Max Emfinger @EmfingerSScout
Two Angels were sent from Christ to help John Tesh with his worship and help him sing this great song: “I Can Only Imagine” with John Tesh and his band at Worship at Red Rocks. Christina Rasch (In Photo) and Christine Miller.
Published October 31, 2012 | FoxNews.com
The U.S. Mission in Benghazi convened an “emergency meeting” less than a month before the assault that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, because Al Qaeda had training camps in Benghazi and the consulate could not defend against a coordinated attack, according to a classified cable reviewed by Fox News.
Summarizing an Aug. 15 emergency meeting convened by the U.S. Mission in Benghazi, the Aug. 16 cable marked “SECRET” said that the State Department’s senior security officer, also known as the RSO, did not believe the consulate could be protected.
“RSO (Regional Security Officer) expressed concerns with the ability to defend Post in the event of a coordinated attack due to limited manpower, security measures, weapons capabilities, host nation support, and the overall size of the compound,” the cable said.
According to a review of the cable addressed to the Office of the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Emergency Action Committee was also briefed “on the location of approximately ten Islamist militias and AQ training camps within Benghazi … these groups ran the spectrum from Islamist militias, such as the QRF Brigade and Ansar al-Sharia, to ‘Takfirist thugs.’” Each U.S. mission has a so-called Emergency Action Committee that is responsible for security measures and emergency planning.
The details in the cable seemed to foreshadow the deadly Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. compound, which was a coordinated, commando-style assault using direct and indirect fire. Al Qaeda in North Africa and Ansar al-Sharia, both mentioned in the cable, have since been implicated in the consulate attack.
In addition to describing the security situation in Benghazi as “trending negatively,” the cable said explicitly that the mission would ask for more help. “In light of the uncertain security environment, US Mission Benghazi will submit specific requests to US Embassy Tripoli for additional physical security upgrades and staffing needs by separate cover.”
As for specific threats against the U.S., the cable warned the intelligence was not clear on the issue, cautioning that the militias in Benghazi were not concerned with any significant retaliation from the Libyan government, which had apparently lost control in Benghazi. A briefer explained that they “did not have information suggesting that these entities were targeting Americans but did caveat that (there was not) a complete picture of their intentions yet. RSO (Regional Security Officer) noted that the Benghazi militias have become more brazen in their actions and have little fear of reprisal from the (government of Libya.)”
While the administration’s public statements have suggested that the attack came without warning, the Aug. 16 cable seems to undercut those claims. It was a direct warning to the State Department that the Benghazi consulate was vulnerable to attack, that it could not be defended and that the presence of anti-U.S. militias and Al Qaeda was well-known to the U.S. intelligence community.
In a three-page cable on Sept 11, the day Stevens and the three other Americans were killed, Stevens wrote about “growing problems with security” in Benghazi and “growing frustration” with the security forces and Libyan police. The ambassador saw both as “too weak to keep the country secure.”
Fox News asked the State Department to respond to a series of questions about the Aug. 16 cable, including who was specifically charged with reviewing it and whether action was taken by Washington or Tripoli. Fox News also asked, given the specific warnings and the detailed intelligence laid out in the cable, whether the State Department considered extra measures for the consulate in light of the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks – and if no action was taken, who made that call.
The State Department press office declined to answer specific questions, citing the classified nature of the cable.
“An independent board is conducting a thorough review of the assault on our post in Benghazi,” Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner said in written statement. “Once we have the board’s comprehensive account of what happened, findings and recommendations, we can fully address these matters.”
The official fallback story is that Obama had “bad intel” on what happened in Benghazi. This “bad intel” somehow caused Obama and his officials to continue spouting nonsense about a video and a protest, at a time when even those of us in the cheap seats were accurately reporting that this had been a planned attack. So either our “intel” is better than the CIA’s, or the problem wasn’t with the intel. Not when one of the first reports had already nailed Ansar Al-Sharia as the perpetrators and everyone knew that heavy weaponry, completely inconsistent with a spontaneous protest, had been used against the consulate.
But reporters are now carefully phrasing leading questions for Obama and his cronies, complete with “bad intel”. These questions wouldn’t be allowed in court, but they’re fine for the professional class of journalists who include the alibi as a premise in their questions.
A classic example of this travesty took place on Morning Joe. “Scarborough aided and abetted him by asking, “Was it the intel community giving you bad information early on because the stories keep changing?”
The real question here is why the stories have kept changing. Scarborough tries to cover for Obama by blaming the bad intel for the obvious problem of the changing stories. But there is no evidence of bad intel. There is evidence of changing stories. And changing stories mean either incompetence or deceit.
Former National Security Adviser Bud McFarlane has said, “To have known what he had available, to have known that Americans were under fire, and to have done nothing, is dereliction of duty that I have never seen in a Commander in Chief from a president of any party. ”
Of the four killed during that 7 hour battle, 2 of the people died in the final hour. Ty Woods, a former SEAL teammate of Nagel’s was one of the last to die. “Ty ran his weapon dry and killed 50 jihadists before he was taken down. If this Administration had used the intel they had and sent help, my friend might still be alive” said Nagel.
Other SEALs are just as furious with Obama.
Is everyone thoroughly appalled that, almost two months after the September 11 terrorist attacks on the American Consulate in Benghazi, official stories keep changing, blame is still being shifted, and the only firmly established fact is that the Obama Administration has never come clean with the American people? Furthermore, neither Barack Obama nor any of his collaborating staff have any intention of doing so in the foreseeable future. Apparently neither the families of the slain nor the rest of the American people deserve the truth.
Or perhaps it is simply that in the last days before the November 6 election, the realities of Obama’s disastrous foreign policy, along with his willingness to play politics with absolutely any situation in which he finds himself, renders him wholly unfit for a second term in the White House. In one infuriating deception after another, the entire Obama team has been caught in grossly inept efforts to hide its grossly inept mishandling of the Benghazi disaster. Yet it appears that this administration is intent on continuing its transparent sham with no end in sight.
Despicable though such actions may be, they really are nothing new. Shortly after the original 9-11 attacks of 2001, liberals began playing politics with those horrific events. Initially, they excoriated President Bush for flying to a secure location in Omaha Nebraska. Next they complained of his slowness to respond militarily. Then of course they ceaselessly derided his invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. At every juncture, their focus was obsessively fixated on regaining political ground which had dramatically shifted in Bush’s favor as the nation rallied to him in the immediate aftermath of the attacks.
Among the most flagrant efforts to discredit President Bush was the liberal complaint that he had failed to get Osama bin Laden. According to Bush’s critics, the only meaningful “mission accomplished” standard of the Terror War was to eliminate the head of al Qaeda. At that point, we were told, America’s triumph against Militant Islam would be complete. Barring that, the rest of the effort was a misbegotten failure.
Throughout the Bush years, the removal of Taliban strongholds in Afghanistan, and the toppling of Saddam Hussein in Iraq, were characterized by the left as costly distractions. Bin Laden still lived, so America’s entire endeavor in the Middle East was inconsequential. And of course, ever since the successful 2011 Seal Team 6 mission into Pakistan, during which bin Laden was indeed dispatched to his seventy two virgins, Democrats (and Obama in particular) crowed ceaselessly about their total victory in the War on Terror.
Unfortunately for them, reality tells quite a different story. In truth, it was bin Laden who had over time become irrelevant. And though America rightly rejoiced at the news of his demise, from a strategic standpoint that event was incidental to the overall effort to neutralize the looming threat of Islamic terrorism. As has now become grimly apparent, since Obama took office America’s mortal enemies throughout the Middle East have been regrouping and fortifying their organizations. Their ability to launch a successful assault on the Benghazi compound constituted a total repudiation of Obama’s vaunted doctrine of “peace through groveling and appeasement.” And it was for this reason that from the first moment of the Benghazi attacks Obama Administration energies were directed entirely towards political damage control, with absolutely no interest in the fate of the Americans under siege, if attempting to save them might create a political liability.
Thus, it was deemed more expedient to ignore the terrorist onslaught in order to maintain the facade that Obama had single handedly eradicated anti-American sentiment throughout the world. Once that ruse fell apart, the goal was to create a straw man on which to place blame for Islamic hostilities. Hence, the Obama Administration, the State Department, and their nightly news parrots feverishly sought to refocus the nation’s attention on that formerly unknown video.
To the dismay of the liberal establishment, none of their diversions worked. Real America is daily incensed and horrified that an attack on its territory and its citizens could have been so terribly botched, and then criminally papered over for weeks with pathetically crafted lies. Worse yet for those on the left, Americans are increasingly making the legitimate connections between this grisly charade and every other empty promise and unmet pledge from candidate Obama to remake this country into his envisioned liberal utopia.
“Bin Laden is dead and GM is alive!” has been among the primary slogans of the Obama reelection effort. Yet bin Laden’s death proved at best to be inconsequential to the War on Terror, with no other diligent efforts underway to identify and dismantle terror cells worldwide. Likewise, the anemic condition of General Motors is far from an encouraging sign that either it or any other aspect of the nation’s economy is rebounding to any major degree.
Americans on Main Street now unequivocally know that every one of them is as easily expendable as was Ambassador Stevens, once his plight became a burden to Obama’s social/political aspirations. Every faltering business across the nation, and every unemployed citizen seeking a worthwhile livelihood, can now expect that their circumstances will likewise be ignored and airbrushed by this White House, as it seeks to paint a rosy enough picture to trumpet the imagined successes of its policies.
In the eyes of Barack Obama and his fellow leftist ideologues, the dismal fate of common people is merely collateral damage to be suffered for the greater good. And that “greater good” is the establishment of the collectivist state, the sole agenda item from which Obama has never strayed. In contrast the cold blooded lack of concern he displayed toward the Benghazi Consulate staff or the nation’s stagnant economy, the advancement of Obamacare and the continuing trillion dollar “stimulus” spending binges are issues about which Barack Obama can get really excited and enthusiastically be engaged.
It is abominable that the callous ruthlessness of Ambassador Stevens’ Muslim murderers was ultimately enabled and over time even exceeded by the heartless indifference of Obama and his minions. Worse yet is that such coldness is typical of his governing philosophy on every other front. And this is the message that he fervently seeks to withhold from America until after Election Day.
More information is coming out regarding the failures of the Obama administration during the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. More members of the media are asking questions, but even so, one thing remains disgracefully consistent: Barack Obama isn’t talking.
CBS News Reports that a key security task force was NOT convened when Americans were under attack in Libya.
CBS News has learned that during the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Mission in Benghazi, the Obama Administration did not convene its top interagency counterterrorism resource: the Counterterrorism Security Group, (CSG).
“The CSG is the one group that’s supposed to know what resources every agency has. They know of multiple options and have the ability to coordinate counterterrorism assets across all the agencies,” a high-ranking government official told CBS News. “They were not allowed to do their job. They were not called upon.”
Information shared with CBS News from top counterterrorism sources in the government and military reveal keen frustration over the U.S. response on Sept. 11, the night Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in a coordinated attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya.
One counterterrorism official told CBS News that the FBI did receive a call from the office of Secretary of State requesting that agents be deployed. “But he and his colleagues agreed the agents ‘would not make any difference without security and other enablers to get them in the country and synch their efforts with military and diplomatic efforts to maximize their success.'”
Another senior counter terrorism official says a hostage rescue team was alternately asked to get ready and then stand down throughout the night, as officials seemed unable to make up their minds.
A third potential responder from a counter-terror force stationed in Europe says components of AFICOM — the military’s Africa Command based in Stuttgart, Germany — were working on course of action during the assault. But no plan was put to use.
Fox News has learned that the diplomats in Benghazi held an “emergency meeting” only weeks before the attack, “because Al Qaeda had training camps in Benghazi and the consulate could not defend against a ‘coordinated attack.'”
The city that President Obama escaped to within hours of the slaughter of four Americans, also is home to a brave band of editorial writers who sentence by sentence, shredded the complete lack of decisive action, total obfuscations and embarrassing circus act of lies that were clearly coordinated from the very top of the Obama Administration and enabled by a fawning media.
Benghazi is being treated like a law enforcement issue rather than a military one for the simple reason that Obama wanted to keep the fairy tale going that through the sheer force of his personality, the magic of his mere presence makes flowers grow. Dictators lay down their weapons and play nice. Terrorism vanishes from the face of the earth.
To increase a military presence in Libya admits there is a problem. To say that terrorists attacked and assassinated our Ambassador on his watch makes Obama look like the weak character that he is. Making the Benghazi issue a law enforcement issue takes the issue down from a major issue to a smaller issue — and in politics, it is all about perception and spin. Two months before the election, he could not afford to call anything a terrorist attack, so clearly a story had to be developed. That’s where the video comes in.
Al Qaeda and their associate groups were testing and attacking this embassy for months. This was no surprise to anyone that an attack was coming.
In the post 9/11 report, the commission could not have been more clear. The terrorists’ modus operandi is to launch a series of test strikes and see how we respond. If there is no response, then they feel they have a green light to launch some of their bigger operations.
For example, after the USS Cole was attacked on October 12, 2000 and President Clinton did not respond. Al Qaeda sensed weakness — rightfully so — and the following September 11, 2001, they struck again.
After testing the Benghazi embassy security on several occasions, the terrorists struck on September 11, 2012. With the pathetic, even apologetic, response from the Obama Administration for a video that has little or nothing to do with the attack, terrorists then attacked in Tunisia.
It is now November 2nd, and there has been no military response of any kind for these murders. Only apologies from a President more concerned about his own reelection than the security of its citizens.
The first duty of government is the protection of its citizens from predators both foreign and domestic. It is the organizing principle of governments in the first place. If that one basic task cannot be achieved by an Administration, then how can it be trusted to do anything else?