latest, media watch, Saudi Arabia

Khashoggi: a danse macabre & the New RealityTM

Catte Black

The New Reality and its merry jig

The Khashoggi incident continues to roll out in screaming headlines. The “confession” that the journalist died in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul is the latest twist, an indicator of the struggle to control narrative.

The manufactured crisis is being used not solely to demonise NATO’s erstwhile best buds, the house of Saud, but also to further isolate and discredit Trump in nice time for the November elections. Trump is currently being bashed by the Dems for doing what they and everyone else was doing a few weeks ago – viz cozying up to the mass-murderers and selling them weapons.

With shameless opportunism the same people who ignored the slaughter in Yemen as recently as a week ago are now appalled by it. Aware that the speed of the change might make them look like the sold-out moral blanks they actually are, Jonathan Freedland and Max Fisher (amongst others) are inventing vomit-inducing excuses for why they just hadn’t got round to noticing the dead children until the deep state told them to care.

They would be better off not trying. Some bits of soul-selling are beyond even the most sophistic attempts at rehabilitation.

The hypocrisy and short term memory loss currently on display is astounding, even by normal establishment/MSM standards. It’s a danse macabre. A horror show of painted corpses feigning life and love, reeking with sickly decay, nicely timed for Halloween.

The Saudis, and Trump, want this whole Khashoggi thing buried asap, and possibly think a quick fess up is the best way to do it. Whether or not it succeeds depends on the motives for creating the crisis in the first place, and how much leg work the Saudis and MBS have done behind the scenes to rehabilitate themselves in the empire’s eyes.

But let’s remember, the “confession” is no more reality-driven than anything else. It may be true. Sure. It may be completely 100% true. Or it may be entirely made up of convenience and back-pedalling. Or it may be any combination of these two opposites. We will likely never know for sure.

The fact it’s being reported, confessed, debated, analysed is not connected in any way to the question of its veridical reality.

That’s the real point, and not just about this.

The New RealityTM is an unending advertising campaign, a permanent promo reel, a PR push that never stops. No one involved is even concerned with verification or even remembers what that is. The lights are too bright. The money too good. The story self-perpetuating. The show really MUST go on. The corpses need to keep dancing. Forever.

Hard lesson. Hard to live by. Some people get annoyed and upset by it. But it’s still true.

Co-founding editor at OffGuardian. Writer. Occasional polemicist. Lives in UK.

Email at


  1. JudyJ says

    I’ve just looked at the CNN surveillance stills (posted earlier on Off Guardian’s Twitter feed) purportedly showing a Khashoggi body double wandering round publicly in Khashoggi’s clothes after the ‘murder’. I have to say that I was amused by the CNN comment attached to one of the pictures in which the ‘double’ appears to have subsequently discarded the Khashoggi attire: “According to a CNN facial recognition expert, he is no longer wearing a fake beard”. Good to know that those years of facial recognition training and experience haven’t been wasted.

    • Hilaire Belloc says

      It looks like Khashoggi in a bad black toupée to me.

      Just sayin

  2. Thomas Peterson says

    The question here is why the media establishment suddenly wants a regime change in Saudi Arabia. A regime change there certainly wouldn’t make any difference to the overall human rights picture; beheadings would no doubt continue.
    so there must be another reason why they want to get rid of MBS.

    • Frankly Speaking says

      MBS disobeyed Washington by purchasing S-400s, they are retaliating.

  3. Nah, but I have been banned from Alternet, after posting there for 5 years, and today, from Craig Murray’s blog. It’s all my own fault. I do realise that some subjects and some moderator’s understanding do not like me, posting my words, which they sometimes find too much – too close to the truth.

    9/11 blew my head off, cos I didn’t know what had happenned and I eventually get home from the other side of London, and my wife is crying.

    She was childminding two Beautiful Twin Girls a few months old.

    Their Grandmother was actually talking to the mother of these girls – in New York, when the planes hit, or the explosions were going off..She thought she was going to die. The phones went dead and we had no contact for two days.

    She survived. She ran for her life.

    So I thought for the sake of the two twin girls who will by now be about 17 years old, I would try and do my best to find out what happenned on that day.

    We would both love to see the twin girls again. My 13 year old son wanted to marry both of them, but has now got two boys of his own.

    They are beautiful.


    • Seamus Padraig says

      I think I remember you from Alternet. I haven’t bothered with them in a couple of years now. I believe my old handle was ‘RaisingMac’. Anyway, good to see you here at Off-Graun.

    • @Tony
      I “know” you from Craig’s blog. I don’t know if I’ve misunderstood but have you been banned from there? If you have I’m sorry to learn of it. I like your posts.

  4. It seems I have been banned by a higher authority. This is not that unusual for me.

    I do notice when my words are intercepted and never actually arrive. What did I say? I hope I didn’t upset anyone.

    Here’s Bob

    “Bob Marley – Exodus: Boston Music Hall 06/08/78”


    • Admin says

      Do you mean by us? we certainly haven’t banned you or deleted any of your comments!

      Our comments are being weirder than usual though. It’s the dratted Jetpack/Automatic software which we can’t currently do much about.

      Apologies to all those affected. Trust me – you are NOT being censored, at least not by us.

      • Admin, so far as I am aware, you have never banned me. It’s just that the quality of your articles, and most of your commenters well – they can write far better than me, so I normally just read, rather than write. I know quality when I see it.

        Thank You,


  5. Kit and Catte are quite right to raise questions about the MSM narrative regarding the disappearance of Khashoggi. It appears that it may have been a hacksaw job, but the MSM are having to cobble together some kind of hatchet job based on the drip feed from the intelligence services – who ever they might be…

    One thing which is clear is that we are entering into a period of time again where intelligence services are being seen to go increasingly rogue, outside the control of the political executive. There is a long history of this it’s not new but usually they prefer for it to be kept out of the publics view.

    The current spate arguably started with the Ukraine Maidan with the whole show being orchestrated by Brennan who has made it his mission, in his dotage, to “get Trump”. However laudable that objective might be it was not the original focus. The “Russia did it” narrative is and was nurtured by him, almost becoming a franchise in its own right and devolving into the canard of the WMSM. Sad really that the paid for shills think they are somehow culturally directing us in this insidious narrative!

    From the Ukraine to the multi-coloured revolutions including other nefarious operations which form our known history we are now again seeing the rise of the rouge deep “secret” state. The Skripal affair, the White Helmets, Trump and Putin” Russia gate” and now the Clown Prince of Saudi Arabia. Hacking is the name of the game from the story to the grave so to speak. Actors disappear and reappear. To quote a recent interview with Stephen Cohen:

    “All of these dangerous developments, indeed the new US-Russian Cold War itself, are elite projects-political, media, intelligence, etc. Voters were never really consulted. Nor do they seem to approve. In August, Gallup asked its usual sample of Americans which policy toward Russia they preferred. Fifty-eight percent wanted improved relations vs. only 36 percent who wanted a tougher US policy with more sanctions. (Meanwhile, two-thirds of Russians surveyed by an independent agency now see the United States as their country’s number-one enemy, and about three-fourths view China favorably.)”

    Catch the discussion here:

    As they say history repeats itself, and it ain’t pretty…

  6. [Mailman here. Reposted from the Thylacine BTL today’s SyrPer]

    “Well, despite being bored to tears with this Khashogglio, I must relay the inimitable Pepe Escobar’s scoop


    Once again my best House-of-Saud-connected source RE-CONFIRMED that Mohammed Bone Saw (MBS) received direct info on CIA assets in Saudi Arabia from his close whatsapp pal Jared of Arabia.

    Jared could only have access to this top secret info because of his high clearance. That led to the Ritz-Carlton jail saga – and other arrests.

    The CIA protégé Mohammed bin Nayef – who was previously made Crown Prince by the CIA itself – was also arrested and is still under house arrest. The CIA was grooming Nayef be King.

    The CIA managed to elevate Nayef by plotting to get rid of Bandar Bush – who was fired by then King Abdullah. When King Abdullah died, Nayef continued to be Crown Prince until ousted by the new King Salman bin Abdulaziz to the benefit of his son.

    Big mistake. MBS moved against the clergy – who had been neutralized by Nayef. He moved against CIA friends, ousting former King Abdullah’s son Prince Miteb as head of the powerful National Guard – who’s after his blood ever since. Crucially, Khashoggi was also CIA. MBS ordered the invasion of Yemen – and turned large sectors of the army against him. He met with AIPAC in New York, befriended Israel and turned the bulk of the Saudi population against him.

    Only misinformed simpletons believe that the Pulp Fiction in Istanbul op could have proceeded without his green light. Hubris, arrogance and inter-galactic ignorance are MBS’s trademarks. What kind of intel op does not know that Turkish secret police would be monitoring the Saudi embassy 24/7?

    The Coward Prince, meanwhile, has had ample time to find not one but TWO fall guys. Fall Guy Number One is Gen. Ahmed al-Assiri, deputy head of Saudi Intelligence (yes, that’s an oxymoron), a senior air force officer with NO (very important) family connections to the Saudi two-bit royals. Fall Guy Number Two is Saud al-Qahtani, who was a sort of Desert Grand Inquisitor – totally controlling the media and supervising the non-stop purge of any critics. Call him the Saudi Steve Bannon – as he was known in Qatar. He led a mighty troll army spreading fake news on the murderous war on Yemen, the pathetic blockade of Qatar and non-stop demonization of Iran.

    Turkey for its part has masterfully deployed Death by a Thousand Leaks on MBS. Now the whole planet knows the detailed description of the 15-men hit squad; pics of all of them; their role in the “mission”; arrival and departure flights; which hotels they stayed for a few hours. The hit squad includes the Bone Saw Master; four intel ops; 6 Royal Guard members; a member of MBS’s personal guard; and a free agent. Compared to all this evidence, the official “fist fight” Saudi explanation as well as the Jared of Arabia-spun “rogue killer” spin are inter-galactic jokes designed for suckers.

    What remains unexplained is whether MBS was striking some sort of dodgy deal with the Trump administration, via his best pal Jared, behind the back of his House of Saud many rivals.

    Consul Pompeus Minimus was on the phone to MBS immediately after the Pulp Fiction news broke out. This could well turn out to have been a double-double cross.”

  7. Occam says

    As I said before: Mohammed bin Salman went too far and is now trying to rescue the alliance with the US with this latest “admission”, trying to blame some underlings. (This was probably coordinated with the US.)

    In any case I still fail to believe the whole thing was orchestrated by the US to get rid of Mohammed bin Salman. The US does not want to get rid of Mohammed bin Salman. Saudi Arabia is their closes ally in the region (apart from Israel), has been for years and there is zero reason why this would now change.

    What the mainstream media is bleating about is meaningless. It’s a side show, a distraction. Actions speak louder than words. And there is still no sign that the US is dropping support for Saudi Arabia.

    • grandstand says

      I believe Catte’s view and that of Stonky (the commenter who used the term “orchestration”) and myself and others is not that “the whole thing” is orchestrated but that the response is, as we keep trying to explain. Why is the death of Khashoggi worth many more pages of print and statements by politicians than the death of a busload of Yemeni children was last week?

      As to the US dropping support for Saudi Arabia, there are several powerful factions at work in the US. While Trump seems, currently, to be trying support MbS as best he can, that is not true of other politicians – for instance, Lindsey Graham, a high profile senator who is a constant supporter of Israel. Perhaps part of the aim is to weaken Trump – I don’t know. EU leaders do not seem to have bought the version of events as now described by the Saudis.

      Of course, what the mainstream media is bleating about is meaningless, but look at the commenters on this site who continue to believe it. And these people will be voting in elections. It is about “manufacturing consent” as Chomsky says. So when the UK participates in an attack on Syria, there are not hundreds of thousands out on the streets in protest because, rightly or wrongly, they have been persuaded that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons on its people. The people of the UK do not object to spending their taxes on NATO exercises because they have been persuaded, rightly or wrongly, that Putin is evil and is intent on attacking us. Most people in the UK would believe those two narratives and that is, without doubt, a result of the work of the MSM in concert with politicians. Yes, I agree, in my mind, as in yours, but not in everyone’s, the MSM is bleating meaninglessly, but certainly not aimlessly.

      • grandstand says

        Incidentally there is a good piece by Weiss over on MW about Israel’s position re this event. It seems to be more complicated than usual. As always there are some intelligent comments (eg by Harry Law) and some inane ones. It appears that, as of today, Israel and its supporters in the US are trying to have it both ways.

        • Occam says

          How is it complicated? They’re calling the dead journalist a terrorist.

      • Johny Conspiranoid says

        How can we know what “most people in the UK” believe?

        • grandstand says

          On Putin:

          On Syria it is harder to find a poll that specifically talks about whether chemical weapons were used by the Syrian government but this one suggests that attacking Syria for that reason is ok:

          Other polls, seem contradictory on this issue – with a majority of those with an opinion opposing air strikes.

          If I am wrong on these, I will be delighted!

          • Yarkob says

            polls. really? you’d base a geopolitical decision or position on polls. good luck with that. we all saw how accurate polls were the last two or three times they were pushed to the fore. nobody polled me, nor anyone i know. And conservative home? really? is that the mind of the british people or a mildly reactionary rag published by a failed politico who then became a born again christian?

            • Mulga Mumblebrain says

              ‘Many ‘born again Christians’ would actually welcome a thermo-nuclear war, to hasten the End Times, and the great war with Gog and Magog (Russia and China).

          • Jen says

            Polling is not necessarily a good gauge of public opinion. Survey questions can be framed in such a way (as in the good old standard, “Are you still beating your wife?” or “Which do you prefer – a medicine that kills 200 out of 600 outright and heals the rest; or a medicine that has 2/3 probability of curing the disease?”) that respondents can feel pressured to choose one option over another when they prefer the other option. Quite often there may be ulterior motives on the part of the pollsters, or the people or organisations who commission them to carry out the polls, to “create” support for certain positions those agencies want to push.

            You need to ask who is conducting the poll, which organisation/s the pollster is conducting the poll for and the pollster’s previous track record in carrying out polls and its previous clients. Who pays the polling organisation and who is on its Board of Directors, what are those people’s connections: all these are questions you have to ask when you see surveys that claim to represent general public opinion.

            And you also have to ask why would publish a post by someone who himself works in public relations and might have an interest in massaging public opinion.

        • BigB says

          “How can we know what “most people in the UK” believe?”

          Individually, you can’t. There is no ‘average’ POV, and individuals can hold a contradictory range of views (without internal coherence). That said, you can get an inferred POV from a complex interactional system from its output …that which exists (which is systemically produced).

          So Grandstand is correct. There is an ideological information loop (or series of loops forming a hyperloop) which operates on the principle of GIGO. The MSM is a major input/output device (the loop works both ways as a reverse dialectic). You can’t fool all of the people, but you can fool enough of the people enough of the time (around 25% of all registered voters will get you elected, if I remember correctly – which is already an elected dictatorship of the minority).

          As you can see, ‘most’ people do not count. With a different system, with a different input, the output could be radically altered.

          • Donald Duck says

            Very complex question. What do the mass of people actually believe? Do they swallow the official line en mass, or not? Well in the instance of the Iraq and Vietnam War(s) clearly not; if anything by a protest march in London involving up to a million UK against the war meant anything, and also given the outcome of the Brexit and Trump vote. Moreover, the circulation of newspapers has been in some decline steadily since the 1950s. The same could be said about the activities and membership of political parties. This process seems set to continue. The true believers are the ones in the command positions of the political and media institutions and who are in command of the dominant official narrative. The mass of the population really don’t at this time have a voice. The real truth is that even if the masses don’t believe the official narrative the PTB still go ahead with the policy anyway. This is become self-evident in American politics where the system is rigged and controlled by the ruling oligarchy. See

            (Testing Theories of American Politics:Elites, Interest Groups, and Average Citizens, Martin Gilens and Benjamin)

            It seems manifest that the social, political and economic structures of late capitalism consist of a very small but dominant elite who command the loyalty of a second larger group of ‘intellectuals’ . This group which neither owns or works the means of production have two courses of action as ways out of this middle-of-the-road position. A choice between joining the mass of citizens or accepting a position as the supporting tier of the system. In our own time most have chosen an affiliation with the liberal bourgeoisie. They are the ‘outer-party’ an ideological legitimising and defensive rampart protecting the real holders of power – the ‘inner-party’ and Big Brother. Big Brother of course only exists as a concept.

            Thus the production of knowledge is the primary function of the petit-bourgeoisie, but this is only one sort of knowledge. There is a counter-narrative which emanates from below. In Karl Mannheim’s study these two sets of knowledge, are termed reality and utopia.

            ”Because the concrete determination of what is utopian proceeds from a certain stage of existence, it is possible that the utopias of today may be the realities of tomorrow. ‘Utopias are only premature truths’ (Lamartine). Whenever an idea is labelled utopian it is usually by a representative of an epoch that has already passed. Per contra the exposure of ideologies as illusory ideas adapted to the present order is the work generally of representatives of the of an order of existence which is still in the process of emergence. It is always the dominant group which is in full accord with the existing order that determines what is to be regarded as utopian, and the ascendant group which is in conflict with things as they are is the one which determines what is regarded as ideological. (Ideology and Utopia – Karl Mannheim – .p183.

            It seems that there is an historical leitmotif whereby ‘norms’ and ‘truths’ which are/were deemed absolute, universal and eternal, or which were accepted with blissful unawareness of their implications leads to a crisis resulting in a paradigm shift – though which way the paradigm will shift is a matter of conjecture.

          • BigB,

            When I got fired in 1980, I used FIFO, First in First Out, when I was on the dole, writing computer games in Assembler. My Commodore VIC only had 1K of memory, as would most people’s who might have wanted to buy my video games. There wasn’t a lot of space left for garbage.

            I love this website, and I think Catte is a total star. She cuts through all the nonsense, and doesn’t claim if she is right or wrong. She just writes her views brilliantly. I don’t know her real name, but I think we should make an award to Off-Guardian, and no I haven’t yet, but am thinking about it.



          • JudyJ says

            I think the figure was nearer to 28.5%. My tongue is firmly in my cheek, of course! But you’re so right, as usual. I did a comparison of election results a while ago:

            In the UK in 2017 – 68% turnout; 42% of which voted Tory: equates to 28.5% of population of voting age

            In Syrian Presidential elections in 2014 – 73% turnout; 88% of which voted for ‘dictator’ Assad: equates to 64% of population of voting age

            But of course in order to discredit Assad’s victory we have to be told constantly that the elections must have been rigged, much as Putin’s success was ‘rigged’. The issue faced by Western governments is that they cannot admit that their autocratic ‘enemies’ are popular and actually command higher levels of support in their respective countries than they themselves do, so it’s much simpler to blame corruption for the landslide victories.

            • Jen says

              A 73% turnout of the total eligible voter population is quite impressive too when you consider that in areas in Syria held by jihadists, voters could not participate in the 2014 Presidential elections for fear of being thumped at polling stations – assuming any were even available where they were – and in some countries, voters were actually prevented from going inside Syrian embassies and consulates to cast votes. So the participation rate in those elections could have been higher still.

              • JudyJ says

                Indeed, Jen. In the majority of countries ex pat Syrians were allowed to vote but 12 countries embargoed the provision of voting facilities at Syrian Embassies for ex pats and refugees. It will come as no surprise that those countries were: Belgium, Canada, Egypt, France, Germany, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE, UK and US.

                • JudyJ says

                  Sorry, it was getting late when I posted the above comment! “…10 countries…”

        • Occam says

          Are you seriously questioning that 99% of the population does not swallow whole everything the mainstream media spews out? Just read the comments under their articles. Or talk to people outside of “our” bubble. I don’t read paper newspapers anymore but just the other day I had occasion to pick one up and it was propaganda misinformation front to back. Sickening. (And I’m not in he UK.)

          The Iraq war is a bad example imo. It certainly is encouraging that there were so many protests, but wars are “easy” things to be opposed to. However take the Skripal case for example, how many people actually question the official narrative there? Or all this anti-Russia propaganda?

          Maybe I’m too pessimistic but again: talk to people outside of “our” bubble, it’s a different story then.

          • JudyJ says

            I unwittingly carried out my own indirect mini ‘survey’ of neighbours a few months ago. Having written to my MP about various concerns regarding our Govt’s dangerous and baseless foreign policies (Russia and Syria specifically) I copied my letter to my 4 immediate neighbouring households (middle class, educated, professional, 2 car, 2.4 teenage/adult children families for want of a better description) along with an additional explanatory paper for their consumption giving more detailed background, on the assumption that they might not be fully conversant with the issues as they had busier lives than I do, and giving explicit reasons why I and others were cynical about what we were being led to believe by the Govt and the MSM. I suggested they might feel inclined to write to the MP as well, essentially to express concern at the UK Govt’s inflammatory war-mongering stance. I put all of this in writing as I didn’t wish to appear to be a ‘nuisance and busybody’ but said that if anyone was interested to discuss it further they knew where I was. I also added that to avoid any discomfort on their part that I would not mention the subject to them again, unless they made the first approach to discuss it.

            For the first few days following this everyone seemed to be going out of their way to avoid me (or maybe that’s just paranoia on my part). Anyway suffice it to say, disappointingly, not one of the neighbours has since acknowledged even receiving the papers and I have spoken to all of them about other trivial matters. Now if the situation had been reversed I am sure that, whether or not I agreed with the viewpoint, I would have at the very least said something to the originator even if it was only along the lines of being interested to see their letter to the MP. But no, we genuinely live in a country where apathy and/or unquestioning subservience to the PTB is the order of the day; and anyone daring to challenge is a misguided lunatic. Interestingly, at about the same time, RT did a similar street poll about the UK Govt’s policies and it was notable that it was middle class executive types who accepted the Govt’s narrative whilst the only person to make sensible comments and demonstrate a large degree of cynicism was a ‘street person’. Very disheartening.

  8. It is quite possible that the Khashoggi hysteria is cover for something like what is discussed below,,,,,,,,,,
    Why is the US media not responding to this?

    • Occam says

      The US broke the agreement not to expand NATO.
      The US dropped out of the ABM treaty (Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty).
      The US has been building missile bases in Europe across the border with Russia.
      The US has been upgrading their nuclear weapons.
      The US is now threatening to drop out of the INF (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty).

      There is a lot the US mainstream media is not talking about.

      • Mulga Mumblebrain says

        At EVERY stage of the Cold War, that NEVER ended, against both Russia/Soviet Union and China, the Satanic psychopaths of Thanatopolis DC have been the aggressors, yet the lying vermin of the Western fakestream media always blame the victims. Our fate was sealed long ago.

      • jonny says

        Totally agree occam, concisely put. Yesterday I had the misfortune of reading an article (either BBC or independent) stating how it was Russia that were breaking conventions by developing medium range missiles. Never a word said about how they are simply responding to the US mobilising near their border, and dropping out of treaties. Russia is more concerned with defensive measures and technologies. That is a problem, any nation that is on the target list is not meant to be able to defend itself against the US and its band of cronies.

  9. Macabre world order says

    “The suspects went and ate dinner at the Saudi consul-general’s residence after murdering and dismembering Khashoggi inside the consulate”

    Did they .. eat him (i mean his cut up pieces)?

    • Jen says

      You would hope they remembered to wash their hands before sitting down to eat.

  10. grandstand says

    It seems to fit very well. I believe Catte’s view (apologies if I am wrong, Catte) is that this story is being given far more airtime that it might warrant when compared with many other atrocities that are going on – often in our name as members of Western countries or at least with our connivance. As Catte says:

    “The fact it’s being reported, confessed, debated, analysed is not connected in any way to the question of its veridical reality.”

    Whether or not it happened and whether or not Khashoggi was/is a nasty piece of work are not the “agenda” of Catte. The “agenda” is that this killing (or not) continues to make headlines, whereas the bombing of a Yemeni school bus, and the shooting and bombing of Gazans do not. Your comment supports that “agenda”. The real story is the story.

    • grandstand says

      This was a response to “donald”.

  11. Why are all the most disreputable sources of establishment hearsay, now, suddenly deemed eminently reliable and quotable by some of their fiercest critics?
    E.g. Galloway tweets link to WaPo article as if its gospel.
    It is like a giant game of Cluedo playing out on the medianet.

    Colonel Mustard did it in the embassy with the bonesaw<<
    …or did he ?

    Tags : Trumpian double bluff fake fake news deep state irregular psywar

  12. Eh, just another murderer and friend of the “west” made a little mistake. Can you name just ONE friend of the “west” that was decent by any measure? Surely NOT. At the same time your “west” (or your UK to be direct) have declared Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela terrorists before starting to celebrate them. You folks are embarrassment to humanity (the whole lot of you from the “five eyes”)

  13. mark says

    Another very good article from Catte, straight to the point.
    Am I the only one who wonders where the body is? Why the fiancée/ family aren’t demanding the body back to give him a decent burial?
    Why haven’t these incriminating tapes of the murder been produced or leaked? Do they exist? Is Erdogan just holding them back in exchange for a few billion from the Shadies?
    Does all this make sense to everybody except me?

    • @ Mark

      No, you’re not the only one wondering these things.

      It’s fascinating and intriguing that Turkey has provided so much information and absolute detail about what took place yet, somehow, the disposal of the body and its location have not been mentioned.

      As yet we’ve only heard claims by Turkey of course. It remains to be seen when Mr E will disclose the evidence.

      Mostly tho’, my biggest question is about Khashogi. Given his wide and detailed knowledge of this regime and all it was capable of….what on earth possessed him to even set foot in that place?

  14. Frankly Speaking says

    “The manufactured crisis is being used not solely to demonise NATO’s erstwhile best buds, the house of Saud, but also to further isolate and discredit Trump in nice time for the November elections.”

    FFS Catte, what are you smoking?

    Khashoggi WAS murdered: real not manufactured.

    MSB bought Russian S-400 missiles, that’s what’s upset the Yanks: real not manufactured.

    MSB: threatened the security of Turkey with his ISIS headchoppers, that’s what’s upset Erdogan: real not manufactured.

    MSB’s drawing more attention of investors than Israel, that’s what’s upset Lindsay and his masters: : real not manufactured.

    MBS will most likely be replaced, Lindsay already publicly announced the regime change: real not manufactured.


    • Admin says

      From Catte, who isn’t logged in:

      “The crisis is not the event. The event may or may not have happened, but it only became a crisis because the deep state and its media treated it like one.

      Had they chosen not to do so it would have passed us by crisis-free, like the suspicious deaths of other journos we fail to hear about. But Khashoggi would be no more and no less dead.

      Because the event and the crisis manufactured around it are different entities

      Why is this relatively simple concept so hard for some to grasp?”

      • Maria says

        “Because the event and the crisis manufactured around it are different entities”

        My take on this exactly.

        No doubt the aims of the manufactured crisis surrounding this event will become clearer in time but I doubt we will ever know the truth of what happened to Khashoggi. So many have been horrified by the apparent murder and dismembering of his body… so many that also never give a second thought or even acknowledgement to the millions of men women and children who have and are being dismembered alive by bombs, terrorist attacks and drones in their own homes and streets.

      • grandstand says

        Totally agree and with Maria below!

      • Frankly Speaking says

        Catte, I gave at least three reasons as to why the MSM would turn Khashoggi into a crisis.

        The MIC will not forgive MBS for buying S-400s. They’d be more than happy to see the decision reversed and even MBS replaced to the CIAs favourite prince instead. That in itself is enough to highlight this incident as a crisis.

        Erdogan has no love for MBS, he’s potentially an existential threat to him or his country as MBS directs ISIS northwards into Turkey. His decision to release the gory details was picked up by media worldwide as journalists were appalled by what had happened to one of their own. This kind of collective repulsion and reaction happened too quickly for the controllers of our MSM to avert, if they had wanted to stop it.

        Israel has no loyalty to MBS even if he’s reached out to them. They’d prefer a compliant ruler in their vicinity rather than a Sadam Hussein or Gaddafi type which MBS is showing strong signs of becoming. He’s also competing with them and indeed the UAE for investment and media attention. The Israelis could easily tell their MSM controllers to make a big fuss about Khashoggi.

        Each of these is enough to highlight this incident as a crisis. All three have created the perfect media storm.

        On this occasion i don’t see that the generally disgusting MSM have done anything more than allow the reporting to take place unfettered as “journalists” express their disgust.

        I would agree it’s an usual event not to be controlled, but simply allowing the MSM free reign achieves the aim of embarrassing MBS and even seeing him removed.

        Perhaps perversely by not controlling the narrative they have actually achieved their ultimate aims. I think that we might be able to agree on this and see that we are just coming from different directions.

    • Most likely the murder is real. Khashoggi’s and that of many Yemenites. What is manufactured is the crisis.

    • Stonky says

      Seriously, Frankly Speaking, there is a small linguistic difference between “the fabricated killing” and “the manufactured crisis”. But there is a whole world of difference in meaning.

      If you genuinely can’t tell the difference between the two, then I suggest you refrain from commenting until you can. There are already more than enough posters on this site who consciously and constantly go out of their way to misrepresent what the ATL authors have actually said, so they can then go on to slay the strawman they have just created. Please don’t add to their numbers.

      • Frankly Speaking says

        Yes i can tell the difference between the two, but in the case of Khashoggi i don’t agree. I’ll not accept from you that i am trying to misrepresent what Catte is saying, i simply don’t quite agree with her viewpoint on the Khashoggi incident and the reasons for the MSM reaction to it. I’m actually not a million miles away from her.

  15. BigB says

    Excellent observations, Catte.

    My money is still on the geo-economics of NEOM: MBS’ silicone pleasure palace, his libidinal AI-Xanadu in the desert …a possible terminal for the ‘digital’ BRI on route to Europe. Its all part of his $500bn Vision 2030 to diversify from oil. There is the oil (the Aramco IPO, if it ever happens); and the S-400. Which goes to show, you can kill as many Yemeni schoolchildren as you like: so long as you use Lockheed Martin and Raytheon weaponry to do it. You can also behead as many female apostates (that is peace activists) as you like, but if you buy Russian, get too close to China, or cross the Gods of Money – you gotta go…

    In which case, t’ain’t nothin’ new; just the same old, same old tune of greed playing out.

    Talking of the same old, same old: don’t rule out the seemingly banal. The price of oil hit $71.54 last week. Anything is plausible in such an evolutionary redundant inverse-truth hyper-reality …the death of Khashoggi did not happen: it is all pure media-spectacle ….the precession of a Baudrillardian 4th Order simulacra ….in the desert of the real.

    Or, he might actually be dead. Somehow, I doubt it.

  16. John Marks says

    Last week the Saudis, flying American planes and using British bombs, destroyed a schoolbus packed with Yemeni children. Not a peep of this was reported in MSM.
    But we have wall-to-wall headlines for days over the murder of a Saudi dissident in Turkey.
    What’s going on?
    This contrast reveals the true message that western governments are trying to push down our throats, using their lying press.

    • Yarkob says

      and a few days after that they did it again, with a wedding party. they’ve been creating famine conditions fir the last 5 years, and that’s been reported in tiny little box outs in the corporate media, yet nothing is done. it doesn’t matter. nobody does anything anymore. the days of people standing outside embassies with placards went the way of the thatcher dodo

  17. Thank you Catte (and Off-Guardian) for helping readers like me to zero in on the overall dimensions of this story.

    I dismissed The Salisbury Spy Scandal out of hand from the get-go, but this one was something of a honey trap and my gut reaction was to take it at face value.

    But now that I have ‘stepped back,’ as it were, I realize how lucky we are to have the petri dish that is Khashoggi and Skripal.

  18. “Not in reality”. How can you expect “reality” when “reality” has NEVER been “real” in the first place?

    The smorgasbord-of-reality is what we have going down here and it has ALWAYS been so.

    It’s the hors d’oeuvres that ALWAYS suck you in!

  19. summitflyer says

    The spin is fast and furious and it has become boring .

    • We still need to stay focused. The spin has become boring, but its implications and consequences are anything but…

  20. Gary Weglarz says

    “The New RealityTM is an unending advertising campaign, a permanent promo reel, a PR push that never stops. No one involved is even concerned with verification or even remembers what that is. The lights are too bright. The money too good. The story self-perpetuating. The show really MUST go on.”

    spot on! An eloquent observation about our now well entrenched “post-truth” madness that passes for “reality.”

  21. Meriem Kheira Peillet says

    Dear Catte,

    Thank you! Yes indeed the show must go on…
    I was thinking just a while ago… Where is the corpse? His belongings? Where is the fiancee, the future wife? Does M. B. Salman needed to send 18 men to Turkey to kill one man, who apparently was even a friends, in its own embassy bugged by the turkish secret services (this is indeed a violation of the Geneca convention)… Weird that this happened whilst MBS, as they call him, is interested in Russian arms and maybe advises too…or just fell in the Putin trap (ah!Ah!Ah!)… I thought, that is was pretty weird that the US threatened Turkey, and other countries willing to buy Russian arms…but did not react when the Saudi expressed their interest in the S 400…Hummmm…
    So, now…as you should know, the Saudi crown and clans are meeting in secret planning to replace MBS with his young brother who is very close to the US…
    Another thought: Yemen…Would MBS be willing to continue to fight this absurd war for the zionist regime and the US? Note also that lately Israel was very critical about MBS…just read the few articles published just recently by the BESA institute about him…I have a perplexity, why Erdogan (I know he is no friend with Saudi Arabia indeed…) but why Erdogan in this precise, whilst he should work on the demilitarise Idlib zone as planned with the Russian…accept to participate to this farce? Still thinking about it…

    • Where is the fiancee, the future wife?

      Right? Has there been any effort on the part of any media to talk to the wife? Not to fill out the picture, but for what in the old days would have been called a ‘human interest’ story. As in human decency. But no. You can’t control the narrative if ‘outsiders’ might say something untoward off the cuff. Better to stick to the ‘screaming headlines’ and leave it at that.

      • These “screaming headlines” had me going for a while. Spooked the fuck out of me. Then I noticed the dismemberment “whilst still alive” became “post mortem” and turned the Texas chain(bone)saw level down a bit.

        If that’s the New Reality TM you can keep it. I’ll stick to soft drugs, thanks!

    • Matt says

      This comment is an excellent example of the author’s intentions: to smear the media’s criticism of Khashogi’s murder as having some “ulterior motive”, which the “anti-Trump deep state” is behind, in order to “sideline” MBS and get some “U.S. puppet” in power.

      Such a perfect example of how everything must be linked back to an anti-American motive. According to the author, the U.S. is behind everything, even the media’s criticism of their own journalist being chopped up in a foreign consulate. Much like the anti-Putin loons, the alt media tries to link everything back to Russia, but only to make Russia look good.

      In this case, the baseless smear is that the U.S. deep state has instructed the media to milk Khashogi’s death to oust MBS for promising to buys some Russian weapons. Is there any evidence for this? None. But when a claim is made against Russia, then the alt media must “wait for the evidence”, all the while promoting alternative conspiracy theories.

      But the above comment goes even further, using the same logic used to defend Russia from its attempted murder of the Skripals: that Saudi Arabia would never do such a horrible thing in such an obvious manner.

      The author is right: the show must go on, the anti-American agenda advanced. Everything can be assumed to have an ulterior motive, the MSM always wrong, and the shadowy U.S. deep state behind every little event.

      • What’s the weather like in Disneyland this week Matt?

        • Frankly Speaking says

          Disneyland? More like Cheltenham.

        • Mulga Mumblebrain says

          Moshe (‘Matt’) works out of an Ultra-Orthodox yeshiva in a settler colony on the illegally occupied West Bank.

      • Makropulos says

        And again and again – the old emotional blackmail of the “anti-American” claim. This signifies a person who has no argument left and just explodes with “You just don’t like me!” At which point we are called on to be all sympathetic and consolatory and once we have calmed down our wailing infant, we are barred from ever being critical again unless he goes into another tantrum.

      • Stonky says

        I have no objection to dissenting views, and I don’t even object to trolls who use genuine facts and arguments. Last week I myself was trolling the Indepeachment, infuriating the assembled groupthinkers by pointing out to them that the original source of the Obama ‘birther’ stuff was not in fact Donald Trump, but Obama’s own literary agent, back in 1991 (my posts did not survive long).

        But you’re not an intelligent dissenter, or even an entertaining troll. You’re just a stupid contrarian. You carried out a google search a few days ago, on the basis of which you apparently satisfied yourself that the Yemeni school bus bombing had received comparable coverage to the Khashoggi killing. I carried out a more targeted search, on the Guardian website, and ascertained that they had published six articles on the Yemeni bombing. I then checked the Khashoggi coverage, and got bored and gave up counting after fifty articles.

        One of the Yemeni articles was an appalling first-hand account by a nurse who treated the casualties. Now, in accordance with a meme spreading from the NYT through the rest of the Western media, I’m supposed to believe that the true reason for the disparity in coverage is that the journalists who read that article thought something along the lines of:

        “Yeah, well, it’s terrible and all that, our friends the Saudis getting up to this kind of stuff. But at the end of the day these were just forty schoolkids. Now if bin Salman was to do something really evil, like killing my beloved fellow-journalist Jamal Khashoggi (whom I’ve never actually heard of, and whose stuff I’ve never actually read) well, that would be unacceptable, and my outrage would know no bounds, and I would have to write article after article after article about it… Hey! Wait! That’s exactly what he’s gone and done! To the barricades everyone! To the barricades!”

        If you are stupid enough to believe that bullshit, then fair enough. But in that case go and create your own stupidity blogsite, where you and your stupid pals can go and post your stupid comments, and give the rest of us peace.

        • Yarkob says

          “You’re just a stupid contrarian. You carried out a google search a few days ago, on the basis of which you apparently satisfied yourself that the Yemeni school bus bombing had received comparable coverage to the Khashoggi killing. I carried out a more targeted search, on the Guardian website, and ascertained that they had published six articles on the Yemeni bombing. I then checked the Khashoggi coverage, and got bored and gave up counting after fifty articles.”

          exactly this.

          “matt” keeps exposing himself with his own posts and their blatant lack of unbiased rigour and lack of basic fact-checking. never responding to requests for clarification, either. not very self-aware. i think, despite my takin* the piss, if he’s a professional troll, he’s failing. badly. but then look at what we’re expected to swallow with’s the total hollywood-esque suspension of disbelief.

          i’m surprised we’re not being told putin had something more direct to do with it, as suggested by HMG that trump must have known, because..well, just because trump

          • JudyJ says

            Matt revealed elsewhere that he was 7 when the Iraq war began – doesn’t that speak volumes? I’m reluctant to say it but I will: he is a typical representative of today’s brainwashed ‘snowflake’ generation who are probably well intentioned but have never learnt or been encouraged to question and analyse thoughtfully and intelligently. Well, why would you when you live in a country where ‘the powers that be’ don’t lie to you…and, on top of that, they make life easy by telling you exactly what to think? But I bet he can probably tell you the plot of every Harry Potter or Game of Thrones book.

      • They’re all eating peanut butter, banana and bacon sandwhiches with Elvis. Lennon is even there, reciting passages from Catcher in The Rye

      • Frankly Speaking says

        Erm, how about her being utterly distraught and grieving at the death of her beloved fiancée, exacerbated massively by the manner of his death, and all the while she was just a few metres away from him?

  22. harry stotle says

    Will these developments force Freedland to reassess his view of the ‘good rebels’ in Syria (armed, trained and funded by the KSA amongst others), especially techniques employed by them to persuade local communities that supporting Assad might not be good for your health?

    • I don’t think it matters whether he reassesses his view of anything. He really isn’t very bright.

      • Tibbles says

        Freedland is very bright, he knows which side his bread is buttered and who supplies the butter.

    • Mulga Mumblebrain says

      No, it won’t. Destroying Syria, breaking it into pieces and killing as many ‘two-legged animals’ as possible in the process, is central to the prime Zionazi Imperial project, the Oded Yinon Plan. Freedland, a dedicated Zionazi, will never abjure the drive to create Eretz Yisrael, ‘..from the Nile to the Euphrates’, including a good deal of Syria.

    • Frankly w says

      We all know the answer to that: of course not.

  23. vexarb says

    Meanwhile, for a little constructive reality as opposed to empty theatricals (U$ Grand Guignol or UK Skripal farce) watch this cheerful Russian farmer on Saker Vineyard:

    Russian Farmer: Thanks for Sanctions, Mr President!
    Putin: Thank the West


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