What explains Benghazi? The administration’s evolving spin borders on the incomprehensible. To the vast majority of Americans it’s not a phony scandal. But, what fits the facts?
We know the senior diplomatic staff and regional security managers begged for additional security; request denied! We know they begged to just leave the security team that was there in place; request denied! We know that reports of an ever growing al Qaeda presence were sent up the chain of command. We know that the security arrangements at Benghazi were not nearly up to State Department standards. We know that for weeks the attack was blamed on a video nearly no one saw. We know the initial explanation by Ms. Rice was modified and edited well beyond the facts that we now know were known at the time.
We know the Libyan government immediately identified the attack as terrorism. We know that our security establishment knew it was terror. We know, or at least think, that there were assets in the immediate area that could have been brought to bear and were not; not to protect not to pursue. We know that two different chains of command got stand down orders. We know that Gen. Hamm was rushed out of his AfriCom job, soon after the attack. We know the ‘missing Colonel’ who was retired, off the grid was neither missing, retired or off the grid.
We know that we have four dead Americans. We know that CNN beat the FBI to the investigation, discovering Ambassador Stephens’s journal. We know the NY Times interviewed one of the suspects in a Café. We know the Libyan President was embarrassed on the international stage by the video claim. We know the Brits and the Red Cross got out of Dodge based on having been attacked; in the case of the Brits, an attempt to kidnap they’re Ambassador. We strongly suspect weapons trafficking were happening in Benghazi. We know the Turkish Ambassador left Benghazi in advance of anything happening. We knew the terror organizations involved in the attack. We know one of the attackers shouted; “I’m here from Mr. Morsi”.
We know that the Administration’s story changed time and time again, as facts demanded alternative spin. We know that the administration has, incomprehensibly, provided major support to the Muslim Brotherhood, at home and abroad. We know the administration has removed the U.S. assets put in place to, potentially, engage the parties involved in the Benghazi attack.
We also know that Mr. Morsi, as President of Egypt, demanded the release of The Blind Sheik from prison.
So what fits the facts, as we know them?
While I’m very timid when it comes to conspiracies, it’s hard to avoid in this situation. Was this entire situation in Benghazi a set up to kidnap Ambassador Stephens and trade him for the Blind Sheik? Did the U.S. facilitate that plan, knowing the political climate in the U.S. would not tolerate the outright release of the Blind Sheik and that his release would solidify President Morsi’s position in Egypt allowing President Morsi to ride in on the white horse and ‘negotiate’ the release of the Ambassador?
It would explain why repeated calls for improved security were ignored, despite attacks on the Brits and Red Cross. It would explain the need to blame a video. It would explain why Ambassador Stephens was there in the first place. It would explain the stand down orders. It would explain the delay of U.S. investigative assets getting to Benghazi. It would explain the continued support for President Morsi even as Egyptian freedoms were under attack and millions took to the Egyptian streets to remove him. It would explain why the passport of one of the suspected participants in the attack was found at the home of a senior Muslim Brotherhood official in Egypt. It would explain the growing amount of reporting in the Middle East that information resulting in major damage to the U.S. administration is in possession of the Brotherhood and related to the Benghazi attack. It would explain why a group with ‘Martyrs Brigade’ in their name was tasked with security at the compound. It would explain the impotent internal review by Ambassador Pickering and Admiral Mullen. It would explain the months of cover-up by the President and his administration. It might also explain why, so far, no one bears any responsibility.
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