Inspired by Senator Graham’s response to a CIA briefing, a new TV series titled “The Smoking Bone Saw” is emerging on the Khashoggi problem.
Senator Graham believes he was shown "a smoking bone saw," and has no doubts on who ordered the execution.
He is not alone.
Senator Corker: “Let me just put it this way. If he [MBS] was in front of a jury he would have a unanimous verdict in 30 minutes.”
The new series is not a drama on “who dun it?” but on “who is responsible?”
Episode 1: The “smoking work order” question.
The premise of this episode is that if someone (anyone?) is responsible for the Khashoggi murder, there must have been a work order.
Drama builds with the search for this work order (prosecutor played by Senator Rand Paul), including discovery of a partially-shredded rough draft in Saudi Arabia’s Royal Palace.
The "smoking work order" (unsigned) copy:
Assignment ###: 15 individuals will capture, suspend, exterminate, dissect culprit JK. And bring me his fingers!”
Plus: This is an order! Who do you think is in charge here, anyway?
Whether a rogue shredder (played by Mr. Bolton) manufactured this document, and followed up with a "faux-shredding" of half the document, constitutes the nail-biting opening in the series.*
(*Ending with rogue shredder slammed into deep dungeon on “chopping block row.”)
Episode 2: Denial is not just a river in Egypt or a swimming hole back of the White House (Mark Twain credited for half of this title).
Here the dramatic question focuses on the view of Messrs, Trump, Bolton, Pompeo, Mattis:
“We do not have direct evidence implicating Mr. bin Salman.”
With Alex Baldwin playing Trump, the high point of this episode comes with the President saying:
“Maybe I’m President, and maybe I’m not--we just don't know for sure, one way or the other."
Episode 3: The Command Responsibility Question
Drama soars in this particular episode due to the “command responsibility” principle in official operations.
As with recent US Navy ship collisions, no matter why those happened, ship captains received their walking orders, careers ended.
This episode builds with classic dramatic technique, featuring Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as Mr. bin Salman addressing the responsibility question:
“No, no, no. Yes, yes, yes, I made those 11 phone calls to the Consulate on that day!"
"I was inviting Jamal to return to Saudi Arabia for special ceremonies honoring his opinions! With barbecued goat!"
"I had no idea of what they were doing! I heard the music and thought it was a party! I was only indirectly involved, you see. Not directly!"