It seems, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Muhammed bin Salman popularly known as MbS), will soon meet during the G20 summit in Buenos Aires. The question in everybody’s mind is “why”? To answer this, we should simply consider the make up of the protagonist.
There we have MbS- a young and ambitious ruler of Saudi Arabia, who, above all, loves theatricality, such as rounding up the Good & Great of his country into the Ritz Carlton and bully them into coughing up their billions tucked away in Swiss bank accounts.
Would MbS not have obtained the same results- even quicker, had he accommodated those gentlemen in an ordinary prison? Yes, but that hardly would have triggered the enormous international publicity, achieved by closing down a lavish five star establishment and turning it into a prison.
As such, MbS reminds one of Ludwig II, the homosexual “Mad King of Bavaria”, who built “Disney Land” castles and, in them, entertained Richard Wagner, commissioning him romantic operas. Like Ludwig II, MbS too has his artistic side: he is capable of blowing a neat $450,000,000 on a canvas depicting a Christian priest, Salvator Mundi, by Leonardo da Vinci — the most expensive painting sold to date.
Consequently, it is hardly surprising that MbS should have chosen to dispose of Mr Jamal Khashoggi with theatricality of a Hammer House horror movie which, by now, the whole world got to know in its minutest sordid details. Would it not have been far simpler to hire a hitman to do the deed at in a crowded location? However, the news of that would probably have appeared, once, as a small item, in the back pages of a newspaper and be forgotten forever. After all, this was hardly John Lennon slain by the Dakota building, in New York. With respect, who had really heard of Jamal Khashoggi until couple of months ago?
As for President Erdogan, in this affair he has assumed the role of the homicide detective — meticulously piecing together the clues: the method of murder, dismembering the body, audio recordings of the deed, tapped phone calls, CCTV footage, all to lead him to the real culprit — the person who gave the order.
Finally, MbS requests a meeting with Mr Erdogan, in Buenos Aires: this reminds one, of Dostoyevsky’s “Crime and Punishment”, in which the murderer, Roskolnikov, socialises with the police inspector — now played by Mr Erdogan. This is an arrogant psychological game, and it is called “catch me if you can”.