On Monday President Donald Trump, realizing the apparent murder of Khashoggi was something he could no longer ignore, he announced he was sending Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on a fact-finding mission to Saudi Arabia.
It is now clear that was not the actual goal of Pompeo’s visit.
Overnight, after meeting with Saudi King Salman, Secretary Pompeo was asked by reporters if the Saudis had told him if “Khashoggi is alive or dead.” The Secretary refused to answer.
“I don’t want to talk about any of the facts,” Pompeo told reporters as he headed to Turkey, according to the State Department’s official transcript. “They didn’t want to either, in that they want to have the opportunity to complete this investigation in a thorough way.”
Here’s video. Pompeo’s remarks about facts start at the 43 second mark:
Reporter: Did they say that Khashoggi was alive or dead?
Secretary Pompeo: I don’t want to talk about any of the facts. They didn’t want to either. pic.twitter.com/ojSa43qHDP
— Robert Maguire (@RobertMaguire_) October 17, 2018
The prevailing narrative right now is that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered Khashoggi’s murder. Four people tied to the Crown Prince have been ID’d as suspects by Turkey.
And Turkey has now shared audio of Khashoggi’s murder with Saudi and U.S. officials. It is gruesome.
But it now seems clear Pompeo wasn’t dispatched Saudi Arabia to get to the bottom of what happened to the Washington Post journalist, a U.S. permanent resident, who has been missing since October 2. Instead, it seems clear he was ordered to meet with King Salman to concoct a cover story for the royal family.
Of note, Pompeo met with the King and with his foreign minister, Crown Prince Adel al-Jubeir – but not with Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), who just happens to be a friend of White House Senior Advisor and Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner. If getting to the bottom of what happened were Pompeo’s actual goal, why wouldn’t he meet with the man Turkish officials say ordered the torture and execution?
Many are pointing to the above photo and video below as proof Pompeo’s mission was to help the Saudi royal family cover up what appears to be the murder of Jamal Khashoggi – not to get to the actual facts.
Look at @SecPompeo laughing away w the Saudi’s as if they didn’t just brutally murder and dismember a journalist. These images are seen around the world. Wonder if he met w the Russian delegation who was visiting MBS at the same time. Did they all work together for this cover up? https://t.co/luV3jNUwMz
— Olga Lautman (@olgaNYC1211) October 17, 2018
Watching Secretary of State Mike Pompeo yukking it up with the Saudi Crown Prince who’s credibly accused of having tortured and gruesomely murdered a Washington Post journalist days ago is . . . well, distressing. To put it very mildly.
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) October 17, 2018
Let’s not forget Pompeo overruled State Dept experts to ensure we’d keep providing weapons and refueling services to the Saudis as they continue bombing Yemen. Between that and the Kashoggi murder cover-up, it’s becoming clear you get a lot of death for your cash at Trump hotels. https://t.co/ObqN3rfJEl
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) October 17, 2018
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) October 17, 2018
Yesterday, by making America the witting accomplice to covering up a murder was Mike Pompeo’s worst day as Secretary of State.
— David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf) October 17, 2018
Khashoggi was flayed alive. A martyr for our sins. This is so very bad, so revolting, and so clear a warning. Pompeo grinning with a psycho. Impunity reigns. No limits. Unless we fight back now with our votes.
— XENI (@xeni) October 17, 2018
Image: U.S. Department of State/ Wikimedia
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White House Bans Fauci From Testifying Before Congress
The White House has informed an Appropriations subcommittee that Dr. Anthony Fauci is not allowed to deliver testify before Congress. Fauci is the most-recognizable medical expert leading the administration’s efforts to battle the deadly coronavirus pandemic that has taken more than 65,000 American lives.
House Democrats “have been informed by an administration official that the White House has blocked Dr. Fauci from testifying,” a spokesperson for the House committee, Evan Hollander, said on Friday, as The Hill reports.
The Committee is investigating President Donald Trump’s and his administration’s response to the pandemic.
The White House later announced it believes it would be “counter-productive” for Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, to testify before Congress.
“While the Trump Administration continues its whole-of-government response to COVID-19, including safely opening up America again and expediting vaccine development, it is counter-productive to have the very individuals involved in those efforts appearing at Congressional hearings,” White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said in a statement. “We are committed to working with Congress to offer testimony at the appropriate time.”
Fauci was expected to testify next week.
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.
‘Known Liar’: Trump’s Acting National Intelligence Chief Blasted for ‘Attempt to Smear CNN for Purely Political Ends’
President Donald Trump’s Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) on Thursday posted a statement via Twitter attacking a CNN report by claiming “this story contains inaccurate information.” It did not specify what the “inaccurate” information was.
The ODNI is headed by the Acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, a Trump loyalist who has come under scrutiny for being unqualified to hold that position.
The story the ODNI is attacking is a bombshell that destroys President Donald Trump’s claim that no one could have predicted the impending coronavirus pandemic, along with other administration falsehoods. It says: “US intelligence agencies started tracking coronavirus outbreak in China as early as November.”
As we told CNN earlier today, this story contains inaccurate information. https://t.co/cFb2q1Cvr4
— Office of the DNI (@ODNIgov) April 9, 2020
The CNN report also exposes the Trump administration’s horrific mismanagement of the coronavirus pandemic. Recent news reports have shown Trump had 70 days to take action to protect America from the coronavirus but instead chose to wage a PR campaign falsely claiming the nation was not at risk, and that everything was under control. The CNN report extends that timeline by over a month, meaning Trump and his administration had more than three months to take decisive action but did not.
But CNN was not the first to report that US Intel was aware of what would become known as the COVID-19 outbreak in November. ABC News first broke the story one day prior to CNN’s report – noting that U.S. Intelligence officials had briefed the White House as far back as November.
“cataclysmic event” briefed “multiple times” to Defense Intelligence Agency, Joint Staff and White House in 2019 https://t.co/gedbavXcR0
— GeorgeStephanopoulos (@GStephanopoulos) April 8, 2020
Former Pentagon Press Secretary and former CIA Spokesman George Little weighed in, accusing the ODNI of attempting to smear CNN for political purposes.
— George Little (@georgelittledc) April 10, 2020
Politico’s Cybersecurity reporter Eric Geller adds:
the really remarkable thing about the tweet is that it’s intentionally obtuse, designed to cast doubt without having to get into the potentially embarrassing details
— Eric Geller (@ericgeller) April 10, 2020
Economist David Rothschild blasted Grenell as a “partisan hack & known liar.”
I am not fan of @CNN (leaders in false equivalency, a hard-core pro-Republican bias), but they are much more reliable source than the Director of National Intelligence, who is partisan hack & known liar. https://t.co/F8hbQwynEC
— David Rothschild (@DavMicRot) April 10, 2020
UPDATE: 10:20 AM ET –
MSNBC’s Ken Dilanian just reported out the same story that ABC and CNN have reported as well.
Trump’s Alleged ‘Checkup’ at Walter Reed Was ‘Non-Routine and Scheduled Last Minute’: Report
President Donald Trump’s unexpected trip to Walter Reed medical center did not follow “routine” protocols for a presidential medical exam, CNN’s Jeremy Diamond reported on Sunday.
A source familiar with Trump’s visit to the hospital told Diamond that staff was not notified prior to the president’s visit.
President Donald Trump’s visit to Walter Reed on Saturday did not follow the protocol of a routine presidential medical exam, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Medical staff at Walter Reed did not get a staff-wide notice about a presidential visit to the medical center in Bethesda, Maryland, ahead of Trump’s arrival, according to that source.
During normal circumstances, medical center staff would have received instructions about a “VIP” visit ahead of time.
“That did not happen this time, indicating the visit was a non-routine visit and scheduled last minute,” Diamond reported.
A second source also told CNN that the trip to Walter Reed was “abnormal.”
The White House is on record insisting that the visit was part of the president’s annual “routine” physical exam.
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