Friday, May 10, 2013

The big Benghazi mystery: Where was Obama while 4 Americans perished?

By Andrew Malcolm
Investor's Busniness Daily
Posted 05/09/2013 09:00 AM ET
Michael Ramirez
The most over-used trick of Barack Obama's reign of error in Washington is whenever something adverse happens, just ignore it. Keep on talking happy. And with a complicit or, at best lazy, capitol media corps the problem will eventually melt away.
Remember all those new jobs that almost $1 trillion of stimulus was going to create by the hundreds of thousands any month now? That was 2009. We're still waiting. And as recently as last weekend Obama is still claiming that job creation is his top priority.
The budget deficit Obama was going to halve? It's been $1 trillion-plus each year.
The spending cuts that really, truly are necessary to get our national debt under control? It's grown by $6 trillion-plus under this guy. Print some more money. The score of green energy projects run by Obama pals with taxpayer underwriting that went bankrupt? Hey, well at least we tried. The gun-running scheme into Mexico by federal agents under Eric Holder? Well, he didn't know about it.
The single stench that's stuck is the 9/11 attack on the Benghazi consulate when four Americans were killed. Perhaps because it strikes at the moral core of many Americans that we don't leave countrymen to die without at least trying to help.
Can anyone forget the searing images on that first 9/11 of those heavily-laden New York firefighters jogging up the World Trade Center stairwells to their doom as the towers' civilian occupants fled downstairs?
And what's our image of the Benghazi attack on that eleventh 9/11? The American compound burning while terrorists in T-shirts brandish AK-47's in triumph. The limp body of Amb. Chris Stevens being dragged around. And that's it.
Obama et al have done everything in their power to minimize that event, to let it melt away to wherever lethal embarrassments go. Why? Remember the context of those days: Both national party conventions were just over and Obama was claiming al Qaeda was on the run, thanks to his leadership and deadly drone kill list. You're welcome.
Now, finally, thanks to our two-party system of checks and balances and the courage of a handful of whistle-blowers we're beginning to get a full account of what really happened that awful night. It's not pretty.
In fact, it's sadly sordid.
Three men directly involved that night testified before the House Oversight Committee Wednesday. The most compelling testimony came from Gregory Hicks, a top-rated career diplomat who became embassy head on Stevens' death.
AFP / Getty Images
AFP / Getty Images View Enlarged Image
Here's some of what we've learned:
The Benghazi consulate was totally unsecured and unprepared, despite area terrorist attacks and months-long urgings of security personnel and Stevens himself.
In fact, a month before 9/11 when two security personnel used their weapons to fight off terrorist carjackers, most of the Special Ops security forces were ordered out of the country.
The first and last contact Hicks in Tripoli had with Stevens that night was an interrupted cellphone call in which the ambassador said, "Greg, we're under attack!" No mention of any protest demonstration.
A special joint team of FBI-CIA-Defense-State crisis experts was ordered not to deploy to Benghazi.
Twelve hours after the U.S. Embassy wall in Cairo was stormed, no contingency military forces were prepared to assist there or anywhere else in the region. The nearest F-16's in Italy were not even on alert and had no refueling tankers nearby.
As the four remaining Special Ops troops in-country boarded a Libyan C-130 to rush to help in Benghazi, someone ordered their colonel to stand down.
Five days later Hicks was "stunned" to see U.N. Amb. Susan Rice on five Sunday talk shows blaming the attack on angry reaction to an obscure online anti-Islam video. From Minute One every official American in Libya knew the attack was terrorist, as did a high-level email circulating in the State Department on 9/12, four days before those infamous TV shows.
When Hicks, who was not consulted for Rice's talking points, reminded State execs the embassy never reported one word about video protests and inquired where that explanation came from, he was instructed to drop that line of questioning.
Hicks, who received calls of praise from Secy. of State Hillary Clinton and Obama himself, has since been sentenced to a desk job.
Remember back in 2007-08 in their bruising primary battles when Clinton questioned Obama's readiness for that 3 a.m. crisis call?
Obama has had himself photographed firmly atop other national security events like the whacking of Osama bin Laden. The Democrat held a brief Rose Garden photo op on Benghazi the next morning before rushing off to fundraisers in Las Vegas. We know he and Clinton both blamed the offensive video for weeks after they knew that line was phony.
What we don't know is where the hell was the commander-in-chief all-night while two former SEALs, a communications specialist and the first U.S. ambassador in three decades were being murdered on-duty six time zones away.
We do know that then Secy. of Defense Leon Panetta claims Obama instructed him in the early evening of 9/11 to do everything necessary to protect Americans and embassies abroad.
We also know now that "everything" wasn't really anything at all.

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