Saudi Arabia has for years been known as "the super conservative country where women can't drive, gay people get flogged, and thieves have their hands chopped off," Trevor Noah said on Tuesday's Daily Show. It was taking strides to shed that reputation under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, or MBS, until journalist Jamal Khashoggi vanished while visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.
"So, a Washington Post journalist known for criticizing the Saudi government was seen entering the Saudi consulate, and then he was never, ever seen again," Noah recapped. "Now, I'm not a detective, but come on." The Saudi government has officially claimed Khashoggi left through the back door, but their security camera doesn't record images — an idea Noah found laughable. The Turkish government has another explanation. "Holy s--t, 15 assassins, private planes, and a black van?" he asked. "This doesn't sound like real life, it sounds like the opening of a James Bond movie."
"So it's looking more and more like Saudi Arabia had Khashoggi killed, and this isn't just a big deal for Turkey and Saudi Arabia," Noah said. Khashoggi was a U.S. resident who wrote for The Washington Post, and the Saudis are U.S. allies, so this is an American problem, too. But President Trump, pressured to step in, has repeatedly accepted the Saudi leaders' denials, and he even introduced a random new suspect, "rogue killers," he noted. Since nobody's buying that, "Saudi Arabia is preparing to release their latest excuse," Khashoggi dying during an interrogation gone wrong.
"I don't know whether to be horrified or impressed," Noah said. "Because this is diabolical. The Saudi government is testing their excuse before officially using it." Michael Kosta explained why America should be "honored" that Saudi Arabia is testing its excuses because it shows "Saudi Arabia respects us enough to find a lie that works for both of us." Watch below. Peter Weber