Current Affairs

Khashoggi case, Selective Outrage

Yatindra Bhatnagar

Numerous journalists are killed, arrested, tortured and driven out all over the world, especially by authoritarian, ultra-religious dictatorship and other military-totalitarian countries. Some call themselves democracy but their conduct is farther than a modern, civilized and law-abiding government.

However, the outrage on these atrocities on the media has never been as vigorous, vehement, unrelenting and aggressive – even by lawmakers and even against their own governments - as happened and continues to happen in Jamaal Khashoggi’s case. This Saudi Arabian journalist-writer based in America, has written against the Saudi government for quite some time in Washington Post. And he was being paid to do that. I don’t know if any  country allows its territory to be used to continue a tirade against its friendly country, an ally.  

Sadly, the man disappeared while allegedly inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul (Turkey) when he went to collect relevant personal papers or visas.

His disappearance is thought to be directly connected to the virtual ruler of Saudi Arabia, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman, as alleged by a large section of the people who are outraged – though their outrage is definitely selective. Most of them have never been so much disturbed for one person’s death – not their own fellow citizen - even when thousands of others have died, tortured, forcibly converted and/or driven out of their countries by fanatics and dictators. The American Congress itself is also outraged. Wow! 

This kind of killings have happened, and continue to happen, practically all over the Middle East, Africa, many countries in Asia – and also Europe.

Hundreds of thousands of Christians, Jews, Hindus and Buddhists and others have been killed, tortured and driven out of their homelands.  Christians from even the birthplace of Christ are fast disappearing. Hindus were killed, forcible converted, tortured and driven out of Kashmir Valley to become refugees in their own state and their own country. Jews are systematically harassed, attacked and killed, and driven out from many Islamic countries and also even Europe. Non-Muslim numbers are rapidly declining from Islamic countries and those who are still there find it hard to follow their faith and claim their civic and legal rights. Pakistan is a leader in this inhuman conduct; Malaysia and Turkey - so-called moderate and democratic Muslim countries - also often behave with extreme intolerance and bigotry. Churches have been ransacked in Turkey recently.

Almost all Islamic countries are guilty of this horrible state of affairs - suppression of human rights and freedom to live their lives in dignity, safety and peace. The facts and numbers are too many to quote and recall, they are there for anyone and everyone to see.

However, this is disgusting to note that not many raise their voice and demand answers, blast those governments and wage an aggressive movement against the guilty countries and their leaders. They have done practically nothing against this systematic annihilation of millions of people, their culture, their religion and way of life, their rights and freedoms.

But Khashoggi is evidently a different case that even the American Congress, collectively, and aggressively, condemned the Saudi government and targeted the Crown Prince, even defying their own President’s stand.