At the G20, those who yelled the loudest were heard. Saudi Arabia: What a difference a year makes.
By Michael Bociurkiw Updated 7:33 PM ET, Sun June 30, 2019
Saudi Arabia: What a difference a year makes
When historians look back at the Osaka summit, they will surely note the astonishing rehabilitation of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who, according to the CIA, masterminded the brutal murder and dismemberment of Washington Post contributor Jamal Khashoggi. (Saudi Arabia denies the Crown Prince had any knowledge of the killing of the journalist).
What a difference a year makes: in Buenos Aires, shortly after Khashoggi’s murder, bin Salman was largely sidelined and relegated in the traditional G20 final photo to the back row. Back then, the only time he seemed to have flashed a smile was when Russian President Vladimir Putin offered a high five.
This year, bin Salman was not only embraced by Trump but also placed front and center in the traditional G20 family photo, possibly because Saudi Arabia will be hosting the next G20 summit in 2020.
Be that as it may, the G20 family, presumably stewards of civility, could have demonstrated its disgust over the murder — especially after the Crown Prince was named by a United Nations report this month as the probable orchestrator of this heinous crime — by withholding the honor of prime placement. They could have even gone a step further by suspending the selection of Saudi Arabia as the venue for the next G20 until bin Salman is cleared. Not to do so condones such atrocious behavior and makes a mockery of the rules-based international order supposedly upheld by the G20.
There is precedent for holding powerful leaders accountable. When Russia invaded and forcibly annexed Crimea in 2014, the then-G8 switched the venue for the leaders of the group of industrialized nations from Sochi to Brussels.
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Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia
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Crown Prince of 5000 Evil Princes
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He is the 8th King and of the 7 Saudi Kings who came before him
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