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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Congressional Hearings on Libya Fiasco: Input Does Not Equal Output

Not going to lie to you. I did not have the stomach to listen to the entire presentation by the State Department reps today in front of Issa's committee. If I get something wrong let me know. After almost 34 years in the State Department, I have a pretty good idea of what's going on and don't really need to hear it. It is the silky swooshing sound of asses being covered.

The fact that Hillary Clinton did not show up or send any of her political appointees to represent her speaks volumes. The politicos are trying to get the top bureaucrats to take the spear. It ain't going to happen. These Obama types might think they are very clever, tough, and devious Chicago politicians, but they obviously have never gone up against senior career State Department bureaucrats fighting for their jobs and reputations. Foggy Bottom vs. Chicago? Put your money on Foggy Bottom.

I can guarantee you that the State bureaucrats are burning up the phone lines, running down their cell phones batteries, and going hoarse in "off the record" calls to Congressmen, staffers, and journalists. There is the public presentation being made before the committee, and then there is the "Open Kimono" presentations being made behind the scenes. I don't know Charlene Lamb, the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Diplomatic Security, but it sure seems as if she has been chosen as the sacrificial, ahem, lamb. How good she is at the double dealing game, I don't know. The master of the double deal is Undersecretary for Management Kennedy, whom I have known for twenty years. Whatever he says in front of the committee, which will be a "sort of" defense of the Department and White House leadership in the Benghazi fiasco, you can be sure that behind the scenes he and his acolytes are throwing Clinton, Rice, etc., under the bus. He is not about to go down in flames alone. He will not throw himself on the grenade to save Clinton and Rice and Obama. If he dies, they die, too.

I hope the congressmen can see through the classic State dodge: try to confuse input with output. Lamb, for example, proudly stated that she spent endless hours on the phone during the attacks monitoring the situation. I believe her: People at State work hard. Does it make a difference? Well, that's the rub. What did Lamb do with all this information she was gathering? Had she looped in the White House, the Pentagon, AFRICOM, or SOCOM? Was there a rescue plan underway? Hours went by, if there wasn't, why wasn't there?

Why was the Ambassador visiting Benghazi on 9/11 if he had serious concerns about security? Again, what was so important? Did the Ambassador let down his staff?

As noted, I didn't watch the whole thing; couldn't stand the State Department statements--they read too much like slick nonsense.  From what I can tell, the real question is not being asked--maybe it is in a classified hearing. What was the facility in Benghazi? What made it so important even in the face of mounting threats? If it was important enough to operate, why wasn't it important enough to protect? Did the Ambassador ever threaten to close it down if it weren't protected? The real issue, however, is that the site could not be protected from the sort of attack we saw on 9/11 short of 30 or 40 well armed US troops. Why was it so important to risk so many lives?


24 comments:

  1. Exactly. What was it and why was it necessary to be there on 9/11? Or is it racist to ask?

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  2. I can't remember an intra governmental dispute this big and this open (possible excepttion Eliot Richardson) in my life. I would normally agree with you Diplomad and put money on the careerists, but the Obamanistas have the press on their side. Let's see if they stay there.

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    1. How correct is it to say that the United States State Department is dependent on what the media has to say about it? I can not remember any time in the past that the State Department answered to the Press. Maybe I am forgetting but if I am, it is simply because it was not a full blown event.

      How wrong am I diplomad?

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  3. It amazes me that people can sit side by side, contradict each other over and over again, without once someone reaching out to smack the other across the back of the head. And there is Issa's performance... I am sure the hearing transcript reads better than a viewing of the exchanges he had with Kennedy. Issa essentially tells Kennedy, your lying to me. I know your lying. You know your lying. And we both know there is nothing I can do about it.

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  4. Why was this visit by Amb. to Benghazi so important is THE QUESTION!!! Could this have been an operation that allows the heroic rescue of Amb. by stealthy Obama Special Ops???? IOWs another OBL Capture moment?

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  5. Was Stevens ordered to go there, and if so, why and by whom? What in that building was so important?

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  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  7. I have a question this attack lasted over at least 3 hours is there a reason that air cover couldn't be sent from Sigonella Nato AFB Sicily?
    http://oversight.house.gov/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/2012-10-09-Lamb-Testimony-FINAL1.pd

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    1. In fact, according to Lamb, this attack went on for six hours. That's a long time. Was Africom or EUcom or Socom asked to do anything?

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    2. And what would this "air cover" do exactly? Drop JDAMs? Perhaps a WartHog could fire into the compound hitting only hostiles but even that is debatable. No this required well-armed ground forces already there with defensible positions laid out in advance. This whole thing stinks of incompetence. Whose, I don't know.

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    3. Sure you do Old Man: HRC. And as Truman taught us, the buck stops in the West Wing.

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  8. Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy gets angry at the Obama administration at the Libya hearings.

    "I Want To Know Why We Were Lied To"

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4Za4KXo5Ao&feature=youtu.be

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    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, I don't know how to post a active YouTube link in this blog. You will have to copy and paste the URL into your browser. Please do. The video is worth watching.

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  9. Diplomad, you're absolutely right about senior State people, but James has made an important point about the media. It seems that most of the MSM are caught up in the Obama-as-Messiah paradigm, and are perhaps the most servile and uncritical media corps I have seen in over forty years of watching news. They'll probably find a way to make the failure of State the story rather than the failure of the administration.

    Although, I would like to see Hamhocks Hillary and the rest of the O's crew thrown under the bus.

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    1. This is putting alot of pressure on the MSM. They are well aware of the lying, incompetence, etc. They also know to some extant how bad it looks for them. So, to them the question is should we go or should we stay with Obama. If we stay how do we spin all of this, if we go, how to do it?

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  10. From tinfoil hat country...

    Is it possible the administration was actually hoping for some sort of uprising in Libya to distract from the economy, facilitating it even, and it got out of hand?

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  11. Glad you're back Diplomad. I speculate that AMB Stevens was in Benghazi running cash and jihadis to Syria.
    http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2012/09/us-ambassadors-death-fruits-of-us.html

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  12. Is there any truth to the rumor that Obama was negotiating with Al-Qaida to release the 'Blind Sheik', negotiations fell through so the 'hit' on our U.S. Ambassador Stevens was to kidnap him--not kill him--but it was botched? How does the Blind Sheik tie in with this?

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  13. Saint Theresa said more tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones. When Bush was president, it was said that you could walk down the halls of the State Department and see anti-Bush cartoons pinned to buliten boards. The CIA was hostile to the Bush Administration. SecDef Rumsfeld ended CIA briefings because he got tired of the CIA reporting to the NYTimes what questions he asked or did not ask. The CIA sent a Democrat operative to Africa on a mission for the Bush White House and allowed him to write about it in the NYTimes. They also alerted the European Parliament that we were holding prisoners on European soil. A former CIA employee said one thing you won't find at the CIA is a Republican. It figures.

    Now they have what they want: a Democrat in the White House and it is not working out so well for them. The Obama administration is digging a big hole for American and that upsets me, but I do have a sense of shadenfreude when I see what he is doing to his supporters at State and Intel.

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    1. It's Schadenfreude, buzz4.

      @John, it's "You're lying", not "Your Lying".

      Sorry, but i became a teacher again after leaving State.

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    2. As a teacher you should know to use "I" not "i" as a personal pronoun.

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  14. Four years of bureaucrats, CIA, FBI, NSA, Pentagon, Joint Chiefs, Judges, the Supreme Court and Congress taking paychex from taxpayers while ignoring The Constitution. Sickening. I have no confidence that any of these people will do "the right thing."

    It is all about conning the citizens with the help of the news media, TV and Hollywood. Shut down the State Department and all these consulates. Huge waste of money.

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  15. The American people demand and expect the truth. When will our government deliver? If the government that is responsible to deliver the truth, cannot or will not, then the People should fire all involved.

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