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Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attends a session of the Future Investment Initiative last year. Photo: Fayez Nureldine/AFP/Getty Images

One year ago today, journalist Jamal Khashoggi walked into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. He was then beaten, tortured, murdered, and dismembered.

Why it matters: Both politically and for most of corporate America, nothing has really changed in the last year — despite initial promises and action.

On the political side, President Trump pledged "to get to the bottom of it," and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo promised to "hold all of those responsible accountable."

  • Neither of those things happened. Nor has the White House publicly affirmed an 11 month-old CIA assessment that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) ordered the assassination.

Corporate America, on the other hand, seemed at least willing to publicly shame MBS.

  • Dozens of top Wall Street and business executives canceled plans to attend a massive investment conference in Riyadh, nicknamed "Davos in the Desert" and hosted by MBS.
  • Among them were BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman, JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, venture capitalist Steve Case, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, and World Bank president Jim Yong Kim.
  • All of the event's media sponsors also bailed, including both CNBC and FOX Business.

But apparently a year heals all wounds.

  • MBS is once again hosting his prized event, beginning on October 29, and he wouldn't have risked a repeat embarrassment.
  • BlackRock's Larry Fink is attending this time. Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat is also on the list, per The Washington Post. SoftBank simply isn't commenting on whether or not its CEO will be there.
  • The White House also will send a delegation, led by Jared Kushner. Last year, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin canceled, but then attended an anti-terrorism financing event that was expected to "include participation by Saudi security services under scrutiny in Khashoggi’s death."

The big picture: Most of these big companies never stopped doing business with the Saudis. Or, in the case of Wall Street, trying to get Saudi business. That's particularly true when it comes to deals like the upcoming Aramco IPO, which could be the largest global float of all time.

  • As we wrote at the time: It's much easier to bail on a conference than it is to unwind complex and lucrative business relationships.

The bottom line: MBS bet that Trump didn't care and that CEOs didn't care enough. He was right.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify the network name is FOX Business, not FOX Business Channel.

Go deeper

Apple debut plan to detect images of child sexual abuse

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Apple announced new iPhone features Thursday that it said would enable the detection and reporting of illegal images of child sexual abuse while preserving users' privacy.

Driving the news: One new system will use cryptographic hashes to identify illegal images that users are uploading to Apple's iCloud without Apple directly snooping in users' troves of photos, which can be encrypted.

California wildfire explodes in size, destroys historic town

Battalion Chief Sergio Mora looks on as the Dixie fire burns through downtown Greenville, Calif. on Aug. 4, 2021. Photo: Josh EdelsonAFP via Getty Images

The small Sierra town of Greenville, Calif., was heavily damaged on Wednesday night into early Thursday as the Dixie Fire surged northward amid high winds, extremely dry air and hot temperatures.

The big picture: The Dixie Fire, California's biggest blaze and the sixth-largest wildfire in state history, razed houses and businesses as it ripped through Greenville and surrounding areas in Plumas County.

DOJ investigating city of Phoenix and Phoenix police department

Phoenix Police confront demonstrators in 2017. Photo: David McNew/Getty Images

The Department of Justice announced in a press conference Thursday it is opening a "pattern or practice" investigation into the city of Phoenix and the Phoenix Police Department.

Driving the news: The Justice Department's probe comes after the Biden administration reversed a Trump policy of not investigating police departments. It looks into several possible violations exhibited by the city's police department: