John Brennan laid the blame for the murder of Jamal Khashoggi at the feet of Donald Trump because the president has enabled and encouraged authoritarian regimes with his rhetoric.
John Brennan said on NBC’s Meet The Press, “The strength of the US-Saudi relationship goes back many years. I think MBS has been emboldened. His relationship with the White House, with Donald Trump as well as with Jared Kushner I think probably gave him increased confidence to do some of these things in a more aggressive way. Look what’s happened in Yemen and that awful, awful tragic war. I also think Donald Trump’s siding up to authoritarian leaders around the globe, Donald Trump’s condemnation of the press that’s critical, his continued dishonesty and denial of reality, I think that’s encouraged MBS to go along this road.”
Authoritarians Know That They Won’t Be Held Accountable By The US Under Trump
Domestically, there has been a great deal of conversation about how extremist right-wing elements in the United States have been emboldened and encouraged by Trump. This same dynamic is also visible globally as authoritarians have accelerated their oppressive and criminal behavior because the world’s guardian of democracy and freedom is being governed by a man who natural impulse gravitates toward autocracy.
The rhetoric of a president has international consequences. There are serious questions to be answered about whether or not US intelligence knew that of the threat to Khashoggi, and if they did, why he was not warned that his life was in danger.
By cozying up to dictators and oppressive regimes, Trump is sending the message to the rest of the world that there is no accountability. Anything goes, because Trump will talk tough, but he is a toothless paper tiger who will do nothing.
Jamal Khashoggi is dead, and Trump needs to be held accountable for the consequences of his words and deeds.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association