Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Magreb Madness: We Will Pay More for Obama's Libyan Lies

This little blog has criticized the Obama misadministration's policies in Libya for a long time--well before the 9/11/2012 massacre of our diplomatic personnel. At the risk of having an "I told you so" tone, let me review a few items.

Starting in March 2011--eighteen months before the Benghazi Bungle--I ran several posts (available in the archives) which expressed doubt over and opposition to our involvement in the EU's war on Libya. Make no mistake: This was the EU's war. The Europeans became fed up with Qaddafi when he longer gave their oil companies preferential treatment. The same Europeans who vehemently opposed Reagan's action against Qaddafi when he posed a threat, now ardently demanded American action against Qaddafi when he no longer did--and when, in fact, he leaned toward the USA. At the time, I expressed my views to State colleagues working on Libya and North Africa. They dismissed me for my lack of "expertise."

Much more important, however, Obama and Clinton violated the Number One Diplomad Rule of Foreign Policy: Never pay attention to Europeans. Except at times the British, the rest of Europe hasn't a clue about how the world works.

I noted in one early post that,
Unlike Saddam, the Taliban, or Al Qaeda, crazy old Qaddafi posed no threat to the US homeland or to our interests abroad. One of the great achievements of the Bush administration was that it defanged Qaddafi-- dismantled his nuclear weapons program and turned him into a valuable source of information on Al Qaeda. That administration basically treated Qaddafi as though he were an aged sex offender, put him under house arrest and tagged him with an ankle monitor. Qaddafi, once the darling of the left, became just a cranky old man with an odd fashion sense selling his oil to whomever wanted it. <....> [W]e had an imperfect solution in an imperfect world. 
Then, Qaddafi got himself a rebellion. OK. People in Libya are unhappy. OK. He is a crazy gangster and responded like a gangster. OK. And our interests are what? Are they so pressing as to justify Obama's incredible abuse of Presidential power? <...> What is the mission? No Fly Zone, or blast Qaddafi into the arms of 72 virgins? What result will make any difference to American national interests? What are our interests in this?
Those questions never got answered, and we ended up as predicted,
The US, of course, will have to take over the whole operation when it becomes patently clear that neither the British nor the French have the capabilities needed. That, therefore, means the whole mess will be ours: the UN will back off; the Arab League will be nowhere to be seen; and the EU will be snickering behind our backs with not a word of thanks for having secured their oil supplies. And the Libyans? All of them, pro- and anti-Qaddafi, will be angry with us and our intervention.
We went to war where we had no major interests; against a regime that posed no danger to us; and with a policy that neither defined our objectives nor gave thought to what would happen if we "succeeded." All that Obama and Clinton could do was hark back to the 1980s, and cite Qaddafi's past misdeeds. Obama seemed channeling Ronald Reagan. It proved absurd and completely counterproductive to our interests of today. Our policy was driven by what I have called the liberal foreign policy mindset, to wit, "send America's youth off to war but only if there is no U.S. interest to be protected or furthered."

Our policy was also motivated by another trait of the liberal mind: See what you believe. The Obama cult believed that the magical powers of the Dear Leader from Chicago would transform the world into a peaceful Eden where Julia could tend her community garden free from the threat of unwanted pregnancies, medical expenses, or having to look for a real job. The Arabs and the entire Muslim world would abandon their 1400-year-old war against the rest of the world, and come join us around the camp fire. Ah, the Arab Spring . . . if just those pesky Jews living in Occupied Palestine would get over their paranoia everything would be great.

This delusional state of mind, combined with the pressing need to win an election, prevented our National Command Authority from reacting to the protracted and extremely violent assault on our Benghazi facility. This attack simply cannot be. I killed Osama! It has to be an aberration: Yes, that nasty culturally insensitive video produced in California! That was what threw everything off! After all, I killed Osama! A crowd upset by the video grew a bit unruly, and . . . tsk, tsk . . . these bumps in the road happen on the way to global Nirvana. It just can't be terrorism. Did I mention that I killed Osama?

I have yet to see evidence that the President, who had real time knowledge of events in Benghazi, gave the military anything approximating an "Execute Order." His statement on this makes no sense, nor does Panetta's. Until I see solid evidence to the contrary, I cannot and will not believe that the US military rejected or otherwise defied a Presidential "go." That is not the US military with which I dealt for thirty-four years. Wherever I was in the world, I knew that if it hit the fan, they would come get me, or make a damn fine effort to do so.

What Stevens was doing in Benghazi on 9/11 is inexplicable. Unless he had orders to go there on that day for some very special reason, he suffered a major lack of judgement which contributed to his death and that of three others at the hands of Islamist murderers. What was the purpose of the Benghazi facility? If it was a cover for other activities, why did the Ambassador draw attention to it? Was this part of a "gun walking" exercise from Libya to Syrian rebels via Turkey? If so, who knew about it? By that I mean how widespread was the knowledge within Libya and elsewhere that we were doing or intending to do that? It certainly seems to have been leaking into the press as part of the Obama misadministration's efforts to appear supportive of "freedom" in the Arab world. If we were "walking" guns to the Syrian rebels, might the attack not have been instigated by the Syrian regime or its Iranian allies? If this facility was engaged in highly sensitive work, why was it so poorly defended? The questions are endless; anybody reading this can come up with dozens more. The answers, however, well, those are not forthcoming.

The insanity of Obama's Libya policy gets further underlined when see that now our clueless Secretary of State has gone to Algeria to seek support for US-French action against the growing threat of Islamic terrorism in Africa, in particular in Mali. There used to be somebody who knew how to keep those crazies under control; his name was Qaddafi. Maybe Hillary should go talk to him . . . oh, yes, I forgot, "We came, we saw, he died!" It now seems likely that Americans will have to risk their lives in Mali, because Obama's delusions helped overthrow Qaddafi.

We will kill and die yet more for Obama's Arab Spring.

31 comments:

  1. One has to wonder why the people who make the policies seem so clueless. I remember actually throwing a pillow at my television when they told us that it had been decided to stop at the Kuwait border during the first part of the Iraqi was in '91. I knew then that we would have to go back later and do it all over again, but it would be a lot bloodier the second time.

    As far as I can tell, if we had just gone straight through to Baghdad then, we'd likely still have two towers in Manhattan. But the folks in charge seem to live in some sort of fairy land, where if you just wish hard enough it will come true. Just as stopping at Kuwait would somehow make Saddam behave himself, killing Qaddafi was going to help make everything sunshine and roses in Libya.

    Gene Rodenberry's Andromeda used to start each episode with a quote, and my favorite, from some fictional future historian, was to the effect of "Those who fail to learn history are doomed to repeat it. Those who fail to learn history correctly? Why, they are just doomed." I would posit that most of State and the current administration are just doomed. Which wouldn't necessarily be so bad if they weren't dragging the country, and far too many folks abroad, with them.

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    1. The people who make these policies simply don't believe in the now out-of-fashion notion of victory, at least by Western nations. If the 1950s documentary series about World War II "Victory at Sea" were made today, it would be called "Exit Strategy from a Maritime Kinetic Action that We Hope Won't Hurt Anyone's Feelings". They don't want to win, they don't know how to win, so they do not make strategy or plan to win. They only seek international community consensus>>UN resolutions>>Nobel Peace Prizes>>post-retirement Johns Hopkins/JFK School of Government gigs.

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  2. Dip, your analysis is perhaps the sanest I've seen. It also makes me feel pretty disgusted with the American Stinky Onion doing the dirty work for the Yurrupeen Onion. However, I worry more that the noise from this administration loudly and slef-righteously condemning a rightly obscure video by a rightly obscure American or LPR makes me sense that this admin is seriously testing the social, political, and legal defenses of the First Amendment.

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  3. There are two options open to the White House, etc.:

    1) Lie, stall and hope noone finds out what really happened.
    Hope that another disaster comes along and takes attention
    away from this story on Fox and the blogs.

    2) Do all of the above, hope that Romney wins, and the repubs
    do nothing as the country doesn't need the distraction from
    the attempts to dig this country out of the hole we are in.

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  4. Very well put Dip. Thanks for the analysis. I would like the US Congress to add to their next DOD CR word to the effect that "no funds shall be appropriated or expended on military activities in Mali without a Congressional resolution to that effect." Should be self-evident, but then we see the Libyan example and what this president thinks he can do by Executive Order. Time to pre-empt him.

    BTW: was Bev Carter in Geneva when you were there?

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  5. You posed the question of why Stephens was in Benghazi....(besides the meeting with the Turkish representative...it has been reported he had scheduled meetings all day....)One of the reports I have seen is that he also was there to attend the opening of a school for Libyan students...financed by an individual citizen....(I had read earlier he was there to attend an opening of a hospital), so who knows?

    Had you not also read that when the British left, they asked the US to "tend" their weapons...(don't know how many or what kind...perhaps cars and vans, also). They may well have been in a warehouse with perhaps any weapons our folks were trying to procure for shipment to Syria through Turkey? (I have read too much....don't know what to believe anymore! )

    Just an early 70's grandmother who worries for my daughter and her children's generation......oops..there goes the doorbell...back to the "trick or treaters!"

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  6. Would've been helpful had Obama et al read what West Point's CTC put out for Obama et al's benefit:

    http://www.ctc.usma.edu/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/aqs-foreign-fighters-in-iraq.pdf

    Of course the "jailhouse conversions":

    http://www.ctc.usma.edu/posts/lifg-revisions-posing-critical-challenge-to-al-qaida

    Astonishingly the misadministration had some cheerleaders:

    http://www.mccain.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressOffice.FloorStatements&ContentRecord_id=b63b7b6f-a466-ba23-dea8-7bc024f54655

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  7. If we were "walking" guns to the Syrian rebels, might the attack not have been instigated by the Syrian regime or its Iranian allies?

    You've seen the speculations in Canada Free Press regarding the Iranian Red Crescent team in Benghazi?

    ...

    the entire Muslim world would abandon their 1400-year-old war against the rest of the world, and come join us around the camp fire.

    Nonie Darwish questions the use of muslims to guard non-muslims,

    What seems not to have been taken into account in subcontracting security to local Libyans, Muslims, is that, according to Sharia law, it is a capital crime for a Muslim to shoot another Muslim to protect a non-Muslim. Anyone who did this would instantly be considered a violator of Sharia law, and an instant apostate marked for death. When the US State Department in Benghazi subcontracted consulate security to Libyan Muslims, there was of course precisely such a probability. The plan was therefore useless from the start: Muslim guards would be required to follow Sharia law to run away and leave the Americans to be killed rather than violate Sharia law and kill other Muslims to save these "unbelievers."

    The less Americans understand their own principles in light of Judeo-Christian religious teachings, the less they seem to be able to understand the motivations of other religious believers, and the critical differences. It's an intelligence failure, so to speak. Always recasting theological conflict as the fruit of colonial oppression.

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  8. Okay, just found this on CNN--don't usually go there, but was trying to confirm something I had read earlier today: a computer gaming friend of Sean Smith, Alex Gianturco said:Gianturco wrote that Smith had been under fire before, while posted to Baghdad. When that occurred, he usually broke off his messaging. "We'd freak out and he'd come back OK after a bit," Gianturco wrote. But Tuesday night, after reporting "GUNFIRE," Smith "disconnected and never returned," he added.

    A few hours earlier, Smith had posted, "assuming we don't die tonight. We saw one of our 'police' that guard the compound taking pictures," he recounted.

    The link to that CNN article is: http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/14/us/benghazi-victims/index.html in case you are interested.

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  9. This is my understanding of the top tier of our government.
    1) The State Dept. can request assistance from the official military, but cannot legal order it or countermand it. This is excluding para military forces that I assume they possess organically.
    2) The same should apply to non military intelligence(CIA, NSA, etc).
    3) This leaves the president, vice president, Sec. of Defense, and area commands (Central, African, etc.) as the conduit that orders should legally flow.
    Did Obama issue an execute order or not? If he did through who did it flow and who stopped or counter manded it. If he did not, did anyone request it?
    Number 1 and 2 should exclude Hillary, Patreaus, Clapper, etc. Only number 3 applies. It's really pretty simple and stands alone from the other facets ( what was the amb. doing there, who was he seeing, etc. all important, but not to the main question.
    An aside Khaddafi stayed around so long because no one could ever figure out how to spell his name.

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  10. None of this comes as a surprise, sad to say. This rocket ride to hell has been long coming

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  11. Dip, good point about crazy old Qaddafi. I admit that the only other good things I could say about him are that he looked as if he might have been the natural son of Chico or Harpo Marx. I wonder, could it be that after Qaddafi (during the Bush II) years came clean about his nuclear program, gave it up, and started cooperating against the Salafists, that the Yurruppeen SD's didn't put him in their sights simply because he stopped being so blatantly anti-American? And did so under the wrong type of US administration?

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  12. Iran or Syria would be my top two suspects. I don't recall where I saw it but the report was the the mortar team our seals were painting fired four rounds. The first one was ranging and the next three were on target. Either they were on our seals before the seals realized they were being dialed in or their infantry gained fire superiority and pinned the seals on the roof for the mortar team. Either way this was no such and such marters brigade, this was somebody's elite forces.

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  13. Your conclusions, based on logic and insights, which are in turn clearly based on real world experience, are heart-breakingly likely to come true...
    So glad to have the benefit of your moral clarity, though I could wish that you were posted as US ambassador to the UN or some higher post in the soon-to-be Romney administration...

    Glad you returned to the IntarWeb world.

    Kalashnikat

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  14. Diplomad, are your old Obama fanboys friends from State admitting yet that he left that consulate to die? Must make them feel good.

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  15. I would not forget Putin in all of this; yes-obama was having an international fast and furious x1000 to Syria, recruiting jihadists of all stripes, AQ included, which he used Stevens for.
    After all, Obama put an AQ member as head of the Libyan Govt; the turkish consul meeting Stevens that night in Benghazi may was to inform him that their op in gun running into Syria was compromised. 400 tons of weapons, which incl missiles to take down aircraft surely made Putin mad.
    I would not put it past Putin to use iranian red crescent and AQ to undermind obama, clinton, jarret and panetta, after he repeatedly warned obama not to destabilise Bashar Assad.

    It has also been reported that gun running was not limited to Syria alone, but incl Jordan as well - once again with the help from obama and clinton to use the MB and, any jihadists they could recruit.
    Obama has no clue and,setting up the middle east to go up in flames.
    A investigation needs to commence after obama is gone; before sh*t hits the fan.

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    1. "Obama has no clue and,setting up the middle east to go up in flames."

      What if he not only has a clue, but a plan?

      The catch is that the clue and plan may not be in the best interests of humanity, let alone America.

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  16. turkish consul met between 7:30 & 8:30. According to witnesses, the bad guys were putting up roadblocks in&out of city around 8:00

    turkish consul would have had to pass thru (how?) and did not warn Stevens.

    from www.radicalislam.com

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    1. Yes, the role of the Turkish diplomat has not been explored well, if at all. Where did he go?

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    2. That is not the only question swirling around in my head.

      a) Ty Woods and Glen Doherty were former Navy SEALs. These are guys who would have been crack shots and we know the firefight lasted for hours.
      Where are the jihadi dead? No photos of jihadi dead; no reports of jihadi dead. Are we to assume that Woods and Doherty were such lously shots they never hit their mark?

      b) We hear about the two buildings at the compound; the residents, and barracks for the security. But what was the other very large building for that no one is taking about? Arms storage awaiting transfer, perhaps?

      Zane

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  17. Very astute analysis. You are asking questions that need to be asked.

    - Augustus

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  18. God forbid that Chauncey Gardiner and his handlers survive this election, a question: is Darrell Issa's congressional committee good enough to hit this out the park?

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    1. Do you think Boehner would let him? He hasn't been much help in pursuing Fast & Furious.

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  19. I love the speculation that Stevens was to be kidnapped by MB then Obama would trade him from Egypt for the Blind Sheik.

    Obama would then have an international crisis during election season and yet spring an October surprise to the delight of the American electorite right before the election. A reverse Jimmy Carter, if you will.

    Morsi would also delight his domestic constituantcy with getting the Blind Sheik released.

    Win-Win!

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  20. The story is falling apart..see Fox News reports and even CBS! as well as other blogs reporting on new info that is forthcoming. Eli Lake from the Daily Beast (www.thedailybeast.com) reports that a senior U.S. Defense official says "There was no request from the Dept. of State to intervene militarily on the night of the attack."

    Read the whole article.....

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    1. Unnamed sources blaming State, clearing CIA, excusing Obama... Maybe. Maybe it is another Obama stall to throw suspicion on Clinton. Considering the unnamed sources are going to a liberal blog I see this as being suspect. I wonder how this will go down with the Clintons. Of course Obama can and will deny. He only has a handful of days left. And then there is the fact that Obama could go on record and tell us what, when, where and how. But he won't.
      Also, the implication if this report if true would be that Obama is/was unwilling to make a gutsy call if Hillary didn't ask him to?

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    2. Everything in Government leaves a paper trail. If somebody at State argued against military intervention that will be written down somewhere. It is not State's job to call for military back-up; it can make recommendations, but the ultimate call is the President's. If these sorts of conversations took place, there will be a record.

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  21. Where is Senator Inhofe?

    Has he disappeared?

    Why is he silent?

    What did he and Ambassador Stevens meet about two weeks before his murder? Was Stevens meeting with Sen. Inhofe on behalf of Dead Fish and The Mullet Queen?

    Did Jarrett resent that Stevens did so, or would fear be a better choice of terms?

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  22. At Riehl World View from one of your contemporaries, Diplomad.

    http://riehlworldview.com/2012/11/does-matter-state-department-never-requested-military-backup-the-night-of-benghazi-attack.html#comment-262875

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  23. I've read Seiyyid Qotb (in translation), and find him horrifying. Few others so richly deserved hanging. Before a few months ago, the Muslim Brotherhood was the Islamic equivalent of the Klan (or, perhaps one of several). It became moderate only because Mme. Billary and the O declared it to be so. Never mind that Christians have been killed or driven out of Homs by the "liberators" of Syria, that there's pressure on the Copts, and the last Jews of Tunisia are being harrassed again. If "the most brilliant president ever" says the MB are "moderate", that must be so.

    Hence, Diplomad is absolutely right that an O win on Tuesday means a lot more trouble.

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  24. You've got to write a book! I think we'd all like to know how things actually work at the diplomacy level. Anyway, you write real good.

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