy says:

    Someone on twitter asked “Why did Trump pardon a turkey? Did it murder a journalist?”

  10. 10
    hells littlest angel says:

    He truly deserves the words “Fucking Moron” on his headstone.

  11. 11
    TenguPhule says:

    Brain Higgins has decided to bend the knee and kiss Pelosi’s ring.

    One less stupid rebel to worry about.

  12. 12
    germy says:

    “And then they remind me that there’s a lot of liberal folks in those other schools who maybe we don’t want to vote. Maybe we want to make it just a little more difficult. And I think that’s a great idea.”

    – Cindy Hyde-Smith

  13. 13
    Corner Stone says:

    @germy: I enjoyed Michelle Wolf’s twit response:

    Michelle Wolf
    ‏Verified account @michelleisawolf
    12h12 hours ago

    Michelle Wolf Retweeted Donald J. Trump

    I bet you’d be on my side if I had killed a journalist. #BeBest

  14. 14
    M31 says:

    @TenguPhule:

    well, the President didn’t make any morally bankrupt screeds the day before that, because the President was Obama :-)

  15. 15

    Trump thinks having your political enemies murdered is cool, and wishes he could do it. The Saudis give him money, he got to pose for a cool picture with a glowing orb, they don’t let their people mock him, and Jared is getting great bribes from them, part of which goes in Trump’s pocket. Plus, he can get what he wants by sitting on his ass and doing nothing.

  16. 16
    TenguPhule says:

    @Paul W.:

    For real though, what can Congress (and more specifically the House) do to try and help embarrass Trump enough to take action against MBS?

    All House Bills should be titled “Donald Trump is Saudi Arabia’s Murderbitch” until further notice.

  17. 17
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule:
    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/steady%20state

    Definition of steady state
    : a state or condition of a system or process (such as one of the energy states of an atom) that does not change in time
    broadly : a condition that changes only negligibly over a specified time

  18. 18
    Corner Stone says:

    Trump knows absolutely nothing about business or how the exchanges of goods and services operate.

  19. 19
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @A Ghost To Most: What $100 million transfer?

  20. 20
    TenguPhule says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    Trump thinks having your political enemies murdered is cool, and wishes he could do it.

    And sooner or later, he’s going to try again. He’s going to keep digging until he finds a Republican stupid enough or crazy enough to obey that order.

  21. 21
    TenguPhule says:

    @Corner Stone:

    or how the exchanges of goods and services operate.

    Trump: “What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine. Fuck you pay me.”

  22. 22
    dmsilev says:

    @TenguPhule:

    Morden:
    What do you want?

    Vir Cotto:
    I’d like to live just long enough to be there when they cut off your head and stick it on a pike as a warning to the next ten generations that some favors come with too high a price. I would look up at your lifeless eyes and wave like this. [gives a mockingly cheerful finger waggle] Can you and your associates arrange this for me, Mr. Morden?

  23. 23
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman: An argument could be made that his ignorance is worsening over time into outright delusion.

  24. 24
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Paul W.: Congress could pass, with veto proof majorities, a ban on US military sales to the Saudis, zero out funding for US military assistance to the Saudi military, which will shut down the train, advise, and assist missions, and place sanctions on the Crown Prince and those closest to him who were involved with this.

  25. 25
    TenguPhule says:

    @dmsilev: My favorite quote. I refer back to it more and more these days to preserve what little fragments of sanity I retain.

  26. 26
    MattF says:

    Yeah, Trump demands ‘fair’ treatment, not just for himself but also for a rat’s breakfast of authoritarian murderers. Family first.

  27. 27
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Congress could pass, with veto proof majorities

    Theoretically.

  28. 28
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: That’s because Brian Higgins didn’t want to be sharing this office with Tim Ryan and Seth Moulton:
    https://i.pinimg.com/originals/bb/03/c3/bb03c34f19e02a5da30349724d1fc9e1.jpg

  29. 29
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Corner Stone: That’s just SCIENCE!

  30. 30
    TenguPhule says:

    @TenguPhule: Gah, Brian.

  31. 31
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Corner Stone: As I’ve said before here: he is the type of person who thinks he knows the price of everything, but really knows the value of nothing. Also, he doesn’t actually know the price of anything.

  32. 32
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    That’s because Brian Higgins didn’t want to be sharing this office with Tim Ryan and Seth Moulton

    Wait, those bastards get a pillow?!

  33. 33

    @TenguPhule:

    He’s going to keep digging until he finds a Republican stupid enough or crazy enough to obey that order.

    It’s not going to happen. I doubt he’s brave enough to ask for assassinations, because he is an incredible chickenshit. He’s a whiny, forgetful, meanspirited toddler, so he’ll probably keep asking to have people arrested for political reasons, and people will keep explaining to him that they’d like to, but there’s this ‘law’ thing and ‘courts’ and it cannot be done. Assassination requests will have similar problems. The people stupid enough to obey that order are not the ones who would carry it out, and those people are going to go ‘Uh… no?’ They have been all this time. If anything, he’s getting less and less power to do stuff like that as his refusal to staff high levels of the executive separate the actual people who do things from the ones who supposedly give orders.

  34. 34
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule:

    What’s mine is mine and mine and mine.

    And mine and mine and mine!

    Not yours!”

  35. 35
    The Moar You Know says:

    Heard Corker on the BBC this morning distancing himself from Donald for all he was worth over this. Which was interesting. Nadia, correctly, asked him why he had a problem with it since they took their marching orders from Trump. And Corker laid down an Oscar-worthy acting performance, informing her that just because they were of the same party, that he was an INDEPENDENT UNITED STATES SENATOR, as were they all, and nobody was doing any bidding of Trump ever, no ma’am, and he was shocked and appalled by Trump’s response since it made them look like the US Government was for sale to anyone, and VERY STERN AND SERIOUS RESPONSES AND ACTIONS WERE FORTHCOMING. I found that response quite interesting.

    At least one senator has figured out that everything Trump touches dies, and he’s on that list.

  36. 36
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Also, he doesn’t actually know the price of anything.

    He knows the price of him getting laid is $130,000.

  37. 37
    cynthia ackerman says:

    @hells littlest angel:

    He doesn’t deserve a headstone.

  38. 38
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @dmsilev: Anyone ever notice that Paul Ryan and Morden have the same hair cut?

  39. 39
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: Yes, theoretically.

  40. 40
    JMG says:

    @The Moar You Know: He’s a United States Senator for exactly 42 more days. He’s mighty brave on his way out the door. “Hold me back boys, I might kill him.”

  41. 41
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: They had to pay for it themselves.

  42. 42
    Ramiah Ariya says:

    I think pointing out “moral bankruptcy” is not the best way to attack Trump on this. It sounds like music to Republican ears. The right way is to ask why he consistently says “We will never know” about things like Khashoggi’s murder, but is very sure that the migrant caravan has terrorists.
    The best way to question Trump in a press conference is to relate his weird double standards – not to proclaim some vague American norms. Yet, I bet NO journalist will actually ask such a question, and will deal with each issue as isolated.

  43. 43
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: No, Michael Cohen and Alan Wesselberg did the math on that.

  44. 44
    TenguPhule says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    It’s not going to happen.

    A lot of things people thought weren’t going to happen over the last two years have. I think you’re underestimating just how venial his supporters are and how deep in treason territory they’ve gone. And while I agree that Trump is a coward in person, his fucking mouth is more then willing to write blank checks he can’t cash and there have already been occasions where it has exploded in unexpected directions, like Comey’s firing. He didn’t do it in person, but he did do it.

  45. 45
    Josie says:

    If I was Fethullah Gulen or anyone connected to him residing in the US, I’d be looking into seeking asylum in Canada as soon as possible.

    This. I have been thinking of Gulen a lot since the president issued his statement. I hope he has a plan to save himself from the coming deal with Turkey.

  46. 46
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ramiah Ariya: I’m not a journalist. I don’t play one here or on TV.

  47. 47
  48. 48
    Bill in Section 147 says:

    I guess he just green lit any type of hit or action Canada feels is necessary as we won’t act in a way that might raise the price of oil.
    If we can get Canada to annex North Dakota, South Dakota and Idaho, then they will be part of their country and Trump won’t care about what happens to their citizens. Bonus: Democrats will then control the Senate and can approve Trump’s “Surrender for the Sake of a Tax-Cut like Thing!” treaty. Although Canada would be required to pay reparations to the tune of them having to to say, “Sorry.”
    Bonus Tax Cut because North and South Dakota take in more Federal dollars than the give to the feds in taxes.
    I might feel bad for some of you ‘good’ folks in those states for becoming not-American but Canada is really not too bad… I think you’ll get over it. If not… Sorry.

  49. 49
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I’m not a journalist.

    Because you have standards.

  50. 50

    @TenguPhule:

    He knows the price of him getting laid is $130,000.

    That does not sound like a successful negotiation. I’m going to hazard a guess that she’d have done it for a mere $50,000. That’s a whole lot of money for one night of dull, annoying, slightly disgusting work.

  51. 51
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ramiah Ariya:

    The right way is to ask why he consistently says “We will never know” about things like Khashoggi’s murder, but is very sure that the migrant caravan has terrorists.

    I’m not sure what you expect would happen if they asked those type questions?

  52. 52
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: I’m not sure that 27 seconds counts as a night.

  53. 53

    @TenguPhule:

    A lot of things people thought weren’t going to happen over the last two years have.

    I don’t know about ‘people’, but not much has surprised me so far, and I’ve had a pretty good track record with ‘Not going to happen.’ Wars, pardons, firings, coups, a whole lot of running around screaming and waving arms in the air has failed to pan out. This is a terrible situation, truly awful, but it does have limits. Trump is not going to have his political enemies prosecuted or assassinated. He dearly wishes he had that power, but he does not.

    EDIT – @Adam L Silverman:
    She had to sit around and watch Shark Week with him.

  54. 54

    We have here an account of the struggle to place progressives on critical committees in the newly-Democratic House. Yes, the visible anti-Pelosi faction was only the tip of the iceberg and no, I am not fond of the publisher, but publishers are where you find them, and I have a lot of respect for the author.

    https://theintercept.com/2018/11/21/progressive-caucus-congressional-progressive-caucus/

  55. 55
    eclare says:

    @TenguPhule: Same with the terrorist attack in Pittsburgh, he basically ordered it.

  56. 56
    sherparick says:

    @TenguPhule: A quote from the Sweet Smell of Success that describes J.J. Hunsecker and equally describes Trump and his whole group. “Tell him that like yourself, he’s got the scruples of a guinea pig and the morals of a gangster.”

  57. 57
    The Moar You Know says:

    I’m not sure that 27 seconds counts as a night.

    @Adam L Silverman: You gotta admit that the other 7 hours, 59 minutes and 33 seconds of having to tell that urine haired beanbag chair he’s the greatest lay ever is hard fuckin’ work. And Oscar-worthy acting.

  58. 58
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: Yeah, but Shark Week scares him, so watching him freak out might be, at least, somewhat amusing.

  59. 59
    sherparick says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: Reference Stormy. With Shark Week included, then she was definitely lowballed at $150,000.

  60. 60
    Ramiah Ariya says:

    Here are the ways news stories are written about Trump’s statement:

    For example, take two New York Times articles this morning: First, Mark Landler described the statement as “a stark distillation of the Trump worldview: remorselessly transactional, heedless of the facts, determined to put America’s interests first, and founded on a theory of moral equivalence.”

    In a second news analysis, Mark Mazzetti and Ben Hubbard described Trump’s dismissal of “the very process of seeking the truth” while also characterizing Trump’s worldview as driven by the notion that “the decisions of a president should be guided by what is best for the economy and the United States’ security.”

    A Washington Post story says Trump “puts economics above human rights,” and Stephen Collins at CNN accuses Trump of arguing that “principles that generations of Americans have cherished are for sale.”

    From vox.com
    As I said, this kind of coverage gives actually a positive spin to Trump’s statements.

  61. 61
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raven Onthill: This is what happens when you have great ideas and no understanding of how to develop a strategy in order to implement them.

  62. 62
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @The Moar You Know: She’s a diva!

  63. 63
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ramiah Ariya: We know the news media still hasn’t got a grip on how to cover this stuff, so what’s your point?

    I’ve been hammering this stuff here for almost three years.

  64. 64
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Raven Onthill:

    But if progressives cannot find the warm bodies willing to fill committee slots, they’ll have put their reputation on the line in a bid for power, without being able to follow through.

    So, basically, the CPC shot themselves in the foot by making a deal but not having enough members willing to switch committees to make the deal work.

    And yet this is all going to get transmitted by rose twitter as all Nancy Pelosi’s fault, because reasons.

  65. 65
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @TenguPhule: Those journalists murdered in the Eastern US?? Wasn’t that by some MAGAt??

  66. 66
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Ladyraxterinok: Yep.

  67. 67
    TenguPhule says:

    Hyde-Smith’s remark, which she said was an exaggerated gesture of friendship, has generated a fierce backlash even among some Republican backers. To them and her opponents, she conjured an image that Mississippi wants to leave behind — of lynchings of African Americans. That historic reference is even more pointed because her opponent, former congressman Mike Espy, is seeking to become the first black senator since just after the Civil War.

    “You know, for anyone that was offended by my comments, I certainly apologize. There was no ill will, no intent whatsoever in my statements,” the GOP senator said. “I have worked with all Mississippians. It didn’t matter their skin color type, their age or their income. That’s my record.”

    But targeting Espy, she added that “this comment was twisted, was turned into a weapon to be used against me, a political weapon used for nothing but personal and political gain by my opponent. That’s the type of politics that Mississippians are sick and tired of.”

    Espy responded by tossing the charge back at Hyde-Smith and noting that some prominent supporters had distanced themselves from her.

    “Well, no one twisted your comments because your comments were live — you know, they came out of your mouth,” Espy said. “I don’t know what’s in your heart, but we all know what came out of your mouth.

    Espy is a fighter and I’d love to see him in Congress.

  68. 68
    Mike in DC says:

    @Frankensteinbeck: One night of work? I think we are more likely using legal billing increments of tenths of an hour.

  69. 69
    Jay says:

    @Josie:

    There isn’t a Turkish “deal”,

    The Turks have put out the intel and evidence globally, and there’s no putting the Genie back in the lamp.

    They arn’t going to claim it’s all “fake news” just because the Sawdi’s offer to give them some money, or Prince Jared offers them Gullen.

    The Turkish Deal is to take down Prince Mohammed Bone Saw and “force” other countries to invoke individual, economic and military sanctions on Sawdi Arabia.

  70. 70
    Gravenstone says:

    @TenguPhule: How about constant, unwavering, ineffable? So many adjectives, so little time.

  71. 71

    How is it possible for this man to be so ignorant? He hasn’t spent his life in some small town somewhere the internet connection is spotty. He went to good schools. He’s traveled. He hears news on the car radio, the TV, in people’s chatter. He now had people briefing him. How can he know so little? It boggles my mind.

  72. 72
    Gravenstone says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Decontamination after the ‘event’ takes time.

  73. 73
    Soprano2 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Anyone ever notice that Paul Ryan and Morden have the same hair cut?

    OMG, they do! That could explain a lot.

    That’s probably my favorite TV show of all time. Lots of lessons there.

  74. 74

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: You can bring the horse to the water, you can’t make it drink the water.

  75. 75

    @Adam L Silverman: Criticizing newly-elected Representatives for not knowing the complexities of wielding power in the House is unfair.

    I fear that if the progressives don’t take at least some of those committee memberships we will have more of same-old same-old, and Democratic voters will not turn out in 2020. Never underestimate the ignorance or vindictiveness of the average voter. I canvassed in the last election and (except for the blacks) many of the people I spoke with had no idea of the issues, had no idea why it mattered.

    Boize moi!

  76. 76
    Mo MacArbie says:

    I fear that if the CPC can’t take advantage of the deal, they may find it more expedient to scream, “No fair! You promised! Rigged!” instead.

  77. 77
    Pogonip says:

    Hi Adam,

    Here we have a Saudi citizen murdered by other Saudi citizens on Turkish soil. I don’t understand what business the U. S. government has prying into this crime. (Cue Hank singing “Why Don’t You Mind Your Own Business.”). Can you explain the compelling national interest the U. S. has in meddling? (If you already did and I missed it, sorry.)

  78. 78
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raven Onthill: The heads of the Progressive Caucus have not just been elected. They should have had a plan. They didn’t. I”m not blaming the incoming members who will join the Progressive Caucus, I’m blaming the people already it in and running it.

  79. 79
    rikyrah says:

    You are on point once again, Silverman. I appreciate you laying things out like this.

  80. 80
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Pogonip: It is a very good question, sorry for the delay.

    Kashoggi has been reported to be a legal permanent resident of the US (green card holder). There was one CNBC report on his extra-judicial execution that, instead, described him as being the holder of an O work visa and having applied for a green card/permanent resident status. While this may make a difference when dealing with immigration officials, it makes little other difference. He was a legal, resident alien of the US. The US has a responsibility to promote behavior within the global system that safeguards and protects those who are subject to and protected by US jurisdiction. And by doing so the US promotes behavior that protects and safeguards those who are subject to and protected by other states’ jurisdictions. Given that Kashoggi was also a journalist, and journalists are at particular risk when they travel abroad for work and when they do so for other reasons because of their work, the failure of the US to take a strong stand against what Saudi Arabia has done is very dangerous. It is dangerous for US citizens, permanent legal residents, and temporary legal residents who travel abroad for whatever reason. And it is dangerous for US citizens, permanent legal residents, and temporary legal residents whose professional work or religious beliefs or ethnicity or gender identity may place them at risk when traveling abroad. Failing to hold Saudi Arabia accountable will only encourage more of this behavior. From MBS in Saudi Arabia, from Putin, from Xi, from Duterte, and from others.

  81. 81
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @rikyrah: I would appreciate a well funded Patreon account…//

    More seriously, you are quite welcome and thank you for the kind words.

  82. 82
    Pogonip says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Thanks, Adam! Now I understand the case for meddling.

  83. 83
    sm*t cl*de says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    I doubt he’s brave enough to ask for assassinations, because he is an incredible chickenshit.

    Mussolini was legendary for his chickenshit cowardice and his incapacity for face-to-face confrontations. Il Douche models his mannerisms and his entire public persona on Mussolini. Nuff said.

  84. 84
    Tehanu says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    As I’ve said before here: he is the type of person who thinks he knows the price of everything, but really knows the value of nothing. Also, he doesn’t actually know the price of anything.

    You’ve got it in a nutshell. Thanks!

  85. 85
    sm*t cl*de says:

    @Pogonip:

    Here we have a Saudi citizen murdered by other Saudi citizens on Turkish soil. I don’t understand what business the U. S. government has prying into this crime…. Can you explain the compelling national interest the U. S. has in meddling?

    I know that the traditional received wisdom is that murderous-thug heads of state are a source of stability, and therefore good… but one lesson from the murder is that Crown Prince feels so insecure in his power that he has people killed for minor dissidence (and for making fun of him). He is so hard-up for money that he rounded up the entire puling mob of sheiklings who comprise his family, and kept them imprisoned until they gave him their fortunes. He could trust hardly anyone, and now he has used his few trustworthy underlings as scapegoats for Khashoggi’s murder, and lined them up for execution, so he can trust no-one. He has no impulse control and no concept of “long-term plan”. Crown Prince is dead meat walking..

    At this point, a rational US government would be distancing itself from MSB and signalling a willingness to work with any less-psychopathic, more-competent successor.

  86. 86
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Pogonip: It really isn’t even meddling. It is simply demonstrating America’s official displeasure by sanctioning the right people, cancelling military sales and placing a moratorium on them, cancelling military train, advise, and assist missions. That isn’t meddling. Those are standard tools in the foreign policy toolkit. Meddling would be trying to overthrow the Saudi government. I’m not talking about that, let alone advocating it. And I’ve not seen anyone else advocate it either.

  87. 87
    Pogonip says:

    @sm*t cl*de: Not to worry. Our gov’t will, because it has to, always, always “work with” Middle Eastern oil potentates. The next one could make bin Salman look like a pussycat and our government would still “work with” him.

  88. 88

    @Adam L Silverman: it’s a good point. They really didn’t expect to ever win, that shows very clearly. Now that they have they don’t know what to do. Ironically, the hope here rests with the newly elected representatives who bloody well did want to win.

  89. 89
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Tehanu: You’re welcome.

  90. 90
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Mo MacArbie:

    That is most likely what will end up happening, unfortunately. It was a great idea for the CPC to make a deal to get Pelosi elected Speaker, but somebody didn’t do the necessary pre-planning to figure out who was going to move where.

    This is reminding me of Black Lives Matter and Occupy Wall Street in 2015 and 2016. When they got meetings with Hillary Clinton and other politicians, they never seemed to have any ideas or plans for implementing the change they wanted. They just wanted, like, change and stuff, and for politicians to do whatever it is that politicians do to change things.

    That’s not how legislating works, though. You can’t pass a bill that doesn’t specify what changes you’re making to existing law or what new law you’re creating. You need to be SPECIFIC, FFS.

  91. 91
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raven Onthill: The key for Pelosi trying to identify and mentor new leadership over the next two to four years is going to be finding either strategic thinkers or those with the ability to learn to become strategic thinkers both within the current members of the caucus and within the incoming freshmen class of Democratic representatives.

  92. 92
    Mnemosyne says:

    When this was all being discussed yesterday, I discovered that Ted Lieu, who is a member of the CPC, was selected to be an Assistant Whip last year, so hopefully a few more CPC members are either already on that leadership track or will decide to pursue it.

    It also looks like my longtime current rep, Brad Sherman, will be joining the CPC in the next Congress, which is probably a good decision for this district, so they may also be getting some “new blood” from representatives who have been in the House for some time but are only just now joining the CPC.

  93. 93
    J R in WV says:

    @Pogonip:

    Here we have a lawful American resident, working and writing for the Washington Post, murdered in Turkey, but on the lawful territory of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, ie their consulate.

    So your framing is not accurate at all.

    Haven’t seen you for a v. long time… which makes me wonder: Is this a reappearance of a former friend, or a total stranger using a nym from the past?

  94. 94

    @J R in WV: Green Card holders are just chopped liver according to this administration, and its base.

    ETA: The person with this handle has made borderline racist/xenophobic comments @ me before. Also flung the all purpose southern insult, bless your heart at me. So this comment doesn’t surprise me.

  95. 95
    Groucho48 says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Well, I’d guess part of the reason they were unprepared is that no one really expected Pelosi to be in a spot where she would have to wheel and deal like that. So, I imagine they expected they would get more seats on those important committees, but, pushed for more when they saw an opportunity. I’d say it’s better to have too many seats to fill than not enough.

  96. 96
    debbie says:

    @J R in WV:

    I agree. I’ve started responses to the post a couple time, but am too ticked off. Prying, my ass.

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