Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa Bay news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Charlotte news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

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

The new Washington

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Axios subject-matter experts brief you on the incoming administration's plans and team.

Rep. Lou Correa tests positive for COVID-19

Lou Correa. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Lou Correa (D-Calif.) announced on Saturday that he has tested positive for the coronavirus.

Why it matters: Correa is the latest Democratic lawmaker to share his positive test results after last week's deadly Capitol riot. Correa did not shelter in the designated safe zone with his congressional colleagues during the siege, per a spokesperson, instead staying outside to help Capitol Police.

Far-right figure "Baked Alaska" arrested for involvement in Capitol siege

Photo: Shay Horse/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The FBI arrested far-right media figure Tim Gionet, known as "Baked Alaska," on Saturday for his involvement in last week's Capitol riot, according to a statement of facts filed in the U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia.

The state of play: Gionet was arrested in Houston on charges related to disorderly or disruptive conduct on the Capitol grounds or in any of the Capitol buildings with the intent to impede, disrupt, or disturb the orderly conduct of a session, per AP.