When does presidential malfeasance become a scandal? Answer: Probably at the point where something bad has happened and no amount of explanations over several weeks seems to answer the questions or, sometimes, even make sense.
By that standard, the Obama administration’s juvenile and contradiction-filled changing explanations over the lack of security at the Libyan embassy, and just what took place there that led to the deaths of four Americans, is a fully involved barnburner of a scandal.
First, understand that it is now known, despite repeated protestations to the contrary, that the Obama administration was well aware early on that information pointed to a planned and coordinated al-Qaida-style terrorist attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi Sept. 11 that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three others.
Nonetheless, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice went on television with firm assurances days later that information indicated the attack was a spontaneous protest over an anti-Muslim video on the Internet. White House spokesman Jay Carney did too.
And now the administration not only admits none of it is true – and that it was a terrorist attack – but also says it never said the video was the likely culprit. Even though they said it all on camera.
“It’s pretty clear the State Department, now caught in a lie, is responding with yet another lie,” a Republican foreign policy adviser told The Washington Post.
Moreover, officials now admit there wasn’t even a protest outside the embassy before it was attacked.
Did the Kremlin take over the White House? Isn’t this a Soviet Union-style set of bald-faced lies and fairy tales?
In addition, information has revealed that embassy personnel practically begged for increased security well in advance of the attack, and that the requests were denied.
“The State Department,” wrote the Washington Post, “acknowledged Wednesday that it rejected appeals for more security at its diplomatic posts in Libya in the months before
a fatal terrorist attack in Benghazi.”
Lt. Col. Andrew Wood, formerly involved in security at the
embassy, said security there was “weak.”
“The security in Benghazi was a struggle and remained a struggle throughout my time there,”he told a congressional panel. “Diplomatic security remained weak.”
Eric Nordstrom, a former regional security officer, twice asked for more security and was ignored by the Obama administration. Nordstrom termed security there “inappropriately low.”
Some are suggesting the Obama administration avoided security infrastructure and manpower in order to provide an appearance
of “normalization” of relations and of the security situation. But there were repeated incidents in the months leading up to the attack.
It seems clear enough now that the attack on Sept. 11 was planned to coincide with the anniversary of the 2001 attacks on America – and that the Obama administration was wholly unprepared.
Then, in the aftermath, the administration has repeatedly lied through its teeth – not only about what it believed was behind the Libyan embassy attack, but also – unbelievably – about having said it to begin with.
They’re hoping the media will move on, that you’re not smart enough to smell a lie that’s put right in front of your nose, and that they can kick this scandal past the Nov. 6 election.
It’s hard to remember more blatant lies coming out of a government in this country.
The level of truth telling at the White House appears to be the same as the level of security in Benghazi: