First of all, I'd like to thank President Obama for reminding us of the awful incident at Benghazi, even though he did not refer to it by name, and in the most oblique manner possible:
As Commander-in-Chief, I have used force when needed to protect the American people, and I will never hesitate to do so as long as I hold this office.
"I will never hesitate" to use force to protect the American people. If that is the case, Mr. President, exactly what happened in Benghazi?
Friends of the blog may remember that I have gone into detail of the tripartite nature of the Benghazi scandal, or three separate scandals, if you will. The first part was the administration ignoring requests for more security, ignoring the deteriorating security situation in Benghazi (unlike virtually every other Western mission or NGO), and ignoring the warnings and the obvious significance of the anniversary of 9/11. This represents at the very least a serious lack of judgment, which should not be rewarded with further employment or, dare we suggest, promotions?
No one has truly been held accountable for the lack of security at Benghazi, and these persons are, for the most part, still in a position to muck up any number of other things vital to our nation's interest.*
And before we deal with the second, which will be the thrust of this piece, let us consider the third part of the scandal, which is to say the cover up. There is no nice way to put this, but there must have been a conspiracy of sorts, within either the White House or the State Department, or both, to put forth the fairy tale (read: lie) about a video which incited the attack, when the administration knew full well from the very beginning, within minutes, that this was an organized terrorist attack, likely al Qaeda, not some spontaneous protest of an angry mob.
The fact that for weeks, spokespersons for the President, the Secretary of State and the President himself all repeated this lie, has never been fully investigated, nor has the responsible party or parties been held accountable for lying to the American public.
Which brings us to the second part, that of the Commander-in-Chief. One month after the attack at Benghazi, Obama made a rare statement on Benghazi, when pressed by a reporter:
“Well, we are finding out exactly what happened. I can tell you, as I’ve said over the last couple of months since this happened, the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to. Number two, we’re going to investigate exactly what happened so that it doesn’t happen again. Number three, find out who did this so we can bring them to justice. And I guarantee you that everyone in the state department, our military, the CIA, you name it, had number one priority making sure that people were safe. These were our folks and we’re going to find out exactly what happened, but what we’re also going to do it make sure that we are identifying those who carried out these terrible attacks.”
-Barack Obama, Oct. 26, 2012 "The minute I found out what was happening... I gave three very clear directives..." Well, that would certainly fit with a "never hesitate" scenario. But, Leon Panetta tells us that the President was notified within minutes of the start of the attack. So, if President Obama "did not hesitate" and "gave very clear directives" to those around him, why was no one sent to Benghazi to rescue or come to the aid of those dying in a terrorist attack? Obama was praised to the heavens for making a "gutsy call" on killing bin Laden. How do we know it was a "gutsy call"? That's what the sycophants in the media and his administration were repeating over and over. Aside from the fact that he was persuaded by Valerie Jarratt on three separate occasions NOT to make the 'gutsy call' to kill bin Laden, where is the evidence of a similar "gutsy call" on Benghazi? It was a "gutsy call" to stand up against the wishes of a female adviser, but not to save the lives of an untold number of American citizens?
I say "untold number", because too many people try to diminish the importance of what happened at Benghazi, because "only" four people died. But there were more than thirty people who came under attack at the embassy that night. Two men, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, who did perish in the attack, rushed to the aid of the diplomatic mission, though they were not State Department security, and aided in the rescue of some 33 souls.
So, from his overstuffed chair in the Oval Office, when news of the attack first came to him, Obama didn't know that two former Navy Seals would rush to their defense. When news of the attack first came, no one knew how long the battle would last. But we have armed forces stationed around the world, trained for just an eventuality like this. Why were they not sent? And if some reports can be believed, some forces were sent and they were recalled and told to stand down. Was this your "gutsy call", Mr. President? To call off any attempt at aid or rescue, because it might be embarrassing to the political narrative you were selling with your re-election campaign?
Mr. President, as I have said before, it does not take a Congressional investigation for you to tell the American people what you yourself know to be fact. It only takes a spine. You said you gave "very clear directives"? To who? What precisely were those directives? And if they were not carried out, what punishment or discipline was ordered to those who either refused or failed?
Did you indeed not hesitate and give clear instructions, or did you dither as brave Americans lost their lives defending an outpost that you and the state Department couldn't be bothered with?
You owe an explanation to the families of those slain and to the American people why you apparently hesitated and made ready to attend a Vegas fundraiser rather than attend to the very serious business of protecting the American people that you were elected to do.
Be a man, for a change, Mr. President, and tell us what you did or didn't do that night. Or are you saving that for your next autobiography?
Cross posted at Proof Positive
*A side note, since periodically some mindless, liberal drone (but I repeat myself) will try to put forth the argument that the reason there was inadequate security was because of those wascally Wepublicans, who constantly cut the budget. A few will go so far as to blame the "Republican" sequester that was proposed by Barack H. Obama.
This argument is patently false. The State Department has not argued a lack of funding for the lack of security, and a simple perusal of the State Department budget for that year will show millions of dollars spent on art in various embassies around the world. It wasn't that there wasn't any money, there just wasn't any competent, adult leadership in the organization