One year ago, Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Turkey. He was working for the Washington Post because he was in exile from his Saudi Arabia. He was a vigorous advocate for openness, accountability, and transparency. He used his platform to urge the Saudi leadership to embrace these important values and was assassinated by their agents as a result.
Khashoggi knew that using his voice in this way carried risks. He nevertheless pushed for democratic reforms in Saudi Arabia. His commitment to democracy aligned him with a foundational element of our democracy here in the United States, which is a free and independent press. In the year since his murder, his legacy has become even more profound.
A commitment to openness, accountability, and transparency is a hallmark of journalism. These principles deserve to be memorialized in a permanent way. The Fallen Journalists Memorial Foundation was recently launched to build a memorial in Washington so that we never forget Khashoggi and others like him. The memorial will not include any names. Instead, it will be a testament to the commitment shared by journalists to the values of democracy all over the world.