Published: Wed, December 05, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Zero doubt Saudi crown prince directed Khashoggi murder: GOP senators

Zero doubt Saudi crown prince directed Khashoggi murder: GOP senators

Following a briefing by CIA Director Gina Haspel Tuesday, leading United States senators emerged with the strong conviction that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman had ordered the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul in October. "Prince Mohammed. he really was the original El Chapo, literally", said Louisiana Senator John Kennedy on Tuesday as US President Donald Trump was under pressure for maintaining support for the murderous prince. Khashoggi walked into the Saudi consulate in Turkey on October 2 and never walked out.

"There is not a smoking gun, there's a smoking saw", Graham, R-South Carolina, told reporters after emerging from a Capitol Hill briefing with Central Intelligence Agency Director Gina Haspel.

"It's not a smoking gun, it's a smoking saw", Republican Sen.

Haspel will speak with members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the Armed Services Committee on Tuesday - to disclose what the Central Intelligence Agency knows about Khashoggi's death, according to The Wall Street Journal. Legislators have vowed to punish Saudi Arabia, proposing a measure which would remove US support for the Saudis in the civil war in Yemen.

"If we don't stop it now, it gets worse later", Graham said, adding that MBS has been a "wrecking ball" the Middle East. He said it seemed as though the White House's response to the Khashoggi killing was that "you can kill a journalist". "I would imagine if they were in a Democratic administration, I would be all over them for being in the pocket of Saudi Arabia, but since I have such respect for them, I'm going to assume that they're being good soldiers". Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), the chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations. He has touted Saudi arms deals worth billions of dollars to the US and recently thanked Saudi Arabia for plunging oil prices.

Lawmakers on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee used a nomination hearing on Tuesday that included Christopher Henzel, a career diplomat tapped to be next ambassador to Yemen, to vent their frustrations about the Trump administration over its relationship with Saudi Arabia. Sen.

In a column for the Wall Street Journal on Tuesday, Graham wrote that the killing and other moves by the Saudi regime showed "astounding arrogance entitlement" and disregard for global norms.

"I would really question someone's judgment if they couldn't figure this out", Graham continued.

The Yemen legislation, which may face another procedural vote this week, could set up a bitter year-end Senate floor fight over U.S. war powers.

Some senators have complained about the way the briefing was handled today, including Kentucky Sen. The Saudi public prosecutor has indicted and charged dozens of Saudi citizens, including several top advisers to the crown prince, in the affair.

Speaking to reporters after the briefing, Graham explained, "I went into the brief believing that it was virtually impossible for an operation like this to be carried out without the crown prince's knowledge".

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