Friday, November 02, 2012

It Just Gets Worse

The Benghazi debacle gets worse by the day...
More than six weeks after the shocking assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi -- and nearly a month after an FBI team arrived to collect evidence about the attack - the battle-scarred, fire-damaged compound where Ambassador Chris Stevens and another Foreign Service officer lost their lives on Sept. 11 still holds sensitive documents and other relics of that traumatic final day, including drafts of two letters worrying that the compound was under "troubling" surveillance and complaining that the Libyan government failed to fulfill requests for additional security.

When we visited on Oct. 26 to prepare a story for Dubai based Al Aan TV, we found not only Stevens's personal copy of the Aug. 6 New Yorker, lying on remnants of the bed in the safe room where Stevens spent his final hours, but several ash-strewn documents beneath rubble in the looted Tactical Operations Center, one of the four main buildings of the partially destroyed compound. Some of the documents -- such as an email from Stevens to his political officer in Benghazi and a flight itinerary sent to Sean Smith, a U.S. diplomat slain in the attack -- are clearly marked as State Department correspondence. Others are unsigned printouts of messages to local and national Libyan authorities. The two unsigned draft letters are both dated Sept. 11 and express strong fears about the security situation at the compound on what would turn out to be a tragic day. They also indicate that Stevens and his team had officially requested additional security at the Benghazi compound for his visit -- and that they apparently did not feel it was being provided.
Add in the breaking news that the Administration failed to convene their top interagency terrorism taskforce, and we're now watching the cracks in the facade built by the Obama team and its sycophantic supporters in the mainstream media start to crack. Keep in mind that during the Bush years, the media obsessively pursued the silly claim that Valerie Plame's identity had been compromised to hell and back, creating the need for a special prosecutor who ultimately ended his investigation with one prosecution that had nothing to do with the alleged original crime. All of that involved a case where no one died. Put differently, if there had been this much actual evidence showing Bush and Cheney thought there were no WMD in Iraq, the media would have ferreted it out before Bush gave the "Mission Accomplished" speech.

Here, four American citizens died. Additional security was requested, repeatedly, and it was not provided, even though elements of al Qaeda-related groups were known to be operating in the city. When the compound was attacked, a force of CIA operatives was sent from Tripoli to try to help, but no other assets were dispatched, allegedly due to a lack of on-site intel, although at least one drone was in the area providing real-time surveillance, and we have video of the attack that was observed in real time.  No one sent help, and at least two additional deaths occurred more than 5 hours after the attack started.  And when it was over, the Obama Administration tried to spin this as an amateurish protest against a silly movie that escalated into random violence. Most of the media followed the party line, in order to keep the President's all-important re-election on track.

Based on the above,  I think we're forced to draw some conclusions.

1.  The President actually crapped the bed that night and was unable to make a "gutsy call." 

2.  Since this would run counter to the Democrats' political needs, they asked the media to ignore the story.

3.  The media by and large acceded to the Obama Administration requests.

I can't really blame Mitt Romney for choosing not to turn this into a campaign issue -- he's got an election to win, and this election is largely about the economy.  In addition, fighting the media's disinterest in the case is a full-time job, and his work has to be focused on winning the election, not beating the media.

But the media itself will answer for their shameful conduct on behalf of President Obama.  As for the President itself, a second term (if he gets one) may end up being an epic nightmare.  Most Presidential second terms are beset by scandal, but this one would be dealing with multiple scandals that pre-date the second term.  Let's not find out how low a Presidency can get.

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