Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Republicans Being Ridiculous On Benghazi Attack

George W. Bush
Cover of George W. Bush
George W. Bush on being told a plane had just hit the World Trade Center kept on reading stories to little children. He thought it was an accident, a bad accident, but an accident still. 9/11 was a thousand times more "offensive" - if that is the word - than the attack in Benghazi. And W got it wrong at the outset. The 9/11 attack was so unexpected, so out of the box. And I don't blame George W - never did - for not getting it right right away. To engage in such a blame game would be disrespectful of the tragedy.

In hindsight we know what the Benghazi attack was. It happened on 9/11. The Al Qaeda feels poetic about that date. America killed Bin Laden, so the Al Qaeda killed an American ambassador. I read up on the guy after the death. He was a dream ambassador. He was steeped in the local culture with passion long before he was picked for the job. Libya was lucky to have him. And he got killed. Of course people did not get it right right away. You start with disbelief. You even engage in a little bit of denial. But then you get it right, and you draw a plan of action. The president said the perpetrators will be brought to justice. And I think he means it, he meant it on Bin Laden.

Hillary Clinton has been an excellent Secretary of State. In an era when soft power means for more than military power Hillary has managed to draw on all sorts of levers of soft power to do an effective job as America's face to the world. Now for the Republicans to conclude her time in office with a humiliating hearing on Benghazi I find obnoxious. It is "offensive" - Barack Obama's word to Romney during the second debate. The Republicans should be ashamed of themselves for playing political football with an apparent tragedy. It is a disservice in that it takes away from the fight against the Al Qaeda. This meets my definition of a witch hunt. And if they are not ashamed they should own up to the fact that 9/11 happened on their watch.

Is Hillary Running?

A month after falling ill, Clinton returns to work
on Capitol Hill, where Clinton is expected to face bruising questioning from Republicans about security lapses at a diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya. The deaths of U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans in a militant attack there in September represent the largest blot on Clinton’s record as secretary, and Republicans have insisted that she testify in person about what went wrong ..... Top deputies gave Clinton the helmet and a jersey with the number 112, representing the number of countries she has visited during her tenure. .... “She loved it. She thought it was cool,” Nuland said, referring to the gift. “But then, being Hillary Clinton, she wanted to get right to business.”
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