Who’s in trouble over Benghazi (so far) and why

| May 10, 2013 | 71 Comments

The Benghazi hearing this Wednesday and two pieces by The Weekly Standard and ABC News have established that there was a coordinated effort to scrub the initial public reports on the attacks of politically damaging information. They reveal that people in the State Department and, in all probability, the White House knew the attacks were pre-planned and well coordinated by al Qaeda linked terrorists. They reveal that the State Department knew from the beginning that there were long outstanding requests for additional security in Libya and that disclosure of this fact would be damaging.

ABC News has obtained the precise edits made to talking points to be disclosed to the public. The important point to be had here is that the person with the most fingerprints on these edits, so far, is career Foreign Service Officer and Ambassador Victoria Nuland. This is critical because Nuland is not a Democratic political appointee or White House staffer. In fact, Nuland served under various administrations and was a close adviser to former Vice President Dick Cheney. While Nuland’s own politics are not yet clear it’s not without reason to note that she’s married to well known neoconservative intellectual Donald Kagan, the founder of the Project for the New American Century, putting her in close political and social proximity to Bill Kristol, the founder of The Weekly Standard, the same magazine calling for investigations and performing the first reporting on the talking points cover-up. This reveals two things, first that the cover up was systematic in the State Department; Nuland was seeking to cover for the Sate Department itself. Second it shows the non-Fox media’s initial indifference to the Benghazi investigations as partisan politics were more indicative of their own inherent biases than any grounding in fact. The partisan effort was not in investigating the attacks but instead in the Democratic Party’s circling of the wagons and “nothing to see here” routine. The true partisan politics were in the cover-up, a divide then sold to the public as a Republican witch hunt.

The cover-up, while seemingly starting at State, doesn’t end there. Reporting so far also fingers two high level White House staffers, Ben Rhodes and Jay Carney. Ben Rhodes is a White House Speech writer and close confidant to Barack Obama. He’s well known for helping craft the White House’s public positions on Middle East policy. In fact, Rhodes wrote Obama’s now infamous 2009 Cairo speech. Jay Carney is the White House Press Secretary, the same man who recently couldn’t find the moral clarity to reject the notion that U.S. troops in Afghanistan are terrorists. Both men seem to have been aware of, or participated in, the changes. Despite this Carney has been insisting from the beginning that the attacks were of the nature portrayed by the false edits instead of the nature indicated by the truthful intelligence reporting scrubbed from the release, something he knew to be a lie.

Of course the three people everyone is watching now are former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and the President himself. There still remains the unanswered questions of how and why a Special Forces CIF team in Italy was left waiting on the tarmac, why no armed air support was scrambled, why a four man Special Forces detachment in Tripoli couldn’t get permission to fly in on a Libyan C-130, why CIA Global Response Staff at the nearby CIA Annex was refused permission to provide back up, why in the aftermath of the attacks Greg Hicks was told not to talk to visiting Republican Congressman Jason Chaffetz and what instructions the President left as he delegated the handling of the attack before going to bed that night. Gregory Hicks, the State Department’s number one in country after Ambassador Chris Stevens’ death has already testified he was actively seeking the Tripoli detachment’s help and coordinated their airlift but that the team was denied permission to go. We also know that the CIA GRS, despite being denied permission to aid the Ambassador and his staff in Benghazi, saddled up and went anyway. Who exactly refused, or declined to provide, permission to send aid remains to be seen. The President, Panetta and Clinton are so far avoiding answering these questions, deflecting by leaning on the fog of bureaucracy surrounding the response.

The important thing to watch and demand accountability for now is that the media shines the light on the partisan obstruction of the investigation and that the House continues to seek answers to who, exactly, made the changes, was aware of the changes, was aware of requests for help, denied or refused to grant permission to help and what the President knew and when. Why did Jay Carney continue to lie to reporters about the nature of the attack? What was his motivation and who did he believe these lies helped? For those of us who expect leadership from our President perhaps most important of all is a personal explanation of why the President thought that having dinner with his family and getting rested up for a political fund raiser the next day was more important than dealing with an American Consulate under attack and one of our Ambassadors going missing.

Category: Barack Obama/Joe Biden, Breaking News, Libya

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  1. Anonymous says:

    @47: I agree, certainly – and I’m certain the ‘truth’ rests somewhere between both sides. However, in this particular case, I find that the politicization of the facts on behalf of the Obama administration is less severe than the politicization of the facts on behalf of the conservatives.
    And since I find this sort of politicization detrimental to the good of the nation on the whole, I’m more frustrated with the Republican politicians and media than I am the Democrat ones.

    Clearly, that’s a minority opinion here. Civil, reasonable disagreement is a good thing in this country.

  2. Hondo says:

    Anonymous: really? Then I suppose you’ll have no trouble in finding multiple examples of coordinated, baldfaced lying regarding what went on at Benghazi on the part of senior public officials on the conservative side of the house? Or the same number of deliberate attempts to mislead the public? Or of attempts to prevent people from disclosing what actually happened, or threatening them if they did so?

    I’m all ears and waiting.

  3. Anonymous says:

    @49: I have a great deal of faith that the military, when charged with doing so, can accomplish incredible things. There is no doubt in my mind that if a clear order was given, we’d have assets in the air almost immediately. I think, however, there’s a big difference between the clarity with which we were struck and the (relative) simplicity of turning a ship around and rearming her in international waters off the coast of the US, and dropping small teams of people into foreign soil with unknown numbers of bad actors around in the midst of ongoing riots. Flying a plane overhead is easier, but doing it at a level that would possibly disperse the threat subjects it to anti-aircraft weapons, and without intelligence on what’s going on at the ground, that’s tough to do. Could it be done? Of course, but the question isn’t “Can we do this?”, it’s “Can we do this with minimal danger?”, and that’s harder to answer. In hindsight, perhaps it would’ve been the right call. It’s hard to say.

    As for calling it an attack versus a protest, sure, in principle I agree with you. The only reason I’d have called it a protest would be if the IC asked me to in order to downplay things while they mobilized to get the people responsible — and there’s no indication that happened. So, we’re left with .. what? Politicians being politicians. Sure, there were still SOME indications that it might’ve been a protest, but I agree, within the following few days it became more clear that this was just an outright attack, and any protestors were simply there as cover. If the complain is mostly that Obama called things a protest, then yes, you’re right. He shouldn’t have done that. To my mind, though, this isn’t a big deal – you and I both knew what it was, so essentially we’re just witnessing politicians being politicians. That’s not a shocker nor a scandal. We deserve better, but it doesn’t need hearings, 24/7 coverage, talk of being the worst-thing-ever, etc.

    Again, I think there are a lot of ‘lessons learned’ to take away from this, but when this whole event is presented as a scandal of epic proportions, and sometimes in hushed whispers talked about as if people ‘let it happen’, it takes away from the reality that this was a regrettable and unfortunate act of aggression against us which, in hindsight, was perhaps handled less than perfectly. It basically makes it a political issue rather than an issue of policy, readiness, preparation and decision-making.

  4. Anonymous says:

    @ Hondo: That’s why I specifically mentioned the references to the Wikipedia article – if you feel they’re slanted, take a look at the works they cite. Here are the two I mentioned:

    http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/0/52567/Egypt/Egypt-army-intervenes-to-pacify-Salafist-protest-a.aspx

    That one refers to the Cairo protests spearheaded by Wesam Abdel-Wareth on September 11th, specifically citing the film.

    The article doesn’t have a citation for the suggestion by Eric Trager that the protests were planned as far back as August 30th, but here’s one I quickly found by searching:

    http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/world/story/2012/09/12/deadly-embassy-attacks-were-days-in-the-making/57752828/1

    As for your ‘grave doubts’ that the protests were about the film, I would agree in the sense that I highly doubt more than a handful (if any) of the protestors saw the film, I tend to find those sorts of people protest at the drop of a hat when called to by their wonderful leaders. So, just as you have grave doubts, I’m hardly surprised at all. Another day, another protest. Especially on September 11th. Or, do you think the two thousand or so at the Embassy in Cairo were actually all attackers who were repelled? Protestors to me sounds more plausible. In Benghazi, it’s a different story, but when you’re hearing word of ‘N’ protests from various places, it’s not hard to assume -incorrectly as it turned out- that the protest at place ‘N+1′ was due to the same thing.

    As for your newest post, I’m talking about politicization – and yes, I feel the Republicans have made this far more of a political football than the Democrats. Clearly, you disagree. To keep with the theme above, it’s like this registered a 5 on the ‘volume’ scale, and the Democrats, not wanting that sort of noise, turned it down to a 3. Maybe a 2. They downplayed it, and that’s bad. And Republicans took that same dial and turned it up to an 11. Had they merely matched the Democrats and cranked things up a little bit, say to 7 or 8, and asked things without bringing out all the comparisons to Watergate, or 9/11 or other such things, and showed a little understanding for hard decisions being made in a fog of war, then I’d be more annoyed with the Democrats instead.

  5. Hondo says:

    Anonymous: hogwash. By that logic, all the Nixon administration was doing in covering up Watergate was “turning down the volume” to keep the Democrats from making political hay.

    Nobody died during or after Watergate. Four American public servants died in Benghazi.

    I want freaking answers as to what happened, not some hand-waving, self-serving nonsense followed by nonsensical, self-serving “that was a long time ago” crap. I want to know who stood by and did nothing as 4 American public servants died – when assets and personnel were available within range to respond.

    We deserve those answers. All we’ve gotten to date is a bunch of lies followed by the equivalent of, “Pay no attention to the man behind the screen.”

    That’s bullshit. You know it, I know it – and the friends and family of those killed at Benghazi know it. Anyone with any intelligence at all knows it. It’s disgustingly obvious. So please spare me the “this is just a partisan game” crap.

    Let me reiterate: four US public servants freaking died in Benghazi. It appears at least some of them may have died needlessly. It also appears no attempt was made to save or support them, even though assets and personnel were readily available to do so. In short, it appears they were “hung out to dry” and left to die – either by incompetence or by design. At this point, we don’t know which.

    America has a right to know (1) what actually happened, (2) why it happened, and (3) who’s responsible for hanging those public servants out to dry – and die. But all we’ve gotten to date from those in charge is a shifting, changing, totally inane and bogus story with more holes in it that a sieve.

    Perhaps you’re willing to prostitute your intellect and morals and accept that as “the cost of doing business”, politically speaking. I’m not. To me, none of that is acceptable, and it never will be – regardless of which side is pulling the stunt.

    Nixon and his cronies deserved to answer for Watergate. They did. Somebody similarly deserves to answer for Benghazi.

  6. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Even assuming that 99% of what Anonymous offered is accurate, the problem with his offering is that nothing in it is so unreasonable that could not have been related by the administration in some palatable manner. But it wasn’t. Instead we got days and days of the talk about a video no one has seen and then variations on a theme based on falsehoods. It’s rather like pleadings in the alternative. The classic: My client wasn’t at the scene of the murder. If you find he was there, he didn’t commit the murder. If you find he did commit the murder, he killed only in self defense.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Hondo: Watergate was a deliberate, intentional act. Unless you’re contending that Obama intentionally had these Americans killed, I think the comparisons are already a ways off. The Obama administration didn’t try to pretend this attack didn’t happen, they simply seemed understandably confused by the sequence of events and tried to downplay certain aspects of it of varying clarity.

    Rapidly evolving events are confusing. Look at the recent Boston bombings and the coverage there – is it a ‘scandal’ that Boston PD and the FBI sometimes said different things at the same time, or is that a ‘fog of war’ effect when the situation was rapidly evolving and nobody quite knew what was going on? Should we be demanding that the head of the NY Daily News resign for posting a photo of the wrong person? Going back to the Newtown shootings, a similar thing happened – the brother of the suspect, I believe, was identified as the culprit, and received death threats. He wasn’t even in the same state. I look at these sorts of situations as I look at Benghazi – people are going to get things wrong, often times even many hours after the fact. It’s pretty unlikely it’s intentional misdirection to cover for idiocy, it’s just that we don’t know. So when officials downplay what is known about events beyond their control, I shrug a bit. It’s unfortunate, but it’s not a ‘scandal’. It’s not intentional illegal acts. It’s the fog of war.

    I want answers to things just as much as you do, I just don’t think we’ll get them by having people proclaim this to be the most despicable, horrible act, and thus clearly we need to investigate whether this was a regrettable unfortunate act, or a despicable, horrible act and failure of leadership. When you put the result of the inquiry before the inquiry itself, it’s politicization.

    But sure, if it makes you feel better, you’re free to believe I’m prostituting my intellect and morals because I want the facts before drawing conclusions.

  8. defendUSA says:

    @ 54…
    You are sadly misguided in the thought that it is Republicans who created the political football. What is collusion and how many people do you think it takes on the follow through? Start at the top. Stevens calls for more security, the State Dept. leaves him hanging. Clinton was in charge of that. She and the President lie about a video being the cause of the attack…(he at the UN and she in a presser.) Add Jay Carney and Susan Rice to the list of liars with talking points and Carney still trying to blame Bush! The Pied Piper President gets angry because Romney has some words of comfort in a bad time…yet, off he goes to a fundraiser while our people are being slaughtered because of his dereliction of duty and not just by the President–Clinton, Panetta, et al.

    You are nothing if not being willfully obtuse.

    The President’s actions, words and those under him politicized it the minute they felt election results were going to be compromised and our people died. And survivors have not been seen or heard from until last Monday!! 8 months after the attack. I’m sorry, but I have no words to reason with someone like you who is pretending to use logic and facts to say that this was politicized by Republicans.

    As an American, I demand the truth and whatever consequences should follow that for those who have lied, obstructed and failed our Embassy people.

    As a veteran, I demand that the oath of office be taken seriously and the lives of our fellow Americans in harm’s way be at the top, not election outcomes and the amount of power to be wielded. They work for US.

    And I will get that accountability one way or another. But make no mistake the continued collusion includes all of the Pied Piper’s people to have kept it quiet for this long. It is not and will not ever be acceptable no matter where blame can be thrown and more than one person will have to pay the price.

    You keep carrying the water because that water is going to take the ship down…it’s listing and thank God for men like Hicks, Thompson and the others who will surely come forward.
    And God rest the souls given up in the name of Barack Hussein Obama. Impeach them all and charge them with treason.

  9. Hondo says:

    Anonymous: to date, we have see little besides confusion, outright lies, obfuscation, and apparent obstruction from the current Administration regarding the facts of what happened at Benghazi. The American public does not yet know what happened at Benghazi. All we know is that something happened that claimed four lives – and that people in high positions in our government appear to be desperately trying to obscure precisely what it was that actually happened. It’s obvious to anyone without ideological blinders that someone does not want the full story to be made public.

    If you’re willing to be an apologist for the lies, obfuscation, and obstruction carried out by officials of the current Administration because it suits your political leanings – then yes, you are prostituting your intellect and morals. If as you claim you really want the truth, you should be demanding answers vice acting as an apologist for said lies, obfuscation, and obstruction.

    Nixon’s crime relating to Watergate was not the break-in; that was planned at a lower level, and best evidence indicates Nixon had no foreknowledge of the break-in whatsoever. His crime was in directing and participating personally in the cover-up related to the Watergate break-in. For that, he – and many of his cronies – richly deserved what they got, if not more.

    However: no one died at Watergate. Four people died at Benghazi. And it appears possible that some of those individuals were deliberately hung out to dry. By whom or why, we don’t yet know. And it’s obvious that one or more persons very high in the current administration don’t want us to know the details.

    I’m old enough to remember Watergate quite well. The term deja vu comes to mind when I look at what I’ve seen regarding Benghazi so far – the initial confusion, the lies, the dissembling, the misdirection and obstruction, all coming from senior government officials. I’ve seen it before. It stank then, and it stinks today.

    Obstruction on the part of senior officials was bullshit 40 years ago. It’s still bullshit today. And IMO anyone who argues differently, or excuses it on basis of “that’s just politics as usual” – well, IMO they’re simply being willingly complicit.

  10. Anonymous says:

    @58: I don’t deny that there were some bad decisions – someone should have listened to Stevens asking for more security, no question. Whose responsibility it was that they didn’t get that additional security is debatable – I’m inclined to lay it at the feet of State, because ‘where there’s a will there’s a way’, and they didn’t make it happen. But what of the funds for security? Funds that Republicans voted against? Does that factor in? Who gets the blame for that? The argument for Hillary goes that since she’s in charge, she’s to blame. The argument against the Republicans go that since they cut funding, they’re to blame. I share a bit of both those sentiments, but I’m also inclined to share it equally with lifelong bureaucrats who don’t prioritize things as they should at State. I doubt that went as high as Clinton, to be honest. And even if it did, did she get the CIA information about a strike? Questionable. Our IC isn’t historically good at sharing information. Maybe they did this time, maybe they didn’t. There are LOTS of details that aren’t known, so just laying the blame at Clinton’s feet -or, for that matter, Obama’s- seems disingenuous to me.

    And again, with the video, it doesn’t appear (to me) to be a lie that the video -yes, even though virtually nobody saw it!- was the ’cause’ of the protests.. protests that were happening all over, even if not en masse at Benghazi. This is separate but related to the attack. Saying that was a ‘lie’ is inaccurate – it’s a complex situation. If she gets out there and says, now, today in testimony, that THAT video is what caused THIS attack, I’ll eat my hat and donate $100 to whatever cause you wish. There was a lot going on that day, and with the benefit of hindsight, we’re now only focusing on one thing.

    I want the answers too. The problem is the Republicans claim to have the answers already, and their answer is that.. well, Obama did something very, very bad. We just don’t know what, exactly, because we don’t know precisely how things happened yet. But we’re sure he did something bad. That’s political, and it’s stupid.

  11. Ex-PH2 says:

    @57 – Just what is it that makes you think the 4 Americans at the Benghazi were not deliberately killed off?

    Are you really that naive? Or are you trying to whitewash this on someone else’s behalf?

  12. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    $100? That’s pretty low if you’re so confident. As for her testifying, she wasn’t (by prior agreement with the Repubic Committee) placed under oath before chatting about Benghazi. The Rep vs. Dem business I cannot buy. I see too much collusion and fearfulness. But that business about “we’re sure he did something bad” makes sense. The evidence of manipulation traces to the WH and to some of the agencies under its control. This is May 2013. The answers (honest answers, that is) to many of the questions being asked today should have been volunteered to the American public months ago. If you want to dismiss it as political, okay. But many of us have been on this since DAY ONE. Just look at the original post here at TAH and you’ll see the BS flag being thrown and questions being asked. Is that because we were playing politics?

  13. Ex-PH2 says:

    I went back into my journal for last year to see what was actually going on around that time and found this tidbit, which the newspapers have conveniently set aside:

    “09-17-2012 – Monday. The riots continue, now in Paris and UK. Harry Wales is the alleged target at Camp Bastion/Leatherneck in Afghanistan, but the real target was the Harrier jump jets parked there – 15 of them damaged beyond use. The US UN ambassador, Sharon Rice is parroting the official line from the WH that the attack on the Benghazi, Libya embassy was spontaneous – and hit with an RPG? And a research report from last year that did not align with the official WH attitude about troops being attacked by Afghans was suddenly “classified” and the researcher dumped from his job. This comes after constant leaking top secret info by the WH about the SEALs raid on OBL’s compound last year, which compromised not only the SEALs themselves but also their families.
    The head of Hezbollah, in Lebanon, has made a rare public appearance this morning in Beirut. Netanyahu (Israel) is now saying that Teheran, Iran, is five to six months away from enough fissionable plutonium to have a working nuke and he’s going to engage in a pre-emptive strike to put a stop to it, but Bo won’t meet with him.”

    See, this administration has a long-standing habit, from Day One, of doing whatever it wants to, regardless of the consequences to OTHER PEOPLE. If something makes the White House look bad, it’s off the table and swept under the rug.

    Note also that the official line on September 17, 2012 was that the attack on the Benghazi was spontaneous. There was no reference to a video or film by Ms. Rice. In fact, she did not refer to a video or film until she went on the Sunday morning talk shows.

    So @58 Anonymous, when you say the GOP is trying politicize this, that is pure unadulterated bullshit.

    I will repeat what I said above: if you think those four Americans were not deliberately abandoned by the current administration, you are extremely naive.

  14. OWB says:

    I do not give a flip whether any of the participants are political or even if they voted in the past. All I expect from them is that they do their jobs, and here is the kicker, WITHOUT REGARD for the political party of those in ANY of the houses of government. OK? Being politicians is no excuse to fail to do their jobs. Clear enough?

    We know (as all of us here who served in the military knew the instant that this happened) that there were military units available and ready to respond to the threat. They did their jobs. It took either a direct order to GO (which they were prepared to do) and they did not get it OR they were given a direct order NO GO (which they were not prepared to do).

    When the manchild told the Secs Def and State to “Do what you need to do” and left the room, they all knew that he was limiting what could be done ultimately because only he could issue some of the orders. So, the question in my mind is, “Did they issue preliminary orders activating units for rescue and/or destroy (which those units would already be preparing for based upon their own intel and opords) which were later countermanded by the manchild, OR were they simply unable to locate the manchild because he was in hiding and thus they were unable to issue the final GO orders which could only come from him OR did they just do nothing at all because they understood what he meant?” The end result is the same, of course, but his level of responsibility is slightly different. But only slightly.

    The first strange action is that he even left the room. Any of us normal folks would have felt compelled to stay there to see what was happening to our employees who were under attack. Apparently he felt no responsibility to them, or even some small amount of curiosity about the events?

    But here’s a clue: Take away all the names and labels and just look at the facts. Like the fact that the security budget was never cut by Congress! Look it up.

  15. teddy996 says:

    @53- relative simplicity? We essentially assembled and moved a whole fucking airport in the middle of the ocean starting from from scratch in 16 hours, yet some people in the news think it is impossible for us to deploy a team of people, whose job is to wait in readiness on the tarmac, within time to respond to a seven hour firefight. Within their zone. Into a country that we supported with air cover for months prior. That line of thinking is allowed to continue because it serves to establish more of that “noise” you speak of.

    The fact is this: multiple people high up in the chain of command dropped the ball, and they dropped it repeatedly. It is State’s job to allocate funds to embassies. So the fact that the embassy in Luxembourg had more security personnel than the consulate in fucking Benghazi, rests squarely on the shoulders of Clinton at State. That is why we have a SecState, because the buck is supposed to stop there. No one expects the president to be involved in running embassies, but the head of the state department should damn well be.

    There was a team ready to go, and they weren’t far away. We had, just months before, bombed the fuck out of Libya in support of the current president’s regime there. How was violating airspace then different? Why weren’t they dispatched, if only to secure the scene for an investigation?

    There was a drone overhead, and the administration said it was unarmed. One of the guys that died did so while lasing a mortar pit. If there was no air cover, why did he bring an unloaded laser designator to a gun fight? You would think an ex-SEAL CIA contractor would find better use for that weight, like for more ammunition, or some grenades or such, instead of carrying a bulky paperweight into combat.

    But launching a hellfire or giving the go to a response team requires a signature. Are we to believe that Obama, with his drone kill list that spans across multiple countries, and his endless braggadocio about his “gutsy call” authorizing a strike team to kill BinLaden, was suddenly conscious of civilian casualties, or squeamish about violating someone’s airspace?

    The fight lasted for hours, and our men were under equipped and unprepared, and the resources to help them were present, but not used. Again, they knew it was not a “protest” relatively quick after the first shots were fired. Why was the situation room empty, and where were the president and SecState during this time?

    All of this was swept under the rug for political expediency during the campaign, as we were told we would have to wait for the investigation. After the campaign, we were told that it was a long time ago, and we should not bring it up. Somewhere in between, the people responsible for making the decisions leading up to and during the incident investigated themselves, and found no wrongdoing or incompetence at any level. Four Americans are dead due to obvious negligence, and the response from our government ranges from shrugging their shoulders or screaming “what difference does it make?”, and we are just supposed to accept that and move on?

  16. OldSoldier54 says:

    teddy996:

    “@53- relative simplicity? ” Yeah, I snickered about that one too. It’s pretty clear that Anonymous doesn’t have a clue.

  17. teddy996 says:

    @66- I believe Anon was referring to the political complications involved with the two scenarios with the “relative simplicity” remark.

    What I tried to suggest (somewhat incoherently upon a second reading, I have to admit) in response was that Libyan airspace should not have been considered in his or her analysis. Our air muscle ousted Qaddafi and allowed this guy to take charge. What made violating Libyan airspace different in that case? Hell, they even admitted that there was already a drone overhead during the attack, so they were even violating Libyan airspace during the attack anyway. The political implications of having air assets in country were already met, and thus irrelevant. It is therefore just a question of “if we can pull off seemingly impossible logistic scenarios in an impossibly short amount of time, why can’t we pull off routine scenarios that we train for in a reasonable amount of time”?

    Every time I see a talking head give the “and that’s if they could have gotten there in time” caveat when talking about the response team, it pisses me off because it makes us sound as incompetent as the politicians are. They didn’t get there in time, because they were fucking told not to go.

    But the thing that really pisses me off is how Obama sends drones over various other countries without their permission, and he bombs people who are not directly threatening our forces, killing civilians and his targets without batting a fucking eyelash. He sent a squad of helicopters armed with SEALs into Pakistan and conducted a ground raid, then bragged about how fucking bold he was for signing the paper allowing them to do so for a full year. Again, Bin Laden was not shooting at our people at the time, and Pakistan was not consulted beforehand.

    But when one of our consulates comes under attack, we have CIA contractors disobeying orders (whose orders, by the way?) to stand down. They go help the embassy staff and they get killed, but ultimately help repel the attack. All of that while a US drone circles harmlessly overhead, and a rapid response team sits on standby with their thumbs up their asses.

    This, at a consulate in a country that we had, just months prior, helped to overthrow a hostile regime. A country that we knew still contained regime forces that hated us, and the consulate was in a region that those forces were known to be in. It is inexcusable that the consulate was not staffed with a beefy security force, but that was the reason a rapid response force was located nearby, right? Just in case.

    But where was the “gutsy call”? Where was the drone strikes? This administration plays the tough guy when its an easy, no-risk play or when it suits it politically to do so, but when the chips are down, they fucking choke. And then they try to cover up their incompetence, and they don’t care how many lies or dead bodies it takes to do so.

  18. Ex-PH2 says:

    @teddy996, you wrote: But the thing that really pisses me off is how Obama sends drones over various other countries without their permission, and he bombs people who are not directly threatening our forces, killing civilians and his targets without batting a fucking eyelash.

    Let’s not forget that Bodaprez wants to use armed drones in this country, too. http://www.westernjournalism.com/drone-warfare-in-america/?share=email

    It was the entire point of Rand Paul’s filibuster in March, to try to put a stop to this abuse of power by this government. Remember that Eric Holder said it was feasible to use those things to target people in this country.

    What is the justification for even considering the start of a program like that on home turf, but refusing to support people who were desperate for help when it was within reach?

  19. defendUSA says:

    @60. That video had ZERO to do with this attack. The crimes and the deaths are equally important in this case and for you to continue to defend the lies makes me think your head is in a dark place. There’s something inherently wrong with people who willfully ignore doing what is morally right for the sake of a political party and it’s ideology. THAT IS exactly what is wrong with this country. No one has the balls to do what is morally right and not politically correct.

  20. Old Trooper says:

    @28: Bullshit. No one had heard of it and no one had seen it. The protest in Cairo wasn’t about a fucking poorly made POS video, although the meme was immediately used. Also, The President of Libya spoke up immediately about who was behind this well coordinated attack on our consulate and then he heard the chuckleheads in this administration trot out the bs about the video and got pissed off. He was basically being called a liar by the US. That’s why the FBI couldn’t get into the compound, because he refused to let them. He was pissed and I don’t blame him. The meme was made up; why else would Rhodes convene a meeting to change set the narrative immediately and to go through what words were going to be used, or not used, to convey the message? Your boy and his administration got their collective wiener caught in the zipper with this cover up and no amount of spin from you is going to change that.

  21. NHSparky says:

    Unless you’re contending that Obama intentionally had these Americans killed, I think the comparisons are already a ways off.

    Nobody has; rather, it was the coverup and the outright bullshit coming from the administration in the middle of an election campaign that is going to be their undoing.

    Remember, it wasn’t Watergate itself that (rightly) brought Nixon down, it was the coverup afterwards. As I constantly tell my kids, the trouble you might get into for doing something ain’t one-hundredth the trouble you’ll get into for lying about it.

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