Sunday, September 23, 2012

Mark Steyn's Take On The Benghazi Attack

As always, Mark Steyn is spot on regarding the whole Benghazi incident: how it even happened in the first place, and how Barack Obama and the administration handled the aftermath.

In his article "Disgrace in Benghazi" he makes some very astute observations about the ineptitude of our current leadership. He asks why Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and General Martin Dempsey initially tried to mislead the world into thinking it had more to do with a spontaneous violent reaction to the anti-Islam film rather than a planned terrorist attack:

One can understand why they might do this, given the fiasco in Libya. The men who organized this attack knew the ambassador would be at the consulate in Benghazi rather than at the embassy in Tripoli. How did that happen? They knew when he had been moved from the consulate to a “safe house,” and switched their attentions accordingly. How did that happen? The United States government lost track of its ambassador for ten hours. How did that happen? Perhaps, when they’ve investigated Mitt Romney’s press release for another three or four weeks, the court eunuchs of the American media might like to look into some of these fascinating questions, instead of leaving the only interesting reporting on an American story to the foreign press.

How did that happen? Embassies in any region with Muslim majorities should be heavily fortified, especially in countries that are being led by Islamists or have militants in their midst, which is pretty much most of them. And I still want to know how the safe house was discovered.

He is also highly critical of how Barack Obama was more concerned with his celebrity status, and his campaign than dealing with this totally avoidable tragedy in the appropriate manner.

The president is too lazy and cocksure to have learned any prepared remarks or mastered the appropriate tone, notwithstanding that a government that spends more money than any government in the history of the planet has ever spent can surely provide him with both a speechwriting team and a quiet corner on his private wide-bodied jet to consider what might be fitting for the occasion. So instead he sloughs off the words, bloodless and unfelt: “And obviously our hearts are broken . . . ” Yeah, it’s totally obvious.

And he’s even more drunk on his celebrity than the fanbois, so in his slapdashery he winds up comparing the sacrifice of a diplomat lynched by a pack of savages with the enthusiasm of his own campaign bobbysoxers. No, no, says the Broadway director; that’s too crude, too ham-fisted. How about the crowd is cheering and distracted, but he’s the president, he understands the gravity of the hour, and he’s the greatest orator of his generation, so he’s thought about what he’s going to say, and it takes a few moments but his words are so moving that they still the cheers of the fanbois, and at the end there’s complete silence and a few muffled sobs, and even in party-town they understand the sacrifice and loss of their compatriots on the other side of the world.

But no, that would be an utterly fantastical America. In the real America, the president is too busy to attend the security briefing on the morning after a national debacle, but he does have time to do Letterman and appear on a hip-hop radio show hosted by “The Pimp with a Limp.” In the real State Department, the U.S. embassy in Cairo is guarded by Marines with no ammunition, but they do enjoy the soft-power muscle of a Foreign Service officer, one Lloyd Schwartz, tweeting frenziedly into cyberspace (including a whole chain directed at my own Twitter handle, for some reason) about how America deplores insensitive people who are so insensitively insensitive that they don’t respectfully respect all religions equally respectfully and sensitively, even as the raging mob is pouring through the gates.

And he wonders at the administrations total lack of concern that "sensitive" papers were taken from the Benghazi compound, papers which more than likely list Libyans who have been helpful to the U.S. We all know what happened to that doctor who led us to Osama Bin Laden. Rotting now in a Pakistani jail because we threw him under the bus.

Read Steyn's whole article here, on National Review Online

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