Lied To Again

The Federalist Papers reported today:

Maybe Barack Obama thinks if he says something that’s completely false, perhaps they’ll believe it if he tweets it.

So speaking to troops at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, when Obama said “Over the last eight years, no foreign terrorist organization has successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland,”

Sorry, that is a lie.

The article includes the list of attacks during Obama’s Presidency:

Little Rock, Arkansas, June 1, 2009. Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad shot and murdered one soldier, Army Pvt. William Andrew Long, and injured another, Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula, at a military recruiting station in Little Rock. Muhammad reportedly converted to Islam in college and was on the FBI’s radar after being arrested in Yemen–a hotbed of radical Islamic terrorism–for using a Somali passport, even though he was a U.S. citizen. In a note to an Arkansas judge, Muhammad claimed to be a member of al-Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula, the terror group’s Yemen chapter.

Fort Hood, Texas, November 5, 2009. Major Nidal Malik Hasan shot up a military base in Fort Hood and murdered 14 people. Hasan was in contact with al-Qaeda terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki prior to the attack and shouted “Allahu Akbar!” as he fired upon the soldiers on the Fort Hood base. After being sentenced to death, Hasan requested to join ISIS while on death row. It took six years for Obama to acknowledge the shooting as a terror attack instead of “workplace violence.”

Frankfurt, Germany, March 2, 2011. Arid Uka, a Kosovo Albanian Muslim, shot and murdered two U.S. airmen who were headed to fight in Afghanistan at a Frankfurt airport and injured two others. Uka was sentenced to life in prison and is believed to have been radicalized through jihadist propaganda on the Internet, as his Facebook page was laced with jihadist statements. He is also believed to have acted alone.

Benghazi, Libya, September 11, 2012. Ansar al-Sharia, an Islamic terror group, attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi and murdered Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton blamed the attack on a video, a blatant lie.

Boston, Massachusetts, April 15, 2013. Tamerlan and Dhozkar Tsarnaev set off two bombs at the 2013 Boston marathon, killing three and injuring over 260 people. The Tsarnaev brothers later shot and murdered Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer Sean Collier. The Tsarnaev brothers were self-radicalized through online jihadist propaganda and through a mosque with ties to al-Qaeda.

London, Britain, May 22, 2013. An off-duty British Army solider was murdered by Islamic fundamentalists.

Brussels, Belgium, May 24, 2014. Islamic terrorist Mehdi Nemmouche murdered three people at the Jewish Museum in Brussels.

Hamas starting war with Israel, July 8, 2015. Islamic terror group Hamas started a war with Israel, launching rockets into the Jewish state.

Moore, Oklahoma, September 24, 2014. Alton Nolen beheaded a woman, Colleen Huff, at a Vaughan Foods plant and stabbed and injured another person. While Nolen’s motives are unclear, he appears to have been another radicalized Muslim who was obsessed with beheadings.

Queens, New York, October 23, 2014. Zale Thompson, another self-radicalized Muslim, injured two police officers with a hatchet before being shot dead by other cops. Thompson reportedly indoctrinated himself with ISIS, al-Qaeda and al-Shabab–a Somali jihadist terror group–websites and was a lone wolf attacker.

Brooklyn, New York, December 20, 2014. Ismaayil Brinsley shot and murdered two police officers execution-style and his Facebook page featured jihadist postings and had ties to a terror-linked mosque.

Paris, France, January 7, 2015. Two Islamic terrorists murdered 12 people at the offices of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical French magazine that had published cartoons mocking Mohammed. Al-Qaeda’s Yemen branch claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Paris, France, January 9, 2015. A gunman who pledged allegiance to ISIS held people in a kosher supermarket hostage and killed four of them.

Copenhagen, Denmark, February 23, 2015. A gunman who swore loyalty to the leader of ISIS opened fire at a free speech forum and at people outside a synagogue. The terrorist murdered two people.

Garland, Texas, May 3, 2015. Two gunmen shot up the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland, where a Mohammed cartoon contest was taking place, and were killed by a police officer. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.

Saint-Quentin-Fallavier, France, June 26, 2015. A French ISIS fanatic beheaded his boss.

Chattanooga, Tennessee, July 16, 2015. Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez shot and killed four Marines and a sailor at a military base in Chattanooga and was believed to have been inspired by ISIS.

Palestinian Intifada against Jews, September 13, 2015. A wave of Palestinian terror attacks toward Jews in Israel began in September, which only worsened after the incitement from Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

Paris, France, November 13, 2015. ISIS launched a massive, coordinated terror attack in the city of Paris that resulted in at least 129 dead and 352 people injured.

San Bernardino, California, December 14, 2015. Two radical Islamists, Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, shot and murdered 14 people and injured 22 others at an office holiday party.

Brussels, Belgium, March 22, 2016. ISIS set off bombs and gunfire at a Brussels’s city airport and a subway station, killing 30 people and injuring at least 230 people.

The article points out:

In fact, under Barack Obama, worldwide terrorism deaths have risen four-fold.

Obviously, President Obama is not solely responsible for the increase of terrorism around the world, but there is an aspect of this that needs to be looked at. America has been looked to as a force that kept law and order around the world. It was understood that if a country was consistently causing trouble, they might experience the wrath of America on some level. In 1986, the United States bombed Libya in response to the terrorist bombing of a Berlin discotheque and other terrorist attacks Libya had been involved in. There was a price to be paid for engaging in terrorism. The attack had only a limited effect on the terrorism activities of Libya, but the message was sent that America would attack states that sponsored terrorism. Unfortunately that has not been the case during the Obama Administration. He has made it possible for billions of dollars to flow to Iran, a country that routinely funds terrorism and arms America’s enemies in the Middle East.

Ronald Reagan brought down the Soviet Union partially because he was considered a cowboy, and the Russians feared him.

According to a recent article at RightWingGranny, President George W. Bush had a similar effect:

According to one of the world’s most deadly and infamous terrorists, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, President George W. Bush wiped out plans for other imminent attacks by quickly invading Afghanistan after 9/11/2001. 

According to a new book detailed by The Federalist and former Bush staffer Marc Thiessen, KSM admitted during enhanced interrogation the President’s swift “shock-and-awe” action not only thwarted plans for follow up attacks to 9/11, but changed Al Qaeda‘s entire strategy. 

…Far from trying to draw us in, KSM said that al-Qaeda expected the United States to respond to 9/11 as we had the 1983 bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut — when, KSM told Mitchell, the United States ‘turned tail and ran.’

‘Then he looked at me and said, ‘How was I supposed to know that cowboy George Bush would announce he wanted us ‘dead or alive’ and then invade Afghanistan to hunt us down?’’ Mitchell writes. ‘KSM explained that if the United States had treated 9/11 like a law enforcement matter, he would have had time to launch a second wave of attacks.’ He was not able to do so because al-Qaeda was stunned ‘by the ferocity and swiftness of George W. Bush’s response.’

I do not support overseas fighting unless it is absolutely necessary, but those who criticize President Bush for his handling of Iraq and Afghanistan forget that there was no follow-up attack to 9/11. They also forget that it was President Obama who prematurely withdrew troops from Iraq, allowing for the growth of ISIS.

I am hoping that Donald Trump will be a President in the mold of President Reagan–not anything like President Obama.

 

 

Before You Buy Into The Accusation, Take A Look At The Accuser

I suspect that if you are reading this, you are as tired of this presidential election as I am. However, the media (and the Clinton campaign) have said so many outlandish things about Donald Trump, I feel obligated to respond to at least some of them. I would like to point out that Donald Trump has been in the public eye for at least thirty years, and although he has never been a poster child for modesty, humility, and Puritanism, he has had a rather reasonable reputation until he decided to run against Hillary Clinton. That alone is cause for reflection.

The latest Democratic talking point is that America will end if Donald Trump is elected–the seas will begin the rise again, we will bomb everyone, and the world will hate us. Pick any major media and you will find a story about one of the above. Well, it’s time to point out the background of one of the accusers.

Yesterday The Conservative Tribune posted an article about one of Donald Trump’s attackers–retired General John Allen. General Allen spoke in Philadelphia and has appeared on a few news shows since then.

The article reports General Allen’s statements about Donald Trump:

Allen apparently wasn’t just referring to Trump’s statement that he would reintroduce waterboarding and other enhanced interrogation techniques, but that he would bomb the Islamic State group. Apparently, that’s an illegal order now, too.

“He’s talked about needing to torture. He’s talked about needing to murder the families of alleged terrorists,” Allen said. “He’s talked about carpet-bombing ISIL. Who do you think is going to be carpet-bombed when all that occurs? It’s going to be innocent families.”

“What we need to do is ensure that we don’t create an environment that puts us on a track conceivably where the United States military finds itself in a civil military crisis with a commander in chief who would have us do illegal things.”

Actually, that sounds better than the current rules of engagement.

Let’s look at General Allen’s record. The article reports:

Allen was, at one point, the White House coordinator for anti-Islamic State group efforts. Along with Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Susan Rice, and the whole sick crew, he was responsible for the policy of treating the Islamic State as the “JV team” — a bunch of angry, stupid teens who had somehow found Kalashnikovs and were taking their angst out on the world.

He’s the one who helped construct a policy where a group with ultramodern weaponry and a Bronze Age ideology were considered to be no threat whatsoever.

That’s not all. He was also responsible for the funding and arming of so-called “moderate” Islamic rebels in Syria. Lo and behold, these were the rebel groups who often decided that their allegiance — as well as their funds and weaponry — belonged to the Islamic State group. Others merely surrendered their weapons.

It gets worse:

He’s one of the people behind the drone killing of terrorist imam Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen, in Yemen. Now, granted, al-Awlaki was a detestable individual, but the American-born cleric had never been charged in court nor had his citizenship stripped. He was the first American citizen specifically targeted and killed without any due process. And this is a man who thinks enhanced interrogation techniques are going to cause a military revolt?

General Allen retired as the result of a sex scandal (he fits right in with the Clintons). This is the portrait of the latest accuser of Donald Trump.

 

 

Some Good News About ISIS

The U.K. Daily Mail reported yesterday that three ISIS leaders have been killed within ten days of each other by a sniper in the Libyan city of Sirte.

The article reports:

The leaders are said to have been picked off one-by-one in Sirte, the Libyan coastal city where Muammar Gaddaffi was born, which the militants took control of last year.

According to unconfirmed social media reports, ISIS fighters are now sweeping the city for the man ordinary Libyans are said to be dubbing ‘Daesh hunter’. 

The article further reports:

…social media is ablaze with reports of rumours of the sniper, who has become somewhat of a hero to those living under the control of the evil terror group, according to the Libya Herald

The Islamists are not popular in the city, and days after the first assassination a ‘photo report’ emerged, showing the terror group executing at least three men and whipped another for drinking alcohol.

ISIS reportedly has 3,000 fighters in Sirte and has imposed the strict rules familiar with residents in their defacto capital in Raqqa, Syria.

Beheadings and crucifixions plague the town, which has been deserted by citizens by the thousands.  

My only hope is that the sniper will continue his work.

Oh, What A Tangled Web We Weave…

The real advantage to telling the truth is that you don’t have to remember what you said. As you get older, that matters. Today The Wall Street Journal posted an story by Kimberley Strassel showing how lies about her emails are becoming a problem for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Ms. Strassel notes that nothing Mrs. Clinton has previously stated about her emails has turned out to be true.

The article cites a few problem areas:

The Democratic presidential aspirant on March 10 held a press conference pitched as her first and last word on the revelation that she’d used a private email server while secretary of state. She told reporters that she’d turned over to the State Department “all my emails that could possibly be work-related.” And she insisted that she “did not email any classified material to anyone on my email. There is no classified material.”

Both of those statements have been proven to be false. Ms. Strassel points out that as a result the Benghazi probe, Sidney Blumenthal was forced to turn over his emails, which revealed work-related emails that had not been disclosed. Mr. Blumenthal’s emails also revealed that the emails Mrs. Clinton turned over had been altered–work related sentences and paragraphs had been removed.

Since Mrs. Clinton began turning over her emails, some of them have been designated ‘classified.’

The article points out:

We also know that the State Department has now upgraded at least 25 of Mrs. Clinton’s emails to “classified” status. State is suggesting this is no big deal, noting that it is “routine” to upgrade material during the public-disclosure process. But that’s beside the point. This isn’t about after-the-fact disclosure. It’s about security at the time—whether Mrs. Clinton was sending and storing sensitive government information on a hackable private email system. Turns out, she was. For the record, it is a federal crime to “knowingly” house classified information at an “unauthorized location.”

From what we know so far, Mrs. Clinton is guilty of a crime. However, because she is not Richard Nixon and there is no contemporary Woodward or Bernstein who are going to inform the general public as to what is going on, she is not at risk of being held accountable. This is another example of the American media choosing not to do its job. Our nation needs a media that holds our leaders accountable. Right now we don’t have one.

Libya Does Matter

Erick Stakelbeck posted a story on his blog entitled, “Why You Should Care About Libya.” I will admit that I never understood the need to remove Muammar Gaddafi after he began cooperating with the west in the War on Terror. If you remember, as a result of the American invasion of Iraq, in December 2003, Libya renounced its possession of weapons of mass destruction, decommissioning its chemical and nuclear weapons programs. At that point Libya’s relationship with the United States improved and seemed to be moving in a positive direction. Admittedly, his civil rights record was questionable at best, but it was no worse than any government that has followed him.

So why should I care about Libya?

The article explains:

While the West’s attention is focused on ISIS’s rampage through Iraq and Syria, Libya is fast becoming one of the world’s most dangerous and unstable countries–a hotbed of ISIS and Al Qaeda activity and ravaged by civil war. ISIS now wields a major presence in the Libyan cities of Sirte (where it recently seized a civilian airport) and Derna (where it has been battling other jihadist groups for supremacy) along the Mediterranean coast and is making further moves elsewhere in the country.

ISIS has also wasted no time extending its genocide against the Christians of Iraq and Syria to the shores of North Africa. In February, ISIS released a horrific video showing its jihadists beheading 21 Egyptian Christians on a Libyan beach. It issued a similar video in April showing the beheading and shooting of over a dozen Ethiopian Christians in Libya. And just last week, ISIS reportedly kidnapped 88 more Christians–this time, Eritreans–who were refugees traveling through Libya. These Eritrean Christians’ outlook for survival is obviously grim.

So why should you care about ISIS’s advances in Libya? For starters, Libya is rapidly becoming a terrorist safe haven–the kind of place where jihadists can train freely and plot attacks against the United States (see: pre-9/11 Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, and the ISIS-held territories of Iraq and Syria). That’s bad enough. Worse still is Libya’s geographic proximity to Europe–it lies just 600 miles across the Mediterranean from Italy. And according to a recent Fox News report, ISIS is wasting no time using its Libya strongholds to transit into Europe:

“Refugees” have been pouring into Europe from Libya. In recent weeks, the Italians have picked up at least thirty ISIS fighters who have come into Italy from Libya. This is a threat to Europe and eventually to America.

So what was the regime change in Libya about? What was the Arab Spring really about? In his book Catastrophic Failure, Stephen Coughlin examines the timeline of the Arab Spring. He cites a Der Spiegel article explaining the goal of Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood to bring about the collapse of the Arab governments that were not based on Islamic Law. America, unfortunately, came down on the wrong side of history in the Arab Spring and simply strengthened Al Qaeda and helped bring chaos to the Middle East.

The Egyptian government has moved against the Muslim Brotherhood, sentencing many of its members to death, including former President Mohammed Morsi. Again, the civil rights record of the new Egyptian government is not good, but they have restored order and are eliminating the threat of the Muslim Brotherhood to Egypt. American needs to wake up to the threat the Muslim Brotherhood is to America. I strongly recommend reading “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America,” by the Muslim Brotherhood operative Mohamed Akram. This is one of the government exhibits from the Holy Land Foundation Trial. You can find more information at Discover the Networks.

There are many lessons we can learn from Libya and many reasons why Libya matters.

This Is Not Really A Surprise

The hope of the Hillary Clinton for President campaign is that by the time Americans vote, they will be so tired of hearing about Benghazi and Mrs. Clinton’s private email server that they won’t even care. So far that strategy has been somewhat successful, but it’s success may be drawing to a close.

On Monday the Daily Caller posted a story about emails provided to a House Committee by Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime Clinton insider.

The article reports:

The new Blumenthal-Clinton correspondence was included in a batch of emails Blumenthal gave in response to a subpoena from the Benghazi committee. He will testify in a closed-door session in front of the panel on Tuesday.

It is unclear exactly why Blumenthal’s emails are only now being provided to the committee, though there are two likely explanations. Either Clinton failed to turn the records over to the State Department in December, or the State Department received the emails from Clinton but for some reason failed to turn them over to the Benghazi committee, which is led by South Carolina Rep. Trey Gowdy.

This, of course, is contrary to Mrs. Clinton’s claim in March that she had turned over all of her emails.

The article further reports:

Clinton said her handlers had sifted through her private email account to find her official emails. She said her personal emails were deleted. A private email server Clinton used to host the email account has also reportedly been wiped clean.

The rest of Clinton’s emails will be released in increments beginning at the end of the month.

This does matter. However, it will probably not matter to Mrs. Clinton’s supporters. I believe that there is no level of dishonesty that Mrs. Clinton could be guilty of that would derail her presidential campaign. That really does not say good things about the American voter.

 

How Naive Do You Have To Be To Believe This?

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article today about the latest twists and turns on Hillary Clinton’s private server and private emails. A few months ago, Mrs. Clinton explained to America that she never used her private email server for classified emails. Some of us were skeptical about that statement because, as Secretary of State, a lot of her emails would be at least confidential, but that was her story. Now that many of her emails have been made public (how did that happen when she erased the server? Did only the emails that would not be seriously damaging survive?)

The article reminds us:

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton received information on her private email server that has now been classified about the deadly attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi.

The email in question, forwarded to Clinton by her deputy chief of staff Jake Sullivan, relates to reports of arrests in Libya of possible suspects in the attack.

…The information was not classified at the time the email was sent but was upgraded from “unclassified” to “secret” on Friday at the request of the FBI, according to State Department officials. They said 23 words of the Nov. 18, 2012, message were redacted from the day’s release of 296 emails totaling 896 pages to protect information that could damage foreign relations.

Because the information was not classified at the time the email was sent, no laws were violated, but Friday’s redaction shows that Clinton received sensitive information on her unsecured personal server.

…QUESTION: Were you ever — were you ever specifically briefed on the security implications of using — using your own email server and using your personal address to email with the president?

CLINTON: I did not email any classified material to anyone on my email. There is no classified material. So I’m certainly well-aware of the classification requirements and did not send classified material.

Note the statement that says the information was not classified at the time. The author of an email determines its classification. Why did the author of the emails that are now classified change their status?

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. The article includes a very interesting email exchange between Hillary Clinton and Jacob Sullivan. One email includes a second email address (after the existence of a second email address was denied).

The article concludes:

Note the e-mail address on this message — not the hdr22 address that the Clintons have insisted was the only one used by Hillary, but the hrod17 address that got exposed a few days ago. In this e-mail, it looks like Hillary used this address for her more political issues, although without looking at the whole record, it would be difficult to establish that kind of a pattern. This does show, though, that Hillary understood the significance of the collapse of that false narrative, and got her State Department staff to do pre-emptive oppo research on her behalf.

Don’t forget that this is just the first release of material. We will likely see more problems along the same lines, and that may or may not include issues of classification.

There Are No Words

On Friday, CNN posted a story about Muslim migrants fleeing Libya and trying to get to Italy.

The article reports:

Muslims who were among migrants trying to get from Libya to Italy in a boat this week threw 12 fellow passengers overboard — killing them — because the 12 were Christians, Italian police said Thursday.

Italian authorities have arrested 15 people on suspicion of murdering the Christians at sea, police in Palermo, Sicily, said.

At least Italy is arresting those who are suspected of the killing.

The article further reports:

Thousands of people each year make the dangerous sea journey from North Africa to Europe’s Mediterranean coast, often aboard vessels poorly equipped for the trip. Many of them attempt the voyage to flee war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East.

More than 10,000 people have arrived on Italian shores from Libya since last weekend alone, according to the Italian coast guard.

Many die each year while attempting the voyage, often when boats capsized. Last year at least 3,200 died trying to make the trip. Since 2000, according to the International Organization for Migration, almost 22,000 people have died fleeing across the Mediterranean.

We need to take a closer look at what is happening. People are risking their lives to flee Muslim countries that are at war and yet they are killing the people who are fleeing with them because of their religious beliefs. This is unacceptable. The fact that killing Christians is widely accepted in many Muslim circles should be an alarm for the western world. We have to either deal with the philosophy that condones this killing or find a way to contain all of those people who believe it is their duty to kill Christians. This is a worldwide problem, and those countries who are part of western civilization need to face the problem and deal with it. If those people fleeing Libya and other war-torn Muslim countries want to settle in western countries which are peaceful, they need to leave their ideas about killing Christians back in their home countries.

Evidence Of The Decline Of America

On Monday, the Washington Post reported that Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) carried out a series of airstrikes in Tripoli, Libya. Neither country informed the United States before taking action.

The article reports:

The airstrikes appear tied to fear over the growing muscle of Islamist militias. The region’s monarchies and secular dictatorships are increasingly alarmed about Islamist gains from Libya to Syria and Iraq. And the airstrikes may signal a new willingness by some Arab states to take on a more direct military role in the region’s conflicts.

Various groups in Libya have been battling for control of the main Tripoli airport, and the strikes may have been a failed attempt to keep the strategic facility from falling to extremists.

Our intervention in Libya was a mistake. The only true justification for America’s getting involved was to protect the oil fields that supply Europe with oil. There is also some questions as to whether of not Gaddafi was planning to begin to trade oil in currency other than American dollars. If he had done that, it would have crashed the American economy. Gaddafi had turned over his weapons of mass destruction after the United States had invaded Iraq. He was a horrible dictator, but there was no assurance that he would be replaced with anything less horrible. The Obama Administration’s decision to bomb Libya as part of the ‘Arab Spring’ only strengthened the grip of the multiple terrorist groups in Libya and surrounding areas.

President Obama’s foreign policy in the Middle East has been a disaster. It will take years to restore the faith in the United States that our allies once had and to undo the damage President Obama has done by supporting the enemies of democracy.

Politicizing Justice In The War On Terror

In case you haven’t noticed, we are still fighting a war on terror. Young girls are being kidnapped, terrorists in the Middle East are killing Christians, and Islamist terrorists seem generally to be running amok. In the midst of this, we are getting ready to try one of the suspects in the attack on the American outpost in Benghazi.

Andrew McCarthy posted an article at National Review today about the indictment of Ahmed Abu Khatallah, the suspect arrested in connection with the attack in Benghazi. It seems that the indictment the Justice Department has created does not make sense when viewed in the context of who Ahmed Abu Khatallah is and what he did.

The article reports:

In big criminal cases — and there are none bigger than those involving terrorist attacks — indictments tend toward book length, written in a narrative style designed to cut through the legalese and explain what happened. See, if the prosecutor is ethically convinced that there is sufficient evidence to convict an accused terrorist, his duty is to plead the case as expansively as necessary to get that evidence admitted.

In terrorism cases, that has always meant fully describing the nature of the terrorist enterprise. Look at the Justice Department’s jihadist cases from the Nineties (see e.g., here). They explain the history of the international jihadist network; the different terrorist organizations and state sponsors it encompasses; the identity, status, and roles of the players; plus all of the different plots and attacks that knit the network together.

The idea is to frame the case in a way that completely and coherently relates it — making it easier for judges to admit controversial evidence and jurors to grasp the willfulness of the accused. That is why the most critical decision made by the prosecutor drafting a terrorism indictment is Count One — i.e., the first statutory offense alleged.

…It seems, however, that the Khatallah prosecution is following a different strategy.

Khatallah has been identified by the State Department as a “senior leader” of Ansar al-Sharia, one of the al-Qaeda-tied franchises in Libya. Yet there is no mention of Ansar al-Sharia in the indictment, much less of al-Qaeda or the Islamic-supremacist ideology that ties jihadist affiliates together. In fact, the indictment does not even accuse Khatallah of being a terrorist.

…In other words, the Justice Department is not alleging that Khatallah himself was a terrorist. It is saying that there were some elusive “terrorists” hanging around Benghazi, and Khatallah conspired to help the “terrorists” by contributing personnel — mainly, himself — to their machinations, knowing that these just might include preparation for a lethal attack on a U.S. facility.

Oh, and the duration of this conspiracy? It is alleged to have lasted about one day — i.e., from approximately sometime on September 11, 2012, to sometime after midnight September 12.

One day. In fact, maybe it was just a few hours.

…Instead, the indictment is written to portray a sudden, spontaneous eruption of violence, without much planning or warning, in which Khatallah — who knows . . . perhaps inspired by a video — abruptly joined a disgruntled group of protesters that turned out to include some shady terrorists motivated by . . . well, who can really say? All we know is the violence started without warning and, before you could scramble a fighter-jet or fuel up Air Force One for a Vegas campaign junket, it was all over.

There are a lot of downsides to giving enemy-combatant terrorists all the majesty of American due process. But at least it used to mean that, by the end, you’d have the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Now, it’s starting to look like what you get on the Sunday shows.

It’s time for Eric Holder to go back to Chicago.

Preparing The Field

Unfortunately we are now living in a country where the presidential campaign is never ending. The latest example of this is the selective release of excerpts from Hillary Clinton’s forthcoming book “Hard Choices” by Politico. The excerpts deal with the attack on the Benghazi outpost on September 11, 2012.

Fox News posted a fact check of the excerpt by Catherine Herridge, their Chief Intelligence correspondent. Ms. Herridge provides a very logical analysis of Mrs. Clinton’s narrative.

One excerpt from the book as posted at Politico:

“There were scores of attackers that night, almost certainly with differing motives,” she writes. “It is inaccurate to state that every single one of them was influenced by this hateful video. It is equally inaccurate to state that none of them were. Both assertions defy not only the evidence but logic as well.”

Note to Mrs. Clinton–no one in Benghazi had seen the video.

Fox News reports:

An independent review of more than 4,000 social media postings, conducted by a leading social media monitoring firm in December 2012, also found the YouTube video was a non-event in Benghazi.

“From the data we have, it’s hard for us to reach the conclusion that the consulate attack was motivated by the movie. Nothing in the immediate picture — surrounding the attack in Libya — suggests that,” Jeff Chapman, chief executive with Agincourt Solutions (now Babel Street), told Fox News.

Chapman said his analysts reviewed postings in Libya, including those from Benghazi, over a three-day period beginning on Sept. 11, and saw “no traffic in Benghazi in the immediate lead-up to the attack related to the anti-Islam film.”

Please follow the link to the Fox News article to read the rest of the fact-check. The upcoming release of this book is the first step in clearing the way for Mrs. Clinton to run for President. The book provides talking points for the Democrats on the investigating committee and will also make the Benghazi scandal old news by the time the election campaign is fully operational.

 

 

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There Will Be More

As the select committee to investigate Benghazi gets organized, gets its security clearances in order, plans its witnesses, etc., there will be those who hope to obstruct its mission. There will also be those who are in search of the truth about what happened that night.

Allen West posted an article on his website today that illustrates why we need the select committee. I strongly suggest you follow the link and read the entire article.

Here are a few excerpts:

I was seated beside someone who personally knew one of the men who was there on the roof in Benghazi. This person was excited to share with me the “ground truth” of what happened September 11, 2012.

…I learned about the proximity of the staging area of the attack to the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, and the attackers were indeed Ansar al-Sharia, a group affiliated with al-Qaida. I came to understand why Ambassador Chris Stevens was there in the first place and that he had in fact requested better security but was denied – the question is, by whom? And I learned that the Martyrs of 17 February Brigade were in charge of security and were the ones who opened the gates, then fled.

I learned there are those who are being threatened with their pensions being cut off if they come forth to speak.

And I learned, as I presumed, that there was a covert weapons scheme going on in Libya, Benghazi. We had been supplying radical Islamists with weapons against Libyan President Moammar Gadhafi, effectively supplying the enemy and destabilizing that country. And it seems that there was a CIA weapons buy-back program, the aim of which was to ship the retrieved weapons out of Libya through Turkey, and to the Islamist forces in Syria.

I strongly suggest that you read the entire article. There are many things that the committee needs to investigate about what happened that night in Benghazi.

I was seated beside someone who personally knew one of the men who was there on the roof in Benghazi. This person was excited to share with me the “ground truth” of what happened September 11, 2012.
Read more at http://allenbwest.com/2014/05/exclusive-confidential-source-reveals-really-happened-benghazi/#fCXybhSrMwdlxbDk.99
I was seated beside someone who personally knew one of the men who was there on the roof in Benghazi. This person was excited to share with me the “ground truth” of what happened September 11, 2012.
Read more at http://allenbwest.com/2014/05/exclusive-confidential-source-reveals-really-happened-benghazi/#fCXybhSrMwdlxbDk.99
I was seated beside someone who personally knew one of the men who was there on the roof in Benghazi. This person was excited to share with me the “ground truth” of what happened September 11, 2012.
Read more at http://allenbwest.com/2014/05/exclusive-confidential-source-reveals-really-happened-benghazi/#fCXybhSrMwdlxbDk.99
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Now That We Have A Committee…

This post is based on two articles–one by the Editors at National Review and one by Andrew McCarthy at National Review. The article by the Editors explains why Benghazi matters, and the article by Andrew McCarthy has some good advice for the Benghazi Select Committee.

The article by the Editors sums up the reasons Benghazi matters:

But the question here is not whether the administration’s misleading statements in the wake of the attacks on U.S. installations in Egypt and Libya are a political scandal in the style of President Nixon’s infamous burglary; they aren’t. But that the administration’s misdeeds here seem to fall short of felony burglary hardly makes the matter a less serious one: The White House misled the American public about a critical matter of national interest, and it continues to practice deceit as the facts of the case are sorted out. That, to answer Hillary Clinton’s callous question, is what difference it makes.

Andrew McCarthy has some advice for the committee:

I was a tough prosecutor but a fair one. If I were the special counsel, I’d do my best to let the chips fall where they may even if it ended up showing that I’d been wrong about things. But truly being fair means you never get to that point: You don’t take an assignment that might disserve the assignment; you don’t take an assignment under circumstances where fair-minded people could be persuaded to wonder whether you’re pursuing the truth or pursuing your own agenda.

The facts of Benghazi are damning for the administration. The select committee should choose one of the dozens of excellent, ethical former prosecutors who have not publicly stated conclusive views on Benghazi. That would make the facts sing for themselves rather than create a target for the partisan demagoguery that could drown them out.

Benghazi is important. The goal is to get to the bottom of what happened, why no one came to the aid of the Ambassador, how the video got blamed, and why has it been so hard to obtain government documents relating to the attack. Those are the questions America wants to have answered.

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About That Three A.M. Phone Call

Tommy Vietor was interviewed on Fox New’s Special Report tonight. It was very obvious that he was attempting damage control after the recent revelations about Benghazi. I posted a copy of the memo that has rejuvenated the questions about the attack in Benghazi in 2011 yesterday (rightwinggranny.com).

There are a few videos on YouTube with excerpts of the interview, but this is a section that is somewhat amazing:

I am sorry that a political campaign was more important that the life of an ambassador and the lives of there other Americans. I truly believe that the reason they were not helped was that the Obama Administration was trying to avoid the political fallout of a military action in Libya in the midst of a Presidential campaign. Remember, President Obama was partly responsible for destabilizing Libya in the first place and was trying to give the impression that the country was under control of rational people. Having to send in troops would have blown that illusion. The other part of this story that is hard to understand is why the President chose to head off to a fundraiser the next morning. He acted as if the incident in Libya was not his responsibility and he did not have to hang around to see what needed to be done. The cover-up is horrible, but the total lack of responsibility on the part of the President is even worse.

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I Don’t Think We Have Learned The Truth Yet

Yesterday The Blaze posted an article which featured an unclassified map of American military forces in the area of Benghazi. Libya, on September 11, 2012. The map was obtained by Judicial Watch through a Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) request. I am in no way a military strategist, but after looking at the map, I wonder if more could have been done to defend the embassy annex at Benghazi. Here is the map:

Screengrab via Townhall

The American military does not usually leave men behind. I wonder why they chose to close their ears to the cries for help that were coming from Benghazi that night.  We need to have an honest investigation into what happened. So far that investigation has been blocked. The American people (and the families of those killed that night) have a right to know why the military did not show up.

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Has The Government Lost Its Mind?

Last week CNS News reported that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a draft resolution that would lift a 30-year-ban on Libyan nationals coming to the United States to work or train in “aviation maintenance, flight operations, or nuclear-related fields.”

The article reports:

In a statement on his congressional website, Rep. Chaffetz said that the draft final regulation could take effect without prior notice and comment. The congressmen say the prohibition was put in place in the 1980s after the wave of terrorist incidents involving Libyans.

“The administration justifies lifting this ban by claiming that the United States’ relationship with Libya has been ‘normalized,’” the statement said.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Reuters reports today:

Heavy fighting between militias using rifles, grenades and anti-aircraft weapons erupted in several parts of Tripoli on Tuesday in the worst violence in the Libyan capital for weeks.

…OPEC producer Libya faces chaos and anarchy as the government struggles to rein in militias, gangs and Islamist radicals in a country awash with arms two years after the ouster of former leader Muammar Gaddafi.

Several security officials declined to comment when contacted by Reuters on the latest incdient.

Officials are often reluctant to discuss militias which call the shots in the streets. Many technically work for the police or other other regular forces but in practice report to their commanders.

Fighting between militias is often about personal arguments, control of local areas, stolen cars or smuggled goods such as drugs or alcohol banned in Libya.

I don’t have a problem with taking in refugees from a war-torn country. I do have a problem with allowing people from a country with known terrorist ties to work or train in “aviation maintenance, flight operations, or nuclear-related fields.” The draft memo by the DHS is simply not sensible. I don’t understand how America’s relationship with a terrorist country can ever be ‘normalized.’

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More Questions Than Answers

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line yesterday that asks a very interesting question about the Benghazi attack.

The article at Power Line links back to a Jake Tapper CNN article referenced on this site on August 2. The article confirmed a rumor that many CIA operatives were on the ground at Benghazi during the attack on September 11, 2012, and that those operatives were being muzzled by the government. The obvious question being asked is, “What is being covered up?”

The cover-up began instantly when a video with very few YouTube hits was blamed for the attack on Benghazi. Why was it instantly necessary to provide a cover story for this attack? Was this political–if it was terrorism, it might impact the election–or was this about something entirely different?

The article at Power Line points out some basic facts:

So, what do we make of all of this? Tapper’s reporting points toward the conclusion that the longstanding rumor to the effect that the terrorist attack occurred during a top-secret arms transfer mission is true. But how much does that really explain? It seems unlikely that the CIA mission prompted the attack: we now know that the Syrian rebels consist in substantial part of al Qaeda elements, and if arms were sent from Libya to Syria, al Qaeda probably wound up with some of them. So why would al Qaeda want to interrupt the CIA mission via an attack on the American compound in Benghazi?

…So I find it hard to understand how the current revelations fit with what we already know–or think we know–about Benghazi, or why the administration and the CIA are now so intent on covering up whatever the Agency was up to at the famous “annex.” My sense is that the current reporting leaves us a long way from understanding what really happened on September 11, 2012.

It will be interesting to see if we actually have the truth about Benghazi before President Obama is finished his second term.

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Incredible Coincidence Or Government Thuggery?

The Benghazi attack is still surrounded by more questions than answers. Yesterday CNN posted an exclusive story about a number of CIA agents who were on the ground in the outpost at Benghazi during the attack. Since the attack, many of these agents have been recovering from the wounds, but all of the agents have remained out of sight. Why?

The article reports:

Since January, some CIA operatives involved in the agency’s missions in Libya, have been subjected to frequent, even monthly polygraph examinations, according to a source with deep inside knowledge of the agency’s workings.

The goal of the questioning, according to sources, is to find out if anyone is talking to the media or Congress.

It is being described as pure intimidation, with the threat that any unauthorized CIA employee who leaks information could face the end of his or her career.

In exclusive communications obtained by CNN, one insider writes, “You don’t jeopardize yourself, you jeopardize your family as well.”

Another says, “You have no idea the amount of pressure being brought to bear on anyone with knowledge of this operation.”

“Agency employees typically are polygraphed every three to four years. Never more than that,” said former CIA operative and CNN analyst Robert Baer.

In other words, the rate of the kind of polygraphs alleged by sources is rare.

“If somebody is being polygraphed every month, or every two months it’s called an issue polygraph, and that means that the polygraph division suspects something, or they’re looking for something, or they’re on a fishing expedition. But it’s absolutely not routine at all to be polygraphed monthly, or bi-monthly,” said Baer.

CIA spokesman Dean Boyd asserted in a statement that the agency has been open with Congress.

If the CIA has been all that open with Congress, why are agents being kept from the press and subjected to lie detector tests much more frequently than usual?

With this is mind, let’s take a look at the timeline regarding the resignation of General David Petraeus as the head of the CIA. Regardless of his affair, General Petraeus is known for being an honest man who loves his country and believes in America. There are a lot of stories about when General Petraeus began his affair with Paula Broadwell. The timeline on this is important–was the affair going on in early September 2011, when General Petraeus took over as the head of the CIA? If it was, how did the people who screened him for the job miss it? If the affair began later, was the Obama Administration aware of it? Why does this matter? The attack in Benghazi took place on September 11, 2012. General Petraeus resigned on November 9, 2012. The cover-up of Benghazi began immediately–keep in mind the only person in jail for the Benghazi attack is the filmmaker who made a film no one saw and had nothing to do with the attack. Is it possible that General Petraeus was told to go along with the cover-up or have his affair revealed?

Regardless of the scenario anyone chooses, it is obvious that there has been a cover-up of what happened in Benghazi. The thing to keep in mind is that cover-up, deny, and delay are all standard tactics of the Obama Administration. There are two main theories I have heard on what was going on in Benghazi — number one that it was a gun running operation supplying arms to the Syrian rebels, and number two that the attack was supposed to be a peaceful kidnapping of Ambassador Stevens so that he could later be swapped for the Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman (the Blind Sheik), currently serving a life sentence at Butner Federal Medical Center in North Carolina.

Neither scenario would be popular with the American public, but I suspect the spin artists in the media could dress up either one to make it work. With the recent reporting on Benghazi by CNN, it may actually be possible that Americans will eventually know the full story of what happened at Benghazi on September 11 of last year.

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Why Didn’t They Just Send Him A Fed-Ex Package?

Fed-Ex seems to have the ability to deliver a package to anyone anywhere in the world. They are a whiz at locating people. The FBI should have contacted them to arrange an interview with one of the suspects in the Benghazi attack.

Mediaite reported yesterday that CNN had interviewed Ahmed Abdu Khattala.

The article states:

Khattala told Damon that no one from either the Libyan or American governments has contacted him asking for his take on the events of that deadly night in 2012. “Even the investigative team did not try to contact me,” he said of the FBI team that traveled to Libya in the wake of the attack.

Damon said that Khattala told her that he would be happy to speak with American investigators about what happened on the night of the Benghazi attack. She stressed, however, that he would not voluntarily submit to interrogation.

CNN posted an article today about their success in locating a possible suspect in the Benghazi attack. The article states:

Eight GOP lawmakers are asking that incoming FBI Director James Comey brief Congress within 30 days about the investigation. They say the administration’s inquiry into the September 11, 2011, attacks in Libya has been “simply unacceptable,” according to a draft letter obtained by CNN.

“One of the pertinent questions today is why we have not captured or killed the terrorist who committed these attacks?” Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told reporters. “News out today that CNN was able to go in and talk to one of the suspected terrorists, how come the military hasn’t been able to get after them and capture or kill the people? How come the FBI isn’t doing this and yet CNN is?”

It is really pathetic that CNN spends two hours interviewing someone who may be connected with the attack on Benghazi and the FBI doesn’t seem to be interested in talking to the person.

It has been almost a year since the attack on Benghazi. Congress is right to demand more information from the FBI regarding the investigation. Hopefully, someone at the FBI will provide that information. Unfortunately the Obama Administration has not been kind to whistleblowers when they reveal things that are unfavorable to the administration, so it is a safe bet that we will not find the people responsible for the attack on Benghazi until we have a totally different administration in Washington.

 

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Searching For The Truth

Yesterday CNS News posted a story questioning the accuracy of some of the Congressional testimony regarding the attack at Benghazi.
The article reports:

An attorney whose firm represents two Benghazi whistleblowers said Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, lied to the Senate when he said there was never a “stand down” order during the Benghazi attack on Sept. 11, 2012.

This contradicts the testimony of Gregory Hicks, former number two State Department diplomat in Libya. According to the article:

Hicks told Congress that after the first attack, a security team left Tripoli for Benghazi with two military personnel and that four members of a special forces team in Tripoli wanted to go in a second wave but were told to stand down.

I have previously reported on this aspect of the story (rightwinggranny.com). Despite the fact that the attack was more than nine months ago, these questions about what happened that night remain unanswered. I believe that all Americans are entitled to answers–especially the family members of those who lost their lives their night.

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Are The Benghazi Hearings Earthshaking?

Tomorrow the hearings in the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will begin at 11:30 am. The witnesses will be:

Mr. Mark Thompson
Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Counterterrorism
Mr. Gregory Hicks
Foreign Service Officer and former Deputy Chief of Mission/Chargé d’Affairs in Libya
US Department of State
Mr. Eric Nordstrom
Diplomatic Security Officer and former Regional Security Officer in Libya
US Department of State

In true Washington form, a lot of the expected testimony has already been leaked out (can’t anyone in that city keep a secret?).

There is a lot of damaging information that has already come out, but most of it was not new to people who were willing to look past the mainstream media. The significant part of what is happening now is that much of the media that blindly supports President Obama has begun to cover the story. Sharyl Attkisson at CBS has been covering the story from the beginning and posted a story at CBS News yesterday which claimed that Special Forces were barred from going to help when Benghazi was attacked. The article includes excerpts from Gregory Hicks’ interview with congressional investigators on the House Oversight Committee in April. Please follow the link above to read the interview.

Benghazi was mishandled from the start. That area of Libya has a history of radical Islamist terrorists and the annex at Benghazi should have either been guarded like Fort Knox or shut down. Decreasing security before the September 11 attacks was foolish and dangerous. The goal of the Obama Administration may have been to give the perception that the war on terror ended with the killing of Osama Bin Ladan, but they were very foolish to let their guard down in Libya. Had the Special Forces been allowed to go into Benghazi, we might have saved Ambassador Stevens, but the ensuing news reports would have been a nightmare for the Obama Presidential Campaign. That fact may have been a major part of their calculations in how they responded to the incident, altering the talking points, and lying about the some of the details. .

So what happens next? I don’t know. I don’t want to see President Obama destroyed by this. He is guilty of lying, incompetence, and a bunch of other things, but impeachment would be a serious mistake on the part of the Republicans. Even if it were deserved, it would never pass the Senate, and even if it did pass it would give America Joe Biden as President. Either way, there is no happy outcome. The good that could come out of this is that Congress will continue to hold the President’s feet to the fire when he is lying and will begin to limit some of his more unconstitutional actions. It would also be nice to see the American press begin to cover this President objectively, but I really don’t believe in unicorns.

 

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This Really Does Not Look Good

CNS News reported today that when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited Libya in 2011, the Department of Defense pre-positioned ‘assets’ off the coast of Libya in order to ensure her safety.

The article reports:

The fact that the assets were pre-positioned for Clinton’s visit was included in the annual report of the State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security (BDS).

CNSNews.com asked the Pentagon if it would specify which military assets had been prepositioned off Libya at the time Clinton’s visit. The inquiry was forwarded to U.S. Africa Command, but a spokesman for that command declined to add any details to what had been stated in BDS report.

“One of the most complex security challenges presented to the Secretary’s [Diplomatic Security] Detail was her equally historic and ground-breaking trip to Libya in October [2011], after the fall of the Qaddafi regime,” said the BDS annual report.

So we are left with a variety of questions. Was our intelligence so far off that we had concluded that Benghazi was safe when we decreased the security provided there? Does America routinely abandon its diplomats in unstable areas without adequate protection while going out of its way to protect their superiors? What did the State Department think had changed in the time Secretary Clinton visited Libya and the time Benghazi was attacked.

Just a note. As hearings convene next week on Benghazi, remember one thing–the person who produced the video that was NOT responsible for the attack in Benghazi is still in jail. How is that possible?

Please follow the link above to read the entire story.

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Alarming Stories The Press Seems To Have Ignored

The Accuracy in Media website posted a very disturbing article yesterday. It’s a rather long article consisting of stories of small businesses and private citizens who have been harassed by the federal government in the past few years.

The article expresses concern for the militarization of police forces and the seeming lack of regard for Constitutional rights of American citizens. The stories show a pattern of excessive force and SWAT- style tactics when a simple visit from a local police officer would have resolved a problem.

The article concludes:

The increased militarization of police forces and the associated use of SWAT teams for routine law enforcement are a dangerous trend. Given Obama’s seeming willingness to abuse the power of his office on so many fronts, it is reasonable to expect more, not less, of the kind of abusive police overreach described in this report, while police forces and capabilities will continue to grow.

Obama’s obvious hostility to gun owners is fueling legitimate fears of gun confiscation, furthering an atmosphere of mutual distrust and paranoia between police and civilians. This raises the specter of armed confrontations should there be attempts to confiscate firearms. As one law enforcement official said at a recent gun hearing, “Good people are going to die trying to take these guns and good people are going to die trying to keep them.”

Ironically, despite its professed commitment to stopping “gun violence,” the Obama Administration authorized gun-running to Mexican drug cartels and Jihadists in Libya and elsewhere in the Middle East. Some hearings and investigations have been held into these schemes but there has been little accountability for this “gun violence.”

If the disregard for the rights of American citizens is a pattern, it needs to be stopped quickly. A free country cannot survive four more years of total disregard for the rights of its citizens. At the very least, the press needs to be reporting the stories in this article and holding the officials responsible for the abuses or power responsible.

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The Testimony On Benghazi Only Gets Worse

Yesterday Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article about the testimony of Army Gen. Martin Dempsey during the Congressional hearings Thursday.

The testimony from Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was telling:

“The United States military is not and should not be a global 911 service capable of arriving on the scene within minutes to every possible contingency around the world,” Panetta told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

This was followed by the testimony of General Dempsey:

“Why didn’t you put forces in place to be ready to respond?,” Senator John McCain asked the general.

Dempsey started, “Because we never received a request to do so, number one. And number two, we –”

McCain interrupted, “You never heard of Ambassador Stevens’s repeated warnings?”

“I had, through General Ham,” responded Dempsey, referring to the commander of AFRICOM. “But we never received a request for support from the State Department, which would have allowed us to put forces–”

“So it’s the State Department’s fault?”

“I’m not blaming the State Department,” Dempsey responded.

Any American who is paying attention and has common sense knows that September 11 has become an important day for terrorists who want to attack America. It is also logical that terrorists would attack a ‘soft’ target–one that was not heavily defended. It is also obvious to Americans paying attention that the situation in Libya has not been stable since the revolution there. So the logical thing to do would have been to increase the security at Benghazi at least on a temporary basis. Instead, the brilliant minds at the State Department decreased security (Washington Times October 2012) in the weeks before September 11.

Four Americans died because the people in charge were not paying attention. It is extremely unfortunate that many of the same people were still in charge after the attack.Enhanced by Zemanta

In The Middle East Which Country Allows Arabs The Most Civil Rights ?

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about the annual report from Freedom House, an organization that annually reports on freedom around the world. The recently released report explains how the results were obtained, discusses trends and provides current rankings for all countries around the world.

Freedom House reports:

Key global findings:

The number of electoral democracies stood at 117, the same as for 2011. Two countries, Georgia and Libya, achieved electoral democracy status, while two were dropped from the category, Mali and the Maldives.

Four countries moved from Partly Free to Free: Lesotho, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Tonga. Three countries rose from Not Free to Partly Free: Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, and Libya. Mali fell two tiers, from Free to Not Free, and Guinea-Bissau dropped from Partly Free to Not Free.

Some notable trends highlighted in the report include increased Muslim-on-Muslim violence, which reaching horrifying levels in Pakistan and remained a serious problem in Iraq and elsewhere; a serious decline in civil liberties in Turkey; and among the Persian Gulf states, a steady and disturbing decline in democratic institutions and an increase in repressive policies.

Worst of the Worst: Of the 47 countries designated as Not Free, nine have been given the survey’s lowest possible rating of 7 for both political rights and civil liberties: Eritrea, Equatorial Guinea, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Two territories, Tibet and Western Sahara, were also ranked among the worst of the worst.

An additional 5 countries and 1 territory received scores that were slightly above those of the worst-ranked countries, with ratings of 6,7 or 7,6 for political rights and civil liberties: Belarus, Chad, China, Cuba, Laos, and South Ossetia.

Let’s look at this summary for a minute. Many leaders in America claim that Sharia Law is compatible with American democracy. Saudi Arabia operates under Sharia Law–please note that they are listed as one of the worst or the worst. Note also that many of the countries listed in that category have Muslim governments.

The article at Power Line notes:

…The report notes some positive trends in the Middle East, yet Israel remains the region’s sole country ranked Free in Freedom House’s evaluation.

Today Israelis go to the polls to elect their government. Israel’s Arab citizens will vote and Arabs will be elected to Israel’s Knesset. Given the neighborhood, not to mention other factors, it’s a remarkable story.

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