Seb Gorka Downplays Khashoggi Killing with Smear: He Was an Apologist For ‘Groups Like ISIS and al-Qaeda’


Former White House aide Sebastian Gorka pushed smeared late Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi by claiming he is tied to “groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda” while disputing mainstream reporting on his assassination.

Gorka, who made the comments Sunday during an appearance on CSPAN’s Washington Journal, responded to a guest caller suggesting Saudi Arabia is a worse dictator than Venezuela’s Nicolás Maduro, yet the U.S. remains allied with the former while attempting to over the regime of the latter.

“Oh my gosh, this is the classic leftist propaganda Howard Zinn, Michael Moore argument to moral equivalency,” Gorka said to the CSPAN caller. “Who is the opposition that Mohammad bin Salman has been acting against in Saudi Arabia? They are not pro-democracy demonstrators, it’s the Muslim Brotherhood, it’s members of their regime who have been supporting groups like the al-Qaeda and ISIS for decades.”

He continued: “MBS is the first Saudi leader in years who is trying to purge his nation of those who have been funding… the global jihadist movement. This idea that there is moral equivalency between Maduro and MBS is asinine.”

After the Washington Journal host asked if America’s “lack of response to the clear assassination of Mr, Khashoggi” is an issue, Gorka acknowledged that it “has put us in a difficult position” but proceeded to smear the late journalist.

“At the end of the day, it’s not what the Washington Post or the fake news industrial complex would have you believe,” Gorka said. “This man Khashoggi was an apologist for jihadists. He was an apologist for the Muslim Brotherhood. He wasn’t an American journalist.”

The ex-deputy assistant to Trump added that Khashoggi’s “was wrong,” but dismissed “the idea that he was some champion for democracy.”

“He was an apologist to the kinds of the people who are in bed with groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda,” Gorka concluded.

In reality, while many of Donald Trump supporters and media allies have attempted to defend the president’s non-response on the killing of Khashoggi by accusing him of terrorist ties, Politifact found that Nexis data has no history of the Saudi government accusing Khashoggi of connections to the Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS, and al-Qaeda connections; nor is he described as an enemy actor. Khashoggi was only dragged as supposedly having ties to terrorists after his murder — false allegations that were spurred on by Saudi Arabia’s disinformation network.

One piece of evidence pro-Trump pundits use to justify Khashoggi’s killing is a photos from the 1980s of the journalist posing with Osama bin Laden as well as the mujahideen in Afghanistan. However, bin Laden was backed by the CIA at the time and the mujahideen were reportedly were being funded by the U.S. government in their conflict against the Soviet Union.

Watch above, via CSPAN.

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Caleb Ecarma was a reporter at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter here: @calebecarma