09.11.2013 0

Benghazi: One year later

BenghaziAttackBy Rick Manning

One year ago, our American consulate in Benghazi was in flames, our ambassador, his deputy and two security operatives who were defending the compound lost their lives, and no one knows where the president was or what he was doing.  No one knows for certain who gave the order for the military which was poised to launch a rescue operation to stand down.  And no one knows why presumptive Democratic 2016 presidential nominee and then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton failed to honor requests from the ambassador for increased security at the Benghazi compound.

Twelve years ago, crazed Islamists from Al Qaida commandeered four airplanes flying two into New York City’s World Trade Center, one into the Pentagon, while the fourth crashed landed in a field in Pennsylvania due to the heroic actions of the passengers against the suicidal terrorists.

In those twelve years, America has been dramatically changed with government agents confiscating our drinking water at airports, and the National Security Agency scouring our emails, smart phones, Facebook and telephone conversations for evidence of terrorist activities.  Just be glad that the underwear bomber wasn’t successful, otherwise it would really be ugly waiting in line for the electronic TSA strip search.

Now, on this solemn anniversary, it can be hoped that in all the cover-ups, what does it matters, witness intimidations, and whistleblower demotions, that this Administration also conducted a legitimate threat assessment and has been beefing up security to meet those potential threats.

The dangerous Syrian waffling that has invited more terrorist hits on our Middle Eastern embassies notwithstanding, if the Obama Administration has failed to secure our nation’s assets around the world heading into 9/11/13, the Commander in Chief himself should be hauled up to Congress to answer for the malfeasance.

The survivors of Ambassador Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods deserve truthful answers about what happened in the decision making chain of command that night, and their memory can best be upheld if lessons learned, no matter how painful, prevent future deaths due to a paralyzed decision making structure.

It is clear that the Obama Administration mishandled Benghazi based upon their false front YouTube video explanation and a year of dodging accountability.  It would be tragic and a gross dereliction of duty, if they have spent so much time running from responsibility that they have failed to solve the problems that led to these unnecessary deaths.

The world is a dangerous place, and sometimes the bad guys win.  Every American understands this basic fact, but what is irreconcilable with our national ethos is failing to send available help to stop the slaughter of American citizens abroad.  The only thing worse would be if it happens again, because an Administration unable to admit fallibility makes the same mistakes.

On this September 11, let’s pray that lessons have been learned and a preventable tragedy is not relived for a second year in a row.

Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is the Vice President of Public Policy and Communications for Americans for Limited Government.

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