The Benghazi Malfeasance Continues In Real Time

Why did we abandon the compound?

The larger question that is raised here is why the U.S. has abandoned this diplomatic outpost, so that anyone–whether reporters or civilians, friends or foes of the United States–can rummage through its rubble. The jihadists who attacked our consulate were surely hoping to drive us out of Benghazi, and they have now accomplished this purpose. I am at a loss to know why marines were not sent to secure the site of the compound and why efforts have not been made to rebuild. This is yet another failure that gives the people of the Middle East an impression of American retreat.

An impression that is apparently deliberate. But the media wants to pretend it isn’t happening, at least until Wednesday.

[Update a few minutes later]

All jacket and no bombers“:

Back in Benghazi, the president who looks so cool in a bomber jacket declined to answer his beleaguered diplomats’ calls for help – even though he had aircraft and Special Forces in the region. Too bad. He’s all jacket and no bombers. This, too, is an example of America’s uniquely profligate impotence. When something goes screwy at a ramshackle consulate halfway round the globe, very few governments have the technological capacity to watch it unfold in real time. Even fewer have deployable military assets only a couple of hours away. What is the point of unmanned drones, of military bases around the planet, of elite Special Forces trained to the peak of perfection if the president and the vast bloated federal bureaucracy cannot rouse themselves to action? What is the point of outspending Russia, Britain, France, China, Germany and every middle-rank military power combined if, when it matters, America cannot urge into the air one plane with a couple of dozen commandoes? In Iraq, al-Qaida is running training camps in the western desert. In Afghanistan, the Taliban are all but certain to return most of the country to its pre-9/11 glories. But in Washington the head of the world’s biggest “counterterrorism” bureaucracy briefs the president on flood damage and downed trees.

I don’t know whether Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan can fix things, but I do know that Barack Obama and Joe Biden won’t even try – and that therefore a vote for Obama is a vote for the certainty of national collapse. Look at Lower Manhattan in the dark, and try to imagine what America might look like after the rest of the planet decides it no longer needs the dollar as global reserve currency. For four years, we have had a president who can spend everything but build nothing. Nothing but debt, dependency, and decay. As I said at the beginning, in different ways the response to Hurricane Sandy and Benghazi exemplify the fundamental unseriousness of the superpower at twilight. Whether or not to get serious is the choice facing the electorate Tuesday.

But let him keep the bomber jacket.

He won’t need it much on Oahu.

7 thoughts on “The Benghazi Malfeasance Continues In Real Time

  1. Martijn Meijering (@mmeijeri)

    I keep wondering why there were no Marine Security Guards at the consulate. It looks as if they were trying to hide the CIA presence, but why would they want to avoid having Marine guards? Was the use of CIA contractors perhaps intended as a way to circumvent the War Powers Act?

    1. Larry J

      From what I heard after 9/11, most Marines stationed at embassies are there to protect the classified information and systems, not provide security for the ambassador or his staff. Security is generally provided by contractor or host nation personnel. I don’t know if that’s true or not but that’s what they were saying in September.

      1. ken anthony

        The host nation is responsible outside. We are responsible inside. In a place where there is no threat, regular police patrols are all you need. But the embassy inside is still fully staffed. Unless you have a feckless admin that guts it.

    2. Alan K. Henderson

      You’d think that A CIVIL WAR HAD JUST CONCLUDED would be cause enough for any nationality that had inserted itself into that war to beef up any facility it has in that nation.

      1. Peterh

        You may not know who may attack a consulate, or when, but you want the means to bloody the nose of whoever might try, and hold out until reinforcements come.

        Speaking of reinforcements, where was the Libyan police response to criminal activity issuing from their territory? You would expect weapon fire in town to get the attention of local law enforcement, who should call in larger forces if needed.

  2. wodun

    Someone should ask the FBI who asked them not to collect any evidence while they were at the consulate.

  3. Formerly known as Skeptic

    Even before I knew anything else about the timeline, I could not understand why, in the aftermath, Libyan official weren’t INFORMED (not asked) that we were inserting a significant military force to secure the facility.

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