Biden Talks To Saudi Royals And Secret Service Subpoenaed
President Joe Biden on Friday indicated to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that he believes the Crown Prince was to blame for the 2018 killing of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi, even as Biden announced several new areas of cooperation aimed at reshaping US-Saudi relations.
The meetings in Jeddah largely seemed to go along with the planned reset of the US relationship with the kingdom after years of strain following Khashoggi’s death. But even more than the policy announcements and the formal discussions, it was the personal interactions between the US President – who once promised to make Saudi Arabia a “pariah” – and the kingdom’s de facto ruler that drew the most attention.
The President was fiercely criticized for fist bumping the Crown Prince during their first in person interaction by human rights groups and fellow Democrats, as well as the publisher of the Washington Post. Those images of Biden and the Crown Prince, also known as MBS, were quickly promoted by the Saudi government, including on Saudi state TV and Twitter.
Biden came to Jeddah seeking solutions to one of his top political problems at home – high gas prices – as diplomacy with the kingdom and other allies in the Middle East was seen as one of the few routes he could take to ease the pain at the pump.
Critics argued the fist bump validated bin Salman on the world stage just over a year after the US declassified an intelligence report concluding the Crown Prince personally ordered Khashoggi’s killing. Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan said Biden’s fist bump was “shameful” because it “projected a level of intimacy and comfort that delivers to MBS the unwarranted redemption he has been desperately seeking.”
He can’t even do small things that the establishment wants anymore. Idk what value he adds when he’s getting in the way and undermining what the elites want.
The House panel investigating the attack on the Capitol issued a subpoena Friday to the Secret Service after a Homeland Security official briefed committee members about the Secret Service erasing text messages from Jan. 5 and Jan. 6, 2021.
In a letter to Secret Service Director James Murray, Committee chair Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said the panel wanted any pertinent text messages and other records tied to Jan. 6. He said the request was being made after the Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general notified congressional committees of allegations that the Secret Service had erased text messages after the internal watchdog requested records of electronic communications surrounding the Jan. 6 riot.
Thompson’s letter was sent after Homeland Security Inspector General Joseph Cuffari briefed all nine committee members Friday, a source familiar with the matter told NBC News.
For some reason I never really thought that the secret service would be questioned like this. Ig they thought the same or else they wouldn’t have purged. Idk what they’re going to say to explain why those text messages were deleted. I would think the feds had some communication with the secret service, as evidenced by them steering the President away from the Capitol. Ofc that could’ve just been for his own safety but I can’t imagine them being left in the dark about the importance of Jan 6th.