The Atlantic

Khashoggi’s Murder Heralds a New Era of Impunity

The ugly geopolitics in the wake of the Saudi journalist’s death point to a world in which impunity reigns.
Source: Henry Nicholls / Reuters

The head of the United Nations delivered a dark and, it turns out, prophetic warning several weeks ago. As power diffuses from the United States, the world is devolving into chaos. “Impunity and unpredictability” are becoming “the name of the game,” António Guterres told me.

At the time, the UN secretary-general had the kaleidoscopic and catastrophic Syrian war top of mind.

Now we have another stark case study: the death of Jamal Khashoggi, which the Saudi Arabian government has finally acknowledged, following one unbelievable obfuscation after another, as the premeditated slaying of a Saudi journalist who dared to critique the monarchy and press for greater freedoms.

The brazen murder of Khashoggi, by apparent agents of the Saudi

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