Climate change is fueling extremism, raising tempers along with temperatures as the world continues to heat up on many fronts. But the most extreme changes are taking place in Muslim-majority areas.
It’s a story that’s been repeated many times in the past year, and has been widely reported on, with the world’s eyes trained on the Middle East. Nowhere is that more apparent than when U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Iranian leaders. A recent trip to Saudi Arabia has increased his clout even further.
On April 11, Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey, where he had been meeting with a friend on a holiday invitation from the country’s Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.
The killing has been the subject of multiple investigations, and is now being investigated by an independent panel, led by former CIA officer John Rizzo.
Many of these investigations have centered on Khashoggi – a vocal critic of the Saudi royal family and their policies, a critic of the Saudi war in Yemen and has been suspected of being among the perpetrators of a grisly murder in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia has denied involvement in the killing, saying the country had nothing to do with it. And while it has been denied responsibility, several elements of the investigation are pointing to it.
Among those that raise more serious concerns is that Khashoggi was executed by firing squad, rather than beheaded like many executions in the past. And that the circumstances of the death don’t align with previous reports of the Saudis killing many of their critics and then escaping. It’s a claim based on the theory that Khashoggi was a member of the country’s royal family – in order to secure his death, the Saudi government killed him in a way intended to draw international attention to it.
Saudi Arabia’s public response to Khashoggi’s death has been to condemn it, and to blame others for it.
Some of the latest Saudi condemnation, which has been issued in response to the ongoing investigations, has been especially harsh.
The Saudi Foreign Ministry has released a document it says purports to be a list of the people the country believes planned the murder of Khashoggi.
According to the Saudi statement, its list includes Khashoggi’s “pro