web analytics
July 1, 2015 / 14 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Pulling Out of Benghazi: These Colors Run Scared

Either we change our policy – and ideally, our president – or this keeps getting worse.
pwpoT

Photo Credit: Yori Yanover

Remember the slogan “These colors don’t run,” captioning the American flag?

Neither does al Qaeda.

Why should they?  They’ve just won.  They have forced us out of Benghazi.  It did take multiple attacks over several months, and the gruesome torture and murder of our ambassador, to edge us out.  But the job is done now.  We’re running scared.

Instead of sticking with our commitment to a new Libya, one in which Americans have friendship and influence – one in which we can walk free, and so can Libyans – we have closed our post in Benghazi and drawn down our embassy staff in Tripoli to “essential” personnel only.  It will be of some interest to see how long it takes al Qaeda or other terrorist savages to attack us in Tripoli.

Congressman Darrell Issa revealed yesterday, in a letter to Hillary Clinton, that U.S. officials said they had asked earlier this year for more security protection at the U.S mission posts in Libya – and been denied.

This data point isn’t really a bombshell, so much as a confirmation of the theory that the Obama administration wanted to avoid putting too much obtrusive U.S. security into Libya.  Fans of Dinesh D’Souza’s theory about Obama and anti-colonialism would attribute such a determination to the theory’s implications (e.g., about the offensiveness of the “West” in the former-colonial world).  And for those who dislike the D’Souza theory, or at least consider it overreaching or irrelevant, the question is:  what theory about Obama and his advisors does explain the decision not to adequately protect a US diplomatic mission?  What could motivate a president and his staff to dismiss the security concerns expressed by the president’s own representatives in Libya?

It’s worth pointing out that Obama’s entire approach to Libya has guaranteed that the country will not unify quickly around a strong, America-friendly central government.  “Leading from behind” gave terrorists months to gather in war-torn Libya in 2011; refraining from wielding US influence has left them plenty of latitude on Libyan soil in 2012.  The Islamist terrorists have no reason to respect America or be wary of what we might do, because under Obama, we don’t do anything.

Well, that’s not entirely true.  We do encourage the arming of poorly vetted militant groups, as we have done in Libya and Syria.  Every now and then we make a Delphic pronouncement about a regional development – Egypt, Libya, Syria – taking care not to seem to have any particular outcome or alternative in mind.  However the American audience sees these activities, regional jihadists see them as signs of detachment, cynicism, and weakness.

In this context, a conscious policy of poor security at a diplomatic post appears more than self-effacing.  It is self-abnegating.  It’s like wearing a “Hit me!” sign.

We’ve had embassies hit before, embassies that weren’t necessarily wearing “Hit me!” signs.  The U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998 come to mind, and of course the U.S. embassy in Tehran in 1979.  (Others will remember Saigon in 1975 as well.)  We didn’t withdraw from our posts in Kenya and Tanzania.  We showed determination, we rebuilt, we were back in force with even better security.

We did withdraw from Iran, with which we have not had diplomatic relations for 33 years.  In the wake of the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut in 1983 – mounted by Hezbollah, the Iran-sponsored terror group – we pulled our Marines out of Lebanon.  This latter case is similar to the Benghazi withdrawal, because the U.S. Marines in Lebanon were assigned an unexecutable mission with rules of engagement that made them sitting ducks.  But it is also different from the current Libyan situation, in that there was no valid reason for us to have Marines in Lebanon in 1983, whereas sound policy in 2012 would indeed have the United States robustly and sustainably represented – diplomatically, and with good security – in Libya.

As we learned with Iran, losing an ally is likely to mean having to amp up our regional military posture.   We met the challenge of revolutionary Iran with a dramatic expansion of U.S. military presence in and around the Persian Gulf.  The military option is always more expensive, but our security demands it, now interlinked as it is with the dynamics of even distant regional situations.

About the Author: J.E. Dyer is a retired US Naval intelligence officer who served around the world, afloat and ashore, from 1983 to 2004.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

3 Responses to “Pulling Out of Benghazi: These Colors Run Scared”

  1. Lori Lowenthal Marcus says:

    It is always enormously enlightening to read J.E. Dyer's military analyses. Heed then well. I sure do.

  2. Lori Lowenthal Marcus says:

    *them

  3. Dolores Testerman says:

    "Remember the slogan “These colors don’t run,” captioning the American flag?

    Neither does al Qaeda.

    Why should they? They’ve just won. They have forced us out of Benghazi. It did take multiple attacks over several months, and the gruesome torture and murder of our ambassador, to edge us out. But the job is done now. We’re running scared."

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
U.S. President Barack Obama
Obama Won’t Enforce Anti-BDS Provision Language in Trade Bill he just Signed
Latest Indepth Stories
Mahmoud Abbas trying to see if he has supporters on the UN Security Council.

Nothing in the NEW Paris Proposal differs much from what was offered by Olmert and rejected by Abbas

Matan Katzman. regional executive at the StandWithUs

No longer will delegitimization efforts go unchallenged. That’s a silence we will continue to break.

Flag of Sweden

Increasingly, Sweden is becoming a country where anti-Semitism & supporting terrorism is acceptable.

Community-Jewels-logo

Rabbi Pfeffer points out that at his site, there are no one-line answers. “We want to show the people we’re interested in their questions,” he says.

The problem with US treatment of Israel did not start with Obama but with birth of Jewish State

The pathetic failure of the Marianne to reach Gaza is the best thing that has happened to Israel since Hamas mis-fired a rocket on its own civilians.

Wonder why Israel has the world’s most insane rules of engagement imposed on its military? Read on..

Think political Islam’s a problem now just wait until an Islamist nuclear umbrella covers the region

Fiorina’s wrong about Islam which embraces our death&destruction confusing pc theories for hard fact

Bangladesh PM Hasina is fighting terror not only for her nation but for the entire civilized world.

No necessity to redefine marriage, just address equal rights for couples in non-nuclear families

PM Netanyahu has pledged the nation won’t rest until the hero Eli Cohen is returned home to Israel

“Palestinian armed groups” & “local authorities” are named in the report; Hamas’ absence stands out

Dating apps have really changed the way many young Jews approach dating.

The families of those slain even publicly forgave the murderer. Charleston was serene and at peace.

Changing plans needn’t be a frustrating experience. Sometimes the new path proves far more rewarding

More Articles from J. E. Dyer
Iran Shahed, with stern decked out in Yemeni flags. Iranian flag flies from traditional position on center fantail.

Activists from US, France, Germany & from Iran’s media are aboard because the ship’s a cause célèbre

Pope Francis in Jerusalem on May 26. 2014.

“…the Pope did the exact opposite of what the media reported: he urged Abbas to change his ways.”

The world’s more vulnerable to predation, eruption, and chaos than it has been in at least 600 years

Iran stands unopposed by the “international community” and is racing to assert regional dominance.

The S-300 poses a major problem; Israel will have to get creative as to if, when & where it strikes

In the last weeks of the talks the US excluded every other delegation from negotiations with Iran.

Israel has never invoked the agreement, but Israel sources say that its importance lies in its very existence.

The Senate formed a bipartisan panel investigating money from the Obama adm. to an anti-Bibi group

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/j-e-dyer/pulling-out-of-benghazi-these-colors-run-scared/2012/10/05/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: