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July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
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The First Plane Out of Benghazi

In another time and place, a place called America, an attack on an American diplomatic mission would have been considered an act of war.
In another time and place, an attack on an American diplomatic mission would have been considered an act of war.

In another time and place, an attack on an American diplomatic mission would have been considered an act of war.

It took some 22 hours for American help to arrive in Benghazi after all the t’s had been crossed and the i’s had been dotted and the body of America’s ambassador to Libya had been dragged through the streets by “rescuers” stopping along the way to pose for cell phone pictures with his corpse.

By way of comparison it takes about 16 hours for a boatload of Libyan illegal immigrants to row to the Italian island of Lampedusa. Support for the Americans under fire in Libya would have arrived sooner if a few former members of the Harvard Rowing Team had gotten in one the many rowboats beached on the shores of Lampedusa and pushed the oars all the way to Benghazi.

It says something about the current state of asymmetrical warfare that not only can Al Qaeda throw together a coordinated string of attacks on American embassies around the region without anyone  being the wiser for it, but boatloads of migrants from Libya can reach Europe faster on muscle power than American forces can reach a mission under attack while equipped with jet power.

For that matter, less time passed between the ubiquitous campaign fundraising emails that every American with internet access was barraged by no less than three times a day, than between the Benghazi’s mission first call for help and the arrival of American support. But that night, Obama’s priority was to get to a Vegas fundraiser, not to get American support to two former SEALS fighting and dying in a hellish mess created by his policies.

Obama Inc. blamed the second set of September 11 attacks on a movie, which was giving Al Qaeda credit for not only orchestrating worldwide attacks on American embassies and consulates, but doing it in a matter of days based on nothing more than a YouTube trailer. That would make Al Qaeda one of the more impressive organizations around, but the administration of the perpetual campaign found it easier to give Al Qaeda credit that the terrorist group didn’t deserve rather than accept the blame that it did deserve.

When madmen in America shoot up schools or movie theaters, Obama blames the weapons they used and calls for gun control. When madmen in the Middle East shoot up American consulates and embassies, he blames movies and calls for film control.

The filmmaker was locked up because he was one of those non-union types and none of Obama’s Hollywood friends would complain about a scab that wasn’t in the Producers Guild of America, whose director was not in the DGA and whose writers were not in the WGA being thrown in the slammer for making an offensive movie.

In another time and place, a place called America, an attack on an American diplomatic mission would have been considered an act of war, but the United States had just gotten over fighting a war in Libya, despite denying that any such thing was going no matter how many bombs were being dropped, and that war had led to Benghazi being run by Al Qaeda militias.

Obama assured the nation that the “folks” from the militant militias of Mayberry, Libya  responsible would be brought to justice. After three weeks of trying to get through Libyan immigration and dealing with concerns about conducting a criminal investigation in a war zone, the FBI finally made it to Benghazi, strolled around the compound for a few hours, took some pictures and then went home without interviewing any persons of interest.

An independent commission chaired by an Iranian lobbyist whose members were handpicked by Hillary Clinton conducted a review of what went wrong and found that the State Department probably should not have relied on an Islamist militia affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood for security, especially considering that its members had been going on strike for pay raises.

Four State Department officials resigned voluntarily, which in government lingo means that three of them took administrative leave and the fourth resigned one of his portfolios while keeping the rest. And the media declared that Benghazigate was over at last. Time for everyone to move on and close the book on another one of those Obama success that up close look a lot like failures.

Three days after unilaterally deciding to go to war in Libya, while insisting on calling it something other than a war, Obama had justified his intervention to the American people based on protecting what would shortly become Libya’s most famously infamous city. “We saw regime forces on the outskirts of the city… we knew that if we waited one more day, Benghazi… could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world.”

But there was no massacre. Nor was there ever going to be one. The only people who were massacred in Benghazi were Americans.

Obama had not kicked off a war because he was genuinely worried about the “700,000 men, women and children who sought their freedom from fear,” as some tin-eared speechwriter had scrawled on the teleprompter, but because the fall of Benghazi would have meant the end of the rebellion and the end of the Arab Spring, showing every dictator that he could stay in power by toughing it out and fighting the rebels down to the last man.

The Libyan War was not fought so that the 700,000 men, women and children of Benghazi could go from living under the rule of a totalitarian government to living under the rule of totalitarian militias. That was just an unintended consequence of bombing a country so that the militias can take it over. And it wasn’t the only such unintended consequence as Gaddafi’s Touraeg allies paired up with Al Qaeda to seize half of Mali and Libyan weapons were passed around to terrorist groups like Hamas.

Those unintended consequences came together on September 11 when those militias decided to commemorate the day with a round of attacks against American targets. Ground Zero for their campaign was Benghazi, the city where they were strongest because the heavily armed militias there had been growing fat on protection money. The same militia that attacked the Benghazi mission also provided security for the hospital where Ambassador Stevens was taken after the attack, providing gainful employment to Salafi terrorists from as far away as Iraq and Pakistan.

Obama had gained attention as a critic of the Iraq War, squawking about necessary wars to small crowds of wealthy elderly Marxists from Chicago’s upper crust champions of the red working class, but no sooner had he gotten out of Iraq than he was jumping up and down on the diving board and splashing down into Libya to show how much smarter and better he was at fighting unnecessary wars than that ignorant Texan who shot first and nuanced later.

George W. had told the American people that there was a vital American interest in stopping Saddam, from getting his hands on WMDs. Barack H. told the American people that “it was not in our national interest” to let Gaddafi capture Benghazi. What national interest was at stake in keeping Benghazi run by homicidal Islamist militias tied to Al Qaeda will be a lot harder to find than Iraqi WMDs.

Bush had told the United Nations that he wanted regime change in Iraq. Obama lied to the UN and told them that he was only looking for a No-Fly-Zone and then used that zone as an excuse to keep bombing Libya long after its air force had run out crop dusters and bottle rockets, until a drone pinned down Gaddafi’s convoy long enough for a mob to gather around and sodomize him to death.

The crazy Texan had built a fortified Green Zone for the American diplomatic presence. The smart Kenyan stuck them in an exposed mansion patrolled by terrorist militias and waited longer to rescue them than he did to send out another email offering a chance to win a free dinner with him, proving that there really is such a thing as a free lunch.

The ignorant cowboy-hat-wearing hick had tried to manage Iraq’s transition to democracy by moving in the troops to keep order, but his far cleverer coke-snorting successor with far more experience in the international arena outsourced the Libyan transition to the militias. And it kept the American casualties down until was the militias decided to manage the transition of the Benghazi mission from a boring compound to an exciting war zone.

Benghazi though, as Obama put it while yukking it up with the media’s favorite liberal clown, was just one of those bumps in the road. The road began when Obama bombed Libya to keep Gaddafi from taking Benghazi. Along the way there were some bumps when American diplomats were forced to flee Benghazi, those who were still alive at any rate, but the road goes ever on as it meanders through exotic locales such as Timbuktu, now under Al Qaeda control, and Aleppo, only under partial Al Qaeda control.

Back in the bad old Bush days, Iraq became a focal point of activity for terrorist groups and terrorist militias, but that was bush league stuff. With Obama, there is no longer a focal point because the entire Middle East is crawling with terrorist groups and terrorist militias running from one war to another in the endlessly exciting adventure of democracy that is the Arab Spring.

Obama pulled out of Iraq and Al Qaeda in Iraq showed up in Benghazi. Now it’s moved on to Syria. A year from now it may be in Jordan. “The front line,” as one of Obama’s favorite atonal bands sang, “is everywhere.” The entire Middle East is a war zone now with terrorists and militias moving back and forth to feast on the instability and carve out their own private Benghazis where a man with a beard and a gun can provide protection in exchange for cash, and then take the weekend off to torch an American embassy or two.

This is Obama’s Brave New Middle East, born out of Benghazi, but coming to every town and city. Four Americans dead in a single attack is not the scandal of it, but the symptom of it, those deaths are what happens when you tear down every allied government and replace them with mobs of gunmen whose constitution is the Koran and who despise the United States no matter how many bombs and press releases it drops in their defense.

“O brave new world,” Miranda exclaimed in The Tempest, “That has such people in’t!” Americans in Benghazi were confronted with the Brave New Middle East that Obama had made and the people who live in it. Two brave men died fighting them and the rest took the first plane out of Benghazi.

Originally published at Sultan Knish.

About the Author: Daniel Greenfield is an Israeli born blogger and columnist, and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His work covers American, European and Israeli politics as well as the War on Terror. His writing can be found at http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/. The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not represent the views of The Jewish Press.


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